Pricing seems to be one of the trickiest subjects when it comes to wedding florals. It can vary for so many reasons and at times can be very confusing. To many who are not in the industry, the price for custom wedding florals can be shocking. But why is that? What makes a particular arrangement quickly climb in price? There are many factors that we as wedding florists must consider when pricing any arrangement from something as small as a boutonniere to something has large an archway covered in flowers. I hope that breaking down some of these factors in this blog post can help you better understand what goes into creating florals for a wedding or event.
1. Consultation & Proposal Writing - A good portion of what goes into pricing is the amount of time it takes for various steps in the process. Many people only think of the final product, but don't consider the amount of time and work that went into planning and creating that arrangement.
The first step is the consultation and proposal. A typical consultation lasts about an hour where I get the chance to learn a little about you and your vision for your big day! I then take all of the information that I gain and put together a custom proposal based on the arrangements you are wanting. I also pull together a custom vision board that has images of the florals that I recommend for your colors, style and season. While the consult may only last an hour, the proposal and vision board can take 2-3 hours beyond the meeting.
If the client moves forward with booking me, there are typically 4-5 more times that I will potentially change or adjust something within the proposal. Sometimes more. It just depends on the client and the scope of the overall event.
2. Ordering & Supply Gathering - The next big step in the process is the ordering not only of the florals and greenery, but the hard goods as well. We source our florals from several different local wholesalers as well as national wholesalers when needed. Many of the florals are coming from all over the world and we spend time making sure that not only are we securing the best quality of product, but also the best pricing on product. The better the cost of the product, the more product that can be put into your arrangements.
We quote based on what we know the average cost of your specific types of florals cost for the time of year of your event. However, if there happens to be either a spike in cost of a particular bloom or even a spontaneous sale, we take that into account when purchasing. We will never come back to reprice the arrangements that we have already quoted you, however, we might make adjustments in selection to make sure we are still delivering the size, style and overall look of arrangement that we have promised.
We also secure supplies outside of the flowers and greenery. Many arrangements and installs have a lot within or underneath the arrangement that you can't see. That's our goal, is to always hide our mechanics! But because of this need for mechanics, we have a lot of other supplies that we must source as well. Especially for installations, we always want to make sure that they are not only structurally sound, but are also providing the right amount of hydration for your flowers to look beautiful from the time they are install until you are doing your grand exit at the end of the night! If you rent candles or containers from us, we also spend the time making sure those supplies are stocked and ready on hand for installation on day of event. This process of supply ordering can often take not only hours, but days at a time.
3. Flower Processing - One of the biggest steps that a lot of people do not think of, is what we call flower processing. When the flowers are packed by the farms who grew them, they are often wrapped in lots of paper and card board. The stems are often even cut well before they are bloomed to allow for the time of transportation from the farm to the wholesaler to myself the designer.
When I receive the flowers, I begin the process of not only unpacking, but stripping of any thorns or excess leaves that fall beneath the water line that would create bacteria, and finally re-hydrating the blooms. Often the flowers have traveled for several days without water and may look a little limp on arrival, or not fully bloomed. We trim and process flowers as well as putting into fresh water for a period of time to ensure that every bloom is at its best on the day of the event. We keep certain blooms out of refrigeration to allow for the warmth to open those blooms and monitoring when they are open enough to be returned to the refrigeration to stop that opening process.
There are also times that a flower might arrive to me dead, moldy or just not in the best condition. I then have to do the work in securing replacement product to ensure the best quality of arrangements. This is where having relationships and accounts open with various local wholesalers comes in beneficial in sourcing that replacement product.
Processing itself can take several hours if not a whole day on its own as well as sourcing replacement product can take many hours as well with possible traveling from wholesaler to wholesaler.
4. Designing & Arranging - Our favorite day in the entire process is Design Day! This is the day that we get to create all of your beautiful arrangements that we've been dreaming up for months or even years. Depending on the size of your wedding and number of arrangements, we typically have a team of 3-4 people working for a full day on everything. From bouquets to table arrangements to the smallest details in your boutonnieres and corsages, this is the day to create each piece. Each of these pieces are designed and ensured that they have proper hydration as well as refrigeration to last until delivery day.
5. Delivery, Installing & Tear Down - Finally, the day of your event! Again, depending on the size of your event, the number of arrangements and installs as what timeline your venue allows us to work within, we typically have a team of 3-4 people (sometimes even more!) to ensure that everything is setup or installed in a timely manner for your photographers to begin photographing as well your event to begin on time!
Our day typically begins with checking over all of the already designed arrangements to make sure everything still looks its absolute best. We then begin the process of loading our vehicles in a way to ensure everything arrives safely, this can be a fun puzzle process. We double check our supply lists to make sure we have every supply we need to not only install your arrangements on site, but also fix anything that might get damaged in transport. Our drive time to the venue can range anywhere from 10 minutes to 1.5 hours depending on the location of your venue.
Finally, at the venue we begin load in, setup and installations. We often stay through the ceremony in order to move or transport arrangements we are reusing from your ceremony at your reception. And last but not least, we return at the end of the night, if you've selected to pay for tear down to remove all of the florals from your venue as well as collect our rental items.
As you can see, there is so much more that goes into wedding floral pricing than just the arrangements themselves! Lots of people, lots of supplies and lots of knowledge is used in ensuring that every one of the arrangements we create for our clients are exactly how they always dreamed them to be!
We hope that when our clients choose KatieBug Florals, they understand that they are paying for more than just beautiful florals, but also the peace of mind that the service and process will be of the highest standard and quality. We hold our clients dear and are grateful for their trust in our team!