My Top 5 Most Difficult Wedding Flower Requests, Preston's blog

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The bottom line is that our clients are our bosses. But we’re also artists with our own unique sense of vision and expertise. So, how do we merge these two? It’s not easy. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re a florist, a wedding and event designer or a wedding planner: it’s a struggle for all of us. Over the years, I’ve found myself wearing all of these hats at one time or another. Today I’m going to focus on my work as a florist. On Wednesday I’ll examine my work as a designer and on Thursday I’ll give my full attention to my work as a wedding planner.

Here are the five most difficult floral requests I’ve ever gotten from brides:

1. A bride once wanted goldfish swimming in each of her centerpieces. I should have know better and said no, but my instinct is always to find a way. Unfortunately, in the middle of the party, these beautiful fish starting dying, and I found myself trying to discretely remove dead fish from the centerpieces while guests were on the dance floor.

2. Another client insisted that I use only phalaenopsis white orchids in her bridal bouquet after she saw just such a bouquet in a bridal magazine. I made it for her, but about twenty minutes into the wedding ceremony, the very fragile orchids started to look damaged. Not everything we see in magazines works in real life. However, if a client insists; make a second bouquet in case the first one dies. Just be sure to bill her for that additional arrangement!

3. One client asked for all gardenia centerpieces. I reminded her that these flowers have a very strong smell and told her I didn’t think it was a good idea. But she insisted, and so I gave in. Unfortunately, one of her guests got sick from the overwhelming scent.

4. I grew up in Panama where birds of paradise flowers are everywhere. I like them, but I don’t necessarily like using them; I think of them kind of like weeds growing in the backyard. However, I had a client who wanted an arrangement for her escort card table made entirely of birds of paradise. Eventually, I gave in. And, I have to be honest here, it didn’t look half bad!

5. Way back when I first started working as a florist, I was dead set against using silk flowers in my arrangements. I thought flowers were only beautiful when they were real and fresh. These days we have the most amazing silk flowers and often even I have a hard time telling which ones are real and which ones are fake. Sometimes brides request silk flower bridal bouquets, because they want to keep their bouquets as a keepsake. I welcome this challenge. Usually, I include crystals, and the bouquets turn out beautifully.

Dear Readers (especially florists!), what tricky floral requests have you gotten? Please share. Also, how do you feel about using silk flowers?

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