Wedding fairs and shows are this week’s topic of discussion at With Love From Corinthia, especially as it is something that newly-engaged couples so often ask us about.

Once engaged, the opinions and guidance from all the people in our lives starts – whether this be on how to manage our wedding plans, or telling us to attend all the wedding fairs that come about.  Even though wedding fairs can be an excellent source of inspiration and a great tool for starting your wedding plans, they can also be incredible confusing and even overwhelming.

Recently we were lucky to attend two of the biggest wedding fairs in London and thought we’d share a little of this with you and give you our top tips…

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The first event we attended this side of the summer was The National Wedding Show at Olympia, for which we were offered VIP passes and wonderfully taken care of.  We were greeted with goodie bags, a glass of bubbles and the opportunity to book in for an express manicure, hair or make-up consultation, which was a lovely way to start the day.

Corinthia Hotel London- National Wedding Fair

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We then began to wander round and take in all that was on offer and all the wonderful suppliers that were there to showcase their work.  We saw some familiar faces, some well-known high street brands, and some new talent, all of which was very interesting to view.

Corinthia Hotel London - National Wedding Fair

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We cannot however talk about the National Wedding Show without mentioning Amie Bone and her breathtaking ’Enamour’ display.  Anyone who attended this event could not miss Amie’s huge stand, covered in beautiful blooms and moss to create the perfect setting for an enchanted garden masterpiece.  There were stunning tablescapes, adorned with extravagant floral designs and stylish tableware from Duchess and Butler – all of which created an absolutely stunning show-stopper!

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Then moving from Olympia to the Business Design Centre, Islington, just under a week later we found ourselves at Brides The Show!  Our friends at BRIDES Magazine did such an incredible job of hosting their annual extravaganza and the 2016 edition did not disappoint.  There were so many Corinthia Hotel London preferred suppliers combined with some new faces and up-and-coming vendors that we were able to meet.  From the creative floral displays, to the cake masterpieces, to the stunning stationery, we didn’t know where to look first!

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The experience was heightened by the exciting Circus Catwalk which featured so many exquisite designers’ work and left both brides and industry professionals wanting more.  The visual displays of models in designer gowns combined with acrobats and other fun elements was just wonderful to watch.

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So with recaps of these fantastic wedding fairs we thought that we would answer a few of the most-asked questions when it comes to this topic…

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Would you recommend going to any wedding fairs?

Yes, wedding fairs can be great at the initial stages of wedding planning as they not only give you lots of ideas but evoke the excitement of your engagement.  They are a great place to go with your maid of honour, or your mum for a fun day out as there are always places to eat and drink, get your nails done and generally mingle with vendors that could be the perfect inspiration for your big day.

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How many wedding fairs should I attend when planning my wedding, and which ones?

Wedding fairs are great but they can also be overwhelming in the sense that you have so many options to choose from.  We would recommend going to a one large wedding fair such as Brides The Show, then perhaps to one that your venue may be hosting.  You may see lots of fun and exciting items at wedding fairs, but remember, you need to work out if they will actually work with the rest of your wedding.

The biggest pieces of advice is to stop going to wedding fairs once you are into the wedding planning process of booking things and finalising your day.  Going to additional fairs will just confuse you and make you second-guess your previous decisions.  Treat it like Pinterest: get the great ideas then walk away and find how to execute your own vision.

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Should I book things on the day at the wedding fair?

There can be a lot of pressure on the day to book things whether this be from people with you, or the attractive discount offer.  Our advice is to take a business card and schedule a time to discuss with the supplier a bit further, without the thousands of other people to distract you.

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Is a supplier credible if they exhibit at a wedding fair?

At a larger wedding fair such as Brides The Show, all suppliers would be completely credible.  Smaller local wedding fairs are harder to gage as the exhibitor fee is usually much lower.  Our advice would be to see testimonies and examples of their work, then use your intuition as to how professional they are in a meeting with you – you will get a good feel for them professionally in their work environment.

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Photo credit for BRIDES The Show –  Roberta Facchini

Photo credit for The National Wedding Show – Soraya Ferrera

With love from Corinthia London,
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