It’s time for what has come to be my favorite blog post of the month…10 questions to ask your potential FLORIST! Floral design can have a huge impact on the overall look and feel of your wedding day, so finding the right person can be key in making your wedding vision become a reality. Even weddings that are less floral inspired, are still greatly effected by how floral design is implemented, so it’s important to find someone you trust to handle this for your wedding day.
This month, I recruited Meg, the owner and lead designer of Fine Line Floral Design, to help us learn the most important questions to ask any potential wedding florist or floral designer. Meg fell in love with flowers from a young age, and continued this passion by getting her degree in horticulture. If you check out the “Who I Am” page of her website there is even an adorable photo of young Meg watering her garden, which is so precious! Meg says, “I feel like my extensive plant knowledge gives me an edge in creating the most gorgeous, unique, custom bouquets for all my brides.” Talk about getting an expert on your side, Meg is definitely going to be an amazing floral expert for your wedding day!
10 Questions to Ask Your Wedding Florist Before Booking
1 | How many events will you book in a single day or single weekend?
Unlike photographers, many florists take on multiple weddings or events in a single day. Wedding season can be short in some markets, so they need to generate as much income as they can in a limited period of time. This is a common practice but it’s important that you know and understand whether you’ll be their sole focus on your special day or if their resources will be split amongst several weddings. If you prefer to have their full attention that day, look for a smaller florist who books limited events per day.
2 | What staff will I be working with for my wedding floral?
Because some florists have multiple events booked regularly, they need a full staff to help them with production. Often the person that you meet with and deal with on the front end will not be the person putting together your bouquets and arrangements the week of your wedding. It’s also possible that they won’t be the person who delivers or installs your event either. Make sure you understand who all you will be working with the day of your wedding and figure out who your day of contacts will be.
3 | What is your preferred style of flower arranging?
A lot of florists specialize in a favorite aesthetic when it comes to floral arranging. This can range from modern/contemporary to traditional to garden style to rustic/bohemian. Understanding what a florist’s preferred style and passion is can help you pick the company that is truly the best fit for you and your vision. Make sure to ask to see actual examples of their work to get a sense of what they can do and how it compares to the inspiration pictures you have saved.
4| What other services are you able to offer?
Some floral companies are able to help with other aspects of your wedding such as event design, planning, rentals like table linens, pipe and drape, arbors, and candles. You may be able to get a better deal by working with a florist who offers additional services verses seeking them out on your own from another vendor.
5 | Have you ever worked at my venue?
Having a florist who has previously worked at or visited your venue is not 100% necessary but can be beneficial to you from a planning stand point. Their previous experience means that they may already be familiar with the venue’s staff, the venue’s policy on open flame, toss petals, delivery and clean up times. They may have a better knowledge of parking locations and local traffic in a congested area such as downtown Kansas City. Experience at a venue may translate into a good grasp of the layout of the space for weddings and unique ideas about how to decorate the space compared to what is normally done.
6 | When do I have to have my final guest count to you?
Planning a wedding can take a year in some cases and many things may fluctuate over that period of time from budget to style to colors to guest count. Most florists will ask for 30 walk through via phone or onsite. The purpose of this is to finalize all the details and get the most accurate measure of the number of centerpieces and all other floral items on your list. Generally speaking, last minute changes can be made up until 2.5 weeks before your wedding. At that time, your florist must lock down her order and submit. Small changes may be able to happen the week of your weekend, so don’t be afraid to ask.
7 | Are you able to provide mock ups or sketches of the floral pieces?
Some brides have a hard time visualizing the bouquets or centerpieces that a florist is planning for their wedding. Sample bloom pictures and inspiration pictures are sometimes helpful to figure out the general style. Some florists with a physical floral shop might be able to do a mock up of your bouquet with similar blooms they already have in stock. But please be prepared to pay for this additional service. It might be helpful to visit a florist when they are building a wedding with similar colors to you, so you can get a sense for their style and the quality of their work.
8 | Can you help me figure out a spending range for my wedding?
Asking a florist how much wedding flowers are is like asking a realtor how much a house will cost? Pricing greatly depends on so many variables such as time of year, location of event, quantity and size of items needed, colors and types of bloom, services needed like set up and tear down. There is NO WAY for a florist to have standard packages but they should be able to give you a rough estimate of the high end and low end budgets you could expect when working with them on your project. I typically tell my brides to budget 10-12% of their overall wedding budget to floral and décor. The average wedding in Kansas City runs $30,000, therefore $3,000 would be a great starting point in a discussion with your florists.
9 | Do you have a location that I can come and visit for a meeting?
There are many florists who operate out of their home and have a very informal workshop space, while other florists have a store front location. Neither is better than the other but make sure you understand the difference. Many brides prefer to visit an office space to see where their vendors work and take a look through hardgoods such as vases, candle holders, ribbons, linens etc. A face to face meeting is not a necessity to get a proposal from a florist but if you prefer to meet in person to get a better feel for them as a person, make that expectation known.
10 | What happens to my flowers after the wedding?
You’ll want to make sure you are clear about the clean up duties after your event. Many florists offer full service weddings and will return to take all floral pieces down, remove all hardgoods and do basic clean up. The flowers are technically yours, so it is your right to take home whatever floral pieces you want or send them home with friends and family, minus any rented vases. If you chose not to take the flowers be aware that they may find homes with event staff or sadly find their way into the dumpster. Consider checking to see if you florist has a relationship with a charity who can utilize the flowers. I personally work with Unexpected Blooms, out of Prairie Village, Kansas, where we repurpose gentle used blooms into arrangements that are delivered to local hospice and nursery home to bless others.
For those out there who are engaged or married…I’d love to hear about what it was like to pick your wedding florist! What was helpful during the process?I’d love to hear other questions that you found to be helpful in your search for the perfect floral designer!
10 Questions to Ask:
Each month there will be a new post from a new vendor, so keep checking back!! Next month will be all about wedding venues!!