New York Magazine Wedding Event

April 9, 2010

This past Wednesday I ventured over to the New York magazine Wedding Event with my wonderful Maid of Honor, Kelly. It was my first foray into the world of bridal shows and it was definitely an interesting experience.

First and foremost, boy was it packed! We arrived at around 5:45, nearly 45 minutes into the event and we could hardly move!

There was definitely a variety throughout the event. There were lots of photographers, bakeries, invitation companies, florists, local venues and of course, bridal fashion retailers. Because I’m so early in my planning, I was mostly scoping out good ideas and find inspiration.

At the entrance there were dozens of dresses on display from designers and salons scattered around the floor. This was the first time I’d really gotten a chance to see wedding dresses up close and the sheer weight of the details was pretty astounding. I did notice from the start and as I was going through, the style I’m looking for in my dress is apparently not as popular right now. Many of the dresses on display were  pleated with lots of tulle ruffles. I’m definitely going for a more romantic, lacey vibe.

It was also really nice to get a chance to see some examples of veils, headpieces and jewelry. The Brideshead Revisited booth has a really lovely selection of combs and pins. I have no clue what I want to do with my hair, so I’ll definitely stop by their store in Manhattan for some ideas. Monvieve was also showing off some absolute stunning veils with amazing lacework from Milan, Italy. The veils were so delicate the booth attendants were wearing  white gloves to touch them! I don’t see myself in a floor length cathedral veil though. And I doubt one of those is anywhere near my meager veil budget.

One thing I was a little disappointed with was that there were so few bridesmaid dresses booths. The only three booths I saw were 57 Grand, TwoBirds Bridesmaid and J.Crew. (The participant list said Lela Rose was there as well, but while I saw the booth, I didn’t see any bridesmaid dresses on display.) I have been looking up a lot of different bridesmaid dress companies and was really hoping to get to see more of the dresses in person. I am definitely leaning more towards J.Crew though and not just because of the swag I got from them. More on that later.

Like I said, there were a lot of photographers showing off their work and it was interesting to see certain trends in wedding photography. Photojournalism and editorial photography are both really popular these days, so all the pictures you’d see were action or behind-the-scenes shots. Most of the photographers I spoke with are working entirely with digital these days, which showed in a lot of the photos. It’s much easier to manipulate the color in digital images, making for more dramatic pictures by fiddling with contrast.

Two other photo trends I saw, but wasn’t a big fan of were photos taken at a skewed angle and over use of sun or light flares. When you’re trying to capture an image in a different way, it’s great to get low and shoot up or shoot down, but actually tilting the camera and having the actual plane on an angle doesn’t really do it for me. And while light flares can create really interesting and sometimes magical photos, it’s an effect that definitely overused.

Looking over the work of so many photography did help me realize how important it is to me to find a photographer who can capture the atmostphere of the room. So many pictures had images of the dance floor that were obviously taken with flash and you really lose a sense of the space.

Most of the other booths were fun and interesting to look at, but I didn’t have much actual use for what they were selling. I’ve looked up a couple of the stationers that were at the event and their invitations are incredibly expensive. Add envelopes, RSVP cards, thank you notes and I could spend half my budget just on pieces of paper!

I don’t need a venue, caterer or cake, but boy was it fun tasting all that food! I will admit to having two to three mini cupcakes, but if I’m being honest, it very well could have been more.

And I have to say, while I do still need a DJ/band, I found very little appealing about the options on display on Wednesday.

There were a few booths that I actually really enjoyed seeing and may end up purchasing a few items from in the future. At the top of that list is definitely Annie’s Blue Ribbon General Store. Most of the stuff on display is fun little trinkets that would be great favors or welcome bag gifts, but the cutest was probably the Bridesmaid’s Survival Kit. It’s $20 for everything you might need to survive a wedding day as a bridesmaid. A great and affordable bridesmaid gift idea. And for all in one welcome baskets, there Sara’s Gracious Goodies NYC. Having a Long Island wedding? She’ll put together bags with local goodies for your guests.

Practically, I didn’t get too much out of the event. I won’t be using most of the services I saw or booking any of the vendors. Was it worth it though? Absolutely!

First of all, every booth had a raffle of some sort. Most of the photographers were raffling off free engagement sessions. Some of the spas were raffling off free massages and spa treatments. There were gift certificates for dinners at fancy restaurants. One of the bridesmaid booths was giving away a free dress, another jewelry booth was giving away free monogrammed necklaces. So far I haven’t won anything, but I entered a lot of them, so here’s hoping!

The other reason to go? Oh, the swag. I registered ahead of time, which entitled me to a gift bag from New York magazine. Along with information from many of the vendors, the bag was filled with chocolates, a bottle of perfume from the Body Shop, some lip stuff from Fresh, a small bottle of vodka (yes! vodka!), wedding tea and more goodies. There were also gift certificates for a free facial and a free pair of earrings, coupons for money off at bridal salons and spas. And wandering around, most of the booths were giving out fun little goodies. Chocolates were big, but I also got a cute ‘Bride’ button from someone, a small junk drive, some taffy and a bunch of other stuff. And the swag from J.Crew? A necklace! Really cute and very pretty. I didn’t see it on the website, so I’m not sure if it’s available for retail, but most of their jewelry is pretty pricey.

So, all in all, a very good experience. I will definitely be attending again next year and I definitely recommend it for any brides-to-be in the New York metro area. It was a lot of fun and totally worth the price of the ticket, which was $50 for two. Leave the fiance at home though. Trust me, he doesn’t want to be there for this.


2 Responses to “New York Magazine Wedding Event”

  1. Hello Shana,

    thank you for your nice comments about Monvieve. I actually truly enjoyed reading your comments to the NY Weddings event, it was also for us a first time there. Wanted to let you know that our veils also come in a fingertip and chapel length, and our prices start at $900 and go up to $5,000. I don’t know if this is out of your budget, but I thought I would let you know that our entry pieces are not for everybody but are within reach. Being these veils timeless and without size, owning a Monvieve means starting a tradition by getting a specially handmade heirloom that can be passed on to your next generations to come.
    Should you be interested in getting a private viewing of the veils I can arrange it for you.
    Otherwise I wish you all the best for a wonderful and unforgettable wedding.

    Claudio Bazzichelli

  2. Thanks for the write up!
    Continue to enjoy all the fun involved in planning your wedding!!
    xo, Sara

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