1. If there is a service at a funeral home it is most common to send flowers to the funeral home for the viewings and you should try and get the flowers delivered for the first viewing as their may only be 2 viewings.
2. It is acceptable& customary to send funeral flowers, Plants or Fruit & Gourmet Baskets to the funeral home
3. If you are sending flowers to a residence do not send funeral flowers such as a funeral spray or a cross or a funeral basket. Funeral arrangements are typically one side and designed to be placed against a wall not suitable for a residence. Instead it is traditional to send white flowers in a vase to a residence or a plant.
4. If the family is Jewish and the family is sitting Shiva you should send a Shiva basket which is basically a fruit & gourmet basket that should be kosher unless you know it does not matter. You can also send a green plant but you should not send flowers or blooming plants.
5. Funeral flower arrangements are typically one sided as they are placed against the wall rather than in the center of a table. Funeral flowers that go to the funeral home are generally large and showy. Pieces like crosses, hearts and large funeral sprays can cost hundreds of dollars. Even though you found something to send for forty dollars you need to consider that your arrangement will be placed next to all the others and many people will spend more. I would send no less then a fifty dollar arrangement to a funeral home. This would be for plants and floral arrangement.
6. The card message is personal but some ideas are ‘our thoughts and prayers are with you’ or ‘with deepest sympathy’. It is also typical not to address the card specifically to anyone as the funeral director will collect all the cards and give them to the family. When you send a sympathy piece the card should clearly indicate who is sending the flowers (last name and or company name if appropriate) as it can be confusing to the family during a stressful time. You should also put your address on the card to make it easier for the family when they send out thank you cards.
7. If you are placing a banner on the piece it should state your relationship to the deceased. Customary banners are ‘beloved Mother', ‘Dearest Friend’ etc. Many times a florist does not offer this as it is not something that they charge for and it costs them money. It will make the sympathy flowers you are sending look special so you should consider if it is appropriate for you.
8. When you send flowers to a funeral home the family generally does not take them home. If you want the family to have something for their home it would more likely occur and be more convenient if you sent the flowers to the home directly.
9. If you contact a funeral home that is trying to sell flowers you should politely say no thanks. Many of the mom and pop funeral homes have been purchased by a just a couple very large companies . These companies maintain the local name but they operate very differently. The funeral directors working for the funeral homes get commissions on flowers that are sold, the funeral home also keeps some of your money as commission on your flower order instead of it going into the sympathy flowers. Worse yet the funeral home employees don't know anything about flowers, what is in season or in stock so you are paying a premium for lousy service.
10. Beware of websites pretending to be funeral homes, or websites acting like funeral home guides that are selling flowers. These sites are not associated with the funeral homes they pretend to be and I would not recommend dealing with them.
If you would like to send an expression of sympathy contact Avas Flowers 877.638.3303
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