I often see magazine articles titled "How to choose your florist" or "Questions to ask your florist".
Most of the time, I wonder who wrote these pieces, definitely not a florist!

I thought I'd write this blog as an honest guide to both those titles.

Ok, whatever you do, Don't wait until six months before your wedding to look for your suppliers.
Good florists can get booked up  two years ahead so as soon as you've booked your venue, make your first enquiries.
 
Watch out for the fakers!
Like most industries, there are those that over promise and under deliver! Find out who really will be making your flowers. Are they a one man band posing as a successful business? If they get sick, who exactly will be making the flowers and who will be delivering. Do they have a fleet of vans to cover a break down?

It doesn't matter if you haven't got a theme or decided your styles and colours.
Take a look at different Florist's websites as they are good indicator of style and quality. Have a look at their Facebook pages too. What are other people saying about them?

Book a consultation.
They should always be free with no obligation. If you like the florist, their work and can agree a budget, pay a deposit to avoid the disappointment of losing out. You will have months to finalise your designs.
The consultation is a wonderful opportunity to relax, talk about your plans and get professional advice. It is a great free service that you won't want to miss.

Write down loads of questions before you come.
Ask the questions that matter to you, , not the ones they list in the magazine articles. I'm often asked the same question of 'do I make up the designs beforehand?' Well, the answer is yes I can, but these will cost exactly the same as the flowers on the day. There is no point in making a sample bouquet from cheap flowers, it won't give you any indication of what your flowers will look like on the day. The relationship between you and your florist is about trust. If you like them, like their work and trust them, go ahead and book.

Have realistic expectations.
If a florist has won awards, has great testimonials and beautiful pictures, they are unlikely to be the cheapest. A good florist should be able to work to any realistic budget by showing you the different flowers in season and ways to get similar effects at less expensive costs.

Please don't send the same pictures to lots of florists and expect them to quote for the same things.
There's good floristry, bad floristry and a whole spectrum in between. There's absolutely no guarantee that the cheapest florist can make what you're asking for, let alone choose the right flowers from the hundreds of varieties available.

Pictures and web shots are great!
They give your florist a good representation of what you're imagining your flowers to be. However, pictures in magazines and Pinterest can be deceiving as they are often photoshopped and use varieties of flowers that are not always available in the UK. Use them as a guide to your style.

Bring anything that helps you get over your style and vision.
I often start with the invitations as these are the first glimpse of your day. Pictures of the dress or the styles you have in mind are essential as your bouquet should compliment it perfectly. Colour swatches are great too.

Decide a realistic budget and be honest about it.
Take a look at our guide, 'How much do wedding flowers cost', to give you an indication of what's possible on your budget.

Relax...
Once you've chosen your florist. Trust your judgement. Dedicated Wedding Florists have worked on lots of weddings. They are used to working in a pressured environment and all about getting it right on your day.
 
 
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