Most brides are fairly knowledgeable when it comes to planning their wedding – the fashion and styling of the attire, the food and music they like – it’s all kind of instinctual but it is when they sit down with their florist that most tend to see question marks. Yes, some brides know a few common flower names like carnations and roses but very seldomly have I sat down with a bride who knows the names of other flowers and can put in to words what they really want to say. Having a floral designer who is able to understand your jumble of words and thoughts is extremely important. A well trained designer, should not only be able to capture what it is you want but also enhance the look you are going for. To be sure you are in good hands on your wedding day, be prepared to ask your floral designer these 8 questions:
1. How long have you been a designing wedding flowers?
Some floral designers may be just starting out while others may have been designing for many years. A newer designer does not mean that they are necessarily worse than a more experienced one. If they are new, ask what kind of training they have had. Some newer designers may be willing to give you a price break because they are building their business- a gamble, but a good one if things go well!
2. How many weddings have you done?
Since the wedding season has it’s highs and lows, the number of weddings a designer has done may be more telling then the number of years they have been designing.
3. What is your training?
Some people do not realize that there are actually professional memberships, workshops and classes for floral designers. It is important to know if your floral designer has had any formal training. Frequently going to workshops, taking classes and studying wedding blogs and magazines will be insightful about your designers knowledge of current trends and styles.
4. Can I see samples of your work?
Many floral designers now have their own blogs and websites that showcase their own work. If this information is not publicly available, be sure to ask to see their portfolio. Some florists do not update their look and are often stuck in a trend that was from 10 years ago. You want to see how their style has adapted over the years and if they are a good fit to the your personal style.
5. Can I have 3 references?
If you have reviewed the designers work and are still feeling uneasy, ask for three references of past brides. Many designers are on sites such as Wedding Wire and they have reviews directly on their profile. If your floral designer does not belong to such a site, ask for the references. Send past clients an email and ask if they were pleased with the designers service and end result.
6. Who actually does the flowers for my wedding?
This is an important question for those who find their floral designer at a flower shop where there are many employees. Sometimes the person you consult with is not the designer. You should ask to meet with the designer who will be assigned to your wedding so their is no miscommunication.
7. Who delivers the flowers for my wedding?
Some floral designers send a delivery person with no design background to set up your ceremony and reception. This is risky, even if all they have to do is set an arrangement on a table. Sometimes in the delivery process flowers have shifted or small problems arise that only a well trained designer would be able to successfully cure. If your designer is not able to deliver the flowers, be sure that someone with a designer’s eye is being sent.
8. Where do you get your flowers from?
Most floral designers get flowers from the closest floral mart. While some places like Costco and Trader Joe’s have quality product at good prices, when compared to a place as large as the Los Angeles Floral Mart, you are limited by the selection and variety. If your designer is getting flowers from elsewhere, find out if the quality and selection are up to par with those at the floral mart. Also, if the designer is not purchasing their flowers from a wholesaler, they are most likely charging you double what they should to make up for it.
These questions are just a guideline of the type of questions you should ask or be thinking about when choosing a floral designer for your wedding. The most important thing is that you are comfortable with him/her. If you have a bad feeling or seem to clash with their personality, go with someone else. Often times a floral designer takes on much more than just your wedding flowers. They can advise you on colors, style, accessories and refer you to other good vendors. It is a good idea to meet with 2-3 floral designers before making up your mind. A floral designer that you are comfortable with can make a world of a difference to the overall style and ease of your planning process.
There are many other things to be consider when choosing a floral designer. Some of these things come from the responses and comments given by the designer you meet with. Stay tuned for an upcoming article on what questions your designer should be asking you!