On today's blog post I hope to explain the question about having a minimum spend. We have received a few questions about why we have one when some other wedding florists and flowershops do not. For our floral studio it all comes down to quality + customer service and providing an overall amazing experience for our clients, let me explain more.
As many of you already know, fresh flowers are not inexpensive, especially if you choose to work with premium blooms + quality suppliers. Even locally grown Canadian flowers can still be expensive due to demand, freight costs and paying a Canadian a liveable wage.
So what is a minimum spend and why do we have one? A minimum spend is the minimum budget our studio will work with to design wedding flowers. We generally do not work with budgets below this minimum unless it's for our designers choice option which I'll explain more about later.
Our minimum spend for weddings taking place locally in Calgary is currently $3,500 incl. gst + delivery/setup but is adjusted each year. For mountain weddings in Canmore, Banff and Lake Louise our minimum is currently $4,000 incl. gst + delivery/setup costs. The increased minimum spend for mountains weddings is because of the business licenses, National Park permits, mileage and time required to service weddings in the mountains.
Most of our clients have budgets that are double or triple the minimum spend as flowers are a huge decor priority for them, often being their only decor item. The minimum spend of $3,500 is typically enough to cover personal flowers, a few ceremony flowers and reception arrangements (4-6 bouquets, 6-10 boutonnieres, 6-12 centerpieces and flowers for a ceremony archway or fireplace all depending on the size of the designs and flower varieties used).
Our minimum spend is in place for several reasons. First, our floral design style is characterized by using high end premium flowers (spray roses, garden roses, ranunculus, peonies, anemones, dahlias, hellebores, protea etc). We often use numerous varieties of flowers and foliage in our designs so that they have texture, dimension and are full, lush and inspired by natural English gardens. This look, as well as most of the favorite wedding flower images on Pinterest, are more expensive to create.
Second, we are not a flowershop that can sell excess flowers to the public if we over order. We are a floral studio that pre-orders our flowers specifically for the wedding or event that has been booked. Like all flowershops and studio florists, we must purchase flowers in wholesale quantities. However; if a client is only requiring a couple bouquets, we can not resell any extra flowers that don't get used. We do take on smaller weddings but they still have large floral budgets so that all of the flowers ordered can be used for the wedding.
Third, and most importantly, having a minimum spend allows us to provide better customer service to you, our clients. There are some flower shops and studio florists that do not have minimums in place and take up to 10 or more wedding bookings per weekend. In 2015 our team did 7 weddings on the same day and it was too much to keep in constant communication with that many couples and logistically to make sure things were picked up at the proper times. Even though all 7 orders were filled and our couples were happy and left great reviews, it was physically draining for our team to be in constant contact with so many couples on the same day and to organize logistics for that many weddings. We have a staff of 4 designers and bring in freelance designers when required, so physically we could take on 10 weddings per weekend, depending on the size and location of the wedding, however we choose not to in order to provide better client care to our valued clients and for our own peace of mind. It would be much easier to make a mistake trying to fill 10 weddings in a weekend or in a day than 2 or 3. Taking less weddings at higher price points also allows us to easily and quickly correspond with each of our clients and also allows our team to have a weekend off each month to be rejuvenated between wedding weekends. Having a minimum spend has allowed us to give more attention to detail to our clients and allows us more time to fill their orders and create the full, garden style wedding floral designs we are known for and that our clients love! We adore our clients so much and don't want anything but the best for you!
Keep on reading because we do occasionally work with couples who have budgets below our minimum spend. If this is you we may still be a good fit as your wedding florist.
Do you ever work with couples that have a budget below the minimum spend?
Yes, but not very often. We have a Designer's Choice option available which you can read more about here. This option can not be booked more than 3 months in advance and it allows our floral designers to choose the flowers + foliage that will be designed in the wedding arrangements. We do a handful of these each year as we are usually booked up for dates more than 3 months out but can occasionally fit an elopement bouquet or intimate wedding into our schedule. If you love our floral designs and trust our team to create something beautiful for you, then this option could be perfect for you!
We'd love to hear from you. If you are interested in having our team design your Calgary, Canmore, Banff, Lake Louise or Golden wedding florals please get in touch!