While creating our UrbanStems review we were seriously impressed with what we found. UrbanStems has flower bouquets for many different types of occasions, from Valentine's Day flowers to sympathy arrangements. Although the UrbanStems selection is not as wide as those of other services we've reviewed, the selection's aesthetic leans more modern and bohemian, opting more often than not for soft hues and romantic colors. However, for those who prefer more classic floral arrangements, there are some options available.
UrbanStems is relatively new on the scene, but has fast become one of the best flower delivery online services. Established in 2014, the company is sometimes called the "Uber of flowers", meaning that customers can order flowers with the ease and convenience of a click of a button, while enjoying the shopping experience. UrbanStems stands out from its competition in multiple ways, especially in its arrangement design, affordability, and its partnership with Rainforest Alliance Certified farms.
The Rainforest Alliance is a non-profit organization that seeks to help business adopt more environmentally sustainable practices. For UrbanStems, this means partnering with certified farms that practice sustainable agriculture and social responsibility, which empowers the locals who work at these farms. So its great for ethical shoppers.
UrbanStems review: Website and selection
- Smaller than average selection, but quite varied, with plants available
- Detailed product pages
- Assortment of gifts, though no add-ons
- A more bohemian aesthetic
Before ordering our UrbanStems flowers, we browsed the selection of bouquets the service has to offer, and we were quite impressed by the beauty of available options. We noted that while it is by no means, small, the selection of bouquets is not as extensive as those of other services like 1-800 Flowers and Teleflora. However, it's easy to browse UrbanStems's entire selection of gifts, which includes plants and candles. As for the UrbanStems flower arrangements, they are varied enough for there to be a little something for anyone.
To make a selection, you can also refine your results by price, collection, occasion, or color. We were pleased to see that each product page is detailed, offering a rundown of the flowers included in the bouquet along with care instructions. There are even suggestions for events or occasions each bouquet is appropriate for.
We also noted that the overall aesthetic of UrbanStems flowers leaned toward a more bohemian, trendy look. The majority of the bouquets may not be for you if your recipient would prefer a more classic look, but there are certainly some options for this preference.
UrbanStems review: Prices and value
- Relatively affordable
- Great mid-range budget options
We were pleased to find that UrbanStems's price range is quite average, even leaning affordable for the product provided. There are arrangements for as low as $35, and as high as $175, with plenty of options for a more mid-range budget. You can also opt to add a vase for a few extra bucks.
We were particularly pleased to find that there is no upcharge for delivering on certain days, like a weekend. And depending on where you're sending the flowers, the delivery fee is already included in the price of the bouquet. The only extra fee we paid for was taxes, which is fairly standard when making any online purchase - and in this case, it was not as high as it was for other services we reviewed.
UrbanStems review: Ordering and delivery
- Pleasant and seamless ordering experience
- Complementary message option
Ordering from UrbanStems is a seamless and pleasant experience. While there are none of the add-ons that more traditional services offer, such as balloons or chocolate, some bouquets come with an extra gift included. For example, zodiac-inspired bouquets come with "birthday cake" chocolate. You can opt to add another gift, such as a candle.
You can also choose to have the flowers delivered with or without a vase, which means that you can ensure that the arrangement will not be too heavy for your recipient to carry home should you choose to send it to their place of work or other location. We ordered our arrangement without the vase. You can also add a complementary message to your order, which is printed on an UrbanStems branded card.
UrbanStems offers national delivery, but has yet to introduce international delivery. Arrangements are hand-delivered in New York and in Washington D.C., but are delivered via FedEx and CDL nationwide. For orders outside of these cities to arrive the next day, UrbanStems requires customers to place their orders before 2pm the day before the desired delivery date.
Depending on the time ordered, a bouquet can be delivered the same day or the next day. While ordering our UrbanStems arrangement, we were impressed with the option to pick a time frame during white to receive the bouquet.
UrbanStems review: Arrangement and quality
- Lean-looking bouquet with some wilting and fraying
- Hard to open box
- Flower care instructions provided
Arrangement: The Macchiato
Price: $55 + taxes
Flowers: Quicksand roses, Coffee Break roses, Kahala Roses, Lavender, Dusty Miller
Added extras: Complementary message
We ordered the Macchiato arrangement from the UrbanStems website and picked a specific date. We also wanted our arrangement to arrive between 11am and 1pm, as UrbanStems allows purchasers to specify the time frame. Our flowers arrived right on time, at 12:37pm.
We ordered The Macchiato without opting for purchasing the vase. Our arrangement arrived in a standing box, so the flowers could stay upright. We thought it would be an easy-open box, but we were proven wrong. It was actually quite hard to get the bouquet out of the box, and we ended up ripping it open to take it out. Although we were careful, anyone with a less steady hand could damage some of the flowers inside.
We also added a special note for ourselves, and it was included with the arrangement, in an envelope. The stationary was nothing special - simply an UrbanStems branded card with the note printed on it. For a more elegant or personal touch, we suggest you purchase the card separately. Sites like Harry & David flowers definitely offer better gifting, even if they trail in many other areas.
Our first thought upon seeing the bouquet was that it was rather small. In fact, our testers agreed that it needed some more foliage to bulk it out, despite there being ten roses. Overall, it looked as advertised. However, we noted that the lavender was hidden between roses - we didn't even know it was there until we looked at the website again. Some of our testers also described the dusty miller leaves in the bouquet as "sad": some were a little worn and wilted, their stems not able to hold them up. The roses were not as vibrant as they appeared on the website, but were still quite nice, their color being slightly unorthodox, yet gentle on the eyes. The roses were slightly frayed, but we think this was due to transport. The bouquet was also pleasantly fragrant, but not in an overwhelming way (like the one we got from Venus et Fleur). After a couple of days, the flowers arrived at peak bloom and, overall, the bouquet looked much nicer.
Our arrangement arrived with care instructions and a pack of plant food. We noted that the same care instructions are provided on the website, which is really only helpful if you know the name of your bouquet, although we doubt that the care instructions vary very much from bouquet to bouquet. Per the care instructions, the arrangement requires some maintenance such as trimming, so it's best to send it to your recipient's home in lieu of their office or another locale. However, if you order without the vase, it can easily be transported home in the box provided that the recipient does not tear open the box. For more info, we've created a feature on flower care.
Overall, we thought that this bouquet was good, even if some improvements could be made. If you opt for a fuller arrangement, you should be happier with the purchase. Despite the slightly disappointing appearance of our flowers, we think that UrbanStems provides nice alternatives to the standard classic bouquets, going for a more modern, even bohemian aesthetic.
UrbanStems review: Customer service
UrbanStems customer service can be easily reached by phone, by email, for by direct message on the site. There's also a helpful FAQ section that may already answer your question.
UrbanStems: Customer reviews
- Overall very positive reviews, with few exceptions
We were pleased to see that UrbanStems customer reviews were overwhelmingly positive. Of course, no service is perfect and there is always a chance of human error at the time of ordering or delivery: there are some reports of late deliveries and flowers that were already wilted upon delivery. However, the vast majority of customers rave about the beauty and variety of the bouquets, the timely delivery, and helpful customer service.