What to Expect at a Wedding Fayre, by Dave Thompson

Wedding Fayres have become more popular over the years and are now seen as a vital part of pre-wedding planning and choosing your suppliers.

I have taken part in 6 wedding fayres so far this year. The options available to couples now planning their wedding seem to be changing and becoming more impressive by the year. My next event is on Sunday 3rd March and is being run by County Brides at The Stanneylands Hotel. You can find out more here. 

 

There are many different styles of wedding photography as well as cake makers, dresses on show, videographers, hair and make up displays, live bands, cars, large stand up illuminated letters and even, as seen at the Stockport Events Wedding Fayre an ice cream stand!!

So what’s so good about a wedding fayre? Well from the suppliers side, it’s a great way to begin a relationship with a potential couple who are looking for someone to provide them with the products they want for their wedding.

With all my couples, I offer a meeting with no obligation to book. This then allows them to view my photography in the comfort of their own home, or wherever we may meet. For the bride and groom, it’s the option of seeing so many suppliers all under one roof!

On the day I have photographs from weddings I have done in the past on show, in print form and albums but also on screen. My first ever wedding fayre as a supplier was with my wife, Caroline, at Crewe Hall in January this year.

What to look for at a wedding fayre

You may be wondering about what to look for at a wedding fayre once you arrive. Well, I would suggest planning ahead! Some fayres can be a little overwhelming if you really don’t know what you have in mind.

Obviously, if you have just recently got engaged, you will be filled with excitement and just want to go and see what kind of suppliers you might think about booking. Doing that more than once though, can run the risk of overpowering you and the visits will soon become something of a weekend chore.

The largest wedding fayre I have done was at the Etihad Stadium. At a wedding event as big as this one, I honestly think that a bit of pre-planning will help you enormously. They can be great fun, but due to them being so well attended, it’s easy to get frustrated if you don’t have an idea of what you would like to find.

Plan your visit

One of the best ways to help the trip to the wedding fayre to sail along nicely is to plan your visit. If you really are unsure about which suppliers you ‘need’ first, then agree that you will both look for your “wedding photographer and make up” and use them as a focal point for the day.

Many fayres have one, sometimes two, catwalk shows. This is great if you are still looking for your dress. If you have already got it though, it’s a great time to get around many of the stands. They are always quieter when the shows are on, so if you aren’t dress shopping, this is the ideal time to get stuck into the stands that are of interest to you.

TOP TIP – Lots of suppliers will ask you for your information. There is nothing wrong with this. Some run competitions on the back of it. One thing I can recommend though is setting up a new email account for your wedding. This means your personal email account wont get picked full of messaged from the suppliers you contact.

Who should I go with?

Obviously, that’s up to you, but sometimes more isn’t merrier. Fayres can be busy places and trying to find one of your party when you are wanting to show them something a wedding supplier has to hand, can become quite frustrating. You want to be with people who get as excited about products for your wedding as you do!

Suppliers

When you visit a wedding fayre there is always the potential to come across some surprise suppliers, something you won’t have even thought of. Two of my favourites are the guys at Big Wow Events and Baci Di Gelato who I have met over the last few months.

I love suppliers whose products have the potential to create a ‘moment’ at a wedding. The wooden letters and Wishing Well created by Big Wow are beautifully crafted and are a must see if you come across them at a North West wedding fayre.

Baci Di Gelato is a fantastic wedding and event product. Have you ever come across Marmalade On Toast ice cream, or even Chicken Balti? Trust me, I have tasted the Marmalade on toast and it is beautiful!

Have fun!!

My final tip is the most important. HAVE FUN! This is the beginning of a fantastic journey for you both, that will end in you getting married and having the day of your dreams. It will no doubt be stressful, but I haven’t met a Bride & Groom yet who didn’t feel it was worth all the effort.

 

Top three tips for visiting a wedding fayre

The final bit of advice comes from a man with far more experience than me! Duane Thornborough is MD at County Brides and has 9 years experience within the wedding industry and 11 years publishing experience. Here are his top three tips for visiting a wedding fayre.

  1. Keep and open mind
  2. Have a budget in mind
  3. Set up a separate email address. (NOTE – I had put this in my blog before I spoke to Duane!)

Thanks for taking the time to read this blog and I hope that it has given you a little bit of advice as you head out with you planning book. If you would like to get in touch with me to talk about your wedding photography I offer a meeting with no obligation to book. This can be done face to face or via Facetime so give me a shout via my CONTACT page.