Make the most of wedding show season

 

If you’re planning a wedding, you probably already know that wedding show season is in full swing. And with so many vendors under one roof, attending a bridal show can be a great place to look for new ideas, scout out the latest trends, and meet local wedding professionals. But it can also be a bit overwhelming.

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Inn Manager, Effie, representing Idlewyld Inn & Spa and Elm Hurst Inn & Spa  at Canada’s Bridal Show, with Ontario’s Finest Inns

So here are five tips to help you get the most out of the experience:

Do some homework
How many vendors will be in attendance? Some shows are held in large convention halls with hundreds of booths. Others are more exclusive ‘boutique’ affairs.

Most will have a website where vendors are listed. Take some time to check it out to get a sense of the size of the event, and to identify vendors – florists, photographers, deejays, venues – that you don’t want to miss.

Many events also allow you to register in advance, offering ticket discounts and other incentives.

london-bridal-shows-prizes
You can even win some great prizes, like these from the 2016 London Fall Bridal Show!

Don’t be shy
After you’ve decided which vendors catch your eye, the best way to see if this is someone you’d really like to work with is to strike up a conversation. Bring a list of questions, but don’t be pushed into making an on-the-spot decision. Most vendors will be happy to set up an appointment at a later date to discuss details in a more relaxed atmosphere.

Bring business cards or labels with your contact information, wedding date, phone number and email address to leave behind. Many vendors offer draws for prizes. You may be the lucky one!

Don’t miss the fashion show
Everyone loves the glamour and excitement of a fashion show, and they are a big part of most bridal events. Check the times to make sure you get a front row seat!

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The fashion show is a MUST! (Photo: London Fall Bridal Show, 2015)

Bring a tote bag
Most vendors have brochures or other information to take home with you. Some even offer swag! Come prepared – your arms will thank you.

Bring a friend
Bridal shows are supposed to be fun, so make it a social event and bring a friend, your mom, or even your fiancée. Give yourself plenty of time to visit each vendor, enjoy the free samples, have some refreshments, and socialize. And don’t forget to wear comfortable shoes!

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Bring a friend and double your enjoyment of all the latest wedding trends! (Photo: London Bridal Expo, 2015)

If you’re planning a wedding in southwestern Ontario, come and meet our Wedding Coordinator and her team at the London Fall Bridal Show (London Convention Centre, September 17 & 18) or the London Bridal Expo (Western Fairgrounds, September 24 & 25).

Or visit the Elm Hurst Inn & Spa and Idlewyld Inn & Spa online!

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8 tips for a perfect outdoor wedding

Summer wedding season is almost here, which means many Brides are busy putting the final touches on their upcoming outdoor ceremony.

Summer wedding tips from Elm Hurst Inn and Idlewyld Inn
Keep cool with these summer wedding tips!

While blue skies and Mother Nature provide a magical backdrop for any wedding, we asked our Wedding Coordinator, Erin Lister, for some professional advice on how to ensure the day goes smoothly for you and your guests:

Let guests know they’ll be outside
Friends and family will appreciate being able to plan for the occasion with appropriate clothing, sunscreen, hats, and even insect repellent.

Elm Hurst Inn, Idlewyld Inn weddings
Let guests know they’ll be outside, so they can plan for the occasion.

Power up
The great outdoors doesn’t always have the best acoustics. Rent audio equipment to ensure that your vows will be heard. Don’t forget to ask if your site has access to power!

Banish the bugs
Did you know that some flowers actually attract insects? Your florist should know which blooms won’t be a fragrant invitation for every bug in the area.

Consider an aisle runner
If you want to keep your dress absolutely pristine, consider using an aisle runner.

Elm Hurst Inn Idlewyld Inn outdoor wedding ceremony
An aisle runner can be a beautiful way to keep your gown pristine.

Know the area
Is there an airport nearby? Or a busy soccer field? You don’t want your ceremony disturbed by surprise interruptions, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Keep them cool
It’s especially important to be on time for an outdoor ceremony, as nobody likes to be kept waiting in the hot summer sun.If your celebration is mid-summer, supply water, fans, and / or sun umbrellas. Get creative and use your fan as a program!

Keep your cool
Summer weddings call for summer wedding gowns. Think light and airy!  Your Bridesmaids will also appreciate dresses that are wind and weather appropriate.
Remember that stiletto heels can sink into the grass. And waterproof make-up should be a must.

Idlwyld Inn and Elm Hurst Inn summer weddings
Keep them smiling by choosing weather-appropriate gowns.

 

Have a Plan B
Mother Nature won’t always cooperate with your outdoor wedding dreams. Have a Plan B in place in case of bad weather, and decide in advance who will make the final decision about moving your ceremony indoors. Then relax, and enjoy your day regardless!

Learn more about the all-inclusive Wedding Packages at Elm Hurst Inn & Spa and Idlewyld Inn & Spa – designed to suit any wedding and any budget. 

Do you have any tips for an outdoor wedding? 

6 great reasons to hold a winter wedding

While some Brides dream of a June wedding, others know that a southwestern Ontario winter can offer a magical backdrop for an unforgettable celebration.

And although you may not be able to hold your ceremony outdoors in February, there are plenty of great reasons to have an off-season Wedding:

Reduced cost

Winter is the ideal time of year for budget-conscious Brides. Elm Hurst Inn & Spa and Idlewyld Inn & Spa are pleased to offer Winter Brides a preferred rate for off-season celebrations (January, February & March.)

A choice of dates and vendors

Since only 30 per cent of couples choose to hold their ceremony during the coldest months of the year, chances are your preferred date will be available!

Winter Brides also have more choice when it comes to photographers, bands, florists and other wedding vendors. It’s their low season too, and they’ll be happy to work with you to make your dreams come true, often at a reduced rate.

Winter wedding themes

Popular seasonal themes include Winter Wonderland and Fire & Ice. Candles can add a romantic, cozy and inexpensive touch to any winter affair, or consider Poinsettias or Holly as a budget-friendly alternative to the traditional floral centerpiece.

Our inns are always dressed to the nines for the holiday season, making the occasion even more unforgettable for you and your guests.

Holiday tree
The Idlewyld parlour dressed for the holidays.

 

Creative comfort foods

Comfort foods such as a hearty soup or lasagna can be a welcome addition to any Winter Wedding Menu. And everyone loves fun winter beverages like hot apple cider, hot chocolate, and eggnog.

Glamorous gowns

Choose a dress adorned with sequins and crystals to sparkle like the snow.  You’ll also need a fur (or faux-fur) wrap or long satin cape to keep cozy for those outdoor photos. Add a matching muff or pair of long satin gloves for an extra touch of glamour!

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This Elm Hurst Bride stayed warm in an elegant wrap.

An island honeymoon

Winter is the perfect time of year to escape to the islands for your honeymoon, with plenty of all-inclusive packages available.

Learn more about the all-inclusive wedding packages at Elm Hurst Inn & Spa and Idlewyld Inn & Spa. And don’t forget to ask about our off-season savings!