Let’s face it, dear ol’ dad sometimes gets the short stem when it comes to expressing sentiments with flowers. However, by using practical items as containers and incorporating some edible goodies, many dads would be delighted to receive a floral reminder that they are loved.
Clay Atchison, owner of McAdams Floral in Victoria, Texas, has tried just about every idea for Father’s Day from beer baskets to sport-themed baskets, but hands down, his best sellers are his snack baskets.
“Even I was surprised when I looked at the sales,” he said. “And, really there’s nothing glorious about our snack baskets, but guys love them. We just layer on the snacks. Sometimes it’s a sweet and salty basket filled with candy bars, beef jerky and chips; sometimes it’s a just a salsa and chips and queso basket.”
That doesn’t mean that Atchison doesn’t add flowers, plants or have fun coming up with new ways to inspire Father’s Day sales. “When we think of guy baskets, we kind of go crazy and can get a little wacky with the basket contents. You just need to think of things to make it fun,” he said and described a “guy” picnic basket where he replaced the wine and cheese with beer and Cheez Wiz. (Note: You have to have a license to sell the alcohol and laws vary by state.)
Another benefit of thinking outside the box (or basket in this case) is that sometimes the wackier ideas are the ones that get noticed on social media.
“It’s the funny stuff that gets passed around on social media like the camo toilet paper we put in our deer hunting basket,” said Atchison, who often searches idea sites such as Pinterest for inspiration. Some of his other favorite ideas: using a tool box or a craft beer mug as a container.
Atchison is constantly on the lookout for new and interesting snacks, products and containers, stocking up when seasonal items go on sale. He buys most of his snacks in volume at bulk retailers to ensure he has a go-to snack inventory. He also shops at the local dollar store and searches online for discount items he can customize. For example, he’ll add a fun custom logo to a Styrofoam™ bait bucket or to a miniature galvanized fireplace ash bucket.
While he acknowledged that his Father’s Day sales are far on the heels of his Mother’s Day business, he said snack baskets, priced at $25 to $145, are popular, and even better, they sell year-round.
Looking for some inspiration? Here are some of suggested themes, perfect for the fellas:
Football basket or team logo cooler: Load your basket with a plant, local team gear, snacks and cold beverages to create a winning gift.
Fishing tackle box: Combine flowers, snacks and a few fishing lures to reel in customers.
Golf basket or cooler: Mix some taller grass plants with a golf towel, tees and ball markers.
Barbeque basket: Fire up your sales by using a small charcoal grill or grill pan jam-packed with bright red and orange flowers, bottles of sauce, barbeque tools, oven mitts and snacks.
Cooler, ice bucket or bait buckets: Stuff these with plants and items that go along with your theme for a pretty cool gift.
Health nut gift: Fill a workout bag with a plant, water bottle and healthy snacks such as protein bars, dried fruit and juices and you’ll be in great shape for Father’s Day.
Renee Houston Zemanski is a contributing writer for the Society of American Florists.