Floral Business Pricing Foundations.
Okay, do this with me. Shut your eyes….. Tighter.
The tighter they are shut, the better your wish will come true.
Okay, now say this with me, “I wish, I wish, I wish, I could just make pretty things and create memories and the money part will just… work out.”
(pause…. did it work? ya, me neither.)
Aw crap, well, so much for money magic. I guess we’ll just have to do some real work to make sure we are making a profit and covering our butts.
Raise your hand if you’ve searched for pricing formulas and financial advice with dismal to so-so results? (woosh) Whoa, I need to reposition my eyebrow hairs from that breeze you created. Ya, me too.
And I get it. PRICING IS PERSONAL. It’s based on so many tangible and intangible things. It’s in some ways math, in some ways marketing and positioning.
The only real thing your pricing and financial plan has to do is cover YOUR needs and your businesses needs.
For the first 7 years of my business, I searched and searched for the golden nugget of a pricing plan for a business as weird as wedding floral and event design.
And then it occurred to me… I have 7 years of details expenses and price data and can directly relay those into what they yielded in money to my pockets. I can figure this out.
Hindsight is 20/20, right? so I literally can go back, see if there were any “purty deeds done dirt cheap”, revise to my preferred scenario, and apply that data to what is going on now.
So I did. And, well, I like it.
Everything I’ve found is oversimplified, incomplete, or just irrelevant.
“Just multiply your materials by 4.5X” they say…. Ya well, what do I charge for that botanical armature thing that is made from what’s in my recycling bin that will take forever to not look like trash?
What about the linens and vintage furniture I am renting for my client? That’s a lot of money that looks like my revenue but just flows through my business?
What about the hours I am spending figuring out what this is even going to look like.
What about the people that I am going to hire last minute but didn’t charge for because I am so freaked out that I don’t have enough setup time and would rather pay more people than allow more eyeball twitching stress than is absolutely necessary?!
Ya, I get this pricing formula is set up to reap massive profit but that doesn’t help me determine sales goals and whether or not I can experiment with that new high end wedding show.
Where’s THAT pricing plan?
Well, there isn’t one. But now I see that there is YOUR pricing plan.
Because what’s success looks like for you is different from the other gal who has three kids under school age.
Success for the farmer-florist isn’t going to look like the success of an event designer and producer.
And success for you now isn’t going to look like what success will be for you later.
But there are some shared foundation principles that we can all agree upon. AND surely for all of us. Success is NOT being in survival mode.
And HOLY FLAMING FIELDS OF FRUITFUL FREEDOM FLORAL FRIEND, when you know YOUR pricing, so much of the mental gunk that causes uncertainty and doubt just goes away. And your hustle has direction.
Your beginning of the year looks like this…
Overwhelmed? Maybe you DON’T need to deal with it.
I came across an interesting insight the other day: the idea that not all problems need to be solved right now– or ever.
Maybe sometimes it’s okay to let some things that are confusing or ambiguous just ‘be’ so I can either work on some more important tasks or give myself more time to develop clarity on those confusing problems.
And in letting them ‘be’, I can liberate my brain from dealing with the emotional strife of not being able to get to them.
How do you know the difference?
The big ones are the things you just cannot tolerate in your life. If you simply cannot stomach another day in your soul-sucking job, if you cannot tolerate a toxic client, if you need to pay the bills.
The little things are urgent but not important. Maybe things that you feel that businesses like you do, but that don’t get you the outcome you need right now. (ehem, social media).
So much of my business journey has been learning to manage stress. And by manage, I mean let it go. Because I’ve found that it really is a choice. I am not a better business owner by being worried all the time. There’s a difference between alert, fully aware, intense even vs being stressed out.
One is positive and constructive, the other is just not helpful- or healthful for that matter.
And it IS possible. We’ve all been there when we are be-bopping along in our lives, with whatever stress we are dealing with when BAM! Some emergency happens with our family and suddenly- there is only one thing that matters. On the positive side, I remember being stressed one morning 10 years ago, my husband proposed to me that day, and WHOOSH, only one thing mattered. All the stress was gone. So much in fact, that I didn’t show up to a consultation with a potential client. Yup, I stood them up. And that just doesn’t happen in my brain.
So you know it can happen, but you can also choose to make it happen with practice. You aren’t forgetting them exactly, just healthily procrastinating on them- but also wiping out the emotional baggage they carry.
So if you are dealing with crushing overwhelm, I am giving you permission to let some things go.
- You don’t need to stay on top of your social media if there are pressing things.
- You don’t need to respond to that email NOW,
- You don’t need to go to that fourth open house this week.
- Hey, you don’t even need to grow your business if something else matters more right now.
You and your business will be just fine.
We’ve all heard that word ‘balance’. Blech.
I’ve got a growing business, a growing family, a team of employees, and some pretty ambitious goals. It’s a lot manage and balance seems like something always out of reach. The word balance makes my eyeball twitch.
To me, balance isn’t the goal, it’s meaningful progress and support to what matters to me: my family, my business, my employees, and my person creative fulfillment.
It’s not a static place to get to, it is constant adjustments in a never-ending process that lights me up and generates its own energy.
I cannot juggle, but I can throw one ball up in the air and catch it. The kind of juggle I deal with now looks like this:
- fully switching attention to one focus,
- making meaningful progress,
- transitioning to a new focus by fully mentally releasing the last focus,
- and being present on the next area of focus.
So I can switch between about 1-3 focuses a day before I need some good ole rest, but I’ve got a bag full of other things to juggle when it is their time.
And when it is time to juggle something else, I have to put the current ball away to take out a new ball. Because if I spread my focus over two things, I’LL LOSE MY BALLS!
Here’s the important part though, While focusing on one thing, I cannot let the weight of another focus leak into my current focus. That’s how overwhelm and stress creeps in.
And every now and then, lots of balls have to be out of the bag. For example if I’m on site and sh** is goin down! Moments like these I have the strength to handle it. And it doesn’t crush me. And I can wrap up a job and be excited about doing it again. Because it’s not about being stressed- I just have to focus on throwing and catching my one ball.
PS, if you were wanting to catch the webinar but didn’t get a chance- you can check it out here! In it, we will go over how we make a fast floral wedding design proposal that is super effective at landing clients. Sign up here:
Because making proposals should NOT be one of those things that stress you out.
DIY Chic Billy Ball Bouquet – Video
Honey, I’m home! Something about this atypical billy ball bouquet inspires the DIY queen in me. Perhaps because I’ve grown up with honeybees, but maybe because ‘atypical’ is my jam. If you’re like me, you’ll love to get your hands on some billy balls and take a whack at this fun pollen-esque bouquet.
If you’ve never made a bouquet, have no fear! This is a great one to start out with because of the simplicity. Plus, we have supplied a quick three minute video below with step by step instructions!
The materials include:
-about 75 stems of Crespedia
-1″ thick yellow ribbon
-1 piece of chenille
Billy balls, billy buttons, or woolly heads– whatever you title these tiny flowers, crespedia is a known favorite of mine. So much so that we also decked out this crazy collar with them!
Now its time to buzz on over to our Youtube Channel (don’t forget to subscribe!), or click the video below and get to building your bouquet! Don’t forget to show us your creations!
Join the Bad Ass Bee Club that is Curious Lola by typing in your email below. You’ll immediately unlock some precious honey, a.k.a. a super thorough centerpiece demonstration and you’ll be first to know when our next DIY projects are up, how sweet of us!
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Every now and then, I pull together a project just because it sounds like a good idea (among other totally practical and business boss-like reasons (cough)). Only later can I actually put my finger on why it is so special to me.
This feature, is one of those. Introducing our Queen Bee wedding photo shoot about a regal, singular, badass bee siting atop her throne of flowers.
It’s all part of our new DIY series that starts with an inspiration shoot, and continues with a series of how-to videos about various creations featured in the shoot. For this shoot, we will be showing you how to make:
A modern pollen bouquet (okay they’re billy balls)
An impressive (and eco-conscious) flower wall throne- yes, it’s a wall, not really an actual throne. See how awesome that is?!
And a pollen crown….. because well, we can all use a new type of flower crown. And it’s a good thing because this queen bee bride eats bohemian vibes for second breakfast. She just pierces them on the end of her sharp little nail….. Doesn’t even blink… just gobbled on up.
We’ll add the links as they get finished up! But if you sign up to our newsletter, you get the videos in advance- plus bonus info about blunders and triumphs related to business, flower recipes, and more.
But for now, a story about bees.
If you didn’t already know, my parents owned a lavender farm. On that farm was rows of lavender, and among those rows were bee hives tended by a local beekeeper. Now, bees love flowers, but they especially love lavender and all purple flowers for that matter. Their visual spectrum of light is such that they can see ultraviolet light beyond the violet that we can see. It’s this type of light they are most drawn too. The point is, during peak flowering season, the fields are awash with bees partying on their favorite food. Literally hundreds of bees thumping drunkenly into your head, and crawling all over every bush. Harvesting one bunch of lavender can yield 15 bees in your hand.
The bees are so drunk on pollen that you can simply brush them off. They will lazily plop off and zoom over to another bush. In years of helping with lavender harvest, I’ve never been stung by these bees. Not once.
What’s more amazing, however, is the sheer level of noise they can produce. Sitting between rows of lavender at peak season will bring you to a secret world where all sound is lost but buzz and the only thing that is important is the work of the bees. Feed the queen, feed the family, take care of each other, everybody do their part- that is the work of bees.
This is also where I first heard of colony collapse disorder from our beekeeper who was losing half his queens.
In colony collapse, for a number of reasons about which researchers can’t seem to agree, the worker daughters leave the hive and disappear, leaving the community to starve. There’s been a lot of research since my initial introduction to colony collapse but the beekeeper was convinced it was because of selective bee breeding.
Honeybees had been bred to be good workers and docile. When all the bees (or anything for that matter) have a similar genetic makeup, they are susceptible to the same infections and diseases. Yet another reason to celebrate diversity.
At the time, our beekeeper was seeking out new queens from far off places that were feistier, fiercer, and hopefully with that, better at fighting off disease.
This shoot is dedicated to those fiesty queens keeping their family together:)
Oh! Thanks for reading all the way through. Here are our friendors who were crucial to this shoot!
Photography: Lola Creative
Creative Direction, Styling, and Floral Props: Lola Creative
Hair and Makeup: Off White Makeup and Beauty
Cake: Honey Crumb Cake Studio
Dress: LaineeMeg Bridal
Model: Cheyenne with Seattle Talent
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A Letter to Spring- From A Restless Moth Fairy- Photoshoot
Dear Springtime and Sunshine,
Not sure if you know, but it’s time to wake up, shake off the rain and get to shining.
These ups and downs of weather have me feeling a little restless. If I’m not able to get outside and play in the sun soon, I may develop a hunchback from all the slouching.
My house is feeling less ‘inspiring nest’ and more ‘bat cave’ by the day. I need to get out of here. Like all the flowers, I am straining my neck toward you, I’m looking for you, and I’m tired.
Springtime? Sun? Are you guys not talking to each other? Did winter not set the clock for you?
Since I saw you last, I planted all my bulbs, read stories to all my bulbs, told them all about you, and now they are waiting for you, too. I’ve dusted my special things, I’ve made this crazy chandelier with all the gifts you gave me from last year.
I arranged flowers, I baked you treats, and still you don’t come.
I sent you an invite to my tea party, yet still you don’t come.
I just want you to know that I’m ready. Bring on the gardening, flower tending, humming under fresh leaved trees, twirling in the grass, let’s do this!
With so much love and affection,
Enjoy these goodies from our recent Moth Fairy Shoot this Spring. This is part of our new endeavor to bring you inspiring (sometimes weird) shoots paired with DIYs for some of the pieces we’ve included. Be inspired, then build your own. You like this concept? Fantastic! Sign up to be sure you get all of them in your inbox:) See the links to the specific DIYs at the bottom.
Hey, We made videos of how to make FOUR items in this photoshoot! Perhaps you’d like to see?
Thank you to all the folks who partnered with us on this shoot!
Hair and Makeup Offwhite Makeup and Beauty
Furnishings: Vintage Ambiance
Photography, Creative Direction, Set and Props, Styling, Floral: Lola Creative for Curious Lola
Gorgeous Local Flowers: Seattle Wholesale Growers Market