Frequently Asked Questions
WHO IS GYPY CARMEN & WHAT DO WE OFFER?
Gypsy Carmen is an appointment based studio florist. We are located in beautiful Jervis Bay. We offer our local clients luxe gift bouquets by delivery and custom quoted wedding florals both local and further afield. Please see about page for further insight.
WHAT IS A FULL SERVICE FLORIST
Basically it means, ‘we’ve got this!’ We want our clients to relax and soak up every moment, trusting us to do what we do best. This means however, we do not offer collaborations with our clients (i.e diy bouquets). We have chosen to work this way so our branding isn't confused or altered in any way and our creative aesthetic is consistent and authentic.
The Wedding Date
IS MY WEDDING DATE AVAILABLE?
We always ensure your date is available prior to sending out any information. If your date is unfortunately unavailable, we will let you know immediately + also help you by providing recommendations for other awesome, South Coast florists. If you have enquired with us but haven't heard from us in a while - your date is still available. Were probably just BUSY driving to Sydney to source our beautiful blooms and spending time at the studio and not our computers. We will never offer your date to another couple without checking in with you first.
HOW MANY OTHER WEDDINGS OR EVENTS WILL YOU SCHEDULE ON THE SAME DAY?
Sometimes we are able to book two weddings on the same day. This is rare though and usually means one is purely for bridal party designs. We endeavour to provide authentic and consistent communication and connection with our clients. We feel that booking too many weddings at once can jeopardise this relationship. However it does happen at times. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us if this concerns you in any way and Clare, our creative director can talk you though the logistics.
HAVE YOU DONE ANY OTHER EVENTS AT MY CEREMONY AND/OR RECEPTION LOCATIONS BEFORE?
We have been to ALOT of venues on the South Coast. We offer a complimentary on site consultation after a deposit has been secured. If a site inspection is required to finalise the quote, a consultation and possible travel fee will be charged. This cost is redeemed if you choose to secure Gypsy Carmen for your special day.
WILL YOU BE DOING MY ARRANGEMENTS YOURSELF OR WILL IT BE ANOTHER FLORIST?
Often for bigger weddings that involve ceiling installations and large guest numbers, professional floral contractors will be used to help bring the floral vision to life. All of the intricate details such as bridal party blooms + the overall creative direction, flower choice and logistics is done by Clare, the creative director and owner of Gypsy Carmen.
We only work with senior florists who have years of experience in wedding and event work. Everyone that comes on board the Gypsy team has a clear understanding of how we design and what our core beliefs are.
HOW FAR IN ADVANCE WILL YOU CREATE THE BOUQUETS & ARRANGEMENTS AND HOW WILL THESE BE STORED?
This depends on the scale of the wedding. There is definitely a misconception that flowers perish in hours! And everything is made the day of the wedding! Its not. Because we buy our flowers direct from Sydney Flower Markets, we often need to allow the blooms time to open; especially roses. We purchase most blooms on the Wednesday and often do a second market trip on the Friday before the event for special local varieties. Some designs are prepped the day before and finished on site. While others are made the day of the wedding such as arbours & installations. We have over a decade of experience with handling flowers and knowing how and when to cool them down or heat them up! Summer can be a little tricky so at times we use our cool room to ensure the flowers are at their best for the big day.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE PARTY IS OVER AKA BUMP OUT?
You can potentially save money by bumping out yourself which is dependent on your terms and conditions and the designs you have chosen for your event otherwise we come in and clear up + help you package any florals that still look OK. Everything is yours to keep so we just take away the scrappy bits and foliage etc.
DO YOU REQUIRE A MINIMUM FLORAL BUDGET?
Yes, we have a minimum spend of 3K.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE COST OF A GYPSY CARMEN WEDDING?
Most of our weddings fall between 3K-8K
WHAT DO WE GET FOR 3K?
Generally speaking, a $3000 wedding will include your bridal party flowers, basic ceremony set up and reception florals (excluding floral installation). Delivery, install fee's and GST is also an element of your budget that needs to be considered.
CAN YOU WORK WITH MY BUDGET?
Absolutely! We actually get such a kick out of creating incredible impact and aligning your inspiration and budget to ensure your floral dreams are brought to life without going totally bankrupt. Don’t worry, we understand how expensive weddings can be. There is no hidden costs or ''wedding tax' (more details on that further down....) Sometimes in order to reach your budget, certain elements may need to be excluded. Often features such as ceiling installations will impact your bottom line. If you're happy to meet our minimum spend - then we are more than happy to share with you, our expertise on how to create the most impact and achieve your VISION!
WHAT RECOMMENDATIONS CAN YOU GIVE ME TO MAXIMISE MY BUDGET?
Trust your florist. Be open to using suggested ingredients that you never knew of or weren't keen on. Professionals have a way of making things WORK. Also, don't rely on greenery to 'bulk things up'. There is a common misconception that greenery is cheaper than flowers. Its not really. At times it can definitely add volume, shape and expensiveness that blooms cant - but foliage garlands on tables often work out to be more expensive than gorgeous arrangements! Listen to your florist and know that once they have a clear understanding of your mood and creative direction, that they can bring it together and make you & your guests say WOW.
DO YOU OFFER SPECIFIC PACKAGES OR IS EVERYTHING CUSTOMISED?
Everything is customised. It might sound cliché but honestly, we feel that each couple is so unique. Everybody does weddings THEIR way and we want to ensure that each creative project we take on is customised for that couple and their love story + we love getting to know you via emails, phone calls and onsite visits before the big day. Packages take the SOUL out of the job.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN BUSINESS FOR?
Our creative director, Clare, has been a florist for over 10 years. Gypsy Carmen has been her flower love child for 4 years and counting.
HOW MANY WEDDINGS HAVE YOU DONE?
DO YOU HAVE A PORTFOLIO OF WEDDINGS THAT YOU HAVE RECENTLY DONE THAT I CAN BROWSE?
Yes! You can check out our online Wedding Gallery via the website or have a little sticky beak on our Instagram page @gypsy.carmen
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE?
BASED ON MY WEDDING STYLE AND BUDGET, WHAT SET OF ARRANGEMENTS WOULD I NEED?
This can be answered in greater detail once we start creating your first draft quote. The common designs for most couples include: Bridal party flowers, some type of Arbour for ceremony, a ceiling installation and table pieces for reception. We also get asked to create, aisle arrangements, tossing petals, cake flowers, bar pieces, bridal table flowers + unique free standing designs for dull corners in marquees etc.
WHICH FLOWERS CAN BE SUBSTITUTED TO BETTER FIT MY BUDGET?
Wholesale flowers are seriously expensive. If you are obsessed with something expensive (such as orchids - trust us, we GET it!) we can help guide you to get the most impact whilst still maintaining budget integrity. There are always cost effective ways of creating beautiful designs but its important to remember that the scale of a design will often be altered. Bouquets and installations can be made smaller and those orchids you love (WE love) can be scaled back to just your bridal party flowers rather than hanging from the ceiling!
IF I GIVE YOU A PICTURE OF A BOUQUET AND/OR CENTREPIECE THAT I LIKE, CAN YOU RECREATE IT?
We love working with inspiration. Its so important to have a visual understanding of our couples creative visions, however, we do not replicate other peoples work. All inspiration will translated into a Gypsy Carmen style.
WHAT TYPES OF VASES DO YOU SUGGEST? AND DO I RENT THEM OR GET TO KEEP THEM?
We have a variety of beautiful vessels to use for your flowers. We love working with our clients to ensure all elements of their day are seamlessly considered. Glass, metallic and whitewash are some of our most popular choices. All flower vessels are complimentary when booking GC. All vessels need to be returned in the same condition they went out. Charges apply for broken or missing vessels.
NB: If you are working with a stylist - we are happy to liaise with them regarding your ideal vessel.
DO YOU OFFER HIRE FOR STYLING ITEMS SUCH AS ARBOUR ETC?
HOW WILL THESE ITEMS AFFECT THE COST?
Yes! WE have just recently included some ABSOLUTELY gorgeous styling pieces into our portfolio which we feel compliments the Gypsy brand and aesthetic perfectly. These include: a custom made 2m high mesh, industrial style arbour, a copper arbour, atlantic pots for unique ceremony and feature arrangements + candle holders as well as tapered candles in every colour. Contact us with specific questions to find out more on what we are now offering. Some pieces are complimentary while others, such as the arbours incur a fee (Min $200)
CAN YOU CREATE A SAMPLE DESIGN (IE: BOUQUET) BEFORE I BOOK IN? IF SO, ARE THERE ADDITIONAL FEE'S FOR THIS?
We don't often get asked this question but yes we can create a sample, for a fee (see price guide)
WILL YOU WORK WITH MY CAKE DESIGNER IF I DECIDE TO CAKE FLOWERS? IF SO, IS THERE AN ADDTIONAL FEE FOR THIS?
We can provide cake flowers either directly to the cake maker or we can design onto the cake ourselves. Our cake flowers are usually $15 - $60
DO YOU WORK WITH STYLISTS & CO-ORDINATORS?
YES! Absolutely. We love working alongside all creative professionals. We are more than happy to liaise with your chosen creatives to ensure smooth communication.
Payment & Logistics
HOW MUCH ARE YOUR FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS?
Please email us and we can shoot through our price guide for an estimated cost per design.
DO WE TRAVEL?
Absolutely! We love to travel! All enquiries are welcomed, including international.
DO YOU CHARGE A DELIVERY FEE?
Yes. Travel costs are itemised into the quote. We are lucky to have SO many beautiful venues in our local area so travel fee's are usually quite reasonable. Obviously this fee fluctuates depending on the distance we need to travel.
DO YOU HAVE AN EXTRA CHARGE FOR SET UP & PACK DOWN OF THE FLORAL DECOR?
Yes. We charge for out time on site as well as bumping out that night or the following day. Midnight bump outs incur a higher fee.
HOW LONG DO YOU NEED TO SET UP?
This depends on the scale of the designs. We generally arrive around 8-9am and work until ceremony. Please know that after years of experience in the industry, we have become GENIUS'S at logistics. Once your day is secured with us, we work tirelessly to ensure our timelines are complimentary to one another and everything goes off without a hitch!
WHAT TIME WILL YOU ARRIVE TO DELIVER THE BOQUETS + SET EVERYTHING UP?
We will liaise with you closer to your special day to ensure all drop off addresses are on file and chat with you regarding preferred bridal party delivery times. We usually deliver the bouquets first!
IS THERE AN EXTRA FEE TO STAY THROUGHOUT THE CEREMONY TO MOVE ARRANGEMENTS TO THE RECEPTION SITE?
Yes. We cover our time to transport and joosh your arrangements. We work quickly, so this cost is often not really noticed.
ARE THERE ANY OTHER ADDTIONAL FEES THAT HAVE NOT ALREADY BEEN TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT?
We have NO hidden costs. Floristry involves SO much more than JUST flowers and 'making pretty things'. We travel at 2am to Sydney to carefully select your blooms. We spend hours ordering and finalising quotes before even buying a stem. Knowing which grower has what and who's product is essential for YOUR day is a huge process that separates the amateurs from the experienced. It takes years to confidently move through the market. Once we have purchased everything (carrying arm loads after arm loads to our vans + heavy buckets), we carefully pack and transport the beauties back to our studio. This process alone is roughly an 8 hour trip. Next step, strip & re-cut EVERY stem, condition all the blooms and start prep such as wedding boxes, ribbons & vessels for the big day. This day is often 12hrs. Remember, we've been up since 2AM - so were feeling pretty weary but there is always SO much to do. We then rise early again the next day to do a water change and further condition the blooms. Roses in particular require a lot of attention. It is vital that we monitor them along the way. Designs are started, further prep continued.....this continues until THE DAY where we often work 10-12 hours (more for a midnight bump out) + collecting all the vessels, sorting green waste, cleaning vessels....unpacking van, cleaning studio - ahhhhh the list goes on. Often in this time we have countless emails to respond to and are VERY sleep deprived. Each wedding is often a minimum 30hrs, basically a working week jammed into 4 days! We adore our jobs and are very passionate about flowers but we are also passionate about educating the general public as to what is actually involved and the toll it takes on our bodies, mental health and family life. This is not a hobby. We have insurances, staff costs, accountant fee's, petrol, vehicle expense, HIGH flower bills + more! All this is taken into consideration when pricing your flowers.
HOW FAR IN ADVANCE DO I NEED TO SECURE YOUR SERVICES?
This is a great question. We have couples contact us as early as three weeks out from their day or two years before their day! It doesn't hurt to get in contact with your florist early in the process (to avoid disappointment and to have peace of mind) however certain elements will need to be secured first such as your venue and preferably dresses (even just Bridesmaids). Our terms and conditions change depending on how far out your date is - please see last question. Our ideal suggestion would be 3-10 months out.
HOW MUCH IS THE DEPOSIT AND WHEN IS IT DUE?
The deposit is 20% of your total invoice. This is due immediately after finalising designs so as to ensure your date is secured. We understand that its important to look around and check out all the beautiful vendors and the services and design costs that each individual business offer. We have amazing talent on the South Coast and understand that at times communication can be slowed down due to vendors working on site (and not at their computers!). However, if you have received a quote and you resonate not only with the floral brief & costs but the tone & customer service of your vendor then please don't hesitate to BOOK them in! Go with your gut and secure the booking as quickly as you can. If you decide that we are not the right vendor for you, that is totally fine - a quick email to let us now is SO SO appreciated. It saves our staffs time in sending out follow up emails and ensures we can open up that date to potential clients who want to book. No hard feelings! x
WHEN IS THE FINAL PAYMENT DUE? AND CAN I MAKE CHANGES ALONG THE WAY?
Final payment is due 2 weeks prior to the wedding day. Changes can be made to the quote up until this date, however changes can be no greater than 10% of the total invoice.
WILL YOU PROVIDE ME WITH AN ITEMISED FLORAL PROPOSAL OF ALL THE ELEMENTS WE'VE DISCUSSED, ALONG WITH PRICES?
WHAT IS YOUR REFUND POLICY?
Life happens. We totally get it. Your deposit is non-refundable. This covers us for loss of potential work over this time + staff costs + the hours of communication and administration time spent in the lead up to your day. Any other payment made (without flowers ordered) is redeemable.
WHEN CAN I EXPECT TO RECEIVE MY QUOTE FROM YOU?
Our 2019 enquiries should receive a quote within a 14 day period of initial contact with us. However, this may vary due to current work load. Our creative director customises each quote to ensure it compliments our unique couples + their budget. Sometimes this can be a lengthy process. Gypsy Carmen is run by a very small team and so at times patience and understanding is required.
We have been completely overwhelmed with the level of enquiries for 2020. Due to this increase, we require a initial low rate deposit for all 2020 couples. Once a deposit has been secured, your tailored quote will be drawn up to perfectly represent your love soaked day!