Our scoop on the Bridal Extravaganza and how to be a great bridal show guest…
This past weekend, the Bouquets of Austin team was thrilled to participate in the Bridal Extravaganza, held at the Palmer Events Center. It’s always a great show but this year they took it up a notch with an appearance by David Tutera – wedding planner extraordinaire and star of the hit show, My Fair Wedding with David Tutera on WE tv. We were able to attend his dinner presentation and we were blown away by his honesty, generosity, and knowledge of the industry. To boot, he was lovely about posing for pictures which made this star-struck crowd pretty happy!
Me & David Tutera
The Bridal Extravaganza is, without a doubt, one of the premiere shows of the year. In the case of their January show (they host two more shows throughout the year – in June and September), it is the first of the year – essentially marking the beginning of the wedding show season. For vendors, this presents some of our most effective opportunities to meet with brides and grooms face-to-face and really show them our work. For engaged couples, this is a rare opportunity to have vendors across the wedding industry – from venues and photographers to florists and bakers – under one roof.
Becky & David
We love bridal shows because we love what we do and we’re excited to share our work. Websites are great, email is a necessary convenience, and we’re always happy to talk with an out-of-town bride and groom by phone; but nothing is better than being able to talkto you in-person. We count on bridal shows to be able to connect with couples we may not have otherwise been able to meet.
Bridal shows can be equally effective for you. Let’s face it – planning a wedding is time-consuming and it can be a challenge to locate and vet a multitude of vendors. Having everyone collectively at your disposal in one place can be enormously helpful.
In this manner, wedding vendors and you – those in the market for our services – come together during these well-planned events. There is absolutely no denying the effectiveness of bridal shows and we always encourage brides and grooms to attend whenever possible. Get out there, meet us in person, and see our work. However, we will ask that, if you do participate, you are a good bridal show guest.
Yes, yes…we know. But trust us – it makes a big difference and it can make all of our participation that much more effective. Here’s how..
Know what you’re looking for on that day.
What many couples may not realize is that there is an order of importance when choosing wedding vendors. First and foremost – after you’ve set a date, of course – consider choosing a wedding planner. You cannot underestimate how much help a professional planner can provide you – saving you significant time, money, and stress. Next is your venue, which should be booked before absolutely anything else and followed closely by a caterer and a photographer. Planners, venues, caterers, and photographers often do not handle more than one event a day so there is obviously less flexibility in their dates. Once these vendors are booked, you can move on to additional services such as florists (that’s us!), bakers, and more. From our perspective, these details are very important, as the time of year determines the type of flowers that are available and drives the overall design. The venue also very much determines design and greatly impacts our delivery/setup schedule, as does a choice of caterer and photographer. We work closely with caterers to ensure that we schedule our setups for when the linens have been put down and we also schedule deliveries to coincide with the beginning of photography.
Come armed with good information.
Having a strong sense of the colors that you want can go a long way towards helping us plan accordingly. So it always helps when you have colors in mind – and especially helpful if you’ve already chosen your dress and your bridesmaids’ dresses. Of course, if you know that there are particular flowers that you would like to use (or some that you definitely don’t ) that is always good information to have so we can guide you towards appropriate seasonal flowers. The conversation we have at a bridal show may be an abbreviated one, but if we all use the time efficiently we can give you a good idea of what you’re wedding flowers may look like and you can get a quick sense if we’re a florist you’d like to work with on your big day.
Provide accurate contact information.
We know you would never dream of doing such a thing…but, believe it or not, some people who attend bridal shows provide inaccurate contact information – ON PURPOSE (gasp!). In the end, this doesn’t do anyone any good; nor does it benefit you to opt out of email contact. Bridal show attendance is an investment on both ends. You’ve invested your time to attend the show and allow us to provide you with information. We, in turn, have invested our time – and a considerable amount of money – to be there so that we can introduce you to our services. When we return from a show, we compile the contact information that we receive so that we can keep in touch, provide accurate pricing, schedule appointments, and keep you informed of upcoming specials. We realize that email can become overwhelming so, if you haven’t already done so, consider setting up an email address specifically for wedding information. This way you won’t miss out on gathering the information that will help you make the best decisions for your wedding. And, it will save us – and other vendors – from managing inaccurate contact information.
One of Our Table Arrangements at the David Tutera Dinner Presentation
With a new year upon us, we look forward to many more bridal shows where we can meet all of you in person. Be a great guest and a strategic planner and you will dramatically increase the efficiency – and enjoyment – of your wedding planning. And don’t forget to come by our booth and say hi; we can’t wait to meet you!