It is February 4th. The decorations are up. 1-800-Flowers is advertising on the side of Facebook. Love is in the air... or actually, maybe those are just flurries.
Pittsburgh has a collection local flower shops that go beyond just a dozen roses, and are creating unique flower bouquets for Valentine's Day (although I'm sure they'd happy to supply you with some roses).
Ordering local is the best way to find something special, and get the most for your money. Also, you have more control over the delivery and pick up process!
While each shop approaches flower arranging in their own way, there is one tip they all agree on - don't dally! If you want something specific, order in advance! If you walk in the day of, you will be able to get something, but if you want to get something special, order sooner than later.
Below is a collection of Valentine's Day tips from some of Pittsburgh's most unique flower shops...
The Farmer's Daughter Flowers
The Farmer's Daughter is a flower shop just shy of 2-years-old on the North Side of Pittsburgh. Owner Lauren Phillips is a Pennsylvania native, and studied flower arranging in Brooklyn. The interior of the store looks like a Rifle Paper Company apothecary (ie: dreamy), and sells a plethora of locally made trinkets. Oh, and they also do flowers.
Of her North Side store, Phillips says they "love to focus on a blend of floral elements. Mixing poppies, ranunculus, roses, tulips, with a funky texture is our Valentine's Day go to! We feel our studio style specializes in the unexpected, garden inspired arrangement. Being bold with colors and elements make our hearts sing!"
For example of the Farmer's Daughter's arrangements, check out their Instagram page!
Valentine's Day Tip? Lauren wants to remind everyone that "Valentine's Day is for all! Treat yourself, your girlfriends, a family member, or your main squeeze. I've learned that Valentine's Day is to celebrate love, all love!"
The Farmer's Daughters Flowers, 431 E Ohio St, Pittsburgh, PA 15212, (412) 231-1238
Roxanne's Dried Flowers
The Strip District is home to the only dried flower shop in the area. Dried flowers are specially preserved after being cut so they keep their fresh appearance, but do not continue to decay. This means a bouquet of dried flowers last much longer than a typical bunch of flowers.
A bouquet of Valentine's Day roses from Roxanne's Dried Flowers will look freshly cut, but will last for years to come. As there is no upkeep with watering the arrangement, their pieces are fairly care free.
Valentine's Day Tip? Dried flowers can be ordered much further in advance! Be sure to check out Roxanne's online shop. Arrangements from Roxanne's can be shipped and stored for when you need them. As there is no upkeep with watering, the Roxanne's arrangements are fairly care free.
Roxanne's Dried Flowers, 2115 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, (412) 281-6950
Squirrel Hill Flower Shop
Squirrel Hill Flower Shop is a Pittsburgh tradition. The family owned business has been delivering fresh flowers to the city of Pittsburgh for over 65 years. The store produces a vast collection of arrangements, but for Valentine's Day, owner Ronna Wedner personally suggests,"dendrobium orchids, fresh cut, because they are beautiful."
It is possible to order and browse their shop online, and even stop in the day of to pick something up. If you want something unique, the store highly recommends ordering at least one week ahead.
Valentine's Day tip? Squirrel Hill Flower Shop suggests having your flowers delivered a few days before Valentines Day. Stores will already have their flowers in stock, and will be delivering all weekend. People will actually be home over the weekend, and they will be more surprised because they're expecting flowers on Wednesday.
Squirrel Hill Flower Shop , 1718 Murray Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15217, (412) 421-3300
This beautiful coffee shop on Main Street in Lawrenceville gains its jungle-like atmosphere from the fact it is also a beautiful flower shop, creating some of the most original floral arrangements in Pittsburgh.
The shop also has some of the most original advice. In terms of a flower suggestion, 4121 Main says to go for carnations - yes, carnations - this Valentine's Day.
"Pink carnations represent love traditionally, and they have the sweetest scent," says florist Thommy Conroy. "There are so many unique varieties we love to work with."
All anyone has to do is look at the beautiful carnation arrangement below to see that Thommy is correct, and carnations get an unjustified bad rep.
Valentine's Day tip? Conroy also suggests that people "Think beyond red. Red is overpriced for the season. You can get a much more interesting bouquet by going beyond red, and you will get more for your money."
4121 MAIN, 4121 Main St, Pittsburgh, PA 15224, (412) 708-4500
Toadflax in Shadyside is another local spot to get Valentine's day bouquets. The store describes themselves as a traditional, english garden type of flower shop. They suggests tulips or ranunculus for Valentine's Day as February is their season, and they are always very beautiful.
Valentine's Day tip? Toadflax says that people are often happy with the nontraditional, and to think about mixing it up!
Toadflax, 5500 Walnut St, Pittsburgh, PA 15232, (412) 621-2500
The shops generally suggest picking up your flowers on Valentine's Day, or the day before. Once the flowers are in your possession, each shop suggest cutting the stems and refreshing the water frequently.
Additionally, it is best to keep the flowers out of direct sunlight and away from forced air, whether it be heat or air conditioning. For Roxanne's Dried Flowers, used canned air for dusting, and keep out of sunlight to avoid fading.
Thanks to all of the shops for sharing their secrets, and happy Valentine's Day, yinz!