Tips for Getting the Most Out of a Bridal Show

Bridal shows are happening this time of year all over the country. Attending a few of these can help you to take care of many wedding planning tasks in one place. They are also excellent sources for wedding inspiration and a great chance to win products and services from vendors.

Unless you have been a bridesmaid before, bridal shows are probably new territory for you. Take some advice from and try the following wedding planning tips for making your way through a bridal show like a pro., weddings, online wedding accessories

Register online.

If the bridal show that you are attending allows early registration online, take advantage of it.  When you arrive the day of the show, you will get in and on your way much quicker if all of your information has already been filled out.  Sometimes early registrants are also offered additional prizes, discounts, or other goodies.

Do your homework.

There will be a lot of people at the show trying to talk to the same vendors that you are looking for, and the show is only so long. Do your research ahead of time. Make a checklist for yourself of all of the things that you need to accomplish at the show. Go straight to those vendor booths first. Once you have gathered all of the information that you came for, visit of the other booths too. You may pick up some great inspiration or discover a new service that you didn't know about.

Setup a temporary email address.

Anything that you sign up for, including the bridal show itself, is a ploy for vendor's to get your contact information so that they can advertise their services to you.  Setting up a temporary email address specifically for wedding planning information is a perfect way to keep all of those emails you will be bombarded with from clogging up your regular inbox. Once the wedding is over, save the vendor info that you may use again in the future, then feel free to close the temporary email address.

Dress comfortably.

You will be walking a lot and probably standing most of the day.  There will be a lot of ground to cover.  Wear comfortable shoes and clothes that are easy to move around large crowds in.

Eat lightly before you go.

Put a little bit of healthy food in your stomach before you get to the show.  There will be lots of food samples, so you don't want to go with a full stomach.  That being said, the majority of the food samples will most likely be sweets such as wedding cake.  If you have too many of those samples on an empty stomach you will risk getting a sugar overload. 

Take wedding info stickers.

Nearly every single booth at the wedding show will have some kind of giveaway to sign up for.  Save yourself a lot of time and hand cramps by pre-printing all of your important wedding information on stickers or address labels.  All you will need to do is peel and stick, and you're all signed up in 2 quick seconds, no writing required!  If you don't take labels along with you, PRINT INFORMATION CLEARLY on all forms.  You don't want to lose out on an awesome giveaway because they can't read your handwriting.  On your stickers, be sure to include:
  • Bride's name
  • Groom's name
  • Wedding date
  • Phone number
  • Email Address
  • Mailing address (if you want to receive mailings)

Have a P.A. for the day.

Your maid of honor, mother, sister, or someone else whose opinion you trust and is reliable should come along with you as a personal assistant for the day.  They can help to keep you on track throughout the show, keep all of the information you will be gathering in a safe place, and fill out your name for you on those giveaways while you spend your time talking to the vendors.  A fiance can be a great helper too if you can convince him to come along.  Grooms are encouraged to attend with their brides, and if he is there with you, it's a lot easier to get your vendors booked right away before you date is taken.      

Don't forget to bring..., weddings, online wedding accessories
Chalkboard Floral Tote
  • Datebook
    • You won't get a lot of quality time with vendors because there will be a lot of other people.  Make appointments to meet with your favorite vendors one-on-one and record them in your calendar immediately.  
  • Checkbook/ Credit Card
    • If you are positive you want a particular vendor, book them right then and there before your date is taken.  Also, very large discounts on services are often available at bridal shows if you book that same day.  Most vendors will probably accept credit cards, but some smaller companies may still only deal with checks.  Have both with you, just in case.
  • Spending Money
    • You may be in for a very long day, and you are bound to get hungry and thirsty.  Have enough cash handy for these things.
  • An Extra Bag
    • You will be picking up lots of fliers, business cards, and promo items all day long.  A bag for carrying all of these around is a lifesaver.  Lots of bridal shows provide a bag to you for this, but having an extra one allows you to put so-so information into one and the VIP information (vendors you definitely want to use) in the other.  Don't throw away any vendor information until after you have all of your vendors officially booked, just in case someone you planned to use falls through.

Follow those tips to get the best possible information out of every bridal show that you attend.  Talk to other brides while you are there and compare notes.  When you meet wedding vendors, ask lots of questions.  The more that you can accomplish in this one day, the fewer tasks you will have left on your wedding planning checklist.  Then you can start focusing on the fun stuff, like buying gifts for bridesmaids and picking out your honeymoon wardrobe.  Let the bridal show inspire your imagination and get all of the wedding planning pieces into place.  

Where Brides Go®
...for What Brides Love!

~ The Team
Post by Deanna Powell, Certified Bridal Consultant

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Brilliant Bridesmaid Gifts for the Wedding Day & Beyond

All of the decisions involved in planning a wedding can get overwhelming.  Some of the details, like whether there are enough trash cans placed around the room, are necessary but not much fun.  When it comes to picking out items like gifts for bridesmaids, you can actually enjoy spending your time on those decisions.      

The practical bride will want to buy bridesmaid gifts that are not only pretty, but will be used often as a memento of your special day.  Things that can be used on the wedding day really come in handy, plus if you give matching items to everyone, it can make for some cute photo opportunities!

There are lot of great gifts to give to your bridesmaids that can be used the morning of the wedding while you are all getting ready together.  First of all, a great big tote for carrying all of the getting-ready essentials is useful for carrying all kinds of stuff later on. A cute monogrammed makeup bag or toiletry bag is also a wonderful present that will get lots of use for a long time.

If the photographer is taking a few shots of you and the girls getting ready, matching robes will look absolutely adorable in those photos.  You will each need something to wear while you get your hair and makeup done that won't have to be pulled over your head, ruining all that pretty prep. even offers some great wedding flip-flops for the entire wedding party.  No need to put on those heels any sooner than you have to!  These will also be perfect for that late-night reception when your feet are tired from tons of dancing.  

We mentioned photographer shots, but occasionally a different kind of "shot" is taken before heading down the aisle.  Our tequila shooter set is the perfect bridesmaid gift for a group of margarita-loving gals, or maybe a destination wedding in Mexico.  If it's too early for that, how about matching travel tumblers with a little "bling."  Your morning Starbucks will look as spectacular as it tastes, and every time you have your morning cup of coffee, you and the gals can think back to this day.     

If you have some wine-loving bridesmaids, a special tote for traveling with a couple of her favorite bottles is a fun gift.  A cup cozy is a very popular favor to give away to all of the guests at a wedding, but add a little extra touch by getting special ones for the wedding party to walk around with.  After all, they deserve to stand out.  

Last but not least, jewelry is always a much-appreciated bridesmaid gift, especially if you want everyone to wear something that matches.  The whole group can feel like they are part of a special club every time that they wear the special bracelet or necklace that they wore on your wedding day.   

The best way to choose gifts for your bridesmaids is to think about what would be a wonderful souvenir of this incredible day you are sharing together.  An item that can actually be used on the wedding day is a great place to start coming up with creative ideas.  If you need more inspiration, visit and look through our online catalog full of bridesmaids gifts, groomsmen gifts, wedding decorations, wedding planning items, and so much more.  After all, it is "Where brides go for what brides love!"

Where Brides Go®
...for What Brides Love!

~ The Team
Post by Deanna Powell, Certified Bridal Consultant

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10 Wedding Planning Resolutions To Make

A new year opens everyone's minds up to new possibilities, much like a wedding opens a couple up to a brand new, exciting life together.  January 1 is always a great time to begin a fresh start.  You can take the same approach to planning a wedding.  

No matter where you are in the process, stop, take a breath, and make sure you are doing things in a productive way. knows that if you apply the following resolutions to your wedding planning process, things will go a little smoother and you will enjoy the experience a lot more.  

1.  Organize & prioritize.

Sit down with your piles of lists, ideas, photos, etc... and find a place for everything.  You will save hours of wasted time by simply keeping all of these things in a place designated for them.  A binder works well for this, with different folders for each task.  Don't forget to include a calendar too.  After everything is where you want it, decide which things are the most important and plan to do them first.  Set goals on your calendar, along with rewards for when you accomplish them.  

2.  Just do it.

Sooner is always better than later.  Don't procrastinate!  Once you prioritize your tasks, actually do them.  If you have some free time, tackle the next thing on the list.  Getting it done on time feels great, but getting ahead of yourself feels amazing!  Write thank you notes when gifts arrive instead of waiting until after the wedding when there are so many more.  If you are planning any DIY projects, keep them by the couch and tackle a few every time you watch TV.  The more you get done now, the less you'll have to worry about later.     

3.  Communicate with your partner.

You can't have a wedding without a partner.  This is a celebration of the love between the two of you, so don't make all of the decisions on your own.  You will be partners in the marriage, and you should be in the wedding planning too.  If you both have a say in what happens, you will both enjoy the event more. 

4.  Plan a "wedding-free" activity together weekly.

Go big and plan an entire date night out, or simply put in a movie and chill on the couch together for a couple of hours.  The key here is to do something together that has absolutely nothing to do with weddings.  A little break every now and then will keep you refreshed.  If you constantly worry about flowers, music, dresses, tuxes, and more you may come to resent the whole thing.  

5.  Ask for help.

The two of you can do a lot as a couple, but you don't have to do everything.  Weddings involve a lot of work.  If friends and family offer to help, let them.  Hire a coordinator to cover all of those surprise tasks that you didn't realize had to be done.  There is no shame in asking for help, and you'll be a lot less stressed when you receive it.  

6.  Trust your wedding vendors.

Wedding vendors do multiple weddings every year.  You hired these people for a reason - you liked their work, a recommendation, a great interview - so trust that you chose wisely.  Usually any suggestion that a vendor makes is a good one.  Always go with your gut, but don't count out their advice before at least considering it.    

7.  Stick to your budget.  

The closer a wedding gets, the easier it is to pick up one more of these, or a couple more of those.  Before you know it, the budget you planned for is blown!  Resolve to pay close attention to where you are spending your wedding budget.  Start out by deciding on the three most important things about your wedding.  Spend the bulk of your money on these.  If it's not that important to you, it's not worth wasting a lot of money on.  Going overbudget now will only cause stress later on.  

8.  Don't take guilt trips.

Sure, you want your guests to be happy and comfortable at your wedding, but it's not about them.  If you prefer an adult-only reception, don't feel bad about that.  It's your party.  You love fried chicken and want to serve it at your reception, but his entire side of the family is vegetarian.  Don't ditch your favorite food, simply make sure they have something to eat too.  No one should make you feel bad about anything that you choose to do at your own wedding.  If you like it, go for it, and don't feel bad.  

9.  Don't sweat the small stuff.

One of the very best things that you can vow to do is to be flexible.  It is highly unlikely that everything will go 100% perfectly as planned.  Train yourself to go with the flow.  If your napkins came in champagne instead of ivory, your guests probably won't even notice and the food won't taste any different.  Maybe your favorite flower is not in season during your wedding.  That's fine, there is still a wide variety of gorgeous blooms to choose from.  Don't let things get to you.    

10.  Never forget to have fun!

This is a happy occasion.  A celebration is supposed to be fun.  Any time that you find yourself getting fed up or stressed out, step back and breathe.  You already resolved to stop sweating the small stuff.  You owe it to yourself and your partner to enjoy everything about this wondrous occasion.  If you aren't having a good time, even with the planning, then find a way to make it fun for yourself. 

Planning a wedding takes a lot of work, but it doesn't have to be a miserable chore. Focus on the things that make you, as a couple, happy.  Don't overdo it, and always remember that you should be enjoying this experience.  Implementing a few of these resolutions is sure to take away some of the worries and help you remember what it's all about.   

Where Brides Go®
...for What Brides Love!

~ The Team
Post by Deanna Powell, Certified Bridal Consultant

Connect with online!