Mother’s Day: Then And Now


Mother’s Day in the United States originates back to the Mother’s Day Proclamation of 1870 by Julia Ward Howe.  The document was written from this feminist as a public expression of love and reverence for the mothers of our country.  Despite her efforts, and many women after her, Mother’s Day was not made an official national holiday until 1914 by President Woodrow Wilson.


Today we show this “love and reverence” by creating handmade cards, making breakfast in bed, and often sending beautiful floral and plant gifts.  In fact, Mother’s Day continues to be one of the biggest days for flower sales, greeting card sales, and long-distance telephone calls.  So whether the Mother in your life is near or far, flowers continue to be the one special way to say thank you for everything you do on Mother’s Day.


A great feature of Mother’s Day is the time of year we celebrate it.  The beginning of May is right about the time when the weather is really transitioning and the beautiful outdoors seem to come alive.  This being said, a decorative planter filled with outdoor plants is the perfect for garden enthusiasts, or someone who just wants a little outdoor color on their porch or deck.  A mixture of annuals and perennials will put a smile on any Mother’s face.  And when the weather is gardening ready, the special mother in your life can plant your lovely gift.

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Tips For Beautiful Wedding Flowers

{1} Plan on scheduling an appointment for approximately one hour with a Professional Florist (or two) to discuss the floral items you are interested in for your wedding.  Have the following details decided on before you meet………

  • Logistics/Dates/Locations and Times
  • Bridal Party attire/colors
  • Dresses should be ordered to provide color and style direction
  • Where you will place floral décor at the ceremony, reception… who will you want to have personal flowers
  • Start your research and have ideas about what you like and don’t like in wedding flowers, provide visual information whenever possible
  • Floral Budget….have some idea or price range in mind before you start the floral planning of what you are willing to spend on your wedding flowers


{2} Research….with so much visual information available, it’s easy to find inspiration on line or in wedding publications. Accumulate photos of likes and dislikes to show your Florist in order for them to get a good feel for your wedding vibe. You don’t need to be experienced in the language of flowers to communicate the looks you are going for, but the more visual ideas you can share will help your Designer to get on the same page with you. Pinterest is a great social media site to gather inspiration and find amazing ideas for your wedding flowers a very effective way to share information with your florist.

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{3} Style….consider what “looks” best capture your personalities as a couple. Will you be more comfortable celebrating outdoors or in a more traditional Church ceremony?  Will formal sophistication rule the day or casual elegance fit your style? Try not to get too caught up in traditions…today’s weddings are all about the couples , their lifestyle and how they want to share the most important day with family and friends.


{4} Color….consider colors as accents not necessarily needing to match the colors of the bridal party.  Pink flowers in front of a pink dress will be lost in your photographs. Contrasting and complimentary colors will work best and you can always include the colors of the day, but mix hues to create a scheme that will hi lite your wedding party.0040

{5} Flower Varieties…..Don’t get tied down with too many specific flowers. Certain varieties of flowers are not consistent throughout the year. Stay true to a style and color scheme and allow your designer the creative license to make recommendations.


{6} Texture is an important element in wedding designs. Ask your designer to suggest items that will add texture to your designs and watch them come to life.


{7} Ceremony Décor…There are many areas to consider depending on your venue, our best tip for you is to consider pew bows/or chair accent designs. This will accentuate your walk down the aisle and provide visual interest before, during and after your ceremony.


{8} Reception Décor….Centerpieces are the main attraction here! Currently alternating high/low centerpieces are a popular item and composites of multiple designs for tables are growing in popularity too. Centerpieces can offer a beautiful visual display for the reception, but can eat up your floral budget fast. This is an area to be very candid with your Florist about your favorite looks and your budget to allow them to suggest ways to accomplish this.


{9} Trust….find a Florist/Designer who you can strike a positive relationship with.  The consultation time is a good place to feel out the designer. Are they providing the looks you like, do they seem to understand your needs, are they someone you can have a positive professional relationship with? Look for a Florist with a strong social media presence that also has photographs of their work available to share with you.  Provide them with your floral preferences and budget and trust them to provide you with the best presentation possible.


{10} Choose a Florist by reputation, experience and quality of design…. not by price. There will always be someone out there to offer flowers at a lower cost. Choosing your wedding florist based on a friend’s recommendation or because they offered the lowest price on their quote may not provide the best fit for YOUR WEDDING.

All About Administrative Professionals Week


Administrative Professionals Week is celebrated April 21-27, 2013.  Over the years its name has changed, but the focus is still on support staff and administrative personnel who contribute to the success of their company.

National Professional Secretaries Week and National Secretary’s Day was created in 1952.  Originally celebrated in June, it recognized the importance and value of the position to a company or business.  The goal was to encourage more women to become Secretaries.  Along with promoting the values and importance of the job; the holiday was created in recognition of Secretaries.

In 1955, the observance date of National Secretaries Week was moved to the last full week of April.  The name was changed to Professional Secretaries Week in 1981, and became Administrative Professionals Week in 2000 to encompass the expanding responsibilities and wide-ranging job titles of administrative support staff.

The most common ways of recognizing your Administrative Professional(s) and all of the things they do for you are:

  • Flowers
  • Cards, often with shopping gift certificates
  • Take them to lunch
  • Candies
  • Gift Baskets

Prom Flower Tips

My former teen was constantly telling me that too “matchy, matchy” was a fashion no no.  And of course there are a million other “rules” that we’ve heard to follow with fashion.  But don’t let your prom look be limited by these conventions.  When ordering prom flowers, choose ribbons that will match or compliment dress colors.  The flowers can be similar or completely contrasting depending on your taste.  Prom is your time to shine, so try to break the mold and pick something to make your look stand out.  Here are some tips on how to:

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{1} Subtle Coordinating Colors.  Make a slight change in color from your dress to your flowers.  And with ombre a huge trend this prom season, you will definitely be in vogue.  Some examples include:

  • Light pink flowers with a hot pink dress.
  • Purple flowers with a lavender dress.

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{2} Strong Contrasting Colors.  Make a bold statement with with a contrasting body floral.  Keep in mind that flowers are just an accessory, so the contrast will be a fabulous accent and not a fashion faux pas.  Try some of these combinations:

  • Orange flowers with a purple dress.
  • Yellow flowers with an orange dress.
  • Red flowers with a white dress.
  • Hot pink flowers with a lime green dress.Z Corsage 6

{3} Expect The Unexpected.  Monochromic design is very modern, and can also be the perfect choice for someone not wanting to stay far outside the box.  Here are some pairings that will look fabulous:

  • Red flowers with a red dress.
  • Purple flowers with a peacock teal dress.Animal Print Corsage Edit

{4} Going Vintage Or Retro.  Ribbons will make the difference in going this route.  Try out some of these unique ribbon styles for a signature look:

  • Lace
  • Polka dot
  • Stripes
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{5} Bling It Up.  Prom is all about the bling, and there are many specialty items available to add glitz and glamour.  Try adding these to add a little something extra to your corsage or boutonniere:

  • Rhinestones
  • Feathers
  • Keepsake braceletsNatural Bout

{5} Nature Lover.  Consider botanical designs accented with rustic elements.  Try some of these add ons to achieve a natural look:

  • Burlap ribbon
  • Feathers
  • Vine

Prom Design Challenge

In early March, Rockcastle Florist designers were challenged to create fashion forward, Prom 2013 looks.  Designers were encouraged to research the latest prom fashion trends to drive inspiration for their floral designs.  Designs were evaluated on many factors including: originality, use of color, cost effectiveness, time effectiveness, and teen input.  To select the winning designs our team brought in three high school students, from Odyssey, Olympia, and West Irondequoit, to score and select their favorite designs.  After all, these looks are aimed specifically for prom attendees.


As fashion trends change, so too do floral trends.  Looks are going outside the corsage and boutonnière box with designs like small bouquets and floral necklaces.  One of our High School judges, Jenna Curicio, fell in love with a small bouquet designed by Ismeta Bandulj.  “This bouquet is my favorite piece!  The color of the roses are so pretty and very trendy for this season,” Curicio said.  Prizes are awarded to the top highest scoring designers and all submissions are considered for this season’s prom offerings.


The white freesia corsage designed by Shawn in our Canandaigua location is a tribute to his love of nature. Hen feathers and pussy willow blooms accent this beautiful combination of freesia and botanical green ribbon.
prom 13 11Robin in our Greece location placed second in the competition with this vibrant mix of hot pink and lime green. Designers are encouraged to find inspiration in this Season’s Prom Fashions and here you see the gown that led to Robin’s designs. The lime feathers and decorative bead wire add exciting new touches for this Spring.
prom 13 5Ismeta will be the first to tell you that Prom designs are not her forte, but she totally “rocked” this fingertip bouquet of pink spray roses with 3-D ribbon accents. Originally from Bosnia, Ismeta also designs in the Greece location.
prom 13 7Last, but certainly not least we have the top scoring design by Jen who was inspired by this year’s popular color… turquoise. Alstromeria lilies accented with gems and 3-D ribbon; this classic design was a show stopper and the one design all 3 of our diverse teen judges agreed on with a high score! Jen has been creating beautiful arrangements in our Greece location for over 20 years!!

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