There really is no way around this concept. If you are a bad vendor, you can't be anything else. Now I'll clarify as to what I consider a "bad" vendor so that we aren't having too many ideas floating around but the main thing is, you can make excuses but bad is bad.
My biggest issue would be clients that book, then make excuses for these bad vendors. You (client) need to understand that if there are issues with the quality of service in the beginning, there will be issues the entire time. If you think it stressed you out while you were planning your wedding, wait til your wedding day when you are already stressed out enough. I want people to expect more from their vendors. This is a big day, a big deal and you are typically paying a decent amount of money, so expectations are expected.
Things I've heard from Brides that absolutely make me want to cringe-
"I've booked a photographer, and they have great photos, they are just SO busy they don't have time to return calls"
"I've booked a cheap limo service, it really is a great deal. They haven't sent a contract, even though I've asked for one a few times, but I can't pass up a good deal."
"I found this great catering company but they insist that they never have been asked to do a tasting before, so we aren't going to have one before our wedding day."
"I saw this band play at a local bar and their music is awesome but they claim they don't do contracts, they will just show up as requested, I'd feel better with a contract, but they said they never do them."
"You should meet this amazing makeup artist I found. She's kind of short with me sometimes but she's so busy (because she's so good) that I totally understand she's just stressed."
"We did an engagement shoot with this photographer and she really didn't listen to us, or do the photos we wanted, but I'm hoping she will be better on our wedding day, she's been in the business so long, I know she'll do a great job."
Really people? I have actually had these things said, out loud by grown adults that would probably never allow this type of bad service from any other type of vendor but for some reason on wedding days, people just get uncomfortable with confrontation. Maybe it is because you already have SO much going on and you are just happy to have decisions made, but let me tell you, it will be something you'll regret in the long run.
This is the most basic statement I can make
If service is bad at the start, it WILL NOT get better once you give someone a deposit, it WILL NOT get better as you get more nervous about your wedding day. Deal with it now, while you can.
Am I saying to have insane expectations of your vendors. Absolutely not. There are time when a vendor is going to take a day longer to return your call than you wanted, or they might forget a small detail when they send you your contract. These things are NOT what I'm referring to. I'm referring to the quality of service you get, the care that they show, the respect that they give you. I would rather work with a new, inexperienced, young vendor that is desperate to do a good job, than an expensive, high-end vendor who things that their reputation is what sells them so they don't bother with anything else.
It isn't always bad but if I can tell you, a few of those brides that didn't take my advice to deal with their issues, had worse problems in the long run, that I then, fixed at the last minute all the while trying not to let them stress out about last minute difficulties. Of course, that's my job, so if you have a planner, you should be safe but at the same time, if you have a planner and choose not to take their advice you are probably better off just not having a planner.
The limo company, that didn't send a contract....
Never showed up.
The rude makeup artist.......
Did the wrong colors/makeup application for the client.
The experienced photographer......
Missed all of the shots the couple had specifically asked for.
Not all of these incidents were with my clients. Some were with friends who told me about their wedding issues after their wedding. (Being a friend does not automatically make you a wedding client but being a wedding client does tend to make you a friend)
Not all of these issues ended poorly. The catering company who "didn't do tastings" had wonderful food on her wedding day. Although, the fact that they wouldn't do tastings just made her whole wedding planning process more stressful than it would have been had she just gone with a company that made her feel comfortable.
I'm not suggesting you become a Bridezilla. That will work backwards in the sense that you will end up not being able to work with GOOD vendors because they won't want to deal with YOU being rude and awful to them. (Side Note: No, I haven't ever worked with a Bridezilla, and I hate the term)
So, think now....are you making excuses for your bad vendor? Are they causing you more stress than you would like from someone you are paying? If so, reconsider. Sometimes it is even better to lose your deposit with them, then it is to be worried that they won't do a good job. Don't know how to manage that, email me, call me and I'll be happy to help you handle the situation. I get emails on a weekly basis from people who aren't sure what to do about their bad vendor. Sometimes the vendor isn't bad, the communication between the two of them is just mixed up and other times, I hope to think that I helped save them from a mini-crises on their wedding day by stopping a bad vendor before they made a mistake.
Good luck and Happy Planning!