Floral Tips I learned from Caroline Ruth Design

{this is our cooler}

My sisters wedding (who I am so excited is taking over the defunct Sarah Tucker events – now molly boyd event design ) was featured on Southern Weddings last week!  She worked with me in college, and after college for weddings when she was working for an event and rental company during the week.  So planning her wedding together with my mother was so much fun and let’s be real we are very detailed and particular people who LOVE details, so we stressed over making all of the details perfect.  And I think it turned out beautiful!  I am so happy she is striking out on her own.  Annnnnnyway, since it’s been featured over on SW, I can share some photos here.   I wanted to touch on what we did with the flowers.  Or what Caroline Ruth did, anyway!  Caroline, you may remember, if you’ve been reading a while, was my intern when I did events.  She came all the way down to Florida from South Carolina one summer to intern with my company at the time.  You can read more about this here.  She went back home, but I would fly her down when her schedule would allow to work events with me.  So obviously the internship went well (: …  She launched her own company – Caroline Ruth Design last year and when we were looking for someone to be the month of coordinator we all felt at ease hiring Caroline.  Then when we were looking into florists, we ran into a little speed bump.  My sisters wedding fell on Mothers day weekend which is one of (if not the) most busiest time of year for them.  We got a lot of outright “no’s” or  the price was really out of our budget.  So I pitched the idea that we hire Caroline!  She had started doing floral design, and it was beautiful, and just our style.  She agreed, and I told her I could be her servant for that weekend. lol.  JB’s adorable cousin loves weddings, and has a beautiful wedding IG account Walking in White, and I asked her if she wouldn’t mind coming down to help.  I booked two houses, a three bedroom and a four bedroom… to accommodate everyone, a babysitter, and our flowers.  Luckily there was the perfect room, a tiny tv room, so we froze that out with a window unit that my parents happened to have stored in their attic.  We put tarps down, and had tables put up.  The room became our little cooler.  Don’t worry – we left everything super clean, and got great reviews on airbnb.  Caroline flew down on Wednesday, and that’s when the flowers started to arrive.  Some also arrived on Thursday, so there was processing to do then as well.

I have to say that after this experience I realize why florists are so expensive.  I mean, I always did, respect their craft, but now I REALLY get it.

I worked with Fifty Flowers, and it was such a great experience.  You can see what florals we picked in this post.  With all flowers you have to be prepared for at least one batch to have some issues … maybe they didn’t travel as well as expected.  etc.  We had some greenery that didn’t look great, so we sent pictures and they rushed more italian ruscus.  We also had peonies that didn’t open fully open up.  I talked to their resident “peony expert”, they advised us to keep cutting every few hours, keep them in sunlight to mimic spring.  Caroline is so knowledgeable about flowers, but it’s always nice to hear what other experts suggest when dealing with flowers.  Here are a few things that may help you out, if you decide to do it on your own (though I highly recommend a professional like Caroline!!)… but here are some tips I didn’t know about before.

First things first:  clorox spray the inside of buckets and rinse.  repeat a few times.  We probably had 15 buckets, maybe more?  We bought most at Lowes.  NO bacteria can be in there, for the flowers to last.

Once that is done, flower food is added (we didn’t add any to hydrangeas I don’t think!)  We trimmed the ends under water, and dipped the ends in quick dip by floralife. Then put them in the buckets according to kind of flower.   I actually recently bought some to prep for Heathers sprinkle shower.

Then they all went back in our faux cooler room.

Caroline arranged each bouquet, and put them all in their own vase until they were ready to be tied.  She used this (the etsy shop – poetry of silk) silk ribbon to tie off the bouquets.

Caroline and Hollyann went to work on the rest of the arrangements.  No two round tables were the same – and all had different collections of ginger jars.  The wooden tables had Italian Ruscus garland adorning them.  We were going to have florals stuck in throughout but it was insanely windy that day.  And being right on the beach didn’t help matters.  Flowers were going everywhere unless they had a heavy enough vessel holding it down.

Caroline worked HARD that weekend, and we are ever so grateful for her hard work, knowledge and talent.

Here are a few of my favorite floral photos of the day by Shannon Kirsten :



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