It’s that time of year … The Scottish Wedding Show is returning to SEC, Glasgow on 23-24 February 2019

It’s a wedding couple’s haven because it’s everything under one roof. And it’s also something we get very excited about because we get out of our venues, set up the bar and meet lots of lovely people!

We’ve been supporters of The Scottish Wedding Show for years, we host the cocktail bar and all our wedding co-ordinators from all our venues are at the SEC all weekend. They’re extremely warm and friendly and they’re armed with all the information you need to know.

Meanwhile, our expert drinks team are behind the bar serving up the fizz and cocktails and ensuring you’re having a great time.

For tickets please see: www.thescottishweddingshow.com

Jackie O’Donnell, QD Events

Show Manager of The Scottish Wedding Show

What’s your top tips for attending the show?

For the ladies – flat shoes! And we absolutely to see more men coming to the show! Look at the website before you come and use the Showplan map while you’re there to see where all the stands are located. Take advantage of speaking to people; you will have one-to-one expertise over that weekend and then you can choose whether you want to develop that relationship further and book appointments/consultations at a later stage.

We see first-hand what a fun event it is, but the best person to tell you all about it is Jackie O’Donnell, from QD Events, Show Manager of The Scottish Wedding Show.

We asked Jackie a few questions of what you should expect this February.

The Scottish Wedding Show has been running for over 20 years – how has it changed?

It’s changed dramatically. It used to be held in hall 3, and with the growth in the wedding industry it now takes up the largest hall of the SEC. There’s up to 300 exhibitors and it’s Scotland’s best offering of everything wedding related. The changes in style, requirements and trends have had an impact and it’s changed the show layouts over the years, which is great because it keeps everything fresh. We always aim to surprise our visitors, especially if they are coming back, maybe they were there the first time as a bridesmaid and now they are coming back as the bride.

And also visit the Manorview cocktail bar?

Yes of course!  Bring some money and enjoy the bar and brunch area.  QD Events has a very good relationship with Manorview Group, going back a number of years and they always over-deliver on what they say they will do.  We give them the bar space and it’s always lively, fun, clean and to a very high standard. We never have any issues or complaints from that area and as an organiser, it’s one less thing we have to think about; we just know it will be run properly with great service!  Manorview are very much about looking after their team and this is obvious, as the staff always appear to be happy!

This is a really important time for brides/grooms-to-be visiting the show and they’re likely to be with some of the most important people in their lives and also making some very big decisions!  They could be with their mum, mum-in-law-to-be, bridesmaids, cousins, friends, partner and it’s a bit of a celebration.  They’ll probably not have the car, as they’ll want to have a couple glasses or fizz or a few cocktails and you can feel that nice buzz and excitement in the air.  Visitors to the show will have a great experience on that Saturday or Sunday they decide to visit, not something you’ll get at any other wedding show.

What’s the highlights?

The catwalk is always one of the main highlights, where people can get to see the gowns and outfits in a live environment, seeing how they drape and flow and this is followed by our Live Band Showcase, where visitors can find the perfect wedding band or singer.  We also have a new brunch area within the hall, which we sampled at the last event in October 2018, which has been developed slightly for the forthcoming show.

What about your exhibitors, what can people see?

We will always have new exhibitors coming to the show and that’s great because it keeps it fresh, develops changes and keeps up with trends. The smaller stands that come in are little-hidden gems and give visitors the chance to see businesses who don’t have a shop front and who might have gone undiscovered! These businesses always get a good return from the show and it’s great to give them a chance to grow, and to bring them to a wider audience, because where else can you find two days full of your potential clients in front of you? We aim for a good quality of visitor, as much as the volume, as it’s important as a business; for exhibitors, it’s more about getting the right visitors through the doors.

What do you love about your job?

One of the nicest things is when I go on to the concourse and see a girl with her mum, she’s got the bag with lots of leaflets and magazines and you can see her saying “I can’t believe I have all these things booked”!  It’s then you realise how much you’ve actually helped people, by bringing these businesses into the show and given them what they’re looking for.  You go home with a really happy, satisfied feeling that you’ve helped someone. As much as we are a business selling space, it really makes a difference to know you have inspired or helped someone create their special day.  It’s also about bringing people together and seeing them having a really great time. You’ll see a group of girls in the bar having a few drinks and enjoying a lovely day and it’s nice to know people are buying something they want rather than something they need.

These days many people buy and order online – but it’s still good to see products and meet people for real?

Yes absolutely! Ultimately people buy from people. When it comes to weddings, some purchases cost a lot of money and are also a vital part of your big day.  It’s great to get a feel for business, meet with them and be reassured they know what you’re looking for, for one of the biggest days in your life!  The show gives you the chance to speak to so many different people and businesses in a couple of hours.  It saves time making lots of different appointments and travelling miles for something that might not work for you. A cake company is an easy one; you can come to the show, see the designs and get to do some sampling; someone can make a lovely cake, but that doesn’t always mean it tastes good.

Nowadays weddings come in all shapes and sizes – the Show is for everyone?

Yes, absolutely! Relationships and weddings have changed and it’s good to be part of a more inclusive and accepting society – and the show reflects that. The show has something for everyone. It could be the first wedding, maybe even second or third, same-sex wedding, large or small, home or abroad – whatever the dynamics of the big day you are organizing, everyone needs advice and suppliers to go to.  Many businesses offer bespoke services and if you really want a black wedding dress, there will be someone who can design one for you.

Mostly the show is just a great day out which everyone can enjoy. There’s a lovely atmosphere with an element of excitement and it’s great to experience and be part of it!