Recently I've found myself genuinely appreciating and reflecting on what we get to do here everyday at the Studio. Not just the opportunity to make beautiful living art but more so the reality that with every event and every design; we learn something more and deeper about ourselves. Not only ourselves as designers but ourselves as people and a growing part of our community.
Typically, any given person may think that being a florist is like living a dream where everything is just simply perfect and pretty all the time. Well...sometimes it is truly a LIVING HELL! The kind of HELL where it is only up to you, as the artist, to come out on the other end just as happy and charming as you were before. Especially, at that crucial moment, when you hand that blushing Bride her 'perfect pretty flowers'.
The 'REAL LIFE' of a florist when a little something can ruin everything...
An average wedding for us involves between six to eight months of detailed planing and coordination. Then about another four to six weeks of vendor communication and venue logistics. So, all-in-all, we put down about 10 months of serious energy to ensure that everything is as it should be. Not to mention that we typically have events running back to back each week so at any point we can be coordinating 5 different things all in the same day for 3 different events in two different states. So, its not just all pretty flowers all day!
In addition to the precise coordination and the anticipation of any possible scenario is the reality of working with the delicate and vulnerable nature of flowers. The moment a bride receives her Bridal is always a breathe of release. Finally giving that thing over lifts the weight of the world off your shoulders. Most people don't consider the level of investment it takes in developing a strong and elegant work that truly captures the bride's vision.
Flowers usually show up all smashed in a box from somewhere very far away. It takes days of particular care and balance to manipulate a bloom cycle that makes those flowers 'perfect' in that very moment. On some occasions I will spend 10 days straight focused on the flowers alone before I even start designing. Depending on the variety each has their own bloom cycles which all need to be precisely timed to evolve simultaneously on the day of the event. It takes alot of science, biology, patience, and love to evoke the purest essence of any flower. In that one moment, of every ceremony, when the bride is so graciously lead down the aisle; that bouquet is at the height of it's life and the very essence of every stem must represent the pure joy of that occasion.
As you can see, in this image alone, everything about this event was stunning, romantic, elegant, and full of so much LOVE!
Well...that is except for myself and my extreme hatred for Penske Truck Rental who happened to not have our truck available for pick up. If you know me even a little you are confident that I called twice to confirm that my rental was there and both times I was assured there was no need to worry. Well, there was NO TRUCK when we arrived and more than enough need to worry. It took them 3 hours transfer a truck to my location which is 3 hours we certainly needed to install the entire: trapeze rig, floral chandeliers, build a tree, set 22 individual centerpieces, a giant "Georgia Style" bridal party, and build an aisle made of FIRE and ICE.
There was simply no other option. We had to wait on that truck because they are the only available box truck rental in town. However, I didn't need to get it stuck in the mud while I was trying to turn it around on the farm. So there went another hour of trying to shim branches under the tires just to get back on the road before we could even load it up. Did I mention the wedding was another hour and forty minutes from the studio...Oops!
Once we arrived we were sweating within minutes. Thank goodness I have the most amazing and resilient family to help me along with this business. My Mom was creating ice sculptures while my Dad built a tree and Darin and I were off installing the rig and chandeliers.
You know, without a doubt, we had everything done on time and down to the wire. It was an epic feat to accomplish. However, when you don't allow the circumstance to dictate the outcome, you open the opportunity to actually be successful. Even when your goals appear to be against all the odds.
SO...that being said, all the many months of planning and anticipation are useless unless you are capable of letting it all go in the end. When everything about your art and business are dependent on other elements you simply have to be willing to play along. Wether it is within your control or not the effort is all you truly have to offer. Every day at the studio we strive to put forth our best effort, even if against the odds, because we genuinely believe that the outcome is loaded with integrity if every step along the way is honest.
This event truly offered us some valuable lessons along the way and resulted in being one of our most proud and unique events. Enjoy the rest of the pictures and clink this link to see a time-lapse of the installation...it's pretty cool! http://vimeo.com/85799272