8 (not so obvious) questions to ask your Wedding Florist
Monday, 13 June 2016
Your getting married! Congratulations. Now for the planning, organising and booking of the big day. So many options to choose from and that’s just with the flowers. To make sure you get the wedding flowers of your dreams, we have put together some, not so obvious questions, you should ask your potential wedding florist.
Not so obvious? We at Thrive Flowers & Events have been in the Melbourne wedding flower industry for over 15 years and during this time have seen and heard practically everything when it comes to weddings, flowers and events. The list below is the top questions we have been asked over the years.
1 - How many weddings have you done previously? Have you won any awards?
These are really good questions to ask, you want to make sure that the florist you choose is experienced and qualified. Find out how many weddings per season your florist does and if they have won any independent awards, like those from the Australian Bridal Industry Academy (ABIA).
You are interviewing florists because you want quality and beauty in your wedding flowers and you need to make sure you are choosing a wedding flower specialist rather than a florist who does weddings. Also don’t discount the wedding specialist because of concerns over cost, they should not necessarily cost you more, they should, in fact give you peace of mind. Our brides are often quite surprised at our prices compared with a local florist shop.
Independent awards, like the ones from ABIA, are a great measure of the quality and service your wedding florist gives. The awards are given out based on ratings from participating newlyweds from the previous wedding season. The newlyweds rate and review the ‘Quality of Product’, ‘Quality of Service’, ‘Value for Money’ and ‘Attitude of Staff’ of each of their nominated wedding suppliers.
2 - I have a budget; can you make my design work within it?
Wouldn’t it be amazing to have an unlimited flower budget at your wedding? Think, flower wall of Kim and Kanye size. Most brides have an idea of what they want for their flowers and also a budget. Do the ideas match the budget? This is where a true wedding specialist can help. If you have a budget it is a really good thing to tell your florist during your initial consultation. This way they can work within it. Using the popular flowers like Peonies and David Austin roses on a smaller budget is quite challenging. But the skilled florist will be able to create the look you want using with alternative flowers.
Shortly after your initial consultation, your florist should provide you with a fully itemised quote for everything on your wedding flower wish list. This way you can subtract (or hopefully add) items to match your budget. There should be no hidden costs with your wedding flowers.
3 - How many weddings per day do you do?
A good question to ask your florist. It is your special day and you want the best possible, but all florists need to make a living and during wedding season it is likely they will have more than one wedding per day (especially on Saturday’s). Find out if your florist already has other bookings for your date. If yes, ask them how they will fit yours in. The experienced and award winning wedding florist won’t bat an eyelid at this question and would only take on multiple weddings if they have the resources to do so.
In general (and especially at Thrive) the earlier you lock in your florist, the better result you have in terms of resources and timings for your special day. At Thrive, if you lock in your wedding first then every other wedding we may have on the same day must fit around yours.
4 - Do you personally select our wedding flowers?
This question came from a groom a few years back and has stuck in our
minds as such a great question ever since. Your wedding flowers should be
personally selected by your florist when they are located in close proximity
to a wholesale market or directly from the farm.
The flowers from the shop floor will just not cut it.
At Thrive Flowers, we are lucky to be close enough to the (trade only) Melbourne Wholesale Fruit Vegetable & Flower market and during wedding season hit it up 3 times a week to ensure we have the freshest and highest quality stock on hand for your wedding.
5 - Where do your flowers come from?
If ethically and locally sourced flowers are important to you then this is a good question. Because, yes, there is such a thing as Flower Miles! Flowers are shipped into Melbourne from all over the world and not all come from countries that produce them ethically or environmentally sustainably.
Should you wish, a wedding flower specialist will be able to tell you where each piece of your design has been sourced from, as they would have selected each piece personally.
6 - How do the flower deliveries work on our wedding day?
This is more important than you might imagine, as it is a big day for both of you and your families. Think makeup, hair, photographers! With everything going on, picking up the flowers is not a job (or responsibility) that you or your family members may have time for.
Your quotation should include the options to have the bridal party flowers delivered to one or several locations (bride and groom). It should also include costs for ceremony / reception delivery and pick up (if required). Finally, if you want to save some money (and spend it on an extra floral installation), you should also be given the option to come and collect the flowers.
At Thrive, all our wedding deliveries are made using our own trained staff (and not a random courier), to ensure that your wedding flowers get to you the same way they left our studio. We have also over the years perfected the art of placing the groom and groomsmen’s buttonholes on the jackets. They are quite tricky to get perfectly in place!
7 - What happens to our ceremony / reception flowers after the wedding?
That should be completely up to you. You will have paid for the flowers (maybe not the vases), so you should be able to do with them what you please. Give them away to your guests or perhaps even donate them to a local hospital. Your florist should give you options to ensure that these floral works of art are admired for more than just one day.
At Thrive, we offer a wrapping station, from just $20, complete with paper and twine, so that your guests can take them home. We can also organise on your behalf, for $100*, to collect, rearrange and deliver to our local palliative care hospital.
* Please note that the $100 is to cover the costs of collection, rearrangement, additional materials and delivery. Thrive does not make any profit from this arrangement.
8 - I have no idea what I want, can you give me some inspiration?
If your florist doesn’t have an extensive portfolio of recent work (whether it be a website gallery, Instagram, Facebook photo album, Pinterest, photo album), then walk away. You want to choose a florist who is passionate about their work and has the proof to show you. Pinterest is a great tool for both bride and florist to share wedding inspiration. If you have a Pinterest board for your wedding flowers, be sure to share it with your florist.
The experienced wedding florist will have done many weddings and will be able to provide you with a multitude of ideas to fit your likes, your budget and your venues. If you’re not sure what to search for, your florist should be able to guide you in the right direction based on your dresses, favourite colour, & style.
We hope these questions and explanations help you choose the most appropriate wedding florist for your special day.
Lots of flower love to you,
From the Thrive Flowers & Events Team