Working with your dream team of wedding vendors makes a huge difference to how easy the wedding planning process is for you.
Hiring a deadly bunch of wedding suppliers takes a chunk of the stress out of it - when you know your wedding vendors will knock it out of the park and you trust they get your vision, all you have to do is show up on the day and see it all come together.
But, especially if you're just engaged, it can be overwhelming staring out into the sea of hundreds of wedding vendors wondering who is going to be the right fit for your day, your vision and of course, your budget.
With that in mind, we've put together five simple steps to finding the best wedding vendors, who won't let you down.
1. Check out our Confetti Recommended Wedding Suppliers Directory
Every year, we put together a curated list of wedding vendors. We've just started adding to the Confetti Recommended Wedding Suppliers Directory for 2020, and we keep the list exclusive.
These are the kind of suppliers who you'll love to stalk on Instagram and who you can count on to do a deadly job on the day. These are the kind of suppliers you'll find yourself recommending to friends and family who are newly engaged after you're own big day.
We will be adding more and more vendors over the coming months to fill out the directory with more of Ireland's best wedding suppliers, so keep your eyes peeled and your wedding notebooks at the ready!
If you have picked up your copy of The Wedding Planner, at the end of every chapter, you'll find more wedding vendors who are the best in the biz in Ireland. We have extended the vendor directories since the first edition as this was one area you guys told us was super helpful, so check out the vendors featured in the 2020 edition of The Wedding Planner.
2. Ask around for wedding vendor recommendations
Chances are some of your friends have already gotten married, so don't be shy about asking them for recommendations. If you've been to their weddings and adored their florals or saw their photos on Instagram and just loved the style, they'll be able to tell you what they were like to work with as well.
It's worth baring in mind, your pal might have had a black tie affair and you're looking for a festival-style bash, so their vendors may or may not be suitable for your day. Think about how your wedding styles compare, or check their vendors out online and on social to see if they've done other weddings that might be closer to what you're planning.
You can also look to any wedding vendors you have already booked for their recommendations. Your wedding venue coordinator will be able to give you a list of wedding suppliers who have worked in the venue before and know it well, which can be an advantage.
The wedding vendor community in Ireland is relatively small, so chances are, most of your vendors will be able to recommend others that they have worked with before on other weddings. Chances are if they're working on similar weddings and you've booked them for your day, the wedding vendors they recommend will likely match up with your style too. However, that leads us to point three.
3. Do your homework
Referrals can lead you to discover wedding vendors you hadn't already heard of, and can give you some confidence in their work. However, take all these wedding vendor recommendations with a pinch of salt until you've done your own homework.
Investing time in doing your research on wedding suppliers in the beginning of your search will save you so much time in the long run. Seek out your vendors' profiles on social media, including the photos they've been tagged in by others, to get a good idea of their previous work on other weddings.
Where possible, check out the vendor's Google Reviews, from previous couples to get a sense of what they're like to deal with. Online reviews often need to be taken with a pinch of salt, so don't be afraid to ask the vendor for couple testimonials as well.
It's also worth looking at real weddings they have featured in, while you're checking them out!
4. Prepare your enquiry emails
Every couple has different priorities and different needs when it comes to choosing their dream team of wedding vendors. Those priorities can vary in terms of which wedding vendors are most important to you, which vendors you want to invest the most (or least!) in, and even in how you want to work with your wedding team, so there's no set list of questions or enquiries we can tell you to ask or make.
However, it's a good idea to be thorough in your initial enquiries so the vendor can get a sense of you as a couple, and the wedding you want to plan. Don't be shy - they want to hear about the two of you and your ideas. This will enable them to be more personal in their response, and potentially in their quote, depending on which type of vendor it is.
Don't be afraid to be specific about what you're looking for, even including reference images if you have found some online, for what you're planning - being clear from the outset can only help!
And finally, think about what's important to you and have your questions ready when you're following up with wedding vendors, to simplify the booking process.
5. Go with your gut
If you really hit it off with a wedding vendor from the get-go, pay that feeling some heed and mark them as a strong contender. Likewise, if you don't get good vibes from them, listen to that and cut them loose. You can't underestimate how important it can be to have that personal connection to wedding vendors when it comes to wedding day smooth sailing.
If a price or quote seems too good to be true, if a wedding vendor seems insincere, or if they're simply dodging your questions, think twice before ignoring any alarm bells that might be going off. It doesn't mean you need to move on immediately, but do a little more digging before handing over a deposit.
It's not about approaching wedding vendor enquiries as a cynic - most vendors truly love playing a role in everyone else's love stories. Going with your gut simply means going for vendors you have a good rapport with and who you feel will work with you along the way so your vision is realised on the day.