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|Emily Gerson • 12/13/17|
The Short Version: Floral arrangements are often among a wedding’s biggest expenses, but they don’t have to be. FiftyFlowers offers a selection of more than 2,000 types of fresh-cut flowers from partner farms worldwide for delivery directly to your doorstep. You’ll trim and arrange them yourself, and this farm-to-door model is less expensive than most florists and provides more options than you’d find at a local shop. The company’s team of professionals draws from its vast experience to turn the big day into a memorable occasion for clients and their guests. That, coupled with a large online catalog of inspiration with checklists and free consultations, has enabled FiftyFlowers to help thousands of brides make their floral visions a reality.
When Liza Roeser-Atwood served in the Peace Corps in Ecuador, she learned a lot about the local culture and commerce. One thing she noticed was how farm-fresh flowers were readily available at affordable prices, and this sparked a business idea. In 2002, Liza and her husband, Blu Atwood, opened FiftyFlowers as an alternative to traditional North American floral shops. The goal was to provide fresh-cut flowers directly to consumers.
“We are a farm-direct operation, meaning that our flowers arrive in their rawest form,” said FiftyFlowers Marketing Associate Thalia Toro-Lopez. “So you order online, the flowers get sent straight to you, and you trim them and do the processing and arranging. That’s what makes us affordable.”
Currently headquartered in Boise, Idaho, with a second office in Quito, Ecuador, the operation has grown to employ more than 40 professionals, all of whom are committed to bringing beautiful, affordable flowers to your doorstep.
Thalia told us the staff loves helping customers. If you find a photo of flowers you adore but aren’t sure what they are, you can send it in, and their experts will deliver the answer and suggest a quantity based on your needs. And, if the desired flowers don’t meet your budget, FiftyFlowers will recommend more affordable look-alikes, which is ideal for brides on a budget.
“One thing I can’t stress enough to our customers is that we’re with them every step of the way,” Thalia said. “We’ll send text messages, and we’ll call when the flowers have been delivered to offer care instructions.”
If any issues arise, Thalia said the team will do their best to find a solution, including reshipping products or offering best practices on how to repair damaged flowers.
When you visit a local flower shop, the florist typically has access to a limited selection of flowers based on what’s in season. Additionally, having the flowers processed and arranged for your big day comes with a hefty fee. FiftyFlowers offers an affordable alternative.
By working with partner farms all over the world, the company has access to more than 2,000 types of flowers and is able to obtain specimens that may not be available in your area. For example, Thalia said she’s had brides reach out wanting peonies but couldn’t find them locally since they were out of season. FiftyFlowers was able to obtain them from a partner farm and help make the bride’s wedding flower dreams happen.
The inventory ranges from traditional garden roses to rare and exotic flowers that are hard to find. This exhaustive variety gives DIY brides more room for creativity and endless potential for colorful bouquets and arrangements.
FiftyFlowers can send as few as 25 stems but can also handle large bulk orders since they obtain flowers wholesale.
And, yes, you do have to trim and arrange the flowers yourself, but you can turn it into a great bonding experience as part of your wedding.
“You’ll read in our testimonials brides will get together with bridesmaids and family members and process flowers together and arrange flowers together,” Thalia said.
Not to mention, creative brides will enjoy getting to express themselves artistically and build their arrangements and bouquets the way they want them.
One big perk of using FiftyFlowers is access to the company’s in-house floral consultant.
“This allows us to bring your floral vision to life, no matter the budget or your favorite color,” Thalia said. “Scheduling a free consultation with our floral consultant really makes things easier.”
Brides or couples are able to talk with Violet on the phone or connect with her on chat for free. You can even send Violet your Pinterest board or inspirational photos to help show her the look you’re going for, and she can help you figure out exactly what you need to achieve it.
FiftyFlowers also has a free downloadable Wedding Flower Recipe Worksheet to help you figure out the nitty-gritty details of how much of each flower you need to order. You simply enter the types of flowers and greenery you want to use, plus the arrangements you want to make, and the worksheet automatically calculates your order. The step-by-step instructions make the process as easy as possible.
If you’re not sure exactly what you want for your wedding, FiftyFlowers also provides tons of inspiration and ideas on its website. And, once you’ve found the blossoms right for you, it’s incredibly easy to purchase the ones you love through the site’s intuitive shopping cart and checkout system.
The Make This Look section of the site offers DIY inspiration, showing countless beautiful flower arrangements from real weddings across the country. But, unlike other sites that simply show you photos for inspiration, FiftyFlowers tells you which types of flowers were used, exactly how many you need to get the look, and allows you to order the materials needed to recreate it.
For additional inspiration and guidance, FiftyFlowers dedicates a section of its site to Flower Stories, where real customers submit photos and testimonials of their flower experience. Each story tells you exactly which flowers and in what quantity the customer ordered.
You can see photos of how the flowers looked and learn from different customer experiences, good and bad. This provides even more insight and creative inspiration for frugal and artistic brides wanting to assemble their wedding flowers themselves.
For those who aren’t into the DIY thing, FiftyFlowers has a new ready-to-go product called the Enchanted Wedding Flowers in a Box Collection, which offers pre-made looks that come with everything you need.
The boxes include the bridal bouquet, bridesmaids bouquets, boutonnieres, and, depending on the package you order, centerpieces.
“It’s so convenient — all you need to do on arrival is trim them, put them in water, and you’re set,” Thalia said.
Whether you’re a bride on a budget or you’re simply a creative person with a unique vision for your wedding, FiftyFlowers offers the tools, expertise, and inventory to make your big day a success.