When I thought about doing a blog series chatting to other wedding folk I already knew this is where it would start, with one of my absolute fave names to see on the supplier list! I met Rachel from Ruby Doodles back in 2016 while photographing at Wrenbury Hall in Nantwich - I was totally blown away by the bouquet she'd made for the bride Sharn, it was perfect, and still is one of my faves! I'm incredibly lucky that our paths have continued to cross regularly over the last few years - I'm so excited whenever I recognise one of Rachel's arrangements or brown tags on a wedding morning, I'm never not blown away by what she's created! The Ruby Doodles shop is super close by to home and its where Matty & I always head to whenever we want flowers for any occasion! I called in for a chat with Rachel recently and to talk shop & weddings for this series of blog posts!
How did you get into floristry?
It was just after I’d had my eldest son, who’s now 18, I was working in retail but had always been creative, having previously studied graphic design. My husband Steve gave me the push to do something new and so I did a 2 year night course in floristry at college whilst I was working. That led to me working in some local shops, then for Jane Packer at the Trafford centre. In 2016 it felt like the right time to open up the shop and here we are!
What does your average day look like?
There probably isn’t an average day! We have fresh flower deliveries most days, but then we can be doing anything from meeting wedding clients, serving customers who call into the shop, writing quotes, deliveries, emails. There’s so much that goes into the business! The actual shop has got busier and busier over the 3.5 yrs we’ve been here, and we take lots of bespoke orders alongside wedding work too which keeps us on our toes! For weddings there’s always lots of prep to be done, we tend to start early in the week planning & sorting table decorations, getting everything ready to go at the weekend!
How do you put together a wedding ‘look’?
I always ask my couples to bring in images of how the rest of their day looks, so I can see what the dress is like, or the venue, what sort of feel are they going for. I love to be able to get an idea of the whole day when creating my bouquets and arrangements. Barn weddings tend to lean more towards being relaxed, lots of foliage, as opposed to maybe a country house wedding with a more structured style.
When should couples think about booking their wedding florist?
I’d definitely say if they’ve got their heart set on a particular supplier to book up to around 18 months in advance to secure the date. We do take on shorter notice weddings as much as we can but it just depends on how busy we are and we hate to turn anyone away, so get in as much notice as you can!
Are you seeing any trends at the moment?
Trends do change throughout the year, and through the seasons. Colour wise at the moment coral tones seems to be coming up lots, its a lovely summery look. When I do my planning I’ll pinpoint the flowers the couples want and then add a touch of what’s in season so everything looks unique for that bride.
If you had free reign what would be your favourite style to put together?
I really love the cottage garden, wildflower look, but we’re so fortunate here that so many brides are familiar with our style and they’re happy to come in with a colour scheme and just say, ‘do what you like with it!’I love big flowing bouquets that aren’t too conformed and that’s what we’re known for!
What do you enjoy the most (aside from the beautiful flowers!)
I'm such a people person, thats definitely one of the best bits! It feels like the shop has become such a social hub its fantastic - I love that people just bob in to say hi! More often than not there’ll be someone on the sofa having a coffee and a chat while we work, or if someone notices we’re in the shop late they’ll call in to help sweep up or bring coffee.
I just love making peoples dreams a reality which I know is so cheesy but the feeling I get when I deliver their flowers is the best.. I genuinely tear up! Its my passion and I hope that filters through.
You can find Rachel's page here... https://www.facebook.com/rubydoodles/ <3