Wedding planning can be an overwhelming experience, as can visiting a wedding fair. Whether you are at the start of your journey or have a better idea of what you are looking for, you can find a lot of inspiration at a fair. But with so many options and ideas out there, how do you prevent planning stress?
With a little bit of planning, wedding fairs can be an enjoyable trip out. But how do you what is the best way to navigate a fair in the most stress-free way possible?
Here are my top pointers for having a wonderful and productive time:
Work out what’s important to you
Depending on how far along you are in your planning journey, you might not have a detailed budget worked out but it’s worth having a think about what’s most important to you. Do you want to make sure you have the best photographer but aren’t too bothered about chair sashes? Or do you want an epic cake (yes, please!) but aren’t really feeling the idea of a photo booth? Sit down with your partner and have a think about what is non-negotiable, what you would really like and what you can do without. It’s so easy to be swept along and persuaded by everything so it’s a good idea to have a little plan.
Pick the fair that’s right for you
There are so many wedding fairs now that it’s easy to find something for everyone! From super-luxe showcases to quirkier offerings, from more intimate shows to mega national ones. Do a little research into what kind of wedding fair might suit you best to avoid feelings of overwhelm or disappointment. A quick Google for a wedding fair events calendar should set you on the right track.
Have a plan for the day
There are so many people to talk to that it’s easy to miss things. If you can’t get hold of a floor plan, have a quick whizz around (if possible) and scope out the people you want to talk to so you can go back and have a better look. Suppliers will be more than happy for you to chat with them and discuss what they have to offer. It’s your wedding and you need to feel comfortable with your supplier. Don’t be afraid to share your ideas and ask questions but keep an open mind: maybe you might see or discuss something you hadn't even thought of!
Don’t forget the practicalities!
Do you need a ticket for the fair or will it save time if you buy one in advance?
Worth doing to ensure you get in and beat any long queues!
Wear flat shoes. There’s going to be a lot of wandering around and the last thing you want is to be distracted by sore feet!
Think about who you are taking with you. Is your partner really keen to join you or will they just traipse around after you? Your 5 best friends might want to come but will all their differing opinions just confuse you? Think about taking a couple of people who will help, rather than hinder you.
Take a bag! You are likely going to collect loads of bits and pieces. Take your favourite jute bag so you can keep your hands free so you can do fun things like look through portfolios, be tactile with fabrics, and eat some cake samples!
Don't feel pressured. Decisions made for your wedding day can be big and expensive. Don't feel rushed into deciding things on the spot. There's always the fear that things might get booked up but it's not worth the expense or upset if you get caught up in the moment and make a decision you later don't feel so great about.
Wedding fairs might not be for you. Or maybe you have been to a few and just can't find what you are looking for. Never fear! There are plenty of ways to find epic suppliers, from blogs, to Instagram, to Pinterest, to wedding directories (like the wonderful Brides Keeping It Real, biased? Moi?) Ask around and search out those things that will make your day as unique as you are.
And remember... this whole process doesn’t need to be stressful so make sure you are doing what’s best for you and your partner and enjoy the experience.
If you would like to come and see me and have a chat about your wedding cake then I will be at Ormesby Hall for their open evening on 20th February and at the North Shire Spring wedding fair on 26th April (in their Enchanted Barn! Oh la la!)
Wedding Open Evening - National Trust Ormesby Hall - https://www.facebook.com/events/1314385582072870/
North Shire Spring wedding fair - https://www.facebook.com/events/north-shire/north-shire-spring-wedding-fair/607046483370044/
Looking forward to seeing you there!