Timing is Everything

After saying “yes” the calendar can become your worst enemy or your best friend. It’s up to you!  Here’s some sage advice on how to be sure you get the vendors you want on your special day.  Complete with a horror story on what not to do!

A bridal hair trial is an important step in selecting your stylist.  You may decide to do a few bridal trials or you may do only one and then want to book that vendor.  In most cases, they will provide you with a contract and ask that you send it back, along with a deposit, to hold your wedding date.   Read the contract carefully!  There will be important instructions and dates to pay particular attention to.  For example, the Westchester Hair-Stylist contract states you have one week to return the contract with your deposit in order to hold your wedding date. 

In the past, I would offer to let a bride know if someone else inquired about booking the same date.  This was a courtesy I extended only during the week the contract was out.  If a signed contract and deposit wasn’t received within the week their date would be released, meaning another bride could book it.  This is a courtesy I no longer offer. 

True story – I did a bridal hair trial and was asked for a contract.  A contract was given with the instructions they had to return it signed and with their deposit within one week.  I didn’t receive any other inquires for that date while the contract was out that week, but I didn’t receive the contract back either.  As a courtesy, I followed up with the bride on the contract after the week was up.  I was told the contract and check was sent, so I allowed an additional week as an extension.  The second week passed and still the contract and check were never received in the mail.  I followed up with the bride again, as another courtesy, and was told they would stop payment on the original check then send another one.  I verified my mailing address and info with her.  Several more weeks passed and I never received a signed contract or a check.  Other inquiries came in for the same date.  I was no longer under any obligation to hold the date so another wedding was booked in its place.  In total, almost a month had passed before the bride called back to follow up. At that time I advised her the date had been booked by someone else.  This bride claimed I was to call her if anyone else wanted her date.  I advised that was only done as a courtesy during the week that the contract was out.  Once that week is up I can no longer hold the date, or advise her of every inquiry I receive for the same date.  This was stated clearly in the contract.  Unfortunately she was unsatisfied but if she had read the contract clearly she would have understood.

Vendors who work with weddings in your local area are most likely being approached by numerous brides for the exact same dates.  There are only so many weekends!  Be vigilant about getting contracts and deposits back to your suppliers, as well as updating them on any changes to location(s) where services are to be provided, dates, and times.  Be sure to read over all correspondence and ask a friend or family member to do the same if you’re getting overwhelmed.  Another set of eyes on a contract may pick up an important detail you might have missed! 

Last but not least, keep an eye on the calendar, keep detailed records of every vendor you talk to, and be sure they have confirmed back to you on receiving any contracts and/or deposits you’ve sent to book them for your date.  If it’s all just too much hire a wedding planner – you can always blame them in the end! LOL

All my best,

Melissa