Attending Bridal Shows, a great starting point!

bridal show

Hello to all my fellow busy brides! Has the wedding preparation been keeping you busy? I don’t know how time is flying by so fast but, somehow, it’s close to 3 months since I have gotten engaged. I assume you’re all feeling the same.  So, what have I been up to? Well, most recently I went to a bridal show. Although I have been to a few shows as a vendor, this was my first time going as bride and, I learned something new. Normally bridal shows are busy, where it can be difficult to walk around and talk to vendors and being able to hear them clearly.  Not to worry – I have found a solution. Bridal shows are at their busiest on Saturdays. Going on the Friday evening or Sunday morning it is not nearly as busy and you can  walk around at leisure and speak to vendors, it was fabulous!

I decided to go to the bridal show with my fiancé because I wanted both of us to get an understanding of the going rate for each type of vendor. Being able to talk directly to all the different vendors it became pretty clear who priced themselves low, average and outrageous. $5000 for a wedding cake? That’s clearly out of my budget but it was pretty to look at! I think it is so important to talk to vendors and get their vibe.  For me, I think it is important for vendors to know their product. I was surprised at how many booths had people behind them that didn’t know the product and told me to call someone else to follow up and get more information. I was also surprised how many vendors would not give price lists. Personally, that makes me uneasy. I would like to know the prices and do some comparisons between vendors. I know that, for my own invitation clients, the invitation and stationary prices are set so there is never an issue of price gauging.

We walked away from the bridal show with a lot of flyers, pamphlets and business cards. I spent the night sorting through the vendors that I want to follow up with versus the ones I will be discarding. I’ve taken some pictures of décor items that I thought were really pretty. The yellow floral décor just took my breath away. You could tell the decorator put a lot of time and effort into it. It looked like a million bucks which makes me think it cost a pretty penny!

  

As we were rounding out towards the end of the show we received a terrific surprise, seeing Keasha from, “Say Yes to the Dress”! She was very sweet and very approachable. A group of us brides gathered around her as she took different questions from the various brides. I truly got the impression that she was not giving a scripted response but rather genuinely drawing on her experience as a dress consultant. I’ve included a snap of her too, but I was too shy to ask for a picture together.

Over the next little while we are going to start taking each vendor category, making of list of each potential vendor and start setting up consultations and getting solid price quotes. Is that how you approached your hiring spree? Let me know what questions I should ask these vendors and any tips or do’s and don’ts.

RULE
About the Author
Team Wedding, founded in January 2000, is a network of wedding related directories and niche wedding websites designed to alleviate wedding planning stress and to give brides and grooms the one-stop-shop experience they need in this busy, modern world. Top Wedding Sites, is the Internet’s first directory of the top ranked wedding sites, voted on by brides, grooms and others interested in hosting a wedding. Plan your wedding fast, easy and in the comfort of your own home, office or anywhere you can get an internet connection.

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  1. rick dalton

    As a wedding photographer in the Dallas and Fort Worth Texas area, I can tell you that bridal fairs are a great place for the bride to be for vendor information. Though referrals from your friends are great, bridal fairs offer a great cross-section of the wedding vendors in your area.

    For budget conscience brides, even though you may not be able to afford some of the vendors, it won’t stop you from getting ideas about flowers, decorations, photography, video, etc.

    For the high-end bride who is using a wedding coordinator, you can go as well, just to see some options that your consultant may not be aware of, yet is exactly what you want.

    See a photographer’s booth that you like, stop in and say “hello”. See a wedding photographer that is not your style, just keep walking. It is that simple.

    Sadly, many wedding vendors will not bring along price lists. Just ask them what a ballpark price is for their services. Understand that they may want to spend more personal time with you at their office or studio to determine exactly what your needs are, and show you all their products.

    Bring return address labels. They will save you tons of time, and spare you muscle cramps after filling out questionnaires at the various booths.

    The Dallas, Arlington, Ft. Worth area has lots of bridal fairs at various times of the year. Go to several if you feel the need, but be sure and take notes as you visit each booth. Don’t pick pick up a brochure unless you think that person is a good fit for you. This will help you minimize the amount of material that you have to weed through later.

    Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. Frequently bridal fair floors are concrete. Sore feet will ruin the experience.

    Bring a friend, your fiance, or mom. Make it fun. Enjoy an un-rushed lunch afterwards to chat about your thoughts while they are fresh.

    Have fun!

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