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Shunning Wedding Traditions

When it comes to weddings there are a few traditions that the majority of people still adhere to. One of the most common ones of course is the colour the bride wears. These days it does vary somewhat, with brides choosing one of 1000s of shades between a stark white and a buttery cream or a soft pink etc.

Guests of a wedding can really wear whatever they fancy whether they choose bright colours, pastels or patterns. The older generations wouldn’t dream of wearing black to a wedding, or on the flip side, risk overshadowing the bride by wearing white.

Oh, how things have changed. These days the rule book certainly has been thrown out, and people are making choices based on their own tastes, irrespective of tradition.

Black wedding dresses can cause quite the stir, but how stunning does Sophie Cahcia look!
Black wedding dresses can cause quite the stir, but how stunning does Sophie Cahcia look! Source: via Lost Misfits

25 year old, Melbourne based mummy blogger Sophie Cahcia made headlines for wearing black to her own wedding. Cahcia wore a stunning long sleeved gown with fishtail, lace sleeves and a choker. Her bridesmaids also wore black, and her hubby-to-be chose to wear a red blazer teamed with leather pants. They had chosen to dress for themselves, rather than follow tradition. And why not?

Her bouquet was a wild blend of greenery and berries featuring a rich and dramatic blend of reds and magenta. Her bridesmaids carried bouquets made entirely from greenery, and berries. In that way, it was a little reminiscent of Mortisha Adams, almost as it the rose blooms had been snipped off the bouquet one by one.

The bridesmaids carried bouquets made entirely of greenery.
The bridesmaids carried bouquets made entirely of greenery. Source: via Lost Misfits

Bouquets of greenery can be so interesting because there are so many different foliages out there. We are not talking about a bunch of Camellia leaves tied with a bow, oh no! Gorgeous flat tropical leaves such as philodendrons, and monsteras, heads of cordylines, or dracenas, tendrils of peppercorn berries, or asparagus fern… Add to that the array of bromeliads, or succulents that can add both colour and texture to your bouquet.

And remember, by choosing to have a bouquet of greenery, you are not limited to the colour GREEN!

Bouquet of greenery
Source: Studio Mondine via Brides.com
How interesting is this green bouquet filled with texture?
How interesting is this green bouquet filled with texture?Source: Inessa Nichols design via Knotsvilla
A foliage bouquet that steers clear of green
This foliage bouquet steers clear of traditional green leaves and packs a punch with rich Burgundy. Source: Happy Wedd
Foliage bouquet made with succulents, air plants and thistles in silver and blue tones
Source his bouquet uses succulents, thistles and air plants to add heaps of interest and texture to this bouquet. Notice that although it is a greenery bouquet, it isn’t green. Silver and blue tones shine through. Source: Knotsvilla

So, what do you think about a bouquet that uses no ‘traditional’ flowers? Is that something that you would consider for your big day, or do you think it’s too risky to turn up with something that isn’t traditionally ‘pretty’? If you are currently planning a wedding, or know someone who is, get in touch with our friendly staff on 02) 98711666 or browse our wedding gallery.

Love to hear your thoughts on any traditions you would consider compromising, or traditions that are non negotiable for you.

Fwf x

Featured Image: Homegrown.org

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Having a Great Meeting with Your Wedding Florist

When you run a business, is all money good in your books? This probably sounds like a pretty strange question, because the purpose in business is to make money right? But where each business draws the line in the sand is their choice. Recently I’ve heard of businesses declining working with same sex couples, other businesses refuse work on Valentine’s Day, some will not take on events during the Christmas/New Year period as so many growers shut over the holidays so stock is hard to come by. Each to his own I say.

When I was growing up, the old adage of never discussing religion, politics and money at a dinner party, seemed to be pretty sensible. In many ways, this decorum should also apply in business, after all, if a client wants us to decorate a chuppah, an Orthodox Church, or an arbour in a garden, what bearing should our personal views have?

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Like every other business in the world, all sorts of briefs are going to land on your table. Truthfully, the amount of times I’ve been handed a bunch of blue dyed orchids, and thought….what on earth am I going to create with these 😂  is more than I care to count. My personal view is that I am a designer, I am given a brief, and I execute that brief. Flowers choices aside, there are some scenarios or situations with the (ahem) ‘group’ dynamic that could perhaps influence a decision in taking on work. Like any relationship, communication with your vendors is so incredibly important. Both parties must feel they are able to work well together, that they are on the same page and that there is a mutual respect. Here are a few tips to getting the most out of your meeting.

  • If you have a budget- BE HONEST!

We all have a budget to work with in life, it’s a reality of the daily grind. If you have a non-negotiable budget the best conversation to have with your suppliers is one that lays this on the table, so they best understand what scope they have to work with. Let’s be real- your can’t have champagne on a beer budget.

Gorgeous candelabra table setting

  • Have your decision makers present

To have a productive meeting with your vendors it is imperative you have the decision makers present. Meeting your suppliers, getting that initial impression, building a rapport, and having a discussion that includes the vital players is the only way everyone can be on the same page. By the same token, having people there who are not vital to the process can be very distracting. The conversation can travel to too many places, and too many opinions can leave everyone confused.  Heard the saying ‘Too many chefs spoil the broth’? This is certainly the case when conceptualising with, or briefing your suppliers. Whilst it is a very exciting time for many members of the family, there may be other times throughout the planning process that you can utilise the many hands that make light work.

  • Schedule your meetings as and when you are ready to make decisions

There is a lot to organise in a wedding, but there is also a natural progression to ticking off the tasks. Have you decided on the date? Have you booked the venue? These are the very first things you need to decide upon before thinking about anything else.

Once you date has been decided, your flower choices are determined according to season. Does that mean you are now ready to meet with a florist? No. A wedding florist will generally provide a colour consultation free of charge, but the cost of sitting down with each client can be costly to a business if the meetings multiply or if meetings do not result in decision making.

If you want to get an idea of prices before you are ready to make design/concept decisions, Florist with Flowers has a Price Guide online that you can check out here.

Have your bridal gown, as well as any bridesmaids gowns purchased/ordered so that your florist knows what colour palette he/she will be working with.  If you could also have suit/tie/accessories worked out, it helps your consultant get the whole picture.

  • When things change- keep your vendors in the loop

Life rarely goes according to plan, things do change and everyone understands that. Just bear in mind that your vendors decline other work based on your booking, and the work involved in your brief. When reductions are required, give your vendors plenty of notice. Major reductions are usually not accepted closer to the wedding day as there is little chance the vendor will be able to recoupe the income will additional work. Booking deposits are generally non refundable.

Getting married or planning a large event is an exciting time. To have the best experience it is important to choose quality suppliers, be prepared to make compromises when your budget does not match your vision, and to communicate with all parties to make sure you don’t assume something is understood, but has been left unspoken.

Fwf

 

 

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What is an Order Gatherer and How Do They Affect the Floral Industry

What do YOU do when you want to send flowers to an unfamiliar area? Like most people you probably type something into google and pick the first (relevant) option, right?

Beware! The first few results are paid ads that sit at the top of the page by order gatherers. The problem with that is that these third party businesses are set up with the sole purpose of aggressively promoting the hire/sale of the goods/services you are seeking, with the intention to broker your business to local companies for fulfilment. This all happens for a fixed processing fee and commission….but this is not adequately explained when you make your purchase with them.

This isn’t something confined to our industry, this kind of thing is present in every industry on some level I’m sure- I’ve experienced it myself when hiring a car. The issue for florists however is that when you accept and fulfil orders from these so called ‘order gatherers’ you are never able to present your work in the best light. This is because the customer has paid a commission to the order gatherer, on top of the delivery and handling fee. What is left, (a fraction of the customers total spend) is all the executing florist can create the arrangement with. Can they do a $100 arrangement with $60 worth of flowers? As a customer do you think you would be satisfied with that arrangement considering what you have spent?

Flower fails from order gatherer

The customer often has selected a picture from a catalogue and therefore has expectations that the order will look like that on the other end. These catalogues tend to be fairly generic, and do not take into account each florists unique style, or what stock is available to them. This varies greatly, particularly in remote and rural areas. Often substitutions have to be made based on what they have in store, or what is in season.

Order gatherers are sneaky. They have domain names that sound like a little family business using a person’s name in the title like ‘Joanne’s Juicy Blooms’. This conjures up images of a cute little bricks and mortar corner store style set up. The reality is NO STORE even exists. They use names that include the suburb or city you are searching for…surely that means you have gone directly to a local business right? Wrong. They are savvy, and they rely on people making assumptions and being complacent or confused…

Order gatherers give you the impression they are a real store, but they are not.

Look, I’m not sure whether we need order gathers…but perhaps the biggest issue is the feeling that these companies seem to be misleading consumers rather than disclosing all relevant information. If the consumer is fully aware of all the costs and commission amounts that will be deducted from their total spend before the arrangement can be made, AND understand that the order will be forwarded to a local business with no guarantee that the order can be fuflfilled as pictured, then I see no issue. At this point though, order gatherers do not make it easy for the consumer to see what value of their order will actually be translated into flowers.

Many businesses have begun distancing themselves from relay services and order gatherers as they feel they are having a detrimental affect of the industry. Instead they are developing their own floral networks throughout the country so that local businesses can execute the work with integrity.

Florist With Flowers is your local Carlingford florist, we deliver locally and to surrounding areas our own, fresh product.

We do offer relay services and can guide you in your choices when sending flowers elsewhere, explaining what costs are involved in that service.

As a local family run business we rely on word of mouth by providing you with quality fresh flowers and great customer service.

Each order that we execute is potentially our first introduction to a new customer. That means of course we want to put our best foot forwards does every small business, so where possible try to order direct. Shop small. Support small.

Fwf x

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