Finding my florist was surprisingly easy and painless. I did some research on vendors, looked at a lot of websites, and asked people in the business for referrals. The florist I chose to work with is Carol Van Zanten of Vinifera Floral Design who was recommended to me by my ceremony officiant. I met with her “just to keep my options open” judging from the beautiful arrangements on her website I incorrectly assumed she was out of my price range. It turned out she was very reasonable and accommodating. She spent a lot of time with me going through her portfolio and getting a sense of what I wanted and gave me a very reasonable quote. I brought along photos of arrangements I liked so she could get a sense of my vision. I was happy to have met with her, she was very professional and knowledgeable and she made me feel like a very important client. I look forward to working with her in the future for our special day.
I have some background in floral design so I went into the meetings with an open mind. Some flowers aren’t available year round so it would be terrible to have your heart set on a particular flower only to find out the flower you wanted to use in your wedding in February is only available May through October. I told the florist which flowers I did not like and we went from there. The florist had some great ideas as to what flowers would suit my style and were cost effective. I felt as though the independent florists I visited had much more creative license than some other well known establishments or chains that seem to rehash the same arrangements for every wedding. I am very excited to see what Carol creates for me to walk down the aisle with.
I have a lot of respect for what florists do. It is hard work the experts just make it look easy. Thanks to websites like Pinterest, some brides think it will be no problem to DIY 20 centrepieces, 5 bouquets, 10 boutonnières, and 8 corsages the day before their wedding by picking flowers from their garden or buying in bulk from a local store. From my own experience in the industry I can tell you it will take you hours upon hours (especially on a first attempt) and most flowers, especially those picked from the garden, might not even make it through the ceremony because they have not been conditioned the way flowers from a florist have been. You may end up spending more time and money in the long run than if you hired a professional in the first place. There is a reason they are professionals. It is best to find someone who you are comfortable with. They can always use less flowers or different flowers with a similar look to fit almost any budget.