Happy Wedding Advice Wednesday- aka, everyone’s favorite day of the week! This week we are pleased to feature one of our absolute favorite florists! We’ve had the honor of working with Leah (Spera Floral) quite a few times over the last year and each time, her floral designs are absolutely phenomenal! We asked her to share a few tips + stories behind her experience as a florist in hopes that it will inspire our awesome brides who read these posts to make their wedding flowers a big priority on their special day!
What are a couple things to think about when booking a florist for your wedding?
For starters, do you want the design of the florist, or do you want a particular look that your florist can design? What I mean by that is, for different florists, some stick with a common look for all of their designing, meaning, you will get that type of look. But others will design and create based on inspiration from pictures and ideas, meaning their designs can have a varied look.
Another element to inquire about is pricing. Some florists have curated package prices; others will do individualized estimates. Some florists will help rework your ideas to fit your budget and others have minimums and set prices that may or may not work for you.
Walk us through the process from inquiry to day of!
It’s always exciting to receive a new inquiry in my inbox! I check to see if I have your date available and then we set up a time to meet. I usually request that you come with some ideas (pinterest boards are great) of what kinds of bouquets and styles you’re drawn to, otherwise we can discuss ideas and come up with some fun thoughts together. After that meeting I’ll send you a quick estimate with some thoughts on what we discussed in our meeting. From there, we get your date booked, deposit paid, and contract signed, and you are officially a Spera bride! 🙂 Depending on the timeline from that first meeting, we may touch base again in person, but typically any changes or adjustments are worked out over email or phone calls. A month before your wedding, I’ll reach out to finalize your wedding flowers and then I submit your flower order three weeks before your date. The week of, I pick up the flowers on Tuesday or Wednesday, let them hydrate for close to 24 hours, and spend the following days working on all the bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages, table arrangements, etc.. And then we finally get to the day of! Upon arrival I drop off the bouquets and get to work designing the on-site arrangements and installations. It is such a fun experience to see it all come together and work alongside other amazing vendors to create a wedding day just for you! Once we finish up, we head out and the flowers are yours to keep. It’s been fun when I’ve had brides send me pictures of their flower-laden living room. I always hope that you get to enjoy them for as long they’ll last after the day of. It’s also a fun idea to preserve your bridal bouquet in some way, whether you hang the whole thing up to dry, or take a few dried stems and create a smaller version in a glass frame, or have an artist paint a replica to hang in your home. There are lots of fun ways to specifically remember your bridal bouquet.
Things to keep in mind for your first meeting:
I love meeting with potential brides! I really do enjoy hearing their engagement stories, seeing their ring, and gushing over their dress. Yeah…I’m a sucker for weddings! I will say, however, don’t feel bad for not knowing the names of flowers when you meet with your florist. It is our job to know the flowers and styles of design, so you can relax and leave that up to us. It’s pretty common to have a bride apologize for not knowing the name of something – but seriously, there’s no need to apologize!
Something however, to keep in mind when talking with your florist, is the fact that not all flowers are always in season. We’ve gotten pretty good at sourcing flowers from all over and providing quite a variety all year long, but there are many flowers that are still seasonal or difficult to come by during certain months. So be flexible and know that particular looks can be achieved with a different type of flower that will be just as beautiful.
What have been some special moments as a wedding florist?
Being a wedding florist is such a special and unique experience. It is truly an honor and not to be taken lightly bringing someone’s vision to life for such a monumental day. There have been so many unforgettable moments throughout my career as a wedding florist that bring me back over and over to doing this job. One time as my husband and I were wrapping up a job, cleaning up all of our buckets and supplies, and placing some last bit of greenery, the father of the bride came into the reception area and came over to say hello and to thank us. As he went to leave, he paused and asked what kind of advice would we give to the father of the bride… having been married myself and seeing many weddings, I couldn’t help but tell him to just soak it all in and embrace each moment, not being afraid to cry. As tears welled in his eyes and words were hard to come, he looked at me and said, “Thank you.” Another of my favorite moments that will most likely never change, is when I bring the bride her bouquet. The bridal bouquet is the element of a wedding that I really work hard to achieve their vision on and when it is met with gasps and words of how much they love it, I am always ecstatic and full of gratitude that I got to provide such a special piece to their wedding. Speaking of special pieces, I love when brides want to incorporate something unique or come to me with an idea that may be a bit outside of the box. One bride, being from an area in California known for growing artichokes really wanted to give a nod to her hometown. So, what did we do? We put artichokes in her floral arrangements! It was such a fun way to incorporate a piece of home to her and I was more than happy to oblige.
Can your wedding flowers really mean something special?
Without a doubt, your wedding flowers matter, whether you have a specific look you want or if you give your florist full creative freedom. In either circumstance it is always my aim to allow the flowers to speak to your personalities and style. Getting to meet my brides, hear about their lives and how they fell in love, always gives me a better understanding of the look their flowers should have. I’ve always said that flowers convey a message without having to use words. It’s important that your wedding day be a day you love – even if that means you might have a wild and fun idea of using succulents or pinecones in your bouquets. One bride who’s flowers I designed had a very unique and meaningful request. Her fiance over the years had given her flowers for special occasions in their relationship. With each bouquet she had then taken them and hung them up to dry. When we met to discuss her wedding flowers, she gave me a box full of dried flowers and asked if her bouquet could be made from the dried flowers she’d saved over the length of their dating relationship.
It was a beautiful memoir of flowers gathered to accompany her down the aisle. Without using words, her bouquet spoke to the love they had for one another.