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Calling BULLSH!T!

Posted on January 16 2018

Whether you know it or not, some major floral retailers are screwing you over, and laughing all of the way to the bank.  Truthfully, I guess we could include LOTS of types of retailers in that list, not just floral, but because we know the industry well….that’s what we’ll talk about a today!

When it comes to pricing philosophies, there are many. But a common philosophy among large retailers is “Mark it up a lot, so you can mark it down and still make money”

The fact is, a business that does 40% OFF, 50% OFF, and 75% OFF all of the time on their products would go bankrupt incredibly quick..  Are stores like Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, and At Home going bankrupt? No. If they were actually giving these huge discounts off of product all of the time, they would have closed their doors long ago.  In order to do these big sales, they inflate the regular retail prices to obscene levels, creating the illusion that a 50% discount is actually a good deal.

Here is an example.  We found this Nandina stem on Michael’s website.

Now, we do NOT carry this exact Item in our store.  HOWEVER, we do buy from this same vendor.  And if we sold this item in our store, the regular price would be $6.95 all of the time.  Not to mention if we did a 20% off sale (which we do several times a year), it would then be 5.56 a stem.  And although we didn’t sell this exact berry stem, we sold other nandina berry stems that were better in quality, and for half of the price of Michaels regular everyday price on this stem.

Here’s another example.  We found this Poinsettia online at Michaels.

Again, we do not carry this exact stem, however we do buy from the same vendor, and if we did have it in our store, it would have been $9.95 all of the time, BEFORE any discount.  We actually did have an incredibly realistic poinsettia that was a much better quality to the one seen above from a different vendor that we sold for $8.95 regular price.  It always pays to shop local!  In so many ways!

This may not be news to you.  You may have understood that big deep discounts all of the time meant inflated prices, and thought “Well, I know they market it up a lot….I’ll just wait for them to go on sale, I’m not going to pay full price.” But did you know, you can go to a local floral shop, and find something comparable to the sale price almost all of the time?  Not to mention a better quality.   (We’ll discuss quality of Big Box vs Small Retailers in another blog).

Here’s another example of christmas ribbon, that we actually did sell in our store! Here is a screen capture of it being sold by another retailer for $24.95!

We actually did sell this ribbon in our store for $19.95! Here’s the link.

And although we've shown you a couple of examples from Michael's, again, they are NOT the only floral retailer that does this.  Hobby Lobby, At Home, and others mark way up, to mark down and give the illusion of a great savings. And how do you know who does this?  Just pay attention to sales!  Someone who does massive sales (40, 50, and 75+% OFF) a lot, especially before the season, is a great and accurate indicator! 

Now, these businesses provide jobs to many people, as well as provide a lot of different products and services that many other businesses, including us, do not.  So they have their place in our world, and...yes, even we have purchased craft supplies/decor from them (on sale). And the truth is, the pricing strategy is NOT decided by the hourly workers, floral designers, store managers, stock people, or anyone at the local stores.  These decisions are made back at corporate.  The employees in the actual store are just doing their jobs and have nothing to do with this. And this blog post, is intended in no way as an attack on their workers in the store, they are afterall, just doing their job, but more of a discussion of the company practices.

Our purpose for writing this article was simple. We wanted people to be informed and be able to make decisions on their own, and not be manipulated by an extreme pricing strategy that they may not be aware of.

So next time you see a 50% OFF sale for something seasonal, especially if the sale is before the season has even started, just remember that you’re not getting the really good deal you think you are, you’re just being manipulated. And that there are small business owners who would take better care of you, for less money, all of the time! Call their BULLSH!T!

Click here to shop our Floral Stems currently available, or shop some of our favorite stems below!




  • Alice B. Rockhold: January 17, 2018

    You guys are spot on about the pricing and most certainly in regard to the quality of what the other retailers are selling. The reality for me as a woman and a designer is that I always have fresh flowers in my
    home but am unable to do this always for my clients. The quality and the color of the stems that you offer are the closest thing to reality that I have seen. I know that I have succeeded in my choices for my clients when they touch the flowers to see if they are real or not.

    I am a huge shopper and always on a mission if not for myself for others. My time is precious. I do not

    waste it running in and out of stores that are unable to meet my needs. So as long as you keep doing what you are doing I will be there to shop. See you on Friday, February 16.

    Am basking in the Florida sun-it is only 32 here today!

  • B J. Poynter: January 17, 2018

    Couldn’t agree with your article more. Had a shop for years and got to witness this first hand. I do love your shop and try to stop by when in Lexington.

  • Jo Jo: January 16, 2018


  • Brian Furkin: January 16, 2018

    There is no comparison of the quality of your merchandise compared to these big box stores. I’ve always known their merchandise was not really 50% off. And, one of them prides themselves as an honest “christian” company. Yeah, right! I’m glad you did this blog! Everyone needs to see it! Thanks!

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