You may be intimidated meeting with wedding vendors for the first time, after all, this is your first time planning a wedding and you may not know where to start. One of the best things you can do to reduce stress? Come prepared. Follow these steps when gearing up to get together with any wedding pros, and you’ll get the most out of your meetings.

Here’s how to prep for wedding vendor meetings like a pro.

Know your budget

Before you can really start discussing your wedding vision with any vendor, it’s important that they know how much money they have to work with. To help you out, we’ve figured out how to divvy up your wedding budget and you can use our budget planner to figure out exact dollar amounts. Having this magic number with you at your meeting will save vendors from upselling you things you can’t afford and help you find something that fits with your price point and your goals.

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Make a list of everything you’ve already taken care of

You’ll want to have a list of everything you’ve already checked off the wedding to-do list for your wedding before meeting with a new vendor. Even things you don’t think relate to the vendor you have a meeting with could come in handy. For example, the style of wedding centerpieces you choose may help inspire the graphics you put on your place cards.

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Create a vision board

An essential step for prepping to meet with a wedding vendor is figuring out what you love. Put together a vision board that includes wedding decor ideas, colour palettes, food inspo and more. If you don’t want to break out a glue stick and bristol board, you can create a digital version on Pinterest or create a flagged folder with all your wedding ideas on Instagram. Show all these ideas to your vendors so they get an idea of what you love and make suggestions based on that.

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Be aware of your makes and breaks

When meeting with a vendor you’ll want to have a firm idea of what you like and what you don’t like. Have your make or breaks written down and stand firmly on those. Sure, you can be laid back, but you don’t want to be so chill that they plan their own dream wedding and leave your ideas in the dust.

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Be open to new ideas

When going into a meeting be prepared to listen and take advice, even if you are stubborn by nature. While you should know what you want, you should also be open to new ideas. After all, the wedding professional you’re sitting down with has probably been in the business for a while. They know what works, so you may want to take their advice.

Chantal Dube, The Harpist

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