{Wed} iquette Wednesday::

Florist vs Floral Designer...huh-h-h?
In the last few years, "floral designers" have become all the craze. The exotic, over-the-top floral art arrangements that grace the altars at ceremony sites and the jaw-dropping centerpieces that command attention in reception halls, can be directly attributed to the creative vision of floral designers. Floral designers, unlike florists, generally do not work out of a shop and are particularly versed in creative, nontraditional themes. Floral designers can create an unifying look for your entire wiedding, integrating not only the flowers into the decor but lighting and textiles, as well. You'll have to decide whether you want to work with a full-service florist, who can provide soup-to-nuts floral needs in-house, or with a floral designer, who generally creates a design and then executes it by outsourcing jobs.
Although many floral designers may not have a shop, they often have a full staff to handle every aspect of the floral plants.
Florist vs Floral designer, regardless to your choice, there are some basic guidelines to keep tucked away::
* Once your selection is made, trust your decision. That's not to say be foolishly blind and turn over full control, but remember that they are the expert. Developing trust gives your vendor the opportunity to be creative and do their best work for you.
* Maintain flexibility when selecting flowers. Your floral vendor may be most inspired if, when purchasing your florals, s/he can use the best flowers available. Keep in mind that, the best may be what is in season at the time and not the exotics that you have included in your 'must have' list.
* Listen to your floral vendor's advice. It is the florists job not only to fulfill your needs and desires but also to advise you on the best ways to make it happen. Remember, it is the obligation of your floral vendor to provide you with an informed opinion.
* Bring Pictures! Bring Pictures! Bring Pictures! Photographs of your vision provides your floral vendor with visual images of your expectations. In addition to pictures, it is also very helpful to bring color/fabric swatches of your gown and bridesmaid's dresses. No swatch available, bring a color palette that includes the family of colors that you have chosen.
* Come prepared. Have a wedding-flowers checklist {yes...one more list}. This lessons the time spent looking through the volumes of floral arrangement portfolios.
* Don't forget the 'nuts and bolts' of it all:: Discuss your overall ceremony/reception decor. Request item-by-item breakdown of the prices, before you sign on the dotted line. Discuss when/where deliveries should take place and ask whether the florist can take care of the little extras(ie, flower petals, florals for OOT Guests, etc}

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