Prior to this day, I had never been to Grosse Pointe. I had never met Sarah in person, despite our many phone calls and email exchanges. I was traveling alone and it was a long drive. None the less, I knew this was going to be a good day.
I drove through neighborhoods of impressive houses and perfectly groomed lawns. The gates and roadways were so well manicured and my rusty Tahoe (rest in peace old girl) stuck out like a handful of sore thumbs against the luxury sedans around me. I was like a fish out of water, a little country girl from the middle of nowhere Michigan, trying to fit into this gorgeous yacht club scene. But I reminded myself, it was going to be a good day.
Trusty Rusty may have turned some heads and raised a couple of eyebrows, but as soon as people see the beautiful blooms in your hands, any questioning looks immediately disappear. My doubts fade when I have flowers in my hands. There’s a confidence in my ability, regardless of where I’ve traveled. Flowers make people happy. And this was a happy day.
Sarah and I met for the first time that day. It was a meeting I won’t soon forget with an embrace as though we were long lost friends. The energy in the room as the girls were getting ready was contagious.
I met my team on site and we got to work, fluffing centerpieces and placing candles. Perfecting each arrangement and making sure each bloom was perfectly placed. The process included hauling marble tables up multiple flights of stairs, carrying 20 some centerpieces into an impeccably designed nautical room and building a table scape on site to be stretched down the head table. We wrap our ribbons around the bouquets right before they were to be photographed, pinned each of the buttonholes onto the guys lapels and dedicated our day to making sure set up as perfect as humanly possible. By the time I left the venue, the bride and groom had exchanged first looks, wedding portraits were well underway and the guests were due to begin arriving at any time.
It’s not a process to be hurried. So much time and care was spent in designing the flowers. Sarah and I spend hours communicating about her favorite blooms, imagining how they would pair with her napkins and what vessels should be used. We searched and search for the perfect shade of taper candle (which oddly enough, we swapped out on the day of, once seeing it in the room – terra cotta was exchanged for butter yellow). I stayed and styled the stationary with Samantha James Photography and moved the table numbers that the venue coordinator placed right in front of the bride’s favorite centerpiece flowers. Are these tasks that all florist do? Maybe some, but others just drop the arrangement and run. But something would be missing if that were the way I operated. The bride would feel it and so would I.
At 11:00pm that night I came back alone. I made sure all the candles were burned out and picked up any remaining flowers. I was tired. It was a long day. I had travel ahead of me still. But the smiles that remained on the bride and grooms’ faces at the end of the night instantly rejuvenated me. Because this day wasn’t about me. I knew an exhaustion I felt was all worth it. I had gotten to be a part of another once in a lifetime celebration. And it was a good day.