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Bridal shows? helpful or stressful?

I am newly engaged and don't even have a date set yet. I was thinking of going to a bridal show and some of my friends said it was a great idea because of discounts and others said it totally stressed them out and overwhelmed! What do you think? Should I go' or not go? I just want to get an idea of how much stuff cost so I can actually pick a date since I am paying for my own wedding! I need an experience bride to help me out!  Now I am a little scared. 

Re: Bridal shows? helpful or stressful?

  • edited December 2011
    I would definitely say helpful for sure.  I went last year when I am not getting married until summer 2012 and I would 100 percent recommend going to one so early just for the reasons you mentioned, as well as getting ideas of what all is out there in your area.  I plan on going again this month to get in contact with more specific people (dj, cake baker, etc) but I think its good to have it all in one place.  Hope that helps!
  • edited December 2011
    I just went to one, as both a newly engaged bride (july) and to get idea's and plans. Unlike rhend88 - I found them totally stressful and overwhelming. I couldn't stay longer than an hour hour because it got me so upset. I felt as if I was a 100 years behind on everything. Now that I have some of my huge vendors out of the way (venue, photographer, florist) I think the next one in Sept might be more fun than the last one. But I really think it's pretty individualized.. each person reacts differently to different things.
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  • edited December 2011
    Oh gosh! A split! I don't have anything planned! amh04 where are you getting married? do either of you have a planner? Now I'm scared to go to one. lol. I got tickets from my MOH for the sept show. I hope I find at least 1 good person there to help me start my wedding planning (such as venue or something). 
  • edited December 2011
    I would say just go.  Everyone is different and if you get there and get too overwhelmed, then leave.  I went to one before I had a date set, and it was both stressful, but also helpful.  If nothing else, it gave me an idea of some local vendors and what they would cost.  Just make up a date if you don't feel comfortable saying you don't have one yet,  I promise, you will not be the only one there feeling unsure about things.  I recommend creating an email address just for wedding stuff (mine is our initials and date). That way your regular email will not be flooded with stuff from vendors.  Also, I highly recommend making some kind of labels with your address, or small print outs and take tape.  It gets exhausting having to write down your address and number a million times.  I think you should give the show a try...I feel like it is a right of passage for every bride, lol.  Good luck =)
  • edited December 2011
    aamk2012 made some great points!
    We are getting married 3/3/2012 and just signed a contract with the Winterbourne Inn for our reception in Orange Park. As far as the wedding planner - no I don't have one - I wish I could afford one.

    I have tickets to the Sept show as well :) I'm really hoping I handle it better. I think the reason why I got so overwhelemed was because I was so unsure about so much at that point. So I got all the info I needed and left an hour into it. I feel much much better about it all now that I have made some concrete decisions. Heck I couldnt even decide on colors until like 2 weeks ago. LOL! But I say go and just see how you like it. I'll be there :)
    Lilypie Premature Baby tickers
  • edited December 2011
    Thanks girls! I feel a little better now. I want to find a venue asap! I hope I can afford a planner because I really feel I need one. I found one that is actually really reasonable but then I am wondering if I could do it myself? I may wait till after the bridal show to decide! Thanks girls!
  • prncszprncsz member
    1000 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    I say go.  I went to several while I was engaged and when I got home I went through all of the stuff that I collected I threw out what I didn't think I would need and I kept what I thought I would eventually need or want to come back to. I found some good vendors.
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  • edited December 2011
    I definitely would say to go.  I've been to two (one in Gainesville and one in Jacksonville) and they were very different.  I went to the Gainesville one just a week after getting engaged at the end of December, and then the Jacksonville one in February.  The first one was awesome.  It was great to just walk around and get stuff from everyone and soak in all the info.  I had literally done nothing at that point, so it was nice to just get a taste for everything at the very beginning.  They also had a runway show at one point with bridal gowns and bridesmaid dresses, so it was fun and nice to sit down.  I also won a $50 gift certificate to an invitations place, so that was exciting as well.  The second one was a lot more crowded and less fun.  We already had a date at that point, but not much else officially nailed down.  It wasn't really overwhelming or stressful, just kind of tiring and like I could have learned the same amount of info in less than half the time at a better setting.  So, I think it also really depends on where the show is being put on, and what the atmosphere is like.
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