Let’s face it, Valentine’s Day can be a stressful time for everyone.
Most women expect a gift and those that say they don’t or “i’m not bothered” is code for “he better“. There are some women who genuinely don’t mind not receiving a Valentine’s gift, but it’s better to be safe than sorry!
It’s stressful for the guys because they wrack their brains thinking up something unique and then before they know it, it’s 2pm on the 13th and the last resort is to call their local florist and hope they still have some roses available. Or they drop into the closest supermarket and hope to grab the last bunch of short-stemmed roses because they’re “10 for £6.50”. The man’s wallet logic is at work while under the impression he’s getting a bargain, but in reality, the quality being offset against the price is just hurting the economy.
And then there’s the florist. This legion of men and women scattered all over the world will slave over each order while pretending there isn’t another 40 bouquets to make up after they’ve finished arranging the roses in their hand at 11pm on the 13th, while most other people with day jobs have long since left work.
So what am I getting at? Well, there’s a few dos and don’ts where Valentine’s Day is concerned that will make everyone’s lives that little bit less stressful!
- Expect to be safe just because your wife/girlfriend/husband/boyfriend/partner says they don’t want anything. This is one of those rare occasions where not doing as you’re told can earn you some brownie points.
- Leave it until the 14th. You’ll be sorely disappointed if you’re trying to buy roses unless you can find a florist that over-ordered their stock. The prices of roses from the suppliers increases dramatically, so florists will only order what they need, not what they think they can sell. Otherwise they run the large risk of wasting hundreds of pounds.
- Buy short-stemmed roses. Smaller stems means the rose was much younger than it’s long-stemmed counterparts when it was cut by the grower. This greatly reduces vase life. The longer the stem, the larger the head. The larger the head, the longer it will survive!
- Buy your flowers from the mass-produced offerings at supermarkets. They may well make your wallet happy, but are you willing to buy sub-par flower stock for the sake of a few quid? There’s a reason they’re cheap.
- Ask your florist if you can pay on collection/delivery. They will need every penny they can get in order to pay for the escalated rose prices from suppliers. Some suppliers force florists to pay for their Valentine’s roses before they’re delivered, leaving florists severely out of pocket.
- Walk into your local florist and scoff at the price of 12 rainbow roses. If you’re quoted less than £50 for 12 of any colour rose then you’re being offered a bargain. Dyed roses are always more expensive than the natural coloured varieties regardless of the time of year. Valentine’s forces florists to charge upwards of £70 for 12 rainbow roses in some areas, so be prepared and don’t insult them by asking for “whatever’s cheap”.
Now we’ve gotten the negative stuff out of the way, lets go for positives!
- Work out your budget. Look online and compare prices. It’s ok to go for the cheapest option if your purse-strings are a little tight as long as you keep in mind that you get what you pay for. Talk to your local florist about how much money you can comfortably afford and you’ll be amazed at what they can come up with. We like a challenge!
- Order your flowers from your local florist instead of online floral courier services. It’s nice to have flowers delivered to your loved one’s place of work, but no one wants to receive a flat-packed box via courier that your partner then has to cut, arrange and keep alive until they leave work, then figure out how to get them home without damaging them. Your local florist will offer a delivery service where your flowers are arranged and ready to just sit on his/her desk and 9 times out of 10 they will be in a hand-tied design, vase or a single stem with a water vial to keep it fresh. These are perfectly ok to travel with!
- Order your flowers from your local florist. Same point, different reason. Support your local florist and independent small businesses. You may find that they can offer a more personalised service than a corporate chain!
- Place your order with your local florist by midday on Thursday 8th of February. Your florist will thank you for it! Suppliers, growers and the Dutch Auction houses will be working 24/7 to ensure the stock is of the greatest quality. This means that prices go up.. alot. You’ll be helping to relieve your florist of some of the stress if they already know how many roses they need to order. Ordering before midday on the 8th gives the florist enough time to adjust and plan for delivery of roses. This year Valentine’s Day is on a Wednesday – most dutch flower companies don’t open or deliver on Sundays and Mondays, so this leaves Friday 9th, Saturday 10th and Tuesday 13th for deliveries. It’s crucial for your florist to get their orders in so they’ve got enough stock and time to plan contingencies in case something goes wrong.
- Attempt to be original. Come up with a great idea for a gift – your local florist will thank you for that too! A dozen red roses in a bouquet can become monotonous after putting the finishing bow on the 46th for that afternoon, so having an order for something unique and challenging helps bring your local florist back to the real world! Have 3 roses arranged in a red stiletto. Get 16 roses in different colours arranged in a hat box to mark your 16th year together. Forget the roses and just have some fresh ivy attached to a mantle-piece clock you’ve bought to mark the occasion. Does she like tea? Just have a single large-headed rose sitting inside a tea cup. Most florists are a little crazy in nature underneath their schooled “how many i help you” expression. They just want to play with the pretty flowers and make someone happy, too.
To recap, here are the key pointers:
- Expect flowers to be expensive. We can’t help it!
- Order before the 8th. Don’t keep putting it off until it’s too late. We’ll all be happier for it!
- Buy from your local florist. Support small and independent businesses.
- Don’t be scared to ask for something original. We probably already have the blueprints anyway.
Have a great Valentine’s Day!