Photo: Brenda Armendariz
We get it: Destination weddings can be tricky, particularly if you're the type of bride who likes to be hands on. While you may not physically be able to be there during planning, you can still design the flowers of your dreams from afar. We consulted Jamaica-based florist Dr. Paulette Tai Chun-Hossmann, Managing Director of Tai Flora Services to get the dirt on how to manage the whole flower thing when you live thousands of miles away.
1. Do your homework
Referrals are the best way to find any vendor so once you figure out where you're getting married, ask them for a few florist recommendations, advises Tai. "The venue would have gone through a preliminary background check of the florist and would be familiar with their standards of work." That doesn't mean you shouldn't do your own research, though. See how long the company has been in business, says Tai, and read reviews online (both the good and the bad).
2. Team up with a local wedding planner
It's always nice to have someone on your side that actually lives in the area you're getting married and can meet up with your florist in person on your behalf. As Tai points out, using a local wedding planner allows you to have that on-ground representative who can oversee and ensure everything with your floral and décor goes perfectly so you don't have to worry. Not to mention, he or she will also be able to school you on the ideal floral designs and needs for exotic locations outside of a resort setting.
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3. Share inspiration photos and other pertinent design details
The more your florist knows about the wedding, the better. For example, inspiration photos (peek at Pinterest for ideas!) are very helpful, according to Tai. Are there flowers you really love and ones you really loathe? If so, don't be afraid to speak up. "Brides should have a second option as an alternative in case their chosen flowers are unavailable," explains Tai. Another wise idea? Send your florist color samples of your wedding theme. "This will help him or her to guide you on the types of flowers that'll work well with your color scheme."
4. Request a mock-up sample
Once your floral design has been finalized, Tai suggests requesting a mock-up sample of what the design will look like on your wedding day. "Pictures or videos can be sent via email." This way, you can really visualize it and make any changes as needed.
5. Trust your florist
You hired them for a reason, and if you did your homework, you should feel good about letting them do their job. That means really trusting your florist and being open to receiving advice about the best flowers for your specific location, wedding style and the weather conditions as well.