Flowers!!! Yay!!! Today you get to internet-meet one of my friends here in Maine, Sarah of Watershed Floral! (Am I using enough exclamation points for you today? Clearly Im excited about this). I met Sarah in 2014 and I immediately liked her. She’s warm and has an incredible smile. That kind of smile that just makes you feel like you’re already connecting, even before you’ve spoken. We both went to college in Western NC coincidentally so I also felt a kinship… a thankfulness for the beauty of the Appalachian Mountains. Please enjoy a little conversation with Sarah.
First lets start with a little bit about you. Tell us what brought you to where you are now in terms of owning this lovely business.Â Watershed Floral grew from many years working at Kennebec Flower Farm in Bowdoinham, Maine. Customers would comment on the bouquets I made for the farmersâ market and started asking if I did arrangements for weddings. At first, I said no. I worked full time as a teacher and the thought of being in charge of the flowers for someoneâs big day seemed overwhelming. But then my friends started getting married, and I was the go to flower gal. I grew my skills and my confidence and after a few years decided to launch Watershed Floral. It grew slowly at first. I kept my teaching job and only did events during summer vacation. Three and a half years ago I left teaching to focus on flowers. Itâs been an exciting (and sometimes scary) adventure!
Whats the story behind the name “Watershed Floral”?Â I wanted a name that reflects my commitment to local. When I started my business, the local flower movement wasnât even a thing yet, but I had a feeling it was coming. And it has. But regardless of trends, community is at the core of who I am and how I live, so it made sense for my business name to embody this. When I came to the word watershed, the dual meaning spoke to me, and I knew I had my business name.
The blurb from my website sums it up nicely:Â âA watershed is a turning point, a moment that defines all of the moments to follow. Your special event, no matter the occasion, signifies a shift, a change worthy of celebration. Watershed Floral arrangements provide a unique way to honor your lifeâs defining moments.Â A watershed is also a close geographic area. To live within a watershed is to live locally, mindful of oneâs neighbors as well as the land upon which we all depend. Watershed flowers are planted, nourished, and harvested on small farms in southern Maine by farmers committed to sustainable agricultural practices.Â With Watershed Floral youâll know that your blossoms are beautiful inside and out, lovely and elegant to the eye and supportive of families and a way of life that are sustaining our world.â
If you can do whatever you want at a wedding, what do you tend to create as far as look and feel?Â My own style is loose, earthy, and reflective of season. Luckily most of the couples who choose to work with me are looking for this aesthetic. I love when a couple has the vision and budget to focus on florals for details such as escort card display, chair backs, place settings, etc. While I love all the floral work that goes into a wedding, itâs really fun for me to work on something beyond personal flowers and centerpieces.
Of course I have to ask, what are some of your personal favorite flowers?Â Depends a lot on the season. From May – October, my favorite flower often changes from one week to the next. In general, I love peonies, dahlias, zinnias, delphinium, stock, and lisianthus. And greenery! Love greenery! Blossoming branches also get me. I really could go on and on. Itâs like picking a favorite child. Impossible!
Is there something that all brides overlook and you’d love for them to consider?Â Cost. And how much of that cost is labor. Especially for couples who have a very specific vision and want to work with a professional who will be able to execute it. I love wedding blogs and am a big fan of Pinterest, but both have given brides and grooms to be a sense of endless floral possibilities without any price tags. I once saw an article that broke down the cost of a centerpiece featured in Martha Stewart Weddings, which I thought was genius and should be a must read for every newly engaged individual. Canât remember where I saw it though!
I also think most brides overlook how little theyâre going to want/be able to do in the days leading up to and day of the wedding. While I understand that the majority of people are working within a budget, I think trying to be realistic about what youâll be able to DIY is very important. Either scale back the vision or spend a little more money so that you (and your guests) can truly relax and have a good time.
What’s a good resource when planning in-season flowers?Â A farmer in the area where youâre getting married. Or a florist who specializes in using locally grown flowers. The key is talking to someone who knows the growing seasons of the area where youâre getting married. There are so many seasonal flower guides out there, but season is very different in California than it is in Maine. And most people donât think about that. If you are planning a wedding in Maine, please, please, please do not follow any sort of seasonal flower guide out there. You may get close to what will actually be available here but could also be setting yourself up for disappointment. I honestly wish the âone size fits allâ seasonal flower guides would go away. They need to be organized by region (or even by state) instead.
Why do you think that investing in a great florist is worth the time money and effort, versus say, buying some flowers at the grocery store and putting them in vases?Â If the look of your wedding really matters to you, then hiring a pro is worth the investment. If youâre getting flowers because youâve been told that you should and donât care what they look like, then any flowers will do. Iâm of the opinion that thereâs no right way to get married. Your wedding is one of the most intimate, personal things you will ever do. It should reflect you and your beloved. Thatâs all. And if the floral decor is an important part of expressing who you are, the commitment youâre making, and the celebration that will mark this important occasion, then hire a pro and put your trust in that person. Nothing (other than love) is a must have on your wedding day. So if grocery store flowers are your jam, go for it!
The images in order of appearance are thanks these lovely ladies:
Heather Payne Photography Â | Â Emily Delamater Â | Â Anne Skidmore Photography
AND…. be sure to head over to Watershed Floral and see more from Sarah.