For a brief moment in time, I really really wanted to be a floral designer (that pic is an arrangement I did a few years ago).
I've always just had a knack with flowers, and after making bouquets and arrangements for friends for many years, someone finally said to me: YOU SHOULD TOTALLY DO THIS FOR REALZ. So, I took a ton of classes, spent many mornings at the flower market and then realized: oopsie. I have no desire to wake up early every morning of my life, work weekends and deal with bridezillas all the live long day. So yeah... I just let that dream die.
Howevs after reading about and studying tons of other floral designers (AND working for the real life Mr. Big who constantly ordered beautiful arrangements of flowers for all sorts of peeps all over the world), I *did* learn a trick or two along the way. So I thought I'd share all the shit I know...here's what I got:
- If you need to order flowers for someone in another city in which you don't live and don't know any of the good florists, DO NOT order from some bullshit online service like 1-800-FLOWERS. I get that its convenient, but those flowers look impersonal and cheap. Google that shit like crazy online, OR, my fave trick is to find fancy/chic hotels in that town and then call the concierge for flower shop suggestions. If she/he doesn't have any good ideas (which is tres unlikely) ask them who does the flowers for their own hotel. After she gives you suggestions, google and yelp it up some more and find the best one.
- If you are unsure what you are doing (OR trying out a new place) and you really don't want to leave the flower arranging to chance, order an arrangment of all one type of flower. It's WAAAAY harder to fuck up arranging a bunch of peonies than it is putting together a "get well arrangment that looks kind of springy." Ask the florist what's beautiful and in season and pick out the best flower you can for your price budget.
- Hydrangeas are gorgeous...and expensive...and like TOTALLY FUCKING IMPOSSIBLE to care for properly. I know these puppies look amazeballs, but proceed with caution cause they kind of always die asap in the hands of someone who doesn't know what they're doing.
- Tulips are gorgeous and I love them long time, but they also continue to grow in their vase, even after they've been cut (most other flowers do not). So if you are getting someone an arrangment that is sitting on a desk all week, tulips will be annoying as all get out as they'll have to continue to trim them, and/or will be totally confused when half the stem is out of water and laying on their desk.
- Personally, I find that most flower shops (particularly any located outside of big cities) go waaaay overboard with their greenery. I really think there is a major art to including greenery within an arrangement, and my personal taste tends toward the little or none camp. So I usually say "no greenery please" and leave it at that.
- If you are hell bent on ordering online, there are a few sites that I would recommend, and Flowerbud is one of them. Flowers typically arrive in bud form, so your recipient will have a good long run with them.
- There are plenty of beautiful flowers at NYC markets and bodegas. I typically like to choose a couple of bunches of the same kind of flower, and then get them re-wrapped in plain brown paper (just say no to the cheesy white paper with the roses printed on it pls.
- I learned this trick on Oprah from the Rock-n-Roll florist! If you are doing an arrrangment of your own, pour in a bit of sparkling water. The bubbles will look gorge up against the stems of the flowers.
If you are doing your own arrangement and need a few more of your buds to open up, use very warm water in your vase. And always remember to trim your stems on an angle...even if its just a little bit.
What did I miss?