Choosing a Florist
Local professional florists are committed to providing excellent product and service. They specialize in unique and customized design, attractive packaging, wide selection, same-day delivery, freshness guarantee, expertise and consultation, and personal attention.
The Society of American Florists recommends these tips to help you select the perfect florist for you:
- The Right Fit: Look for a floral shop that offers the product mix, level of service and design style that fit your needs.
- Personal Attention: Choose a florist who will get to know you, keep track of your floral preferences and send reminders of upcoming special occasions.
- Excellent Service: Look for convenient hours, easy-access location and a satisfaction-guarantee.
- Helpful Suggestions: Good florists ask questions about what you’re looking for, offer expert advice and suggest floral gifts to match any sentiment, occasion, personality or home decor.
- Creative Flair: Look for artistry in the florist’s arrangements, design and presentation.
- Selection and Variety: From the familiar carnation to exotic tropicals, a great shop carries a complete menu of flowers and plants to choose from.
- Top Quality Product: The finest florists in the field carry quality product, provide floral food with each purchase and offer instructions for proper care to ensure maximum enjoyment.
- Professional Affiliation: Florists who belong to professional groups are committed to being the best in their field. Look for affiliation with national wire services (FTD, Teleflora), national trade associations like the Society of American Florists, state and local trade associations, and local community and civic organizations.
- Word of mouth is often the best resource when looking for a florist. An outstanding florist will have a good reputation in your community.
- If you use a telephone book or directory assistance to find a florist, look for one with a local address.
- If you choose a national service with a toll-free number, pick an established organization with a strong reputation for providing great service.
SAF’s Florist Directory helps consumers find local professional florists. The Directory is searchable by name, city and state and ZIP code.
Not all “local” florists are local. Some out-of-state telemarketing and online firms pose as local florists. These companies mislead consumers into feeling they are ordering flowers from a local florist, but without their knowledge, are being call-remote forwarded to another state. These firms charge higher fees and take business away from legitimate local florists. Consumers are deceived into thinking they are doing business with a local company when they’re not. That’s unethical and unfair.
To make sure you are doing business with a local professional florist, just follow these tips from the Federal Trade Commission:
- Ask neighbors, family, friends, and co-workers for florist recommendations.
- Deal only with shops that list a street address with their phone number. If you’re asking directory assistance for a number, also ask for the street number and address. If there isn’t one, consider doing business with another florist.
- Ask the florist for directions to the shop. If they hesitate or refuse, consider this a red flag, and avoid doing business with the florist.
Contact your florist once you’ve selected the date, time and place for your wedding and reception. If you aren’t familiar with the florists in your area, ask for recommendations from other brides, reception halls or churches. If possible, set up an appointment with the lead designer who will be in charge of filling the order for your wedding flowers.
Look through bridal books and floral guides. Sketch ideas, cut out pictures or take photographs of flowers you like and share them with your florist. Seeing your ideas and personal style will help your florist translate your concepts and special requests into workable floral designs and arrangements that are just right for you.
It will be helpful if you know the colors and style of the gowns you and your bridesmaids will be wearing. Bring pictures of your gown and the bridesmaids dresses, along with swatches of fabric if you have them available.
During your initial consultation with your florist, discuss specific design ideas that fit both your personal style and budget. Make arrangements for your florist to visit both the ceremony and reception sites.
The following are suggested questions to ask when consulting with a wedding florist:
- What are the current bridal styles and how do you see them being used in my wedding?
- What are some of the new and exciting flower varieties and are they available in the colors I have selected for my wedding?
- What flowers will be in season at the time of my wedding?
- What flowers are available that will be used to fill my order based upon my budget and color preferences?
- Do you have pictures of arrangements from other weddings you’ve done at my wedding ceremony/reception site? What size, shape and colors work best at my ceremony/reception site?
- Will there be sufficient staff to design the arrangements for my wedding and have them delivered on time?
- How will the flowers be handled, delivered and set-up, taking into consideration the weather constraints for my wedding?
- Do you preserve bouquets after the wedding?
- Is there an additional charge for delivery, set-up and servicing my wedding? How are these charges determined?
- Do you offer rental items (vases, urns, etc.) or do we need to rent them from another company?
- Are there any extra fees (delivery, set-up, sales tax, etc.)?
To find a wedding florist, visit SAF’s National Florist Directory at www.nationalfloristdirectory.com.
Aboutflowers.com is hosted by the Society of American Florists, the U.S. floral industry trade association. Click below to find a local SAF member florist to send flowers, roses and gifts for delivery.