WHEN I was writing my business plan earlier this year, I knew wedding fairs would play a big part in getting the word out about my new calligraphy service.

What I didn’t know, was just how many there would be to choose from!

customs house

Exhibiting at the Customs House in South Shields

I could have been exhibiting pretty much every weekend, from the launch of my business in May until round about now, when things are winding down for Christmas.

It would have been expensive, but do-able.

We have some amazing wedding venues in the north east, from boutique hotels to castles and stately homes, most of them organising their own wedding fairs and showcase events.

Then there’s the bloggers, wedding planners and bridal magazines organising their own events, so you can see how the calendar starts to fill up pretty quickly.

exhibition stand

My first stand!

Next year will be my first calendar year in business, so after laying some groundwork, I’m trying to come up with a wedding fair strategy for 2015.

I’ve booked my first wedding fair of the year, with Brides Up North, at the Ramside Hall Hotel in Durham. It’s the most I’ve ever paid for a stand, but you speculate to accumulate, right?

From the people I’ve spoken to the industry, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to wedding fairs, you just have to go with what feels right for you.

So, January will be spent getting in touch with venues and penciling in some dates!

sage cuppa

Beautiful view from The Sage Gateshead balcony

I’m sure I’ll be revisiting some of the amazing shows I’ve attended in 2014, including Belle Bridal Magazine’s Wedding Wonder Show at the National Glass Centre in Sunderland and Dawn Marie’s Elite Wedding Show at the Sage Gateshead.

I’d also like to get to the lovely venues that put my flyers in goody bags when I couldn’t be there in person – the Durham Marriott Hotel Royal County and Radisson Blu in Durham and Jesmond Dene House in Newcastle.

I’ve also joined the team behind a permanent wedding exhibition in Northumberland – watch this space for more details!

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