THE FLORIST BRIDE
Why I fired my florist 6 weeks before my wedding
Tips from a florist on what you should expect from your floral designer
By Katie Reisman
As a former bride and current florist, I have a lot of friends and friends of friends ask me for advice on how to work with their floral team throughout the planning process. When I tell brides that I fired my florist 6 weeks before my wedding, their raised eyebrows do little to hide the “bridezilla! bridezilla! bridezilla!” warning that flashes across their faces.
Swear I’m not one (ok, maybe a tiny bit...but aren’t we all when we’re spending that kind of money?) - just an over informed wedding vendor who knows what level of service I should expect given my profession. Learn from my crazy journey so that both you and your florist are able to relax, feel confident in each other and design the wedding of your dreams.
Things started out great with florist number one. We had long chats about dahlia colors (chocolate photographs better, while burgundy reads as red in pictures). She sent me samples of her work - which were impressive and very much my style. We signed a contract and I checked “florist” off my wedding to-do list 8 months before my wedding.
The trouble started when my business partner asked me to show her my florists Instagram. Up until that point, I hadn’t prioritized this as I was taking a break from social media. Once I logged back into my account and checked my florists, I started panicking. The work she was sharing was completely different than the photos she had shown me. Her design aesthetic wasn’t close to what we had discussed, and I became terrified that our styles were wildly different due to the way she was representing her brand on the platform.
As a florist, Instagram is our best tool to honestly share who we are as a brand, who we are as people, what our style is, and how we uniquely approach floral design. Most of our current Ash + Oak brides find us via Instagram, and we’ve found the platform to be a great resource to connect with and find clients. As such, we curate what we post on IG extremely closely because we know that this is such a crucial touchpoint for clients to understand who we are, and what they can expect on the day of their event. Big mistake on my part to skip this step in the vetting process!
Why was there such a disconnect between what my florist was saying, and what she was showing? I began to have serious doubt that she could deliver on what she had promised.
I called my florist up and expressed my concerns about the “Instagram disconnect” and asked her to make me a mock-up. If you spend over a certain predetermined amount, your florist should provide a sample centerpiece (free of charge) a few weeks before the wedding. This is an important final meeting for the bride and the florist to tweak any details, and for both to feel comfortable with the look and feel going into the wedding. Knowing this, I asked my florist for a mock-up. She refused and said she would only do it if I paid for materials.
I knew she was in total breach of contract by asking me to pay. Another important lesson for all brides - make sure you read your vendor contracts carefully. We establish contracts to protect both our clients and our businesses - all terms should be reviewed in-depth by both sides so that all parties are protected and comfortable with what is expected of the vendor. You’re spending a lot of money - make sure you’re getting what you pay for!
We decided that it was best to part ways as our working relationship had definitely soured. You don’t have to be best friends with your florist, but florals are one of the “fun” parts of the planning process, and you should enjoy working with whomever you eventually select.
Luckily for me, I found an amazing florist who brought my wedding vision come to life. I was extremely luckily and could have ended up a flowerless on my wedding day - not a good look for a florist.