I am excited to announce a new blog series with a Vendor Feature on one of my favorite Seattle Florists, From The Ground Up Floral! Over the next few months I will be featuring all types of different wedding vendors showcasing who they are, what they offer and how fabulous they are!
Today’s feature is all about one most important parts of the decor of your wedding, your flowers! From The Ground Up Floral is an amazing Seattle Florist that I have worked with numerous times. I am incredibly excited to share a interview with Gina and share all her wisdom and insight with you.
How long have you been in business?
I started il Bel Fiore in 2008, and have been slowly sprouting up since then. I formed into an LLC recently and sadly said goodbye to il Bel Fiore…and hello to From The Ground Up Floral.
Where are you located?
I am located in Kent, Wa. But, I love to travel and freelance anywhere needed. I have been filling in a little at Countryside floral in Issaquah lately. You can never have enough hands when there’s a busy time in a floral shop!
What made you start From The Ground Up Floral?
My start up in wedding flowers began with my own wedding! I was crazy enough to attempt my own wedding flowers (so I can relate to the DIY bride). I did take a few classes and learn basic care and prep for the flowers and then carted them all the way to Heceta Head Lighthouse, OR for the wedding. Part of the reason I chose to DIY my wedding flowers was the simple fact that there was no one who did flowers in the area! I looked. Yes, it was semi disastrous. And, my step-mother in law ended up finishing up the centerpieces. I ended up finishing up boutonnieres at 3am the morning of the wedding…I tell all brides who will give their ears, save the stress and mishaps. Hire someone. You need to savor that time with your family and friends, and not be worrying about the damn hydrangea going limp. But, a long story short, I fell in love with more than my husband on our wedding day.
What is your favorite part of owning your own business?
I’m a born hustler. I can’t sit still for a minute. I love that owning my own business keeps me intrigued and challenges me in all aspects. My creativity, my passion, and even my not so awesome skills like organizing paperwork, and the numbers part LOL. (I also love my husband for this part).
Who is your ideal client?
My ideal clients are those who appreciate all that goes into creating an event to remember. Flowers are such a key part in lifting our spirits and senses. A client who understands that is going to have people talking about their event for years to come.
Who inspires you in your design?
I stay up to the minute in floral design trends. I believe it is so important to be able to offer anything a client can come up with. I hold a Certified Floral Designer title, and am testing for sort of my master’s again this year. I am inspired by so many people in the AIFD (American Institute of Floral Design) realm. I also adore Holly Chapple, of the Chapel Designers. She pretty much invented the bespoke bridal look. ALL of her work is amazing! I hope to be a part of her team someday!
Describe the process of working with you. How would a couple interact with you from start to finish?
Working with me is easy peasy. I like to meet one on one, usually over coffee or something. We go over style notes, Pinterest of course! And, basically I am there to listen to all and every aspect of your dream wedding. From there, I do have to get a dollar amount. Then I compile all the things we talked about and shared ideas into a nice little synopsis and email it to the couple. Then I recommend a deposit to save their date. My proposals are always custom, and always up to what the bride and groom feel comfortable with. I don’t have a minimum for studio pickup orders. Which works really well for Bride’s that just want a bouquet and a boutonniere. I hate to limit people on what they can order. I do have a $500 dollar minimum for delivering a wedding, since at over this price there are usually a few more pieces and special care and handling needs to be taken to get it all there flawlessly. If I deliver your wedding I stay till everyone has their boutonniere pinned on and is looking fabulous! I take pride in giving complete service. Plus, I would totally crash weddings if I didn’t do this for a living! I’m a sap.
What’s your favorite bouquet you’ve done?
Ah, that’s a really hard question. I don’t think I’ve really thought of it this way till just now, but they’re all kind of like my little children LOL. There is something special that goes into each one. And seeing the look on the Bride’s face when I get to hand it to her is something priceless. I think every florist can agree with me on that one! If I had to pick, I would have to say Heather’s bouquet. She came to me wanting something totally different. Asymmetrical and gorgeous. I made a hogarth curve (S-shaped) bouquet using chinese lanterns that I hand wired. Then the focal point of the bouquet were some stunning dinnerplate dahlias. Wonderful early fall colors.
What’s the biggest trend you are seeing in wedding flowers?
Composite table pieces (many small arrangements or vases) for long rectangle tables. I am hoping the pairing of pastels with dark deep rich colors catches on, I love it! Dark navy’s or black with bushes or pinks. Marsala and pink, or dark greens with white or light green. I like dramatic color schemes. Colored or tinted dresses are to die for! And the ethereal bespoke bridal bouquets are still in full swing! Cascade shapes and vines. I am a nut for this stuff. I have to stop.
What do you tell brides trying to save money by doing their own flowers?
I just talked to a girl yesterday about this very thing. It helps that I can relate. I’ve been there. I know what I should have done. I should have been drinking champagne with my girls, not gumming up my $80 manicure with floral glue. Or frantically wrapping my bouquet on the way to the ceremony. NUTS. In the long run, really DIYing it doesn’t save you too much money when you factor the time and energy it takes to prep the flowers, make sure they don’t wilt, and have family or friends grunting when they should be enjoying.
What makes my company unique?
I know flowers. I love them. I spend my free time on education in the floral industry. I listen. I actually want to hear about your dream wedding, and how you met your other half. I am a hopeless romantic. So, this combo is the real deal. Plus, I’m pretty easy going.
Is there a certain style or trend you are hoping to see come up this season?
Well, I know the boho bride is trending…but I would love to see some bold brides. Things like black and white prints with a bright color. Or solid black, grey or white with a couple of bold accent colors. The other metals…besides gold.
I love photographers. They just get it. And all you wedding planners, I love you too! You make my life so much easier! It’s not too often I get to meet all the vendors that come together to make a wedding special. It’s usually emails exchanged or meetups since we are all working so hard day of. When the new website is up, I plan to make a page for vendors I have worked with that shine.
Where do you see From The Ground Up Floral going?
Well, my plan with all this rebranding is to make my own space. I want to open a place where you can grab something beautiful for your home and a nice cup of coffee. A floral and coffee bar if you will. Live on coffee and flowers is a true fact in my world.