Another Bridal Show! How to properly attend...and have a blast.
Photo credit: Kairos Moment Wedding Films
With the start of the New Year, the Joie de Vie Weddings & Events phone lines have been ringing! We have newly engaged couples that are excited about the planning process as they begin to plan their wedding.
If you are newly engaged, CONGRATULATIONS! You are probably looking at all of the upcoming bridal shows and wondering, 'What are some ways to make great use of my time at a bridal show?' Here are some planning tips to help you make the best of the upcoming shows:
1. Have preprinted self-adhesive labels. You don't develop writers cramp or carpel tunnel and trust me if you dont' do this you will be writing all day. You will be giving your information to vendors as well as entering drawing for the wonderful prizes given away at the shows. The labels need to have the following: Your Name, Groom's Name, Wedding Date, Email & Phone Number. This will give you time to focus on the details with the vendors you are talking to. You may want to print at least 100 labels.
2. Set up a seperate email account for all things wedding related. You are going to the show to see the vendors work. The vendors are there to market their business. They are going to contact you after the show. Besides, you get to come up with a cute email address which you can later use for your wedding website if you set one up.
3. Bring along support in the form of two people --only two people! One should hopefully be your groom (if he's willing) and the other a trusted friend (member of the bridal party) and a parent. Your support team also serve as great secretary's and assistants. The groom is able to see all of the facets of the wedding planning and can become more proactive as a result of attending the show with you. Your friend or family member know you and your style and can help you as you look through the various items. Bring people who are going to be objective and honest. You don't want to bring a big group of people, it just becomes to confusing.
4. Wear comfortable shoes! I know we are all "Diva's" and "Fashionista's" -- but stiletto's at a bridal show? You are asking for trouble. Wear comfortable shoes so that you can walk around and talk to vendors not worry about the pinky toe that you can no longer feel because you have been on your feet for two or three hours.
5. Bring your calendar, a small tote bag and a notepad. Many of the vendors will be able to set appointments for you to see them after the show. Use the notepad to make notes as you speak to the vendors. Keep the cards of vendors you want to follow up with seperate from all the other information you are receiving by placing it in your tote bag. The bridal show will more than likely give you a bag, which you can use for all of the other information. This will be handy later when you want to visit the websites of the vendors you want to follow up with. Once you have gone through the information in your tote, then you can explore the information in the Bridal Show Bag.
6. Bring a check book or credit card. Seriously! You may find a vendor that you want to contract right away or they may be offering a show special. Now still be cautious, you want to make sure you read your contract or understand the terms of the services before you sign ANYTHING.
7. Realize that bridal shows are not two minute affairs. They typically run from noon until 4 or 5:00 PM. You will have various vendors to visit and you will offer get an opportunity to taste food and see samples of work. That takes time to do.
8. Many shows want you to pre-register. If you pre-register it may lead to discounted ticket prices for admissions or special incentives because you registered early.
Over the next few months there are several bridal shows that you can take in the Central Florida area you can attend:
Wedding Professionals of Central Florida
Date: Sunday, January 25, 2009
Bridal Show: Central Florida’s Bridal Education Day & Expo at Royal Plaza Hotel
Address: 1905 Hotel Plaza Blvd. Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Perfect Wedding Guide
Date: Sunday, February 08, 2009
Bridal Show: Perfect Wedding Guide Bridal Show at Orlando World Center Marriott
Address: 8701 World Center Drive Orlando, FL 32821
Phone: 407.936.0380 x131
Brides Against Breast Cancer Charity Gown Sale
Date: Thursday - Saturday, March 12th, 13th & 14th
Address: UCF Fairwinds Alumni Center
Your Wedding TV
Date:Sunday, April 5, 2009
Time: 1:00 - 5:00 PM
Address: Wyndham Orlando Resort 8001 International Drive Orlando, FL, 32819
9. Wear the Bride Name tag that most shows provide. It helps the vendor know who you are. After all it is yor moment to shine!
10. Remember to have fun. This will be a great place to meet other brides, to be wooed and wowed by wedding professionals.
Well I hope to see you all at the upcoming shows. I will be at the booth Brides Against Breast Cancer booth. The Association of Bridal Consultants is sponsoring the 4th annual Gown Sale to support Brides Against Breast Cancer. Please stop by and say hello. If you stop by and tell me you found out about our booth from the blog -- I have a special gift for you!