Wedding Flowers and Bouquets
We recently had the opportunity to work with an incredibly talented florist. I was originally going to chat with Genevieve from Valley Coastal Events but something came up that limited our opportunity to devote some spare time to a phone conversation - she just had a baby! We bounced some emails back and forth and talked everything wedding flowers.
Evil Spirits Stay Back! (It's Tradition)
Flowers make up a ginormous part of a wedding; they are really the one constant we always see. Traditionally, brides would carry herbs, grains and garlic down the aisle to ward off evil spirits... although Halloween is just around the corner this is where the spooky talk ends because these days we have people like Genevieve to help us make the most of our floral decor. None of what she offers usually involves herbs, grains or garlic but I'm sure she wouldn't have a problem pulling it off if you needed it!
Flowers are such an important part of the wedding day; besides boutonnieres and the bouquet, what other arrangements do you offer?
Each wedding is different! The standard is to order boutonnieres for the groom and groomsmen, bouquets for the bride and bridesmaids, and centrepieces for the tables. Many clients also order boutonnieres for the fathers/grandfathers and corsages for the mothers/grandmothers.
I also suggest to clients to have at least 2 feature arrangements. These can be used on the cake table, the guest book table, the signing table, or any other feature tables. Then there are special arrangements such as arbor flowers, flowers in large urns that frame the ceremony space, flower crowns, flower wreaths, table garlands, cake toppers, and flowers hanging from backdrops. Sometimes photographers request a few extra flowers that they place for photos of invitations and other special details.
Best selling flower? Arrangement?
Eucalyptus! It's not a flower... but it's a very versatile and hardy greenery. I use it for garlands, wreaths, and as pops of green in arrangements. There are a few varieties of eucalyptus, so you can choose a stiffer/rounder variety or a softer/oval variety. You can also choose a seeded variety, which I love using!
As for arrangements, I don't offer anything packaged, so every single arrangement I make is totally unique. I find that many couples are looking for an organic feel to their arrangements, so I love using accents such as eryngium (purple thistle), queen anne's lace, ornamental grasses, etc.
How long have you been involved in the wedding industry in Nova Scotia? What trends have you noticed in that time and what are you anticipating for 2017 & 2018?
I have been running my small business since 2014. I started off focusing on vintage rentals, and have developed a love affair for flower arranging along the way.
Over the past few years, I have noticed that couples are looking for ways to make the wedding experience enjoyable for everybody - by providing things like photo booths, late night snacks, loot bags for younger guests, live music, lawn games, etc. I'm amazed at the amount of loving detail couples put into their wedding, all the way down to providing a cab stand, or lighting a path to the parking lot.
I anticipate that this trend will continue, and couples will look for ways to personalize the wedding experience. A one-size-fits-all packaged wedding is not what folks are looking for anymore.
What's the most crazy and unique arrangement you've ever had to make?
I once had someone ask me to make a motorcycle out of flowers for a funeral. I had to decline... but later I spoke to a florist who had made a motorcycle flower arrangement before, and she stepped me through the process. I'd still be a bit nervous to try my hand in something that precise... I tend to prefer arrangements that look a bit unstructured! :)
How do you source your flowers? Do you source any locally?
I try to source flowers as locally as possible. I purchase my flowers at The Humble Burdock when I can (a flower farm 10 minutes from my place). But sometimes clients want flowers that are not in season in Nova Scotia, in which case I order them from Avon Valley Floral - a floral wholesaler in Windsor.
What is an average price range for a wedding with 120 guests?
This completely depends on what the couple prioritizes. If the priority is to decorate with lots of flowers, the price can range from $1,200 - $2,500 or beyond. If, however, they decide to go easy on the flowers and just order the standard arrangements (boutonnieres, bouquets, and simple centrepieces), the price can range from $500 - $1,200. Price is also determined by the kind of flowers the clients want. If they want flowers that are not in season, or expensive varieties such as David Austin roses, then the price will be higher.
I love beautiful arrangements and I want my flowers to compliment my wedding colours. I'd like to leave the entire floral design and selections to you. Can you do this and have you done it? Does it cost extra?
Yes I've done this, and no it does not cost extra. It's a bit more work for me, but I love doing it! This may not be common practice among all florists though...
What is the farthest you've had to work/deliver flowers to a wedding?
I did flowers for a wedding in Ireland once. It was so much fun... they have wholesale flower markets where you can go and bargain the prices. I was nervous at first, but I took the groom with me and he helped me get some good deals! You have to go with a colour palette in mind, but not be attached to a particular variety of flower.
Favourite wedding venue in Nova Scotia?
I love the Healy Barn in Kentville. I also love Shobac Cottages, although I've never done a wedding there. And you can't lose if you are anywhere near the ocean! :)
Genevieve is an Arts Administrator with a passion for creating beautiful flower arrangements and just plain kicking butt with all things wedding. You can contact her through her website and meet with her in Kentville, Nova Scotia.