Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. I'm a part time freelance florist so I most commonly book smaller weddings. My typical bride is passionate about flowers, up to speed on all the latest wedding trends, but isn't placing a huge floral order. She may only be ordering bouquets, and planning to DIY her centerpieces (something I'm happy to advise about).
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A. Look for a wedding florist who communicates how you like to communicate - if you like to share inspiration photos and correspond via email, you should look for someone who is quickly responsive to email. Planning a wedding is really hard work, and you don't need it made more cumbersome by having to track down hard to reach vendors.
Also look for someone who offers a good balance of listening to what you want, but filling in the gaps with their expertise and guidance. A great florist will take your ideas and inspirations as a starting point and improve on them, making them more custom tailored to your tastes, your wedding specifics, and your budget.
Q. If you were a customer, what do you wish you knew about your trade? Any inside secrets to share?
A. Flower pricing is about way more than just a wholesale to retail markup on the flowers themselves. For example, some flowers only come in huge bunches (roses come 25 to a pack for example) so there's no way to work just a few into a design without paying for the whole lot. Labor also has a lot to do with the cost of finished wedding florals. A pomander may be made of very inexpensive carnations, but it may take lots of time and attention to detail to create, and so can be far more expensive than another flower girl option. If something strikes you as expensive, don't be afraid to ask why, there is probably a sound reason, and there are probably alternate designs that are very similar but will cost you less that your florist can suggest.
Q. What important information should buyers have thought through before seeking you out?
A. To create a wedding floral proposal, I'll need to know the date, time and location of your wedding (to make sure I'm available!), the bridal party members that you'll be ordering flowers for, and number of centerpieces (tables) you are ordering for. If you know specific other pieces you want like pew decorations, speak up, but if not, we can work together to come up with additional ceremony and reception decorations that will maximize the remainder of your budget.
You should approach a wedding florist with a basic idea of the look and feel, and color scheme of your wedding, though if you don't have the bridesmaids dresses actually selected yet it's OK. It also helps to have a few inspiration photos, and a short list of any flowers you "must have" (or hate!)
Q. Do you do any sort of continuing education to stay up on the latest developments in your field?
A. I am taking ongoing floral design courses through several local shops and community colleges. I also have a blog that I established to stay on top of and share my knowledge about trends in wedding floral design.