Talking Bridal Blooms and Wedding Flowers with Steve's Flower Market

Last week I had the pleasure of hanging out with Mary and her staff over at Steve's Flower Market in Chicago.  

I first heard of Steve's while looking for a wholesale florist to help me with my flower arrangements for my wedding, and I fell deeply in love with everything SFM.  Mary and Steve run Steve's Flower Market, and their story is pretty remarkable.  They opened the Grand Ave. location about five years ago after running another location in Lincoln Park for years.  Steve handed off that location to his son, and opened the location I have come to know and love.  

Steve and Mary have FOUR daughters AND an adorable little pup named Buttons who holds down the fort.  

Steve's MVP, Buttons.  Stop in to see him, he's real friendly.

Steve's MVP, Buttons.  Stop in to see him, he's real friendly.

If you need anything decor related for your wedding, definitely go see them.  It's not just that their flowers are beautiful (because they most certainly are), but also that they are dedicated to making your entire experience a positive one.  Within moments of walking through their doors, it is clear that everyone there not only has a green thumb, but also a passion for working with people and creating something truly unique for each customer.

Now let's get to it:

So, Steve, tell us a little about your flower market.  What led you to open up Steve’s Flower Market?

SFM: Steve saw a need for a place in the city with fresh flowers that could be sold at a reasonable price. He wanted to carry the wide selection of flowers that a global market could provide. He wanted to provide flowers and freshness that you couldn't find at the other local markets.

In your opinion, what makes Steve’s Flower Market so unique?

SFM: We buy most of our flowers direct so we are able to provide the widest selection of the freshest floral and the best prices. We also have wonderful staff that create the most beautiful designs.

What can brides expect when working with Steve’s Flower Market for their wedding?

SFM: They can expect attention to detail and gorgeous wedding flowers! We take our business very seriously and always strive to exceed our bride's expectations.

What should every bride have figured out when she comes to see you to order her wedding flowers?

SFM: We ask that brides come in with inspiration photos (Pinterest/Instagram/Magazine pictures, etc) so we can get a sense of their tastes and style. "Garden style" can be interpreted several ways - so pictures help to visualize the bride's true style/vision.

What advice do you have for brides when it comes to bridal bouquets and arrangements?

SFM: I'm not sure. We have found that most bride's are open to subbing flowers that are not in season and are realistic when it comes to availability. Some prefer to use "in season" flowers to save, but as long as a flower is available (grown somewhere in the world) it is in season. There are other flowers (peonies, garden roses) that cost more no matter the time of year.

What are some wedding floral trends you are seeing lately?

SFM: The loose organic style weddings. Hanging greenery and floral (rings or ladders, etc) in the venue is becoming very popular now. Color is also making a come back. Blush was big, then neutral white and greenery, but I see a lot of dark accents coming in and some with brighter floral too.

What is your favorite type of bridal bouquet? There are so many different ones that look so amazing!

SFM: I love the crazy full, lush, organic style with all types of flowers-some that are so different and unique. The ones that take a true artist to create. I do, however, think that vision should match throughout. I don't think those bouquets fit all wedding dresses or all venues.

What are your favorite flowers to include in bridal bouquets?

SFM: I love Peonies, garden roses, anemones, ranunculus and greenery. I think Jasmine vine when available can add such an element to bouquets. I also love to incorporate pink mink proteas when the design calls for it, or other unusual floral that can make a statement.

In all of the years you have been working in weddings, what has been the most creative use of flowers you have seen from a bride?

SFM: We had a bride mix fuchsia with lavender, orange, some red and a lot of blush and it turned out Amazing! We mixed blushing bride with pin cushion proteas with garden rose, astilbe, ranunculus, agoinis, and the list can go on. It was unlike anything we have ever seen and it came together beautifully!!

What are your favorite seasonal bouquets?  What flowers do you like to incorporate in winter/spring/summer/fall weddings?

SFM: This is so hard. The trendy soft neutral colors with greenery can be beautiful anytime of year. I love the change of seasons and style. We never create the same wedding twice and have designed so many beautiful weddings.  I do love the fall weddings with the dark burgundy/merlot with some navy berry accent and some softer colors mixed in to blend and stand out.

What are some of your favorite wedding floral elements to design? (centerpieces, bouquets, garlands, etc.)  

SFM: I love the bridal design because I think it is the most important. It is the main bouquet that will be seen in all her photos. It is her big day, and the purpose of her bridal bouquet is to accentuate her and her dress.

And, just for fun, what is your favorite flower?

SFM: Ranunculus but I do love anemones too :)