Meet My Mate(s): Florists

Oh hi everyone, fancy seeing you here!  So I’ve written a little something about florists (and a bunch of other things, because would it really be me without a few tangents?!)  What I have to say partly comes from the ‘I’m a celebrant’ place and partly from the ‘I’ve been a bride’ place.  And from both of those places, this is the conclusion I’ve come to about how to get the best from the professionals you employ for your wedding day… you need to be able to let go and trust them.   So sit back, relax and have a read.

(And look at some beautiful floristry!)  Like this, created by Sarah at Farmhouse Boutique

I’m going to talk mostly about florists and celebrants.  But I’m pretty damn sure this can be applied to everything – photographers, caterers, styling, even your dress, hair and make up.

If you Pinterest and google for a million hours, decide on an exact bouquet based on what you’ve found and take that to a florist and say ‘this is what I want’, that is what you’ll get.  If you Pinterest and google for a while, find some looks you like and don’t like, and pick a florist with the kind of style you like (and yes it’s okay to meet a few and pick the one that’s right for you, because at the end of the day, if you don’t click… you don’t click!) then go to them with the important information (what your budget is, what colours are bride/ bridesmaids/ groom/ groomsmen wearing, and any special requests)… then have a good conversation, answer their questions, let who you are shine through… and here’s the important bit… leave them to it, you’ll get a delightful surprise!  (Just to be clear, not saying that you’ll know nothing about their plans till you see them on the day, but the ideas and plans and drafts they bring to you will likely feature things you hadn’t thought of, but things that unexpectedly you love.)

Though how glorious a surprise would this be!?  Created by Sarah at Farmhouse Boutique and photographed by Kellie Francis

Here’s my when I was a bride story.  My husband’s cousin is a florist (a super talented award winning one) if you’re in the Tauranga region look her up Stick & Stem  His extended family’s gift to us was all of our flowers, created by TJ.  I sent TJ a paint chart with a * next to what colour the bridesmaids were wearing. I asked for something yellow (my Grandad who had passed away’s favourite colour) and calla lillies (because I like them).  These are the bouquets she created for us.

Photo credit to Val Wardell

They are stunning and so so much more beautiful and interesting than what I would have designed had I attempted myself (three or four gerberas tied together with ribbon were big when we got married, probs would have been that, because while I’m creative with words… everything else not so much).

I want to interrupt my own story to introduce Sarah.  Sarah runs Farmhouse Boutique not far out of Alexandra.  And much like me she’ll travel around Central Otago. Not only does she do beautiful flowers, she hires gorgeous gear for your wedding day, creates art and is a really fun person to have a coffee with!

I’ll let Sarah tell you a bit more about herself and Farmhouse Boutique!

Hi guys, I run Farmhouse Boutique from our little cottage in Becks. Travelling near and far to create beautiful weddings that don’t break the bank! I love the variety of weddings and especially working to briefs. Be it a special flower that reminds you of a place or a person (insert Harry’s handpicked flowers for Meghan….awwww) or a swatch of your bridesmaids dress and free reign!!



I particularly enjoy working to a budget. There are so many tricks up a florists sleeve to create a gorgeously flowered day if you have a little faith….do a bit of stalking, you will remember your big day every time you see or smell the flowers we chose for you! Weddings are expensive, great style doesn’t need to be!

X Sarah

Again glorious Sarah!! Farmhouse Boutique photographed by Kellie Francis

Okay, back to meeeee!  Here’s my I’m a celebrant story.  Over the last few years I’ve created a lot of my own resources.  And it’s an ever changing portfolio.

Sometimes when I’m putting together a ceremony I use words that I’ve used before because they fit the couple perfectly.  Sometimes I write something new (and that gets added to the portfolio). The biggest reason these words are different to anything you’ll find online are that they’re mine.  I’m a Kiwi. I’m young(ish). I believe in love, but (perhaps controversially) not the happily ever after fairy tale type, but the real life, imperfect, wonderful, personal type.  I write the way I talk (usually with a few less swear words). And (in my humble opinion) I’m bloody good at figuring out who a couple are, what they want and writing a ceremony that’s more them than they knew was possible.

 I share blogs online but the words that make up my ceremonies, my resources are for the most part a closely guarded secret. You won’t find them or much in the way of uniquely worded ceremonies from other celebrants to pick and choose from online.  What you will (largely) find if you go looking online are very formal, used time and time again words. Words that (generally) don’t actually reflect you or your relationship at all.

What I’m getting at, is you don’t need to google up large and come to me with an entire ceremony written for me to deliver.  I give you a lot of info to get you thinking about what you’d like and not like. What’s important to you and what is just fluff. I ask you a bunch of questions so I can include your personalities and your story in your ceremony. From all that I select and write words that are for you and about you. And because it’s your wedding and your ceremony, it won’t be a surprise on the day.  I’ll send it to you as far in advance as I can and you can (and should if that’s the case) tell me if something is wrong, if something doesn’t feel right. We change it until you are happy.

Plus the more you can use someone else’s experience and expertise the less pressure there is on you to learn everything about everything.

Because I’ve talked so much about florists, here are some you might be interested in

TJ at Stick & Stem(in Tauranga)

And around Central and South Otago…

 Kate Stone Wedding Flowers & Design

Farnhouse Boutique

Ruby Tuesday

Twigs N Twine

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