Many years ago, a woman from Paris, France set up a flower shop in Alabama. Little did she know that her granddaughter, Jan Gilmer would follow in her footsteps. Jan Gilmer says, “It is in my blood.”
Jan can remember when she was little, falling asleep in a flower box while her family stayed up all night making corsages for prom season. She grew up watching her grandmother and family help brides pick the perfect flowers for their wedding day. She was destined for a career as a florist.
“Flowers belong in a wedding. They add beauty, elegance and enhance the photography.” Jan says. Personally, she loves bright flowers like peonies and anemones. Because she grew up around flowers, she has years of experience with creating the perfect bouquets and arrangements for weddings.
Over the years, Jan’s business has evolved from florals. When she was pregnant with her second daughter, she filled her time waiting on a baby by learning how to make wedding cakes. Soon, she added it to her repertoire.
She owned a boutique that offered a bridal registry and after talking to brides who came into the shoppe, she noticed that there was a need in her area for a wedding planner. Jan had years and years of experience working with brides on floral arrangements, cakes, and registries that this seemed the natural progression. One bride here and there became a full-fledged bridal service called The Cake Boutique.
Jan Gilmer loves helping brides and grooms create the wedding of their dreams. She considers herself well-organized and helps with every part of the wedding process! In a consultation, Jan will get to know the couple and get a feel for what they want their dream wedding to look like. Once she has an idea of their budget, from there she can create an estimate of her services. She plans every part of the wedding and can even schedule the appointments! Jan gives the couple a timeline to help them stay on track while cutting out a lot of the stress. Besides florals and cakes, Jan has connections and helps get the invitations, venue, band, photographer, food, decor, and shares her resources with her clients. She even goes to help the bride and groom pick out their wedding day clothes!
As a florist, Jan loves the reaction when a bride sees her bouquet for the first time. As a wedding planner, Jan says her favorite part of the wedding is the groom’s reaction when he sees his bride for the first time.
Jan revealed that the reward for her services comes at the end when the grateful brides, grooms, and families come to her to say, “thank you for a beautiful wedding.” She believes that Word of Mouth referrals are the best compliment.
As The Cake Boutique continues to grow and evolve, big changes are coming- including a recent name change! The Cake Boutique is now known as Gilmer Weddings. Another big change- Jan is booked with cake orders until November 2021, then she will no longer do cakes. “The business has just grown so much that I don’t have the time to devote to cakes, anymore. I will still be offering all of my other services, including florals, though.”
Jan is excited about the rebrand and says she is always up for a challenge. “My mom always said if it’s not challenging, Jan doesn’t want to do it. I didn’t really know what she meant until I was older but it’s true. I like a challenge. No wedding is too big. If I think I can do it, I’m going to do it,” Jan pointed out.
Booking with Gilmer Weddings means you will get an experienced and knowledgeable planner who can deliver a polished wedding with stunning bouquets and floral arrangements. Gilmer Wedding is located in Southside, AL and is by appointment only.