I think it’s fun when wedding planners divulge what’s in their emergency kits. Sometimes the stuff they stock seems so random and meticulous to me, proving how Type A these planners need to be! Angel from Love and Splendor wrote a terrific post for Weddingbee PRO about her emergency kit, and Liene from Blue Orchid Blog enlighted me with some of her unusual tools.
We florists also need to come prepared. When working with fragile, perishable artwork on a time crunch in sometimes brutal weather, things can DEFINITELY go wrong. But with florals, there is always a way to make it work. Through trial and error, I’ve built an arsenal of tools that has seen me through some snafus. Here are a few that I just packed up yesterday morning for a fabulous LA wedding:
- wire and floral tape: to make last minute corsages or bouts, or repair ones that are looking less than perfect
- small and large pearl headed pins
- crowning glory or finishing touch spray: when misted onto the florals, these sprays help lock in the moisture and keep them fresh- an absolute must for California summers.
- extra ribbon in the wedding colors: to rope off the aisle so guests don’t stomp your aisle petals to smithereens
- toothpicks: so I can do this neat little cake trick
- water pitcher
- hot glue gun
- extra vases: super important! I always bring a few extra vases with me for peace of mind.
- glass cleaner, plastic cleaner, and paper towels
- lint roller: to quickly pick up any flower bits that fall off the centerpieces onto the linens. I’m thinking of bringing along a dust-buster to clean up the carpets too.
- florist gummy: to stick arrangements to glass vases or containers
- extra flowers: my florist friend once told me that a big stack of chiavari chairs fell on one of her altar arrangements and destroyed it. Luckily, she had extra flowers and floral foam to patch things up just in time. Phew!
- pipe cleaners: so useful for attaching flowers to arches, bouquets to chairs, and for removing the pollen from lilies. Simply sweep the fuzzy pipe cleaner over the lily petals to brush away pollen.
- tent stakes and twine: to my horror, a chuppah once collapsed to the ground because a strong ocean breeze picked up the fabric like a sail! I had to run to REI and grab tent stakes last minute to secure the posts into the ground. Needless to say, I ALWAYS have tent stakes with me now for arches, columns, and other ceremony structures.
- needle and thread
- clear fishing line
- small buckets: the faucets on site are often too short for vases to slide under. You can fill small buckets instead and transfer the water to the vases.
- long lighters
- Water siphon tube: I think any florist can relate to the following scenario. My assistant came to pick up the rental vases at the end of the night, and was faced with these big boys:
She had to channel her inner “hulk” to hoist these 50+ pound vases off the center of the table, all the way to the kitchen sink where the water could be dumped, all the while not spilling a drop of tinted water onto the linens or carpet. What I should have thought to do is to send her to the site with a water siphon tube. She could have sucked out half the water into a bucket in seconds, allowing her to more safely and easily pick up the vases. Next time we’ll be prepared!
As creative and artsy as we can be, florists need to be a little Type A, too! Actually, all wedding vendors are working in high stress situations and need to come prepared. Just out of curiosity, any bakers or photographers want to share their emergency kits with us? That would be interesting!