The Vine

There is always something new and exciting happening at Mountain Flowers! Get an insider’s view into our shop and recent trends by reading our blog.

7 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Wedding Florist

In all the bustle of planning a wedding, it may be easy to put off the decision of flowers. After all, you can’t decide that until you’ve chosen a wedding florist, and that can be its own project! After years of working with brides and wedding planners, we have a few tips for making this process easier. Just consider: the right flowers can bring together the entire event and be an unforgettable part of your wedding.

Read on for a few tricks to pick the right wedding florist, who will in turn help you pick the right flowers. Before you know it, your wedding venue will look perfectly and uniquely like you.

On Your Own

  • Establish your own style. This doesn’t mean you have to be well-versed in flower vocabulary, just that you have a solid understanding of what you do and don’t like. The florist can draw on these specifics when setting the stage. This style consideration should also factor in whether you want to use non-floral elements (twigs, cotton, fruit, berries, etc.) or want to stick to flowers.
  • Consider the venue + your style. If your wedding is outside, you may need fewer wedding floral arrangements. If your event is inside or has limited lighting sources, you may need to invest more into the flowers. Again, knowing your style will help the florist guide the end result: huge stands of drooping willow at the front, or a simple dahlia at the end of each row?

Bring In Others

  • Get recommendations. These might come from review sites, from other brides, or from your own wedding planner. Once you have those, spend some time browsing each florist’s website and social media to see how well their style matches your vision. Do you want lots of loosely-gathered bridal flowers and a bohemian vibe? Do you want more structured, minimalist flowers that will allow other aspects of the dresses and venue to shine? No matter what you’re looking for, narrow the recommended list to just a few florists.
  • Set a budget. Your flowers should be about 10% of your wedding budget. The season of your wedding might determine, to some extent, what flowers are in stock and easier to source. Of course, if you have your heart set on peonies for a winter wedding or cherry blossoms in the summer, factor that extra expense into the overall budget.

Face to Face with the Flower Experts

  • Interview florists. Sit down with each florist on your “short list” to learn more about their style, experience, and personality. And bring lots of inspiration! Trying to describe a color is always difficult and when it comes to wedding flowers, you’ll want the perfect shade. Pinterest boards, color swatches, and photos of the venue will all be invaluable to the florist. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions about how they’ll handle tough situations. What happens if a particular flower doesn’t arrive in time or they have an unexpected employee shortage when setting up the event? Chances are good that these disaster scenarios won’t happen but the questions will be valuable in helping you choose a florist you can easily work with. You should also consider their experience decorating for events versus experience making wedding bouquets: both are important skills but you’ll want to make sure there are enough talented people on the floral team to do everything that’s needed!

  • Study the proposals from each wedding florist. The proposal that you choose will become the basis for the contract, so make sure you’re comfortable with the terms and ask questions if you aren’t. When comparing the proposal to your budget, make sure to consider items that might not be written out, such as gratuities. Details should also be spelled out: delivery and setup information, dates, times, locations for delivery, and any costs for the setup and breakdown. You should also request an itemized list of the bouquets, arrangements, and décor that will be ready for the event. This may save headache in the future if a key floral piece, like chuppah flowers or the last bridesmaid bouquet, doesn’t show up.
  • Choose a winner. By this point, you should be completely comfortable with the florist’s portfolio and proposal – but don’t be afraid to go with your gut feeling. A florist who’s excited about your vision and can confidently answer your questions will be far more helpful than a florist whose portfolio exactly matches your vision. A great florist will be able to create any look, even if it isn’t specifically portrayed in his or her range. Ideally, the florist is chosen 8-12 months before the wedding to ensure that their schedule isn’t already filled.
  • Once the contract is signed, put a big green checkmark next to that item in your wedding planner!  

We hope these ideas were helpful in guiding you to choose the right wedding florist. If you have any thoughts or success stories about doing things a different way, we’d love to hear! Just drop us a note in the comments or on one of our social media pages to tell the story.

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The Quality in Mindful Living

Here in Aspen, we believe in the value of life lived well and with mindful intention. From cars to shoes to flowers, we take care in the little things of life, knowing that quality is more important than quantity. Is this your mindset too? Let’s look at a few reasons (there are many!) to cherish a few good things.

  • You’ll practice mindfulness. Buying quality over quantity encourages a mindset of mindfulness in every purchase. How do your buying habits affect the environment, the local economy, a landfill? When you consider all the resources that go into growing and transporting grocery store flowers, which may last a couple days if you’re lucky, the choice to buy quality becomes much clearer.
  • Blazing Star with Ti Leaf

  • You’ll care more about what you have. For those of us who are naturally clumsy, this may mean slowing down and taking care with what we have. After all, it matters that you spent money on a high-end cashmere sweater and there aren’t half a dozen cheap cotton ones to replace it. One good sweater instead of six cheap ones means you’ll think more about the one, and that feeds back into the mindfulness. It doesn’t take long in this mindset to truly appreciate the earth’s resources and gifts.
  • You’ll be living more ethically and less wastefully. Have you ever considered why a $20 Target shirt costs so little? Most likely, it’s because the garment workers are paid a subsistence wage and because the processes (loom, dyes, etc.) are cheap but harmful to the environment. Buying a few quality pieces of clothing, regardless of the inside label, are better for the environment and the garment workers. We especially recommend the company Everlane, which employs only the best ethical factories and which is completely transparent about its cost breakdown.   
  • There will be a positive effect on other areas of life. Time is the biggest example here. A new car may save you hours of frustration at the mechanic with an old car; excellent hiking boots may save you a series of trips to the chiropractor with an injured back. You get the idea. Making quality purchases now can save you lots of pain and lost time in the future.

Here at Mountain Flowers, we strive to live out this quality and mindfulness in everything we do. From choosing the best-quality flowers to appreciating every moment of the day, we seek to live mindfully and ethically. Won’t you join us? Let us know what speaks to you about a thoughtful, quality life lived among these gorgeous Rocky Mountains.

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Preserve Aspen’s Wildflowers

As I walked the dogs this morning and took note of all the gorgeous, yet fragile summer wildflowers, it reminded me of a lady I saw the other day on the East Aspen Trail who had collected a large bunch of wildflowers to take home for herself to enjoy.

 

 

 

 

Although they were very pretty, it struck me that those flowers were removed from our natural environment and no longer available for ALL of us to enjoy. These natural beauties belong to all of us. While natural blooms are striking in nature, they do not last as cut flowers and it is detrimental to their health and to the lives of the bees and butterflies that depend on them. Leave them for the next hiker, walker, bird, or bee.

The Aspen Center for Environmental Studies offers wonderful educational walks around Aspen, some focusing on wildflowers. We encourage everybody to photograph, smell, enjoy, and educate yourself about these short-lived plants!

We have many “wild” flowers at our shop that have been cultivated for home use and that allow us to bring the wild, natural, beauty inside responsibly. Next time you find yourself about to pick and bring an early end to a wildflower, think again and let us provide you with a responsible, sustainable substitute!

 

 

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Welcome to our new website and blog

After a few months of planning and work, we are delighted to announce the launch of our new website.  We wanted a website that was built with our customers in mind, including showcasing our work. We’re more than happy to answer questions about past events or provide a consultation about your own event!

We value your opinion

We hope you like the look of the website, so feel free to look around and let us know what you think – all comments and feedback are welcome.

Thanks for the ongoing support, Aspen! We look forward to hearing from you.

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Placing Flowers on Your Holiday Table

Thanksgiving in Aspen is such a wonderful time for us, our residents and visitors—we’re embracing the new season of winter and excited about the powder days ahead.  It’s the perfect time to commune with friends, be grateful for where we live and play—in the heart of the mountains, and celebrate all that we have: good health, happiness, and family!

Fresh flowers are essential to finish your holiday table. Are you wondering how to add arrangements for a festive meal? Here are a few tips.

  1. Consider your table shape and size. If you have a square table, use a square vase; a round table, use a round vase and for an oval table—you guessed it, an oval shape.  For rectangular tables place a smaller arrangement in front of every 4 people.  If you do one large centerpiece, make sure to add some smaller arrangements for the people that are near the ends so that everyone has pretty flowers to look at.
  1. Think about the arrangements’ size and shape. Tall flowers look beautiful in photo shoots, but on your table, towering arrangements can cause guests to rock from side to side in order to converse with friends. Instead, think of full, low arrangements that brighten the room, and allow eye contact across the table.
  1. Use flowers that are in season. Pick a color pallette and then stick with flowers that are plentiful during the holidays.
  1. Style it up. Consider using fruits and vegetables to expand your arrangements and create interest on the table, especially if you’re using a buffet. Wood slices, feathers and mini pumpkins add to a seasonal theme—we have these items in stock at Mountain Flowers.
  1. Containers and vessels.  Use a vessel that complements your dishes or room. Mixing metals and ceramics is fine.  Expand everyone’s horizons by using unique vessels that come together with color, texture or material.
  1. Remember the candles. Candlelight adds elegance to your atmosphere and makes everyone look great! Whether you use plain or decorative votives, or candlesticks, remember to add candles.

Not enough time to plan flowers for the big day? Call us or email a photo of your dishes, tablecloths, chargers, candles and napkins, and we’ll help you pull it all together with color and style!

Whether you have four guests or forty, adding fresh flowers in the right size, color and shape complements your dinner, makes your guests feel special, and infuses a touch of elegance to the celebration.

 

 

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