Spring is here….

….and you know what that means?


Yup… bet you thought I was going to say flowers.

Well.. they are definitely a part of spring… and they are definitely what we do…. but today, I’m talking about cleaning. Spring Cleaning! We’ve all heard the term, and I’m sure we’ve all been swept up in it (pun!) at some point in our lives. I know every year I am!

But do you know where the term actually comes from?

The reasons behind why we spring clean are rooted in two competing cultures, Jewish and Iranian with a third close behind with the Chinese, who also have a similar custom. All of these traditions extend far­ back into the distant past.

In Iran, the new year arrives on March 21 the spring equinox and the celebration of the new year lasts two weeks.  The customs, rituals and symbolism are rooted in the culture’s ancient pre-Islamic past. The new year is a time of regeneration for Iranians; they use symbols like burning and planting to signify renewal and optimism for a new season. It’s also a time for refreshing and reinvigorating life, and that includes Iranians’ houses.The ritual is called Khaneh Takani (“shaking the house”) and the custom lives up to its name. Iranians traditionally buy new clothes to wear, every bit of a home is scoured and cleaned…. nothing is spared. Rugs, drapes bedding, knick-knacks, floors, ceilings — everything gets a good cleaning. Fresh scented flowers are brought in to renew the house’s vibrancy. Once the house is shaken, the new year  and spring, can arrive.

The Jewish holiday of Passover (Pesach) is a time of house cleaning as well. The very solemn holiday marks the exodus of the Jews from Egypt. After the 10 plagues were brought upon the Egyptian king by Moses the Jews were finally released from slavery and ordered to leave the land. There was very little time to get ready so the breads they were baking to bring on their journey only were able to be cooked for 18 minutes. That became what is known as Matzah and during Passover, keeping leavened bread (chametz) which is any item made with yeast or a grain that can rise, is forbidden.

Since making sure that no leavened bread remains in the home during Passover is so important, even overlooked crumbs count. To this end, Jews scour their homes from top to bottom before Passover to ensure they don’t miss a crum. No corner is to be left untouched and all chametz is either given away or sold so as not to ‘own’ it during Passover. For those 8 days different dishes, silverware, cookware are used and only foods without any leavening are eaten.  Since Passover comes around April, many people consider this custom as the origin of spring cleaning.

The Chinese, also have of a spring cleaning ritual.  They clean their homes in anticipation of the new year by sweeping their floors and cleaning their homes to be rid of bad luck and misfortune that may have accumulated during the previous year. Once the house is clean, the Chinese then welcome good fortune in by observing a prohibition against sweeping for the few days following the new year in order to prevent sweeping away any good fortune that came with the turn of the year.

After all that cleaning I think we should head for the garden to do some spring planting.  Wanna join me?

Now go out and have yourself a wholesale, flower-filled, spring day!



It’s About Culture

We two girls from Brides N Blooms, Wholesale & Designs are all about what’s new! Who isn’t? New styles, new looks, newest color trends! But sometimes ‘new’ isn’t all about the next best thing…. sometime’s it’s all about what has been out there all along. It’s just new to YOU!

Brides N Blooms, Designs - My Shaidi Bridal Show - event vendor showcases - traditional wedding dressOur latest adventure has been learning and working within the Indian Culture! I’ve always loved Indian cusine… Give me anything with curry in it and I’m a happy camper! I adore the Bollywood style dancing and all the color and clamor of the country itself.  So, when we sat down with a lovely Hindu bride to discuss her flowers, we were ecstatic! In the past, we have delivered boxes and boxes of flowers to others who were doing weddings, and did some traditional bouquets  for  blended weddings…but having our own client is a dream come true!

Curiosity and knowledge are always helpful when going forward in a different and new arena, so we read up on traditions and asked lots of questions. We studied the different flower garlands and Rituals that are traditionally used in a Hindu ceremony and all the different facets that go into this style wedding. We decided that the best way to actually ‘see’ everything that goes into an Indian affair would be to do the next best thing other than attend a wedding. We became a vendor at a local wedding show that caters to this clientele. The ‘My Shadi Bridal Show” in Tampa was beyond any expectation we could have had. Stunning showcases of what any bride, much less a traditional Indian girl could want!!

These were some of the showcases set up by event companies who cater to this culture on a regular basis:

Traditional Indian Dinner

Gorgeous Mandap and table setting

Beautiful Wedding Ceremony Area

It was a great experience for us. We met lots of lovely vendors and guests, and it seems what we had to show they liked too!  I hope our introduction into this different and vibrant culture  is the beginning of a long and exciting relationship. Namaste!

Some of our designs:

Brides N Blooms, Designs - My Shaidi Bridal Show

Lovely Centerpiece Design for Traditional Hindu Wedding

Tall & Elegant Centerpiece on Candelabra with hanging crystals

Brides N Blooms, Designs - My Shaidi Bridal Show 17

Now go out and have yourself a colorful, curry-style, wholesale flower-filled day!

Communication Is Key!

Big Events are a lot of work. It doesn’t matter if you are the host or the vendor. Each one plays a part to create it! Big or small, outdoor or indoor, intimate settings or big halls. Everybody needs to be on board with the vision and realities of the event. Both vendor and client have expectations which sometimes simple and effective communication can make easier on everyone.

1. Getting the question “How much does it cost? This is a difficult question for most vendors to give you during an initial consultation. There are so many factors that go into pricing an event. Aside from the actual price of the items, there is experience, time and artistry, and most importantly service. Trying to be competitive is always a tightrope walked. A client has no clue how much time is spent in the inital phases of the job. Consultations, working out a quote, emails, ordering  processing and bookkeeping. That doesn’t include the actual preparing,  set up & day of event.

How Brides N Blooms, Wholesale & Designs likes to handle this situation is by flipping it around to the client and asking “What is your budget?” Or, “If I tell you your flowers will cost ‘this much’, how would you feel about that?” That helps a client figure out their comfort level and helps you, the vendor, figure out what you are able to do to match the client’s wants and what you are able to provide.

2. Constant Emails and changes…
It is the nature of this business to do a lot of cross communicating with email. However, if a client is continually changing their mind, or over obsessing with details, it becomes difficult for a vendor to be effective at their job. Too many changes, too many requests about minute details and freak outs can sometimes create problems in the final product. The client will not necessarily remember everything that was said or changed and if what is remembered is different than what the client thought, there will be disappointment all around. A vendor wants as much as the client does for everything to be right!

A good idea is to be clear in your consultations that ALL emails will be answered within a certain time frame. As the vendor, you can make sure your reply is clear and itemized with a subject line that is labeled for that particular issue/question. For the client, ask lots of questions, be very detailed in what you want and trust that the vendor you are choosing is a qualified, capable professional.

3. Don’t Assume Anything
This works both ways… Vendors and Clients. Communication just as in any relationship, is ultimately the key to making sure you get what you pay for and the vendor knows exactly what you want. As a vendor we hear many times a client say “Whatever you think is best! You are the professional”. Those are dangerous words for a vendor to take literally. What visions a client may have in their head many times will not be quite the same as what the vendor is envisioning.

As a vendor, have pictures or literature explaining your work. As a client, have pictures and a prepared list of what you want. Everyone may not be literal…but we all are visual in this industry. A picture is worth a thousand words… and a list is both a vendor and client’s best friend.

Make sure no matter which end of the spectrum you sit, vendor or host, you are honest, communicative and realistic. That way we all can work together to make your event a great one!

Now go out and have yourself a wholesale, fresh flower, communicative day!