Have you ever had to go to a wedding show? This can be either in the form of bride, bridesmaid or poor friend that gets dragged along. It honestly means the same thing for everyone involved (except the bride gets to win free shit). If you haven’t, it’s a room full of wedding options. Flowers, hair, makeup, even tanning. Quite frankly, it’s hell encapsuled in a large showroom. Here are some ways to navigate through, what to ask, and what you can just steer clear of.
Don’t Be A Hero….Have That Drink
First of all, these things are usually held in hotels. So…hotels have restaraunts. Licensed restaraunts if you get my drift…..yeah that’s right. Go get a drink before you even attempt to step foot in there. You’ll need it. If you don’t want to get out of control just order a Caesar. If you have no fucks to give and aren’t the driver or the bride…..then whiskey it is.
Patience Is A Virtue
Elbows out ladies! I’ve found that every wedding show I’ve ever had the luxury of being at, I’ve always felt in the way. Even standing alone in a corner by myself. That’s because there is always at least three groups of women that HAVE to get everywhere first. They will push, shove, and give you the stink eye. Now unless your baby is somewhere on fire, don’t ever act that way. I’m going to fill you in on something. Are you ready? Your time is no more valuable than someone else’s. Be prepared for a lot of standing around. Unless you’re the one throwing the wedding show for yourself, there’s going to be a lot of brides there that have to get the same shit done as you. Be patient. You’ll learn how much those country chic decorations will cost in no time.
Another thing that you have to remember is that you’re there to gather information. Remember to take the materials to do so or you’ll be writing on napkins like you’re working a bar on Saturday night. Take a notebook and a pen. Any girl that I’ve worked with for their wedding I actually make them prepare different chapters in their books ahead of time for different needs. Flowers, dress, decoration, ect. You’re going to be talking to more than one vendor, so the less muddled your notebook gets, the easier it will be to remember.
Work Your Name Like You’re Being Paid
No, I don’t mean it in the way that you think. I’m literally nobody so I can’t drop my name and expect it to do anything anywhere. I mean that half of the point of these wedding shows is that you can win an incredible amount of stuff. If you’re the bride, there’s even usually a chance you can win to have your whole wedding paid for. Get writing and dropping slips of paper in every bucket you come across. Even if at one point you find yourself thinking “I don’t need to put my name in for a free spray tan. It’s only a spray tan”. Yes. Yes you do. Weddings are one of the most expensive industries in the world for a reason. Don’t pretend like you’re too good for a free spray tan now. Come wedding time when you have thirty dollars in your account, you’ll wish you put your name in.
Vendors want to sell you their services. That’s why they’re there. You need to get smart to this and quick. I have had someone smile right in my face and try to rip me off literally THOUSANDS of dollars at one of these shows. Too bad that I did my research before I went. Go online and find the flowers that are in season for your wedding. Write down a general cost of the ones you’re eyeing. Now you have a general quote to work with. Do the same for your cake, decorations ect. If someone that you’re talking to projects over that quote in a big way then keep looking. Different vendors all hold different prices. Some are fair and some aren’t. It’s not their job to tell you who’s going to rip you off and who won’t. That’s your job. A little bit of sleuthing online before you go can be the difference between three and four digit outcomes.
Look At Styles
Here’s the thing. When it comes to decorations and photography, it’s always safe to look for someone that uses the style that you like. Even if they cost a bit more, it’s safe to say the outcome will be something that you’ll enjoy. Why pay less for someone who’s country chic photos you didn’t care for when that’s the theme of your wedding? You’ve seen what they can do with your theme. If you don’t like it chances are you wont like yours either. Yes, you generally work hand in hand with these people, but they are a service. You can’t spend all of your time watching over their shoulders…..and they will hate you if you do that. Find someone who’s work speaks to your style and theme. That way they can go it alone and you’ll be in good hands.
Keep Your Pushy Wedding Party At Bay
If you have bridesmaids that say things like “It’s not just about you and the groom you know” or “The bridesmaids should get to pick more stuff for the wedding” then just leave those ones at home. Seriously. You are literally going to be sardined next to a room full of women trying to get their own shit done. They don’t have to deal with you and your maid of honor boxing in aisle three in front of a cake display. Your feet will be sore, you’ll be hot, you’ll be full of questions and your head will be spinning a bit. A pushy bridesmaid might just be the straw that breaks the camels back. Don’t put the innocent public through that. If you have a maid of honor in your wedding party that you’ve been having problems with, maybe speak to them before hand and if they come across as though they will be getting their favorite cake flavor no matter what for your wedding cake…..then just forget to give them the date of the wedding show. It will be the best for you, the vendors and the rest of your wedding party.
These vendors are here to get a job done. This is their job. You get to breeze in and out under your own accord. They are there setting up and taking down long after you’re gone. They really don’t need to know if you don’t like their style or if you think they don’t do a good enough job for what they charge. Don’t go with their services if that’s how you feel. They don’t need all of the facts that the groom cheated but you don’t want to call the wedding off or how this is your fifth wedding with an explanation of what each wedding theme was. They are being polite with their listening. They have a service to be doing. Keep it light and about wedding facts then move on and let them help someone else. Affecting someone’s sales, especially if you aren’t thinking of going with them yourself, is a jerk move. What was that saying the mob used if you got in between them and their money? Oh yeah, that’s right, I think it was “We’ll kill you”.
Wedding shows are a great way to set the groundwork for your wedding. Sometimes you can get a large chunk of the details done there and sometimes you just get one big score like invitations or bridesmaids dresses. Either way, it’s a chance to get stuff done and win prizes along the way. Just remember to go in knowing it’s not going to be the most comfortable thing in the world and you’ll be fine. Take your time looking around, have fun, and if you can’t decide on something just take a picture with your phone so that you can revisit it later when your mind isn’t packed full of flowers and cakes. Happy wedding showing and if you’re around for the one in Brandon on Sunday I’ll probably see you there. I’ll meet you at the bar first for a drink.