Hello my lovely ones, I hope you are all well?

As part of our ‘five tips’ series I have come to realise that it’s all well and good to give out advice about what to do once you have found your perfect florist or photographer, but you need to know how to find them in the first place.  It can be hard, like finding the right partner or hairdresser, the really good ones are like rocking horse poop and when you do get hold of one you really DO feel like you have found the gold at the end of that rainbow.  But they are out there and it just takes a bit of research to find THE one.

So, you have decided you love the one you’re with enough to spend the rest of your life with them.  You’ve booked your date and venue, chosen your best man and bridesmaids and now it’s time for the fun to begin.  Let the research begin in earnest.  Don’t be mistaken, weddings are time consuming wee beasties.  Unless you are rich enough to already have your own entourage of suppliers, or are just avoiding all the extras, or you hire someone else to do the running around, be prepared to muck in and do some research.

Ask friends, colleagues,relatives, even the woman in the queue whose hair you admire, who they recommend.  Everyone knows someone, be it Great Aunty Val and her cake making ability or Sandra from down the Co-op whose son is a photographer.  Ask your venue for their recommended suppliers, though be aware that sometimes people may be on there due to ‘connections’.  Personal recommendation is by far the best way to find a real gem; often those who are the best are too busy to shout about themselves.

Then, once you have this list of recommended people do your homework.  Check them out on Facebook, Twitter, visit their shop if they have one.  Google them to see what others are saying.  Look at their portfolios AND their prices – don’t assume you can’t afford someone, but equally be realistic.  Suppliers rarely like being asked for a discount, or repeatedly being asked for costs when they have taken the time to put them on their websites.  On that note – try to remember that many suppliers work alone and it’s frustrating answering questions to which the answers are readily available.  I know you want to have a response there and then, but often it is quicker to have a read of their website than wait for an email to come back.

Once you have narrowed it down make some appointments to meet them, or send that email.  Make sure you let them know if you can’t make a meeting or if you have found an alternative supplier.  We don’t mind- it happens – but we do mind if we are hanging around waiting.  When you meet them, or get that email back, you will know which supplier is for you.  For the love of cheese, don’t go with the cheapest (Unless they also happen to be the best), but with the supplier you liked the most.  Wedding planning is meant to be fun – not a form of torture – and those who you like will make your planning and day the happiest experience.  You should feel confident in their ability and they should make you feel like they are genuinely interested in you and your plans.  Mutually you should be able to say if something is not what you had in mind without taking offence.  Once you have found your supplier, trust your instincts and trust them to do their job.  It will be the best thing you can do and make your wedding planning a truly joyous experience.

So, there you have it.  Do you have any tips you want top share with other brides?  Any suppliers you want to BIG up? Do share in the comments. Some of my favoured suppliers are listed below…

Happy planning – Mx

Photos – Tiree Dawson Photography

Suppliers featured – Mears Ghyll Bridal, Katie Simpson Hair , One Lump or Two stylists, Aimee Chorley MUA

Amanda Wyatt wedding dress photo shoot
5 Top Tips for wedding flowers, from Katie at KL Flowers