5 mistakes Brides make in Choosing Flowers

1. Underestimating the Cost
Many brides tend to focus on other elements of the wedding, such as the venue and the dress, and then have a bit of a shock when it comes time to decorate the space. Centerpieces are just one aspect of décor, and it’s easy to overlook other spaces, such as the entrance, that will look barren if left unattended. Be sure to do your research and share your vision with your florist so that he or she can work with you and help keep your expectations in line with your budget and vice versa.


2. Getting Too Hung Up on Pinterest
It’s great to bring in snapshots that evoke the overall feel of what you’d like to have, but expecting exact replicas of designs can be frustrating for both you and the florist. Don’t forget that these men and women are artists and want to create something unique and special just for you.


3. Being Inflexible
It’s not uncommon for brides to have a favorite flower (like a pink peony), but there are times when the florist can do everything in his or her power and still not be able to get the flower of choice (or as many of them as needed). The bride who has an idea of what she wants with a few options will find the process less stressful than one who refuses to compromise.

4. Using Out-Of-Season Flowers
Seasonal flowers are not only less expensive; they are easier to obtain. (Find out what’s in season during your wedding month here).


5. Choosing Flowers Based Only On Looks
Many flowers, such as lilies, have strong scents on their own, and others have scents that are overpowering when grouped together. Consider all of your senses when designing your wedding.

For more great tips and design ideas, pick up Bailey’s latest book, Designing with Flowers.

Photo Credit: John Labbe/Prestonbailey.com

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Flowers continue to make life better!

The article below is re printed from the Society Of American Florists article about the benefit of flowers

Amazing Health Benefits From Adding Flowers to Your Home

July 17, 2014 By: Kimberly Button

Think about someone sending you a bouquet of flowers.

Makes you smile just a little bit, huh?!?

Now imagine that feel good joy and happiness throughout your day. That’s exactly what flowers can do for you and your family. No need for drugs, meditation or a fistful of supplements each morning. Simply get yourself to a florist.

And you don’t need to wait for someone to send you that big bouquet.

Here’s the nitty gritty: A Rutgers University study found that the link between flowers and your satisfaction with life is far more important than previously thought. Having flowers in your home increased happiness, reduces depression and anxiety and actually can increase emotional contact with friends and family. A separate study by Harvard University found the same results – increased compassion, feeling less negative, and more energy at work. In a trifecta of flower research, Texas A & M University found that flowers and plants in the workplace improve problem solving skills and increase creativity.

Live Like a Flower

The research is so conclusive that the Society of American Florists has dedicated a page linking to all of the positive research of bringing flowers into your home, as well as sharing real-life tips and tricks from lifestyle experts on how to Live Like A Flower and foster a happier life.

Flowers have been called Vitamin F, for all the good that they can do for your body and soul.

That’s why I wanted to talk with Kelli Ellis, a design psychologist; TV personality for HGTV, TLC and tons of other design shows; and author of Do I Look Skinny In This House? Kelli is known for not only creating beautifully decorated interior spaces, but also transforming spaces to foster the happiest, calmest, most energized you that you can be ~ simply from your home décor and design choices.

Kelli is one of the lifestyle experts offering tips to improve your happiness through the Society of American Florists’ Live Like a Flower series. So I asked her about the importance of flowers on our health and scored some Kelli Ellis decorating tips for our readers! 🙂

What benefits do flowers add to our lives?

We know the importance of giving flowers, but it’s just as important to buy them for yourself and treat yourself well, too. It’s the last design element. When I bring my clients fresh flowers at the end of an interior design, it always makes them smile for many reasons.
But think about it. Why do we always make our home look better for our guests than for ourselves? If we had company coming over, you’d clean and tidy up, stash the piles, and add fresh flowers to welcome them. Why don’t we treat ourselves that way in our own home where we live and work?

Bills, magazines and clutter pile up and you quickly forget about the environment in your home. Adding that little touch of beauty through flowers makes you feel happy.

Gerbera Daisy! Are there certain colors of flowers we should add to improve our health and happiness?

Brighter colors that give us energy are those that focus on energy from the inside out. Yellows and oranges really pump those feelings up.

What kind of flowers are best to bring inside the home to improve your mood and energy?

The type of flowers is completely subjective. It’s really fun to see people’s favorite flowers. They always mean something different to each person for different reasons. For you, a type of flower could remind you of your boyfriend or another special memory, but it means something different for someone else. So I always say pick what makes you happy and brings good memories.

What are some ideas to incorporate flowers in the home so that we can improve our well-being?

Flowers on Bedside Table. Put flowers where you’re going to see them often. It depends on what rooms you spend the most time in. For me, if I want to start my day off right, I have fresh flowers on my nightstand so that I see them as soon as I wake up. I put them in the bathroom and kitchen, too, since that’s where I spend most of my time. Think about the steps of your day and where you are the most. If you have a home office where you spend most of your day, it would make sense to put flowers or plants in there.

What are some unique ideas for adding more flowers inside your house?

Flowers in a Watermelon BasketDecorate the chandelier with simple fresh flowers over a kitchen table to add some unexpected beauty. Replace some knick knacks on your shelves with fresh flowers. We get so complacement in our home that we forget what we’re looking at. Pretend like you’re have company coming and decorate that for yourself. Bring your own container to your florist. My florist loves it and she doesn’t have to try to guess my decor. If I bring in a mid-century urn, she’ll create an arrangement that complements the style, so I don’t get anything that stands out or looks weird in my home.

The color of flowers seems to be one of the reasons that they are so healing. What other advice do you have for decorating our homes?

Think, What does this room need to do? Do I need to relax, do I need to work and feel energetic…. just fill in the blank. If you want to relax, bring in soft colors and neutrals, such as in a bedroom. If you want energy, bring in brights. Think of how you want to feel in a space. Then look at magazines and pictures and collect the images that you like. Invariably, you’ll find a color scheme that you’re drawn to that will mimic the way you want to feel.

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I wanted to pass along something I have known for years. Flowers make us happier. But don’t just take my word for it, there is some science behind this…

    When I began my career in the floral industry,  like many soon to be designers, I started off as the delivery girl. The thing I loved most about my job was the great big smile I got when I delivered flowers. People were so happy to see me, and always thanked me profusely, even though I was not the one who had sent them the flowers in the first place. I even had one recipient of a gorgeous bouquet invite me back for Thanksgiving dinner the next day! I got to see first hand the positive impact flowers can make!

Enjoy the article below by Corrie Pikul for a great, scientifically proven tip on starting the day off right!

Here’s how to get a sunnier start to your day.

By Corrie Pikul

Photo: Thinkstock

Have a little tulip with your coffee.

Why it works: Evolutionary psychologists believe that we see flowers and plants as a subconscious cue of safety (“Things can grow here-let’s set down roots”), reward (“All that foraging paid off”) and promise (“These buds mean that fruit is on the way”). So the sight of a colorful bouquet in the morning, they theorize, can convince you that everything’s coming up roses today.

Strange, true thing that might convince you: In a study led by Harvard Medical School psychologist Nancy Etcoff, PhD, women who saw flowers when they woke up reported feeling happier (and less anxious) at home, as well as more energetic at work.

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Radiant Orchid?

pantone colorhot pink cahrt

Ok, so the Pantone color of the year is “Radiant Orchid” What are you supposed to do with that information? If you are a floral designer you must keep this in mind when deciding on the latest accent ribbons and containers for the upcoming wedding season. Right? Well… not so fast!

In the 40 years I have been a floral designer I can not remember ever having the Pantone color of the year-end up being the color everyone was using that year. Some of the colors have been downright ugly, off trend, or so retro that it was impossible to find the era it was supposed to be from in the first place.

Our advice, forget the trend, forget the official color and choose a color you love. Don’t be afraid to use an off-season color if that is what appeals to you. Love spring pastel shades? It is OK to use them in the fall! A good designer will help you compose a bouquet with seasonal flowers in any color palette.

Let the colors YOU love be the driving force behind the flowers for your wedding!

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The “Christmas Spirit” in Retail.

The other evening as I was sitting at home watching TV with my husband we were flipping channels and came across the classic Christmas movie ” Miracle on 34th Street”. I told him how much I loved that movie and how it had shaped my entire retail customer service policy since buying my Florist as a 19 year old college freshman. The lessons in this movie are more important now than ever. It seems I am not alone in my inspiration!

Read the reprinted column from Anna Papachristos of 1 to 1 Media below to see what I mean!

Anna Papachristos | December 12, 2012

The “Miracle on 34th Street” Guide to Customer Service


miracle-on-34th-street.jpgSanta sees you when you’re sleeping, and he knows when you’re awake, but the average Christmas song neglects to highlight this jolly old man’s keen business sense. Just take a moment to evaluate St. Nick’s behavior in Miracle on 34th Street and you will discover that under his white beard lies the face of an experienced customer service professional.

When Macy’s hired Santa Claus, their main goal was to have someone push the goods that most kids didn’t want. But, by hiring the Kris Kringle, the department store found a miracle they didn’t bargain for. You see, Mr. Kringle refused to put profits before people. Though that young boy asked for an item the store did not sell, Mr. Kringle made the child’s Christmas wish his main concern, thus directing the boy’s mother to another store altogether. The woman, shocked by such an unorthodox strategy, expressed her newfound loyalty to Macy’s and her delight over “putting the spirit of Christmas ahead of the commercial.”

Though radical in theory, Mr. Kringle’s approach struck a chord with Mr. Macy and department store competitors throughout the country. Mr. Macy saw the benefits of becoming “the helpful store, the friendly store–the store with a heart.” Instead of seeing these shoppers as customers meant to rack up the dollar signs, he took Mr. Kringle’s cue and treated them like people–yes, people!–not profits.

Often times, in today’s constantly connected, multi-channel environment, companies get too caught up in strategy to focus on the customer. While these companies actively attempt to provide the best customer experience possible, they neglect the individual in pursuit of a favorable outcome. They claim their strategy will improve customer satisfaction or customer retention, but their fixation on data puts companies at a disadvantage. This information is of no use if they do not understand the people driving these results.

Miracle on 34th Street may be fictitious, but the lessons sewn throughout remain steadfast and true. There may be 65 years worth of technological advances separating us from this beloved classic, but we cannot ignore the beauty in the simplicity of their service initiative. They didn’t need social media or mobile applications. They only needed one man to teach them how to treat customers like people, not pawns, in order to boost loyalty and advocacy. Perhaps, if we look to remove the complications brought on by technology, we will be able to breathe new life into the heart of every business: the customer.

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Merry Christmas everyone!


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Buyer Beware!

It will be difficult to erase the Brand Loyalty companies like FTD and the BBB have generated over the decades. But, people need to know that FTD is not the same trusted company it once was, After changing hands several times in the past 2 decades, it has become a nightmare of greed and deception. People should use the same caution buying online from a floral order relay company as they should when they buy anything from a company they do not know. Shop Local, be safe, use a company in your community you are familiar with!
The Better Business Bureau also no longer operates as an impartial business watchdog. If the ratings are for sale how can the company be impartial?
Buyer Beware!!

The information below is a re-print of an article written by Cathy Hillen Rulloda,

Avante Gardens Florist in Anaheim Calif.

Ms. Rulloda is a floral industry leader and educator who has taken it upon herself to help educate the consumer and fight deceptive Floral order gathering….

As a business owner whose company is a member of the BBB, it’s disheartening to read such an incendiary, misleading headline as the one released by the Chicago BBB about florists this Valentine’s Day.

A more helpful headline could have read: “Local Chicago Florists Blossom in 2011: Just 30 consumer complaints for the entire year.”

Hey, Chicago BBB, how about a do-over?  And if you’re going to send out a press release cautioning flower buyers for Valentine’s Day, think twice about who you award those A+ ratings.

Valentine’s Day BBB Florist Warning: Top Source of Complaints

February 2, 2012

Valentine’s Day flower shopping advice abounds. Yesterday, Chicago’s BBB reported that complaints filed against florists were up 47% from 2010 to 2011 and urged sweethearts to shop wisely for the best blooms.

A 47% complaint increase? Quite an alarming statistic – one that really begged for a closer look.

So I dug through their numbers to discover the details of the source of that huge jump in BBB complaints:

Total 2011 Chicago BBB Florist Complaints : 588
FTD.com complaints: 558
Local Chicago florist complaints: 30

FTD.com’s business practices were the source of 95% of all complaints about ‘florists’ made to the Chicago BBB.

I called the Chicago office of the Better Business Bureau to ask a few questions and to express my dismay with the way their press release seemed to create a negative portrait of Chicago florists as a group.  In reality, the overwhelming majority (all but 5%) of complaints processed were about a single business – FTD.com – and the BBB still rates that company with an A+.

So in effect, by urging consumers to view florist ratings on the BBB site, the BBB is heartily ‘endorsing’ their single biggest source of consumer flower dissatisfaction.

Many local florists believe the Better Business Bureau should put national floral marketing firms like FTD, Teleflora, 1800Flowers.com, Blooms Today, Just Flowers and others in a category separate from local flower shops. These businesses don’t stock fresh floral inventory and don’t actually make the deliveries themselves. They primarily broker orders to local florists for fulfillment or use third-party fulfillment houses to drop-ship orders via parcel services.

Please, call them Floral Relay Services, Floral Marketing Agencies, Online Floral Services or some other name that reflects the true nature of their businesses, but don’t classify them as ‘florists’.

Lumping local stores in the same category as national call center/affiliate marketers is akin to categorizing Expedia or Travelocity (travel agents) as hotels or airlines.

Before anyone gets the idea that weak local florists cause most of the complaints about FTD.com, it might be helpful to know:

– Valentine’s Day 2011 was the scene of a major marketing fiasco with FTD.com and Groupon where FTD’s  discount offers through the group buying site were called bait and switch  scams  across national media.
–  Approximately 75% of the products featured on FTD.com for Valentine’s Day and other floral holidays are not delivered by local flower shops.  They’re drop-shipped in boxes via UPS and FedEx.
–  FTD created a program which severely fines local florists 100% of the value of each flower order if the shops fail to deliver the items on time. The down-side for accepting their orders is now much greater than the up-side during busy major holidays. Many stores simply shut off their FTD communications software and refuse to accept FTD orders before and on high-demand days like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.


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Best of Herndon award

Herndon Florist Receives 2011 Best of Herndon Award

U.S. Commerce Association’s Award Plaque Honors the Achievement

NEW YORK, NY, September 7, 2011 — Herndon Florist has been selected for the 2011 Best of Herndon Award in the Fresh Flowers category by the U.S. Commerce Association (USCA).

The USCA “Best of Local Business” Award Program recognizes outstanding local businesses throughout the country. Each year, the USCA identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and community.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2011 USCA Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the USCA and data provided by third parties.

About U.S. Commerce Association (USCA)

U.S. Commerce Association (USCA) is a New York City based organization funded by local businesses operating in towns, large and small, across America. The purpose of USCA is to promote local business through public relations, marketing and advertising.

The USCA was established to recognize the best of local businesses in their community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations, chambers of commerce and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to be an advocate for small and medium size businesses and business entrepreneurs across America.

SOURCE: U.S. Commerce Association

U.S. Commerce Association
Email: PublicRelations@uscaaward.com
URL: http://www.uscaaward.com

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Going Green

Summer is almost over! It will be time to shut off the air conditioning soon and open up the windows. If the thought of the loss of fresh air and sunshine depresses you, why not make a change to your environment. Did you know, houseplants are commonly grown for decorative purposes, positive psychological effects, or health reasons such as indoor air purification. Plants used in this fashion are most commonly, though not always, tropical.  There is such a wide variety of plants available that you can find the perfect one for your home and your lack of a green thumb. Try some easy to care for plants like the peace lily (Spathephyllum) or Mother-in-Laws tongue (Sansiveria). When you have mastered these move on to the more exotic plants, air plants or terrariums. Remember the easiest way to go green is to bring the outside in. Plants are the perfect air freshener!



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Weddings are our specialty!

Herndon Florist is now WeddingWire Rated for 2011

Herndon, VA – July 5 – WeddingWire, the nation’s leading wedding technology company, is pleased to announce that Herndon Florist is WeddingWire Rated 2011 for Northern Virginia, Maryland and DC. WeddingWire Rated is an annual award program that distinguishes wedding vendors across the country for their excellence. Based on hundreds of thousands of recent wedding reviews, WeddingWire Rated is the most recognized and trusted brand among engaged couples looking to find the best local businesses for their wedding.

Herndon Florist has numerous reviews on WeddingWire. Reviews by our newlywed clients include detailed ratings and insightful descriptions about their experiences working with our business and staff. Our reviews provide transparency for potential clients, assisting them in making the most informed decisions for their big day.

“We are delighted to unveil the 5th annual WeddingWire Rated program,” said Timothy Chi, CEO, WeddingWire, Inc. “Herndon Florist has made a commitment to capturing their clients experiences on the nation’s leading wedding review site.”

As the largest site for wedding reviews, WeddingWire empowers engaged couples with the most comprehensive and trusted review system available. The WeddingWire Rated program provides Herndon Florist with a simple platform to capture customer feedback from their wedding planning experience. Newly engaged couples can easily access all of the reviews for Herndon Florist on WeddingWire.com. We would like to thank our newlyweds for our WeddingWire Rated 2011 recognition.

For more information, please visit Herndon Florist at http://www.herndonflorist.com or


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Where do they come from?

Have you ever studied the wide assortment of pretty cut flowers in a florist?  Even when the outside temperature is below freezing the local florist can be a haven of springtime.

Not long ago most of the flowers sold in the US were grown in California, Florida, Colorado and Pennsylvania. Foliage came from the Northwest and most of our supplies were product of US manufacturers.

Today foreign growers account for almost 90% of the flowers sold in some segments of the flower market. Columbia and Ecuador are responsible for the majority of the roses, carnations and alstroemeria we see in the marketplace today. Holland is still the largest importer of specialty cut flowers and spring bulbs. South Africa, Thailand and the Philipines make up the segment of growers that provide us with our gorgeous orchids and tropical flowers. Israel is a provider of foliage in the form of Ruscus.

A surprising newcomer in the flower marketplace is our neighbor to the North. Canadian flower product has become a staple in most flower shops. Their snapdragon and spray roses are among some of the highest quality available on today’s market.

So next time you look at a pretty bloom, think of the many, many miles it has traveled to brighten your day!




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