Tips For Looking For Your Wedding Suppliers
Once you’ve found your dream venue and have your date secured, it’s time to start thinking about finding the various wedding suppliers you will need. But where do you look for them?
In the ‘olden days’ couples – or actually more like brides and their mums – would go to local wedding fairs to find all their suppliers. But times have changed and there are lots more ways to find people with social media and google etc.
You may well still find some of your suppliers at a wedding fair, there’s nothing wrong with that. But don’t rule out suppliers who don’t attend wedding fairs for whatever reason (for example, I don’t do wedding fairs – doesn’t mean you shouldn’t book me! 😜)
So where else should you look?
Recommended Supplier List
Most venues have a list of recommended suppliers. These are usually people who’ve worked at the venue a number of times and the venue trust them.
But please check this is the case with your venue. Some venues allow suppliers to pay to be on their recommended list which doesn’t sit very well with me. And surely impacts on your ability to rely on that recommendation?
Most wedding suppliers have social media accounts as well as their websites. You should get a good feel for their style and personality from their social media.
Be careful that the images they are using are of their own work – many small businesses use images from Pinterest and other places or repost images from other people’s accounts. So make sure you know it’s their work and not just something that they think looks good.
Another top tip is make sure they have reviews on their Facebook page. If they have switched off the ability for people to leave a review, then be very careful. Why would someone not want happy customers to leave reviews for them?
Many of the big wedding blogs will include features on suppliers as well as showcasing their work from styled shoots and real weddings.
It’s not just the huge companies that get featured on here. My styled shoots have all been published, some of them several times, and it allows you to see the work of suppliers. ⠀
Wedding directories are a good source of suppliers too, the good ones will show reviews for the suppliers as well. Don’t rely on this alone though, as anyone can be listed on the directories, they don’t do any vetting of the suppliers.
However, the UK Alliance of Wedding Planners also has membership for suppliers, not just planners. And everyone is vetted before they can become a member and be listed on their website so definitely worth a look on there.
As well as local wedding fairs, the national ones can be great for inspiration and you can often find more unusual suppliers here. And one of the key bonuses of wedding fairs, is you get to taste wedding cakes and often get some freebies.
The Personal Touch
Personal recommendations are always really valuable. But be careful about the ‘oh my friend could do that for you’ kind of recommendation. You want recommendations for established businesses who will have the appropriate insurance and even better if the person making the recommendation has actually used this company.
A Wedding Planner!!
Obviously, my final suggestion is to hire a wedding planner! We vet suppliers before we work with them and get recommendations from others in the industry. We also have an enviable black book of suppliers who we’ve worked with before and are more than happy to recommend to you.
Remember, as a member of the UK Alliance of Wedding Planners, I don’t accept commission. So you know I’m not recommending people to you who are paying me a chunk of money to do so. I’m recommending them because I trust them and I believe they will be a good fit for you.
I hope this helps you find your dream team. And if you’ve realised that you need some professional help to pull this together then give me a shout, I’d love to help you with your dream wedding.