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St. Simons Wedding Planner :: Island Destination Weddings | Meet the Locals: Gay Whatley of Cottage Flowers
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Meet the Locals: Gay Whatley of Cottage Flowers | St. Simons and Jekyll Island Wedding Florist


Even if you haven’t seen the beautiful face of Gay Whatley, the chief designer and owner of Cottage Flowers on St. Simons Island, chances are you’ve seen her work.  Her beautiful floral concepts have been all over the bridal inspirationsphere:  The Knot, Style Me Pretty, Elegant Island Weddings and more (even here!).  She’s had the pleasure of working with a variety of brides from grand Sea Island events to small, personal in-home weddings, and I’ve loved them all.  Gay was even honored to be personally picked to provide flowers for Governor Bill Clinton’s "Man of the Year" party in Arkansas!  Gay is a fabulous floral designer that gently guides bridal couples and their families through their selections for their weddings that fit the overall event design scheme. 

  1. My favorite part of the wedding day is seeing the bride’s face light up when she see’s her bouquet.
  2. I never leave the house for a wedding without a mimosa and my tool box.
  3. My one tip for couples getting married in the Golden Isles is: Just relax and let your vendors do the work. I hate to see a bride on her wedding day trying to put out place cards, fixing centerpieces, trying to oversee what is going on, etc. This is your day. Make it special: sleep late, eat breakfast in bed, have mimosa’s, get  your hair and make up done, laugh large with your girlfriends and then put on that beautiful dress and stand in front of the mirror and just enjoy the moment.
  4. Your must-see or must-do for couples while in the area: The island is an experience that may be hard for everyone to get enjoy because of time. I think one the the best things one of my brides did for her wedding party and families was to rent the trolley for "welcome to the island" tour. She had it catered with fun snacks and refreshing drinks for the ride.


Here are some images of Gay’s fabulous work that we had an opportunity to collaborate on:

white and yellow wedding bouquet with hot pink kate spade wedidng shoescrane cottage weddings at jekyll island club


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  • Wonderful tip for all the brides to be, delegating and letting others handle all the details while the bride just enjoys the day sounds wonderful.

    November 4, 2010 at 8:18 pm
  • Mike & Monika


    We waited several years through military deployments and financial recovery to ensure we could celebrate our marital union they way we had long dreamed it could be. We wanted our wedding to be a celebration for the start of a new family and life together, a family reunion on a grand scale, and the pinnacle event for our destination wedding/vacation. We scheduled 5 interviews with florist in the area with Mrs. Whatley being our third and last. We did not even bother with the last two as we had spent a lot of time and energy researching our wedding service providers. We knew we had found a devoted professional with a personal touch. Gay truly listened to our vision of our floral arrangement needs without interjecting any personal bias or opinion as other florist had in an attempt to push a certain product or arrangement that would yield a better profit. We knew that wedding vendors take advantage of couples who are planning weddings because “you only have one chance to make the day/flowers/photos/video/memories perfect, so spend the extra money to ensure it executes perfectly” as they all seemed to remind us. Not Gay. She only offered her expert opinion when we asked or needed help or there was a conflict with the planning. Her advice was always towards maximize our overall vision while respecting our budget. Mrs. Whatley’s designs enhanced the overall environment more than we could picture in our minds and the end result was worthy of any celebrity or national bridal magazine wedding (trust me, we scoured dozens and dozens for several years while planning!). Our guest and even other vendors like the photographers and event coordinators continued their compliments of Mrs. Whatley’s work into the next day as we were leaving the venue. Gay’s perfect and personal customer service, expertise and artistic talent became the one of the few stress free parts of our wedding that we will always appreciate when we look at our pictures/photos and remember how amazing our special day felt. Thanks so much for helping us create our perfect wedding day!
    – M&M from Atlanta

    September 5, 2011 at 11:43 pm
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