When wedding planning, a lot of brides can feel totally lost on where to start when it comes to choosing a florist – and flowers! I’m excited to have Jackie, owner and lead floral designer at Blooming Hites, sharing her advice and the story behind her business.
Jackie is not only a talented florist and amazing business owner, but a sweet friend! We met at a networking event and later bonded over margaritas. She is great at keeping it real and brides LOVE working with her because of her gorgeous visions and fun personality. Read on for her most valuable floral tips for any bride-to-be!
How long have you been working as a florist?
10 years (WOW – time flies when you’re having fun). I started when I was a teenager, and my first “flower” job was down the street from my house at a flower stand in Coronado.
What started your interest in working in the wedding industry?
I always joke that Barbie and Ken got me into the wedding industry. Actually, who am I kidding. It’s 50% true. I can vividly remember always marrying Barbie and Ken outside in my yard and putting on these lavish (kid-like) weddings for them. I tend to give them credit because that’s the earliest memory I have falling in love with all things weddings. The other 50% is the blessed gift of flower design and connecting them with wedding couples. I have a strong passion in the connection between flowers and people. Being a part of a couples wedding day and seeing their reactions to flowers and the entire wedding day backdrop is the sweetest reward I can think of. It’s definitely drive for my company.
How can a client best prepare for an initial meeting with you?
There are four essentials I would suggest here. First: Pinterest Board. Pinterest Board. Pinterest Board. :) And if not Pinterest, having a little bit of inspiration of any type helps when heading into a consultation. Clients aren’t expected to know flower names – if they do, it’s really impressive. All they really need to know is what they like and don’t like so I can guide them to the right palette/theme suited for them.
The second essential, wedding couples should have a wedding date and a venue/location for their date. The third, having filled out my questionnaire as best they can helps out tremendously. Last but not least, keeping an open mind with budget because flowers cost more than anyone would think. (Read our blog post on exactly where your wedding floral budget goes right here!) For example, our wedding flower base cost starts at $4,000 in order to assist the average wedding wants and needs.
What types of things should couples consider when choosing a florist for their wedding?
I would suggest to couples focus mainly on personality. Finding a florist with a personality and skill set you respect and admire will make the planning process and day of execution run smoothly. I would also recommend wedding couples to not let budget guide your florist choices. It might sound like I am a bit of a broken record on this topic, but you don’t want to miss out on an amazing wedding floral experience just because the quote was a little high initially.
I love to work with my clients in helping match their flower wants to their budget. For example, if a couple is set on garden roses but they aren’t within their budget, I’ll help guide them toward alternatives (like regular roses or another type of rose they might find pretty). I tend to always quote for a client’s dream wedding in the initial proposal. If the quote is out of their price range, I’ll work with them in scaling it back to fit what they aren’t willing to give up.
Can the client expect to hear from you between the time they book your services and their wedding day?
Of course! I’m in a healthy amount of contact with my clients between booking and their wedding day. If they want to have a follow up after the initial meeting, I can schedule one in. I’m happy to hold their hand as much as they want. As for our event design head to toe package, we include day-of wedding managing design with vendors.
What role do you play on the actual day of the wedding?
Great question and one I love to be asked. For wedding day flowers, my team and I are there setting up two hours beforehand. The whole time I’m setting up I’m so anxious to see the wedding couples in their “I Do” wardrobe. Seeing them dressed up and watching their special day coming together is magical. In some weddings, we do room flips. If that’s the case, we will stay to flip the room from ceremony to reception. If clients want us to come back at the end of the wedding to clean-up, we can do that as well. My clients who book my wedding event design management package, we are there day-of wedding managing all design elements with vendors.
What is one piece of advice you can offer for making the most of the floral budget?
Reusing flowers within the wedding is a huge money saver in a floral budget. I always love discussing recycling options that wedding couples can do within their ceremony and reception. For example, couples can opt to transition their bouquets from the ceremony to the reception by placing them at tables or in the bathroom. Another favorite is reusing the pillar arrangements from the ceremony and into their reception by decorating the escort table or buffet.
What trends for 2018 weddings are you loving?
This year, I really like that wedding couples are choosing to do more hanging installations. A few other trends I’m loving: non-traditional ceremony decor (like arches) and geo-shape centerpieces.
Is there anything else couples starting their wedding planning should know about flowers?
Don’t settle on wedding flowers by cutting them from or taking them out of your wedding budget. Beautiful blooms help accent and elevate an entire wedding atmosphere. Also, couples should know that there are plenty of pretty alternatives for certain flowers they want but aren’t in season during the time of their wedding.
You can find Jackie on her website here (make sure to sign up for her newsletter!) and on Instagram here. Blooming Hites Studio and Boutique is located in Downtown Roswell – stop in to browse gifting and some pretty paper from yours truly.
Kenzie Packrall, Shelby Rae Photographs