My Thought Process Around Starting My Wedding Projects

business mindset client interaction flower business starting a flower business Nov 28, 2020

I thought I’d share my thought process about how I start my wedding projects or even any event project for that matter.

One of my first thoughts is around the client. Getting to know their vision and who they are as a person. What is their personality or what do they want to convey or celebrate? This puts me in the right mindset right off the bat.

Often, it’s tempting as a creative to start thinking or even dreaming about what I want to do instead of thinking about what the client wants. 

I see other florists talk about how they wouldn’t have designed this or that, but “it’s what the client wanted”. I have some thoughts about that, but that’s for another blog!

Back to my process…

Once I know about the client’s needs and wants, I look at the venue, when it’s happening and who will be attending. All of these things need to come into my thought process before I start working on the design ideas.

We all know how important it is to know where the event is happening. How many times have you gotten caught off-guard designing something that can’t even fit or be installed with the space given? It creates problems on-site and definitely can ruin all the good plans you put in place!

I remember early on a client who wanted a gorgeous arch installed at the venue. We discussed the options and what I would design for them. From the images they brought with them and from looking at the venue's website pictures online I thought it would fit. No problem…, right? My biggest mistake wasn’t going for a site visit beforehand. 

The event day came and me and my team arrived on-site to set-up. Much to my surprise, the venue had gone through a major update to their interiors. The arch was too high for the space! 

You can imagine that my excitement for designing this amazing arch completely turned to stress and trying to figure out what to do. It’s not like I could shorten the structure. How was I going to create this design? In the end, we worked fast and visited a local home improvement store and figured out a pipe construction to create a frame for it. 

The lesson? I could have saved myself and my team some major time and $$. All timelines I had created for the day were changed and rearranged. All for trying to save time on the front end by not visiting the venue. Doing the site visit would have only cost me MY time and mileage, but instead I traded it for much, much more in costs. 

As you can imagine, from then on, if I wasn’t familiar with a venue, I would visit it prior to the event I was designing. 

Also considering the time of day, day of the week and time of the year are all important factors in considering the “WHEN” factor. 

For instance, when talking to the client, you or they might have their minds set on a certain flower. But what if that particular flower isn’t available on their date? Your knowledge of flowers will come into play here. 

As well as other factors--like time of day. If it’s in the morning, I don’t normally like to use any candlelight. Some clients think candlelight is great anytime. If they have adjustable lighting, then you can definitely do it. But if there is a lot of natural light, it’s wasting their money to have them use candles. 

Next I get to sketching out the designs and creating the vision to match the client’s.

I should mention that all the while I’m working out these first steps, I’m keeping in mind the overall budget they have. This is super important, right? 

Getting ahead of myself and dreaming up big things for the client without knowing their budget is a sure-fire way to not be profitable and I’m not for that! 

Did I ever do this? Yes, but again, those were lessons learned. And, if I’m honest with you, it still took time to get to the place where that wasn’t the case. 

Even later in my career, I could get caught up in the design. I love florals and designs, but I knew if I wanted to succeed it would behove me to keep the pricing in mind! 

There you have it, my thought process around how I start my wedding and event projects:

  • Client
  • Venue
  • Season, Day and Time
  • Sketching
  • Budget

I love workflows and systems, so this is what’s worked for me!

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