Toledo Ohio Wedding Review

Real brides review wedding vendors in Toledo Ohio and surrounding area

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A Minds Eye Imaging

A Minds Eye Imaging
5249 Secor rd Suite 2, Toledo OH 43623 - 419-472-1034


Hi Ladies,

While I was at the bridal show this weekend I sign up for a bunch of the drawings and actually won one!
So, what I won was a $1000 discount certificate for this A Minds Eye Imaging. The problem is I have to book my date with them by March 24.
The company seems really expensive he said there basic day starts at $1,975 which is expensive for a base price and the things that he listed off that were included with that did not seem like much.
After I talked to the guy, I really don't think that I am going to use the certificate because he was really vague and would not give me any price list or any pricing information beyond the $1975 he had already told me.

Please let me know what you thought of the company if you used them.


Be glad you asked the question! Over the summer, I posted the same thing. We wont the 1,000 gift certificate at one of the August shows. We met with him and something just seemed shady so I questioned it on here. Turned out, the majority of the other brides had gotten the same GC. It was def a shady situation. We never called him back and we haven't heard from him since, oddly. ALTHO, I do get cards from him at all the holidays and my name is spelled wrong on the cards. Nice, huh! Anyways, my post is still out here somewere from when I posted it if you want to check out all the responses.


I also got the same $1000 gift card. The owner called several times, yet I only talked to him one time. I wasn't impressed with the $1000 "prize" considering that their packages were a little pricey (IMO)... We did not go with them for our photographer...


I got the same "prize" and he calls me often to see if I have booked someone. I am not going with them I am using JP photograpy and I am meeting with her on Friday. She seems amazing and I will let you know after we sit down with her if I still love her. Minds Eye does seem very expensive.


I got the same GC too!! I got frustrated with them when they told me I had 2 weeks to decide if I wanted to use it, and then they didn't respond to my emails (questions). I am so glad that I saw this post!


After reading what the othe knotties had posted on here, I am avoided this company at the bridal shows I have been to. On a happy note, at the end of Feb. I booked Wellspring Photography for our wedding and engagement pictures. :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Vendor Reviews

Overall, our day was amazing and beautiful. There were no major snags or disasters. We couldn’t have asked for better weather. I was in awe of how many people traveled to be at our wedding. Literally every person at the wedding told me how stunning, glowing or beautiful I looked. I was amazed at all the kids! They kept calling me the pretty princess, but no one told me how freakin’ hot it is under all those layers of dress! LOL I’m so glad it’s all over and I couldn’t be happier to be married. It’s the most amazing feeling in the world. Here’s some vendor reviews (sorry if they’re long):

Ceremony: Lutheran Church of Our Saviour A++
I cannot say enough good things about this church. I got so many compliments about what a great speaker the pastor was and what a gorgeous ceremony we had. Everyone on staff at the church is so easygoing about everything and they are very affordable. They did our altar flowers for free and just kept them for Sunday service. Our videographer was able to stand up front and tape the whole ceremony. They let us use their fellowship hall for the rehearsal dinner for free. Overall, we had a great experience with them.

I did hear that the coordinator was complaining that we got dressed and picked up the flowers early, then left for pictures, and what was she supposed to do just sitting there, etc., but I told her on more than one occasion that was what we were doing, so I don’t know what else I could have done.

Reception: St. Clement’s Hall A
For the price, you can’t beat this hall. Unfortunately, the hall is in need of some TLC. We were told the carpet was going to be replaced or at least cleaned by our wedding, and neither one happened. We were told this by a member of the Knights of Columbus, who frequently use the hall, but the money they’ve given the hall for improvements has disappeared. I was a little disappointed that the fluorescent lights in the hall were on for so long, especially during our first dance :(. The person who runs the hall is a little hard to get in touch with, but he is very accommodating and easygoing. Being able to bring in your own caterer and alcohol saved us a ton of money. And we ran out of wine and the hall provided all the wine people could drink for only $25. I wish we would have spent a little more on the hall, but we got what we could afford at the time, and it’s not like there are so many fabulous halls in Toledo. ;)

Caterer: Dianne Westhoven A+++
This is another vendor I cannot say enough good things about. By far, we got the most compliments on how absolutely delicious the food was. Several people said it was the best wedding food they’ve ever had. Her prices are amazing and she doesn’t have lots of extra charges. She did not complain at all or balk when I added china the week before the wedding. She hired extra busers and got it all cleaned up. We had so many leftovers that we are still eating the food almost a week later, and we gave so much of it away. The only issue I had with her is that I felt a bit shoved out of the way after we cut the cake.

DJ: Kevin Mullan B
Kevin is a really good DJ. I got all kinds of compliments about how packed the dance floor was and what a great speaking voice he has. The reason he got a B is, up until the week of the wedding, he never returned any of my phone calls or emails after we booked him. There were several things he said he was going to do, and never did them. I was upset that I spent quite a bit of time on a “must play” list for the reception, and he largely ignored the list until the very end of the night. Come to find out though, that my DH vetoed my song choices, because he felt the dance floor was not packed enough. DH and I met line dancing, and I was upset that he killed all the country music because his work friends were not dancing. My work friends left because he didn’t play any slow songs. I tried to tell DH you can’t please everyone.

Florist: Sharry Folmer B
This was probably one of my biggest disappointments. I don’t know if I should have been more explicit with her, or if we should have had another meeting before the wedding. She said my bouquet was going to be 3-dozen roses – it had 26. I wanted mostly red roses with some pink. The BMs were supposed to have mostly cream with some pink roses. They were both opposite – way too much pink. All the GMs were supposed to have cream rose bouts and they were pink.

Also, I told her I wanted greenery with the bouquets and showed her pictures. Maybe I should have specifically said I wanted leaves. She used some green spiky stuff, that shedded all over the place, and did not fit with my idea of elegant roses. She also cut the heads off all the roses and stuck them in holders for the bouquets, so all during pictures, the roses were falling out of the bouquets and we just kept sticking the heads back in like she said to. During planning, I would try to tell her my ideas, and it felt like she always had an attitude of, “This is the way I do weddings.” And like Merin has said before, some of the flowers had brown edges. The good part is you can’t beat her prices and she’s super nice.

Photographer: Cathy Kautz A+
Cathy is very easy to work with and takes great pictures. We haven’t gotten our professional pictures back yet, but I can’t wait to see them. We went to the Botanical Gardens, and she had some great ideas and posing arrangements. She spent almost all day with us and never got bossy or rude. Her price is amazing.

Videographer: Family Friend
We haven’t gotten our video yet.

Cake: DH’s Uncle’s Sister A+
Our cake was done by a family member. It was absolutely delicious and we got so many compliments. I’ve never seen a line for cake like we had. And she only charged us $100. :)

My Dress: House of Brides A+
I ordered my dress online after finding it at Gallippo’s. It was less than half the price online. My dress arrived in perfect condition and before the date promised.

BM Dresses: Online Wedding Deals A
I also ordered these online. They delivered them way too close to the wedding date for my comfort, but we got them in time and the dresses looked so gorgeous.

Alterations: Jane’s Perfect Fit A++
Jane is such a delight to work with. She does excellent work and my dress fit like a dream. I can’t recommend her enough.

Tuxes: Men’s Wearhouse C
Ugh… The one vendor I thought I was going to go bridezilla on. We picked out a $120 tux (which I thought was too expensive in the first place) and I thought everything was going to be simple. Then the guys go to get fitted and I find out they’re all getting charged $150. I called Men’s Wearhouse to find out why and the manager didn’t return any calls. So I went in there, pissed as hell, and found out they’d added extra stuff we didn’t ask for. Thankfully, all the tuxes came in and nothing was wrong with any of them. I was very unhappy with them though. I still don’t understand how a friend of ours got married 1***189; years ago and their tuxes were $70.

Invitations: Rexcraft A+++
Our invitations were absolutely perfect. They were constantly available for my concerns or questions and shipping was super fast.

Rehearsal Dinner: Calvino’s A
Calvino’s catered the rehearsal dinner. The food was excellent, and we again, got so many compliments. There was some misunderstanding with the price and the owner tried to charge us more, but we ended up with the price he originally quoted us.

Vendor Reviews for 6/13/09

Our day was absolutey perfect. I would not change a thing. The weather was what I heat, not a lot of sunshine, and a little rain for good luck. Our bridal party was super fun and everyone got along. Not too mention they looked amazing. I thought pink was an odd choice by husband but it was the best choice.

Maumee indoor theatre-A+. Ty was very accommodating from the begining. When someone wanted to rent the basement where we planned to get dressed, he let us rent it for half the price. They are very flexible with times and will get you what you need if they have it. And its beautiful inside-clean as a whistle.

Candlelight Occassions-A. Had no trouble with them. Rented 2 big columns and fabric for swag down the aisle.

Childers Limo- A+. I had them for the bachelorette party-think his name was David. Was like a security guard keepin creepy guys off the bus, while my bff was sat on the bus bc she was too trashed to get off. He had good conversation with her. On the wedding day. They were early, and he helped us get stuff around so we could get on the bus to get pictures taken.

Davids Bridal-A. Bought a dress in March 08. Loved it but thought it was too much, went back to see if they could exchange. Even though it had been almost a year, they still even exchanged it with no hassle. And I loved loved my dress. Got the flower girl dresses there too-they looked so stinkin cute.

Netbride A+. Ordered the bridemaid dresses by Bill Levkoff from there for about $80 cheaper than the store. And got it almost 2 months early. With no problems at all.

President Tuxedo-B. Guys had a few things missing here and there. My dads coat had to be fixed before we left. There were some wrong shoe sized. But overall the guys looked handsome and they were very helpful when trying to get the things corrected.

Cambridge Place-A. The hall was absolutely beautiful. They do improvements here and there and it looks so much better than when I first signed with them. The food was frickin fantastic-chicken and pork loin. Didnt know how the pork was going to go over but it was dang good. They answered the phone whenever I made husband call and were willing to do whatever. All I had to do to decorate was add my table numbers and my pictures here and there. It was so easy and non stressful.

JEM Photography-A+. I can not say enough good things about Jen. I had her take my daughters 2 year old pics, our engagement pics, and of course the wedding day. I can not wait to see them.My guests kept telling me how sweet she was.

Pollyn Flowers-A++. My flowers were so full and beautiful. She got the flowers I wanted to work with the flowes husband wanted and then added some flowers that I wanted but didnt budget for. I paid $919 for 30 table centerpieces that were awesome. 8 bouquets and about 15 boutineres(sp). When all said and done I should have paid double. Lynn was willing to do whatever I wanted and gave suggestions when I had no idea.

Showcase Video Productions-A. I havent seen the video but I have no doubt it will be amazing and will remind me of what a perfect day it was. He was just a zoomin around with his camera on wheels to get lots of footage.

Ultimate Nights-A+. Steve was awesome. Kept everyone dancing, was willing to work with some strange requests. (my groomsmen had). He also had some tongue twisting last names and did it flawlessly.

Nancy Lendrim (Harpist) A. She has a passion for music and great energy. She came to the theater set up her harp. Played perfectly....I cried hearing my favorite song from the hallway.

Sarah Shriver Custom Invites C. She is a nice lady. She was kind of helpful. I have a graphics arts degree-so I know that the work she did wasnt that hard. Cause she cut and paste the pic I had from my STD magnet. She made table numbers that I hated-so I made new ones myself. My pocketfolds werent the black we discussed nor was some of the pink paper she bought. She just didnt communicate well. Should have done myself.

The Bake Shop A+. I grew up near Fayette and everyone had her make cakes for their events so I knew it was going to be delicous. She used the design from my std/invite on the cake and it was so stinkin pretty.

Salon Serenity A. They did my moms hair and then one of the girls who works there came to Toledo to do the girls hair. I gave pictures of a couple up-down-side-half dos to let the girls have variety. And the girl made them all work together:) My cousin did my hair (she use to work there) and she did a good job even though I hadnt had my hair cut in about 7 months-the last time she came home.

Chowders n Mor B. We went there for the rehearsal dinner. Food was delicious. I being the bride was just the last one to eat (thats why they get the b). We had a ton of people-and they kept them full of drinks and entertained.

I also did of online purchasing from various sites that I would recommend to anyone. Love Snapfish, ebay, vistaprint & 123print to name a few.

Think thats it. Now that wedding planning is over I get to plan a big ol birthday party for our little princess. And begin the house hunting game. The first week feels weird without needing to do some wedding stuff but luckily I have a moh getting married next weekend and a bff getting married in toledo next year who will need some help-should slowly ween me off:)

Vendor Reviews from 4/4

Well our wedding day was awesome. It was rainy and cold Friday but beautiful on Saturday for us!

New Image Photography-A- Jason and Leslie got to the church at 12:30 and the wedding was at 2. Jason is very talented and kept everything moving along from pre ceremony thru the reception. We got 3 disks full of 2,100 photos from the night. We got to choose 300 to go into an album (still waiting on that.....) and the rest we can print out since we have the copyright. Ken is a bit hard to deal with but Jason and Leslie really made the day great!

Hirzel Brother's Flowers-B- The bouquets were bigger then I thought they would be but that was not bad by any means. They were all beautiful and stayed looking nice all day. They set up the church very quick and it looked awesome. Very good quality for the awesome awesome price. Only bad I have to say was the bridesmaids greens on their bouquets fell out here and there but they just stuck them back in with no problem.

Dusseau's Reception-Antique Hall-A+++++- The hall was beautiful. It was a little warm when we got there and I asked to turn down the air but they didn't...I ended up with a bit of heat sickness.... But if it wasn't for a 40 pound dress, that may have been different. The food and appetizers were great, guests couldn't get enough of the chicken! They gave us all of our left over food, alcohol, and also the deposit check that night. Just remind them to set toasting glasses on the head table.

The Bake Shop. A+++- Kristy's cake was to die for! It was better then I could have ever thought of. We didn't have a single piece left as some people went for seconds. It was gone in a matter of 10 minutes. We took the top of the cake on the honeymoon because we have no room in our freezer to save it. After a week the cake was still moist!

Cabin Fever Vacations, Gatlinburg A- We love Gatlinburg and can't wait to go back. Our cabin was on top of a mountain, was clean, and stocked with TV's, games, a pool table, air hockey and lots of windows to enjoy the view.

DJ- Imact Sound Entertainment- A+++ The DJ is my cousin's husband from Michigan. He kept the party going until I couldn't dance anymore.

Mens Wearhouse- A- The guys all looked great. Just one short jacket and some missing socks and pocket napkins but all in all it turned out nice.

Vendor Reviews

Park Congregational Church - Ceremony Site - A

We are not members with any church and kind of had a hard time choosing/finding a church for our ceremony that would marry non-members and someone recommended we contact Park Church and we are so glad we did. It is a BEAUTIFUL church! We loved the architecture and the pastor, Ed Hielman, was awesome and very willing to work with us. The ceremony was perfect and Pastor Ed helped us through every step of the process and we were very happy with them. They are non-denominational and a United Church of Christ. - 419.382.5654

The Toledo Hilton - Reception Venue - A++++++++++

We seriously cannot give enough pluses to the Hilton! They are probably the best venue in Toledo for a wedding reception as far as all-around service and selection are concerned. We worked with Theresa Carroll, their Catering Manager and event coordinator, and she is probably the biggest reason we chose the Hilton. Theresa is absolutely amazing! She definitely went above and beyond to please us and help us with every single aspect of our wedding - from recommended vendors, to decorating the ballroom, to food choices and even helping straighten us up prior to our entrance to the reception! It was almost like having a free day-of coordinator! We had the Birch, Elm and Maple rooms of the main ballroom and it was more than enough space for our reception of approximately 100 people. The food was INCREDIBLE and people raved all night about it. We had a custom Italian buffet dinner with Mediterranean grilled chicken breasts and lasagna as our entrees. Theresa helped us to cut some costs by customizing our menu for us and it was still plenty of delicious food. They even gave chicken fingers, mini-corn dogs, french fries and fried macaroni and cheese meals to all of the little kids and Theresa even a kids meal made for DH as a surprise and he loved it!! We also used them for chair covers at a very reasonable price. We loved that everything was included in the price that they give you - food, open bar, linens, setup, take-down, cleaning, waitstaff, gratuity, wedding cake, food tastings, cake tastings and coordinator services. They even gave us a room with champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries and two pieces of our wedding cake waiting for us at the end of the night and the next morning, we got to order free room-service breakfast! (Toledo link) - 419.381.6800

Jordan Powers - Photographer - A+

Jordan was awesome!! He did a great job. We love all of the photos and we love his photojournalistic style. He had our teaser pics online within just six days and our proofs were all online within eight days of our wedding date! He took some very unique and artistic shots and we are very happy with all of them! He even risked his life, jumping in front of traffic in downtown Toledo, to get some great street shots! :) His prices are VERY reasonable as well.

Mary Poppins Cake Factory - Wedding Cake - B

Our cake was certainly beautiful and VERY delicious! They have THE best fondant we have ever tasted! They also did a great job designing it using only my ideas/suggestions. Our only problem with the cake was that it was very crooked and uneven. A few people told us they were calling it "the leaning cake of Pisa"... We cut the cake immediately after our entrance into the reception, so it was only really on display for the cocktail hour, but it was obviously noticed. *The price of our cake was included in our cost with the Hilton. - 419.849.2997

Ultimate Nights - Reception DJ - A+

Ultimate Nights did an amazing job at our reception! We had Jeromy Danielski as our DJ and he was awesome! He even made us a CD with most of our song selections (plus a few extras) and gave it to us at the end of the night! You really cannot beat their prices, either. We had them for five hours and we thought it was a GREAT deal! The owner, Brian Cahill, was very helpful in getting us set up and he was very easy to work with throughout the planning process. We also loved their new "Online Event Planner" feature - you can add and subtract songs from your request lists and set up your entire reception timeline from the convenience of your home computer! - 419.350.3629

Pam Thomas - Veil/Alterations/Seamstress Extraordinaire! - A++++

Everyone knows Pam is the BEST! She altered my gown and three of my bridesmaids' dresses and also put the bustle points in their dresses for us (their dresses had sweep trains and required a single bustle point - the fourth bridesmaid had her dress altered and bustled in her home town). She created a lovely 9-point bustle for my gown and it was beautiful! She even did some quick alterations to my bodice when I lost 20 pounds between my first and second fittings... :) Pam also makes and sells BEAUTIFUL veils and I ended up getting my veil from her at a VERY reasonable price! She has TONS to choose from and they're all very high quality! I cannot say enough good things about her - she is just perfect!

Jared the Galleria of Jewelry - Our Rings - A+

We used the store on Monroe Street in Toledo and are very happy with the service we receive from Jared. DH bought my rings as a set, which made it very easy on me! DH had a really hard time finding a ring that he liked and after searching high and low, we returned to Jared and they offered to custom order a ring in the style he liked (he wanted at least an 8mm-wide ring in a certain style and none of the area stores had anything that wide in this style) for the same price has smaller-width rings in other stores! We both have their Extended Service Plan on our rings and we love it - we especially love that we can have our rings re-plated, re-sized and/or cleaned all in a few hours! A lot of our friends and family are required to send out their rings for these services for days or even weeks and we didn't want to have to deal with going without our rings for that long every time we needed these services. We worked with several different employees (we like Enrique!) and all of them are very helpful! - 419.480.0072

Sharry's Touch - Flowers - A

Sharry did our bouquets, bouts and corsages at a VERY reasonable price! We were very happy with her work and I would definitely recommend her for any Toledo area budget brides! She was very easy to work with and very happy to help us with ideas, sample photos of her work and the logistics of our day/delivery!

Birmingham Limousine - Day-Of Transportation - A+

We used Birmingham Limousine for our day-of transportation from the wedding ceremony to pictures and to the reception hall. They did an AWESOME job and our driver, Mike C., was very professional and courteous. We orignally had a count of 18 people to have with us in the limo (we wanted our friends to come around with us for pictures, not just the bridal party), so they recommended a stretch Hummer H3! We ended up only having 12 people and we had more than enough space for everyone. The Hummer even had a FIREPLACE in it!! It was VERY nice! The price was awesome, too - it was only $680 total for three hours! We got a free wedding package with colored napkins (in our wedding colors), ice, bottles of champagne and glasses and a "Just Married" magnet on the back of the limo! The driver was on time and knew his way around Toledo very well. Someone even joked about stopping at Fritz and Alfredo's (local restaurant) for some burritos and he even drove to the restaurant while we were wasting time after the pictures! Mike was a great guy and a good sport. (photo by Birmingham Limo) - 419.882.5466

BRIDES DIY Kit - Invitations - F

DO NOT buy this kit if you're looking for something quick and simple! It took me about three weeks, working on them every single day, to get them printed. The texture of the paper makes it impossible for you to print on it because it has small ridges and dimples and the ink from your printer will not adhere to the paper (I tried both laserjet and inkjet printers). The ink and wording from every component of this kit was rubbed off VERY easily and even every single RSVP card and envelope that we got back in the mail was almost illegible by the time it got back to our mailbox, so we can only imagine what the rest of the actual invitations looked like. Also, Kinko's, Office Max and Office Depot cannot print these for you because of the unusual sizes of the papers - I tried all of them.

David's Bridal - My Dress - A

I have no complaints about David's Bridal. I went in a few times to try on dresses and the girls were very helpful. I bought my dress during their big summer sale and saved $400 on my Oleg Cassini dress. (Monroe Street store) - 419.841.1000

MW Tux/Men's Wearhouse - Tuxes - B

DH chose a mid-level tux - three button jacket - and it was kind of expensive, but they looked awesome. We chose black tuxes for everyone. The groomsmen had black vests with "pool" ties, DH had a white vest with white tie and the fathers had black vests with black ties. Everything looked great and DH even had to use both of his tux shirts (initial shirt and backup) because of a shaving incident, so the backup shirt really came in handy. However, the one major issue with them was that his backup shirt was WAY too big for him! He is 6'6" and the sleeves on that shirt were at least six inches too long! One of his groomsmen had to actually tape the sleeves at his shoulders so that they didn't hang out so much at his wrists, which meant he couldn't take off his jacket the whole day/night.

Bridal & Formal, Cincinnati, OH - Bridesmaid Dresses - B

Picture We used Bridal and Formal in Cincinnati, Ohio for our bridesmaid dresses. We found an Alfred Angelo dress (7026) that we liked and the girls tried it on at a local store and we shopped around online to see if any of the discount websites had a lower price on it and we discovered Bridal and Formal and they will price-match any price you find! We found the dress for $65 below retail cost and they matched the price for us with no problems! The girls just had to call in their sizes (one of my BMs is 6'1" and needed extra length, so they matched the low price we found on that aspect as well!) and they were able to get their dresses delivered straight to their homes. Our only problem with them was that the dresses ended up taking 14 weeks from order date to delivery date and they were delivered to each girl only two weeks before the wedding. The employees were very nice about it and even called me weekly with updates on the status. It set a little panic but they were all able to get them altered in time and everything was fine. - 513.821.6622

Sunday, May 10, 2009

vendor reviews (long)

Date: 5/10/2009 at 9:32 AM

So, now that I'm done with the wedding and honeymoon and am able to find time to be on the internet longer than a half hour, I can get to the vendor reviews.

We had a fantastic wedding day. I was a little nervous in the morning, but as soon as I started down the aisle with my dad, I was all smiles all day and totally relaxed.

Photog-Sarah J Photography - A+++
Love her and Mary!! We haven't seen all the pics, but the ones on their websites are fantastic. Both of them were fun to work with and very professional.

Limo-Toledo Limo - A
We didn't have any trouble with them. I think the one we had was the Majestic. It was really roomy inside. There was a cd player with cds that the driver provided. We didn't know that you could bring your own. There was a tv, but you could only watch your own videos on it, not regular cable tv. Overall, I think they were worth the money.

Videographer-Full Zoom - A++
Brent and Diane Martin were a pleasure to work with, plus I went to school with their kids, so I knew them already. They were out of the way during the wedding and reception, I forgot a couple of times that we actually had videographers there. We don't have the video back yet to see the quality, I do recommend the video guest book. So many of our friends said they went up a few times to the video guest book and I can't wait to see it.

DJ-Professional Sounds - A
Doug Bermick was great to work with. I forgot that I was going to have MOH say a speach and didn't tell him we changed it. I asked him right after dinner was served if he could work it in and we made it work. We sent a must play list and he played some of our songs throughout the night. The dance floor was hoppin all night. We got a lot of complements on the music.

Hall-Joesph W.Dien Post, Unit 486 - A
They have fantastic food that is home cooked. When you book, I think you have to use their catering-worth every penny. We didn't have a lot of food left over. They let you come in the morning of to decorate and they have a company that cleans up for you so you don't have to do it.

Dresses-Atlas Bridal - A
I bought my dress and the bridesmaid dresses here. I had great service everytime I went in for alterations. I was dissapointed that my dress was still too big the day of. I had it taken in a few weeks before and tired it on the Monday before and it fit fine. The day of, it was big. That was probably my doing. The girls loved the bridemaid dresses.

Flowers-Emery's Florist - B
I had great service from Ken when we discussed what flowers and such I wanted. However the flowers were wilted by the end of the ceremony. When the flowers were delivered, they sat out of the water buckets 45 min before the ceremony. I had hydrangeas and roses. I had heard that hydrangeas were a delicate flower and I thought they would help with that. Everyones flowers looked pretty though.

Cake-Eston's Gourmet Cakes - A
The cake was fantastic! We had strawberries and cream and white chocolate mousse. I had an idea in mind that they didn't do and were able to accommodate me. I had someone else make fondant flowers and had Estons's put them on the cake. The flowers weren't what I wanted, but the cake still tasted good. That's all that matters anyway.

So, I think that about sums it up. I was very satisfied at all our vendors. We had a great day, the weather was in the 80s.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Vendor Reviews

I didn't post very much during my engagement, but I did do a LOT of lurking and you ladies really helped me out with the whole process. Now that my wedding is past I wanted to post my vendor reviews to hopefully provide some help for brides to be.

DJ - Takin Care of Business A+
Our DJs were Jordan and James and they did an awesome job at a great price. 100% professional and I could not have asked for more. They had every song anyone requested and even brought along lighting to add to the atmosphere.

Photog - Sarah J Photography A+
Loved her!! I can't say enough good things about Sarah, she is just awesome. You can really tell that she loves weddings and it shows in her work.

Flowers - Sharry's Touch A
Sharry did a great job at an unbelievable price. The flowers were beautiful.

Cake - Wixey's Bakery B
The cake tasted and looked great, I just felt like it was a struggle getting there. Their customer service was a little lacking, it sometimes took over a week to get a phone call returned. But in the end everything turned out great.

Ceremony and Reception - Tamaron C
Things defiantly didn't go as smooth here as I thought they would. Everything went great up until the loss of having Mandy and Stacy run the events. The new event coordinator seemed very unorganized and made us feel like she always had somewhere better to be, like our wedding was an inconvenience to her. The day of, hardly anything was placed out like it should have been and my family had to spend a lot time helping get the room ready. This was all suppose to be done by Tamaron. All the manager had was excuses on why things were not done, no responsibility. She didn't even take action on things that were pointed out to her as being wrong, she just kind of shrugged it off.

I will say that the food, wait staff, and bartenders were great. I really hope that Tamaron does all they can to keep this staff the same for future brides.

If you would like my full review of Tamaron you can email me at jennirose113@
and I will be happy to provide you with more details.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Hook My Wedding Up

I was desperate to find affordable chair covers and I was excited once I did. The one thing I didn't know is that Kim, the business owner is the biggest you know what on this earth. She ALWAYS had an exccuse for everything. Though this wasn't a big deal, when you arder a sample, you expect the product you order to be the same, right? Not in this case. The sashes for the chair covers we ordered were not the same color of the sample we ordered. Her excuse: "we change the colors so much it might not always be the same." BS!!!! We ordered those samples only a few months before and you changed the color??? We did get or chaircovers, but this lady is just very unpleasant, and a liar!


We had the same issue with Hook my wedding up. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY!

They sent us the wrong color sashes and chair covers with black splotches on them. We called and asked them to send the correct color and they argued that it is the color we ordered. Fortunately we still had the sample sash and sent them a picture with the sample we ordered vs. the color they sent us! (Moss green vs. fluorescent sea green). They told us they didn't have the color we wanted in stock and that there was nothing they could do for us. No refund either! After we complained they told us they would see us in court! These people are scam artists.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Vendor Reviews

Gown: Maggie Sottero Brittanya from Atlas Bridal. A+ Atlas was wonderful. Some trouble with the bustle, which had to be redone, but they did an amazing job and it held up all night!! Alterations were pricey, however.

Bridesmaids Gowns: NetBride A+ Bill Levkoff. We saved $100 off each gown by ordering from Norah at NetBride. They were wonderful to work with, answering emails promptly, and the gowns arrived weeks ahead of schedule.

Hair: Shiloh Griffiths A+ Shiloh came to the house and did everyone's hair. Loved it!

Makeup: Friend Amy Kahl A+ Amy also came to the house and we had a blast!

Invitations and enclosure cards, maps and programs: Quaint Wedding Stationery, Wauseon, OH. A++++++ (my mom's business and she is great!)

Bridesmaid's & Mother of the Bride Alterations: A Stitch-in-Time, Archbold A+ Audrey was great. Her alterations pricing is very reasonable and she is FAST!!

Tuxedos: A+ Mens were from Lauber Clothing Archbold. Little boys were purchased from Fairytailes A+ on Ebay for $40...a HUGE savings over rental prices!

Church: Shiloh Christian Union Church A+ Anita and Chuck Whitmire were very gracious and accommodating. The fee of $150 to use the church for the rehearsal on Friday and ceremony Saturday included the use of the altar Candleabras and pew aisle candle markers. Tulle pew bows were also available for our use.

Ceremony Music: Alexandria and Brianna Hogan on Harp and Flute were amazing! A+ If you want to set the mood for your wedding ceremony, hire these sisters from Defiance! Supurb sound!

Florist: Blossoms Designs, Swanton A+. Shelly created my 18 rose bouquet from an inspiration photo and it was gorgeous! Exactly what I had envisioned. Bridesmaids gerbera daisy bouquets were the perfect shades of hot pink and light pink and tied with chocolate ribbon.

Catering: Callender's of Archbold A+ Marlene set up a gorgeous AND delicious fruit appetizer station with dips for guests prior to the buffet dinner at 6 p.m. Food was wonderful, and we had TONS left over!

Reception: Delta American Legion A- I give them an A- because their liquor prices were ridiculously high for Fulton County. Even though the hall is very nice, I would recommend a rental where you can bring in your own liquor. For some reason, they think "competitive" pricing means they can charge (gouge) you whatever they want....and they did! Totally out of line!!!

DJ- Steve and Brian Waack, Aiken SC A+++++ If you can afford these guys, hire them! Incredible job! The dance floor was FULL all night!

He also did a great job of cutting our CD for the Evolution Wedding Dance!

Hall Decorating: Jayne and Bill Throne of Something Borrowed, Napoleon A+++ Jayne was right with me in understanding my vision of elegance and drama. The head tables and backdrops were stunning. She dressed the cake table to highlight the cake to perfection! She loves what she does, and it shows!

Chair Covers: Melissa Loar A- They looked great when we arrived at the reception, unfortunately, they didn't stay on very well and most were on the floor halfway through the evening, so it was money not very well spent. Melissa did a great job, however, and her service deserves an A+

Wedding Cake: The Bake Shop, Kristy Clouse, Fayette A+++ It was a masterpiece and soooooo me! Loved it, and it tasted great. So many compliments received on the design. I couldn't have been happier!

Photographer: S.Peterson, Bowling Green. He and his wife photographed and videographed from the rehearsal, through rehearsal dinner, morning of the wedding, the ceremony through the evening reception. We pick up our photos tomorrow, and I expect they will be wonderful so will give an A+ His prices are very reasonable.

Transportation: Larry Goon transported the wedding party in his motor home. He was great! Thanks so much!! A+

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Toledo Ohio Bride Review: Searching For Reviews

Searching For Reviews

I'm happy to say the site has really picked up steam. Reviews are really starting to pile up. Since this isn't my job, but more of an obsession, I frequently fall behind in updating the actual vendor links listed on the side of the page. However that doesn't mean a vendor you're looking for doesn't have a review.

The best way to search for a vendor review is to simply perform a search

At the very top of each page you'll see this search box.

Just type in the vedor you're looking for, and be sure to click on the "Search Blog" button right next to it.


Vendor Reviews

Ceremony Site--St Andrews United Methodist Church: A-
The church itself was beautiful. It was the perfect size for my wedding and allowed me to bring in an outside Methodist pastor to do my ceremony. They were very accomodating about DH and I using the church even though we were non-members. However, the woman I had been working with and talking to for about a year informed me 2 weeks before my wedding that she would not be there on my day. She did not do a very adequate job at passing information along to the woman who was there on my wedding day. The woman I worked with on my day did not have my contract or price sheet, so she had no clue what I still owed. I had to take my checkbook back the day of the ceremony and write a check for the remaining amount. Just a pain but not a HUGE deal. Just wish there had been better communication.

Reception Site--Holland Gardens Banquet Hall: A-
This is a hard review to write, because up until the day before my reception, Tye and the staff at Holland Gardens were WONDERFUL! They have a great menu and delicious food (we got compliments all night). Their bar menu left a little to be desired and they were carding everyone all night, including DH! I was also owed 25 tables and unfortunately there was a mix-up and I only got 24 tables. When a family arrived to my reception that I did not know was coming for sure, I had to rush around to find them seats, and was told that it would be another $300 to set up an extra table (even though it was supposed to be there in the first place). We were also supposed to have evening hors dourves and they were put out at 6:00pm instead. On the plus side, Tye did come out and personally apologize to me, saying that the lack of a 25th table was his fault, and that the hors dourves time was a mix-up as well. He went to GFS and purchased more hors dourves supplies and had my hors'dourves back out again at 9:30pm like the original plan stated. So all in all, it was a great place and I would recommend it to other brides. I was just very upset that I was having to run around at my own reception trying to find people a place to sit and argue with the floor manager (not Tye) that I was owed an extra table.

Cake--Wendy's Cakes: A+++
Wendy was fabulous and by far, one of my favorite vendors. I did centerpiece cakes on all of my tables (21 cakes) and did a 2 tiered wedding cake for the bridal party and immediate family. Wendy was great in offering suggestions and the cakes were AMAZING! She gave me 4 different flavors for my centerpiece cakes and each one was delicious. She has some of the best frosting around! She even listened to me complain about my mom just a week before my wedding. Such a sweet lady and great to work with.

DJ--Remember the Night: B+
Again, this was another great vendor to work with up until the week of my wedding. I tried to get a hold of our DJ, Andy, the Monday and Wednesday before our wedding. I called and left messages with no returned phone call. My mom and I stopped by his office to check in and found a "For Lease" sign in the window. I sent an email to him on Wednesday night and was finally called on Thursday (the day before my wedding) at about 3:00 by another DJ that works for him. I was told that Andy would not be DJing my wedding but that this DJ (Monty) would be doing my wedding instead. RTN allows you to make your requests and set up your timeline on-line, so luckily Monty was able to see my info. However, I had sent Andy an email a few weeks before and was very concerned that Monty might not know when I told Andy. Monty assured me that he would get the info and be ready. When we get to the reception hall Monty informs my MIL that he does not have their Mother/Son dance song. He says that he could not find it on I-Tunes (even though DH and I found it several weeks before). Needless to say, MIL was very upset but fortunately 2 of our Groomsmen were able to figure it out and the song was able to be played. The rest of the night went smoothly and Monty did a fabulous job! I still have not received an apology or follow-up from RTN about the evening :(

Wedding Photographer--M&M Photography (Melody McKinley): A+
I haven't received our photos back yet, but the professionalism and service that Melody displayed during that day was terrific! She did all the pictures we asked for and was such a sweet woman to work with. She was great about keeping in touch with me. Her prices can't be beat and you get 2 photographers. I'm sure our photos will look amazing and I can't wait to see them!

Boudoir Photographer--Leah Stafford: A+
I took boudoir pics as a present to DH and Leah did my photos. She is AWESOME! Her work is amazing and she is so down-to-earth and laid back you can't help but feel absolutely calm and comfortable even in your underwear! She got my proofs to me within a week and even gave me a recommendation on how to print them and which company to use online. She will do Marathon Sessions if you have at least 10 girls. So all you Toledo Knotties who are thinking about doing these, contact Leah for a great rate!

Hotel Accommodations--Courtyard by Marriot at Spring Meadows: A
My event rep, Nicole, was great to work with. They allowed me to have a great block of rooms at a really good rate. Nicole even let me add last minute rooms a couple days before my wedding. The hotel offers shuttle service from the hotel to Holland Gardens which was my main reason for reserving rooms there. My only complaint is the cleanliness of the hotel. My BIL and his FI found a random sandal under their couch, DH and I found a dirty towel and piece of paper crumpled up and thrown in a cabinet in our wedding night suite, and my in-laws room had a pretzel on the floor and the toilet was not the cleanest. Great service, great staff, but the appearance left a little to be desired.

Wedding Day Hair & Make-Up--Definitions by Design (Maumee): A++++
What a great salon and it was suggested by a fellow Toledo Knottie (although I can't remember who, so whoever you were, THANK YOU!). The staff at DBD was amazing! They were able to schedule all my girls together and make everything work for both hair and make-up. My hair was done by Lynn and she was AWESOME. It didn't budge the entire night and she totally listened to my request and thoughts. Her prices were VERY reasonable and the entire bridal party was happy with their hair. My make-up was done by Kelly and she was great too. I told her I wanted "DRAMA" and when I asked her to add more, she happily obliged. She did a good job at creating just the right look.

Flowers--Becky Estep: A++++
After a huge mess with firing a florist I found from Craig's List (yes, I learned my lesson about Craig's List) my co-worker gave me the name of a woman from her church who did silk flower arrangements. Becky was a life-saver and my flowers turned out EXACTLY how I wanted them. I bought all my own supplies, with her help and guidance, from Flower Factory, and she put the arrangements together. Unfortunately for you Toledo Knotties, she lives in Columbus. But if you're getting married down this way, I'm happy to pass along contact info :)

Dress--Making Memories event with Brides Against Breast Cancer: A+++++++
What a cool way to buy a wedding dress! The hosted an event in Cleveland back in March (it's coming again to Cleveland in March '09) and I was lucky enough to go. I went knowing that I would buy my dress that day and that's what you have to do. With over 5,000 dresses in stock, any bride could find their dream dress. The best part was that 100% of the proceeds went to breast cancer research. I found my dress and paid only $299 for it. It was perfect!
***I allowed my bridesmaids to purchase any black dress they wanted, thus not having a review for a bridal shop***

Lucas County Marriage License Bureau: F
LOL. Okay so this is my own dumb*** fault but it's a funny story NOW so I have to tell it. DH and I went downtown to get our marriage license on Wednesday afternoon. We both thought you had to get it in the county you are getting married, not the county you live in. So when we get down there, the clerk informs us that she cannot give us a marriage license. I immediately break down crying and run from the office. I call my dad who promptly calls his attorney. DH is on the phone with his mom asking about getting a license in Lorain Co. (where he's from and his driver's license still says he lives there). So I'm CONVINCED we're going to have to either:

a) drive back to Columbus early Thursday morning and make the 2 1/2 hour trip there and back to get our license
b) drive the 1 hour and 15 minutes to Elyria and get our marriage license from Lorain County.

Lucky for us, my dad's lawyer comes through and we only had to go back to the courthouse the next morning at 8:30am and get a license. I had to give them my parents address but we weren't given any hassles and got our marriage license in about 10 minutes. Crisis averted!

FINALLY got around to posting our vendor reviews!

I FINALLY got around to posting our vendor reviews! Overall the day was AMAZING and I would not change anything if I could!!!!!

Ceremony Site - Rosary Cathedral A+++++!!! - I absolutely LOOOOOOVED our ceremony site! We worked with Chris from the church and she was super nice and extremely helpful!!! She made sure that I had thought of EVERYTHING (which I hadn't, I almost forgot a flower for Mary when we did our prayer to Mary so three days before the wedding I called back the florist to order another flower!!!) She was there on the day of the wedding to make sure everything went smoothly and she ran the rehearsal which went very very smoothly!!!! The church was absolutely gorgeous and worth every penny!!!

Reception Site - Nazareth Hall Lady Glen A+++++!! - Nazareth Hall is a little bit pricey but it is all inclusive! We worked with Kevin and he was super great! He answered all of my crazy e-mails I sent!!! (There was a point where I was sending like 2-3 a day!) Actually all of the staff there that we ran into was great!!! Our seating hostess, Stacy, was also amazing! She came out to take our drink orders before we went into the hall and I ordered a margarita but was to excited to drink, so she brought me out a water (I didn't ask for one) and she's like you have to drink something!! Aww!!! They were great to work with, the food was amazing and it was better than I imagined!

Florist - Emery's - A+++++ - All I can say was WOW! Ken knew exactly what we wanted and made it all happen!! He was so nice and very friendly! I would definitely recommend him and his prices are amazing!

DJ - Ryan Hatfield - A++++++ - Ryan was also great to work with! He created out first dance song mix and everybody LOVED it! He is super affordable and kept people on the dance floor all night long! He kept in contact with us throughout the whole process and I can't complain about anything from him! I would definitely recommend him too!!

Tuxes - President's Tuxedo - C - I'm giving President's a C for a couple reasons. First, two days before the wedding, one of our ushers sends me a pix message with him in the tux, his bowtie is wine, but his vest is WHITE!!! We had specifically gone in there, pointed at the color swatch we wanted and said WINE for the groomsmen/ushers and WHITE for the groom. Not that difficult or so you would think. So we call them in a panic and they said they would have it fixed. Well they send in a couple more groomsmens tuxes and for some reason they switched the colors on the ring bearer and one of the groomsmen. The ring bearer was supposed to be white vest white tye just like DH... they mixed up the name of the ring bearer and the name of one of the groomsmen (Even though there is a significant size difference) so one of the groomsmen now had all white!

Photographer - Cathy Kautz - A+++++ - Cathy was another wonderful vendor to work with! Very easy to talk to and she is very spunky! We just got our pics back a couple days ago and I absolutely love them! Her prices are very reasonable :)

Cake - Thrush's - A++++ - OMG I loved my cake!!! I designed this wonderful cake and they created it exactly how I wanted it!!!! It was absolutely beautiful! Now taste, I"m not sure! Our guests said it tasted amazing, but we actually didn't get a chance to eat any! :) Except for our tasting which was great :)

Dresses - Atlas Bridal - A+ - I know no extra plusses! I guess that's not really Atlas Bridals fault. They were amazing! I changed my dress three days after I ordered it (major dress regret) and they fixed it and ordered me my dream dress :) My only quelm was that some of my BM were a little larger and had to pay extra for a plus size! I did not know that at the time until afterwards when one of them told me. I know there are some designers Alfred Angelo who don't make you pay extra. All in all Atlas was great :)

Hair - Dillards Linda Simmons - A+++++ - Linda at Dillards did my hair and I loved her! My hair stylist recommended her to me since she doesn't feel comfortable doing wedding day hair. Linda worked wonders with my hair! During the trial she peridically would give me the mirror and ask if that is what I had envisioned before she finished. I really appreciated that because I have had some really bad hair experiences! My hair looked wonderful and stayed the whole night :)

Limo - Dagwoods - A+ - Dagwoods was great to work with! They showed up on time, the driver was nice. He took us to our apartment so we could get some champagne DH got from his uncle in France before we headed to the reception.

Videographer - New Image - NA - We are waiting on our video still. They did warn us before hand that it will be a couple months. Once we see the video I will post more. But funny thing is, we booked them 3 days before the big day :) I hadn't made up my mind until then. They were very accomodative and since we booked so close to the wedding they gave us a great deal!

Invitations - Odds and Ends - Michaels - A++++++++++++++++++++++++++ - OMG I LOVE MICHAELS!!! 40% off coupons :) What more can I say! They also have a great selection!

Wedding Night Accomodations - Belemere Suites - A+++++++ - The Belemere was sooo nice!!!!!! The staff was very friendly and the room was PERFECT!! Oooh and the towels smelled wonderful :) I asked her what her secret was and she said she just DUMPS detergent into the laundry and when they towels come out they are still blue, but she puts them in the dryer and they turn white again!! The only thing that I would have liked was maid service. We stayed two nights and usually house cleaning will come in, it's probably because it's a "romantic getaway" and they don't want to disturb, but I do enjoy coming back to a hotel room that has been cleaned :)

Overall the day was amazing and the only thing I wished was for a longer day :)

Monday, November 03, 2008

Vendor Reviews & Kinda long (10/18)

Photography: Jim Gladish Photography www.photosbyjag.
One of my fav vendors for sure! I am SOOOOOOOOOOO happy with our pics and Jim and his team. (we had 3 photogs!!) They were so laid back which is exactly what we wanted! It really felt like they were part of our family and were just hanging out with us. They were with us ALL day and shot whatever we wanted. We even had Melanie (an assistant photog) ride with us on our crazy party bus with all 18 of us!! They have some of our pics up on thier site ( We had over 1500 shots!) The pics at Frickers and The Duck are my favs! For what you get for the price...the quality and profesionalism is amazing. I am so happy with our choice.
** If you want to view..Go to the website above, then click on "view events and order" tab, then click on LaPointe 10/18/08 icon**

ONG> Dianne Westhoven Catering A+++ (and a million more plus signs!) ~ Dianne and her team are not only top notch with the food but top notch in hospitality as well. They were so generous and kind and went above and beyond. From Serving, to cutting the cake, and even taking down extra tables...they did it all. I am still having people call me and ask who did the food!!!!!!!!! Shes had so many referals from me within a week alone! You won't find another vendor in the area that can beat with what you get for the price :o)

Reception Venue: Swanton Sports Center Ballroom www.swan
The staff and ballroom mgrs. at the Sports Center couldn't have been more accomodating and nice :o) There is no extra cost for set up and tear down which was refreshing as we didnt have to lift a finger! Everything was great and they were very flexable with clean-up. I got to go back the next day and take down decor so my family and I could enjoy the rest of our wedding night at an after party we were having at another location. Thanks SSC!!! :o)

Chair Covers and Ceremony coordinator: Melissa Lohr www.mybeau
A+ (And a GAZILLION more plus signs)
I origianally had Melissa as a chair cover vendor only, but as we spoke via Email I mentioned my many problems and stupid crap that kept happeneing to me. So, she in turn became my ceremony coordinator as well!! She was an absolute lifsaver since I was late to my wedding and no one had on flowers yet and my sisters showed up not dressed yet... well...nevermind! She did it ALL and was so kind to everyone:o) Also, the chair covers made such a huge impact on my decor I was going for. I was so happy I rented them & recieved so many positive comments. She also put all 200 of our own sashes on for us too!!!!! Thanks Melissa:o)

Make-Up: Amy Kahl A++
Amy is from my hometown of Swanton and I heard about her from word of mouth from other brides. I gave her a call and she was so amazingly funny and nice. She did my make up for me and I was sooooo happy with the results! ( I am nervous about other people doing my makeup!) I would highly reccomend! :o)

Alterations: Pam Thomas A++++++++
Yes, Believe all the hype you see on the Knot!! This woman is AMAZING!!! As some of you may remember from past posts, I was a 2 dress bride....Well, I am a *** and didn't like niether dress, so I thought it was smart to order one off the internet 3 weeks beofre my wedding ( I know right!) I took the dress to Pam and she made me feel good about what I had just done:o) It was also nice of her to console me after I got a ticket on my way to her house :o( She also added a custom panel for my corset and it looked awesome! And her prices are very reasonable for the high quality of work.

Cake: The Bake Shop A+++
Amazing, Amazing, Amazing.....thats all I have to say about Kristy and my cake (Which was still moist a WEEK later!)

DJ: Bobs OkeyDokey B
Once you get past the name, they are some of the nicest guys I ever met. Our MC Steve was really good, The only reason I gave them a B was becuase they announced our best mans name wrong after we went over it atleast 3 times and they played the wrong song for my cake cutting. I dont know if I am being nit picky or to nice so, B it is.....

My Dress: Julius Bridal Outlet www.nothingb
Yes, I am crazy...this was my 3rd dress in 9 months but, when I stumbled upon this site (My cousin was the one looking for a wedding dress!) I fell in love with my dress :o) And, it was a sample so it was only 150 dollars. They also added a custom color ribbon at no extra cost. They are in NYC so I had to talk to Julius the designer over the phone and he had to describe everything to me. I will say though... the box it came in was was about the size of a milk crate...It took Pam Thomas 4 hours to steam all the crinoline & fabric (The crinny was built in the dress, Which was really impressive!)

BM Dresses:
> A+
My BM dresses were Jordan Couture. Atlas and House of Hilton wanted 210.00 for them. I got a quote from netbride and they were 119.00. The shipping was fast ( 8 weeks) and everything was in pristine condition and perfect. I was extremely happy and so were my Maids for the cost reduction :o)

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Ceremony Location - Erie Street Market
What can I say...I was stressed out all year about the place possibly closing and the concerts they just starting. Being in New York, it made it even harder to focus and I decided not to let myself stress and just go with it. I have to say that I'm glad I did. The day before the wedding the forecast called for ALL DAY RAIN. This was difficult because the ceremony was supposed to be held in my parent's backyard and the chairs and a tent for me to walk out of was all set up. Fortunately my DOC had everything covered and was able to move all of the chairs from my backyard to the market. One of the matience guys was nice enough to help her organize everything and set it all up the morning of the wedding. The room looked beautiful after it was decorated, and it turned out to be a great ceremony. They even gave us the vacant room across the hall to get ready in. Though the restrooms look like something you might see in a public high school, my bridesmaids were able to decorate them and make them look pretty.

Officiant - Susan Spackey
Susan was great. She customized our ceremony to fit us and did a wonderful job. She is also very organized and has a really nice sopeaking voice.

Reception Location - Erie Street Market-Civic Center Promenade
Well, as stated above, the night tured out great. My husband was complaining about a light (bright spotlight type of light) being on and no one could seem to figure it out. That was the biggest complaint we had. Also, the room is VERY large so music could easily ehco if the equiptment is not set up properly. I don't recall having any problems with the sound though.

Caterers - Chef Robert Rosencrantz
My parents got calls from their friends for days after the wedding complimenting the food. It was great!

Cake Creator - Cake Arts Supply
I cannot recommend Cake Arts. My cake looked nothing like the picture I sent them and one of the flavors was wrong. The cake was set up so you could see the cardboard between the layers which should be sealed with icing. I was also supposed to have a swiss dot pattern on the cake (which I personally spoke with Dorothy the week before about) and all it had was some slopped on icing with dents from the rain hitting the icing. They were also supposed to put the flowers on the cake and they failed to do that, so my DOC, with no reference picture, put them on herself. My mom called to complain and spoke to Dorothy's daughter who informed he that her daughter was the one who set up the cake and she had never done it before. Nice! No apology and no call from Dorothy to apologize or anything. Total disappointment!

Florist - Blossom Designs
Shelly has good quality flowers, but she didn't listen to what I wanted. I sent her pictures and she told me I sent her a pic of red me they looked pink! She was able to change the order and get me the pink I wanted, but my mom had to call and plead with her. After telling her I want yellow lillies with orange, pink, and purple accents, I ended up with orange lilies. It's not the end of the world, but yellow was the main color. I was disappointed with that too. Emery's did my centerpieces...see review below.

Photographer - Sarah J. Guess
Sarah and her assistant were awesome! By the end of the night I felt Sarah was a new friend. She does amazing work and I couldn't recommend her enough!

Videographer - Full Zoom Productions
I am still waiting for my DVD with the wedding footage, but they were there recording everything from our vows to the drunken dancing that happened later in the evening. They put together our photo montage and played it during the reception. It was a big hit, so hopefully the video is just as good!

Disc Jockey - Takin Care of Business
This company is owned by Chef Bob's wife. She was supposed to be our DJ that night, but without explaination, she wasn't. It wasn't a big deal because our DJ played all of our songs and kept people on the dance floor.

Transportation - Birmingham Limo
Bob was out limo driver and he was awesome! We had 2 bottles of champagne included in our package and he poured it as soon as we were about to step into the limo. I highly recommend Birmingham!

Invitations - Simple Elegance
Jenny was awesome to work with. I designed my invites myself but couldn't find the means to put the pocketfolds together at a reasonable price. She was able to do that for me. She sent me proofs until the invites were perfect. She does great work!

Rental Company - American Rent All
They came and said up the chairs and tents when they were supposed to so I have no complaints

Jeweler - Zales
They cracked my e-ring while it was being resized. I did not notice it was cracked until I was looking for bands and a guy at another jewelry stored showed me the crack. We took it in to have it fixed and when they returned it to me, a diamond on the side was crooked. This was unacceptable. I sent my ring back in and they called me to tell me they couldn't do anything and it needed to be replaced. I have a newer ring with better quality diamonds, but I probably wouldn't buy anything else there.

Tuxedos - President Tuxedo
Men looked great, prices were great!

My Dress - Highlight Studio
I tried on a Maggie Soterro dress in Monroe, Michigan and thought it might be the one. A few weeks later, while back in NYC, I found out about a place that sells the dresses for cheap. I went and bought it for almost $200 less. Though her English is not the best, Carol is great to work with and calls you constantly to give you updates on the status of your dress.

Bridesmaid Dresses - House of Brides
We were able to order the last minute dresses from here and they came in early and in perfect condition. They also saved my girls some money which was great!

Hair Stylist - Salon Hazelton
The salon is laid out kinda funny and the place is pretty small. They did a great job on my hair but I think they are on the pricier side.

Makeup Artist - Missy Bevier
Missy is a friend of my SIL and was "hired" to do my makeup last minute. She has the warmest heart and is great to work with. She did makeup for 3 of my BM and they all looked HOT! She'll give you what you want and her makeup lasts...well at least until you get cake in your eyes! Contact me if you want her info. She is good and affordable and will come to your location!

Wedding Coordinator - Melissa Lohr-My Beautiful Memory
Melissa was the shining star of the day. As mentioned above she was able to set up my ceremony site last minute without a single sign of worry. She also qued us all the way through the reception when we couldn't hear the DJ and made sure the Bride and Groom and all of their family members were happy. After the wedding she stayed and removed and counted all of the chair covers and everything else that we left lying around! She literally worked her butt off! I honestly don't know what we would've dome without her! She is a lifesaver! I defiantely recommend her to anyone.

Honeymoon Destination - Royal Decameron Beach Resort and Casino
Beautiful resort, beautiful country. For a honeymoon I would probably recommend an adults only resort. We had our room changed because of loud kids in the room above us, but they were just everywhere. The adult only pool was our saving grace. The jungle boat tour was the highlight of our trip. We were able to feed wild monkeys from our was CRAZY!

Other Vendor - Emery's
I went to Emery's a little over a month before the wedding, stressed out about my centerpieces. The owner (Ken, I think) was able to give me ideas and gave us what we wanted at a great price. The one disappointing thing was the quality of the rose petals he gave us. They were browning on the edges and shriviling up. He charged us a lot for them too which I didn't quite understand...

Other Vendor - Hook My Wedding Up
I was desperate to find affordable chair covers and I was excited once I did. The one thing I didn't know is that Kim, the business owner is the biggest you know what on this earth. She ALWAYS had an exccuse for everything. Though this wasn't a big deal, when you arder a sample, you expect the product you order to be the same, right? Not in this case. The sashes for the chair covers we ordered were not the same color of the sample we ordered. Her excuse: "we change the colors so much it might not always be the same." BS!!!! We ordered those samples only a few months before and you changed the color??? We did get or chaircovers, but this lady is just very unpleasant, and a liar!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Ceremony Location - Cedar Creek Church
Grade: A+

The Church was absolutely beautiful! The church staff is amazing and made things so easy for us. It really made the process more enjoyable. The church's wedding coordinator was amazing. She made things extremely simple on all of us girls and everything ran smoothly. Though at one point she asked me if I wanted a muffin or some triskets. I said triskets would be nice thinking she was offering me something to snack on. I hadn't realized that we had forgotten bread for communion and that's what she was asking about. So low and behold Jon and I stood at the alter trying to quietly 'CRUNCH' triskets during communion. Neither one of us could help but laugh. The lighting and sound was wonderful (Thanks Matt!) and the chapel looked exactly as I had dreamed it would.

Officiant - Pastor Ed Bellner
Grade: A+

Ed has been there through so much of our relationship. He's funny, caring, and compassionate. He was wonderful to work with and I don't think we could have found a better match for us. He wrote a beautiful ceremony that fit us to the tee and claimed he had worked harder on our vows than any others he had written. We had a lot of fun with Ed! I'm so thankful he was there for us it was an honor to have him officiate our ceremony.

Reception Location - Civic Center Promenade
Room Rating: A

Jon and I fell in love with this location the moment we saw it. The room was exactly what we were looking for. It was plenty large enough to hold our group and fit the style of our wedding perfectly.

WARNING: This venue requires special attention in the sound department. If you plan on using this space let your DJ know about your concerns so that he or she can make sure that they make needed adjustments. (more in DJ review)

Hall Manager: F

Connie Huffman was an absolute nightmare to work with! And believe me I tried time and time again to give her the benefit of a doubt. She was rude, cold, dishonest, and completely unsympathetic to everything we went through. She refused to listen to any of my concerns and failed to take any responsibility for scheduling conflicts. I called her the week before hand to see when we could come in to decorate, only to have her inform me that she had permitted COT Environmental Services to hold their frog town fair in the civic center from 9am to 1pm the day of my wedding! And then she proceeded to treat me like an idiot because I was upset. I demanded something be done to make a mends for what she had but me through and I refused to pay the rental cost for the hall. After 20 min. of listening to her attempts to dodge the subject I think she knocked an additional $500 off the bar. Which was not worth the fact that I spent the Thursday before the wedding having to pull off to the side of the road several times to puke, because the stress she was putting me through was making me physically sick. On top of everything she had the gaul to show up at our reception and tell me 'see you can't hear the music...' and arrogantly ramble on about her being right! I'm not a violent person in the least but I have never in my life wanted to pummel anyone as badly as I did in that moment listening to that 70 year old woman talk down to me like that. She also promised added security and that no concert goers would be permitted on our side of the building; which never happened. The gross bathrooms we were forced to use due to the concert were mildly cleaned but not repainted as she promised they'd be. She's one of Carty's henchmen as far as I'm concerned and will not hesitate to step on anyone if something deemed by the city as more important happens to fall on your day. I honestly don't know how this women can sleep at night. I'm sure I sound like bridezilla but I really had trouble not bringing my issues with her to light. That and it feels incredible to vent.

Caterers - Event Professionals, aka Chef Bob
Grade: A+++++, I don't think I could put enough pluses behind this grade! <

Chef Bob saved my wedding day! No Joke.

He went above and beyond anything that I could ever have expected a caterer to do. He's gained my trust, confidence, and recommendation for a lifetime. When things got bad the week before the wedding he stepped up and hired added staff to set up and decorate the hall for us at no added cost! Which I must add included hanging a chandelier, placing favors, and assembling all 35 floral centerpieces! He made me feel at ease during an extremely stressful time. All while catering to two large wedding receptions that evening!

And The food? The food was incredible! Everyone at the reception and after raved about it! Chef Bob was creative and helped us put together a unique menu that was perfect for our summer wedding. He even put together a wonderful vegetarian option for us that left several of our vegetarian guests raving about it and thanking us for thinking of them.

If you haven't picked a cater yet I can guaranty 3 things with Chef Bob: 1 - food will be amazing 2 - you can count on his service and staff 3 - Chef Bob will do anything in his power to insure you have the wedding of your dreams!

If by some strange chance you're reading this Bob, we cannot thank you enough!

Cake Creator - The Bake Shop
Grade: A

Kristy was wonderful to work with. She's one of the nicest people I had the opportunity to meet in this process. The cake tasted amazing and her prices really can't be beat in this area. It's well worth the drive to Fayette to meet with her. The only reason I didn't give her a higher rating is because I'm a designer and had too high of expectations for the graphic elements of the cake. The cake was still very beautiful and I'm sure I was the only one remotely disappointed in the way it turned out. I highly recommend Kristy! Her lemon cake with raspberry filling will be a "birthday must have" for years to come. Sadly it was everyone else's favorite at the wedding too so I didn't get a piece of it at the wedding.

Florist - The Flower Market
Grade: B

The flowers turned out ok and the prices were very reasonable. Most of the flowers I fell in love with during our two year engagement were out of season in August but there was nothing they could do about that. They weren't the best but for the money they were a wonderful budget florist.

Photographer - Sarah J Photography
Grade: A++

Sarah and Mandy were amazing. They made us all feel relaxed and made things fun for us. They really went above and beyond the call of duty. Mandy even poured us champagne! A few times through out the night they even helped me hunt people down and manage the DJ. Everyone loved our wedding pictures! I'm so glad we chose to work with Sarah! I was absolutely blown away by these two! My youngest niece was a very unhappy camper most of the day but they still managed to get a ton of amazing shots of her. With the exception of a few shots you'd never guess she was upset! Thank you both so much you were incredible!

Disc Jockey - Larry's Jukebox
Grade: D

My cousin Larry has DJed a number of our family weddings and has done a great job so we hired him to DJ our reception. A month before the wedding he informed me that he wouldn't be able to do it because he had to go out of town and that his partner would be DJing our reception. He reassured me that his business partner would do equally as well as he would and with all the other stress we were under, I just trusted that he was right. I gave the partner very detailed instructions as to what type of music to play, not to play, as well as special dances and songs we needed throughout the night. I swear the guy never looked at our sheet. He got our entrance song wrong on top of saying our last name incorrectly. Which he continued to do for the rest of the night even after being corrected several times. His equipment wasn't set up well enough to accommodate the room so most of our guests couldn't hear anything. I felt like I spent most of the night trying to manage the DJ because he was incapable of keeping anything going. Very few people even danced because of the music selections he made. I can honestly say that he was the worst DJ I had ever encountered.

Musicians - Millenius Strings
Grade: A

Wonderful! My husband composed the song I walked down the aisle to. But he didn't get them the sheet music until two days before the wedding and they still played it perfectly. They were extremely reasonably priced as well. To save money we went with the trio instead of the quartet (which basically meant we had one violin instead of two)

Transportation - Family Friend
Grade: A+++

1964 Candy Apple Red Convertible Chevelle! It beat a limo any day. Thanks Pete!

Invitations - DIY
Grade: A

I designed the invitations, maps, and response cards. Ordered gatefold jackets and envelopes from Invitation Paper and printed the invitation and inserts through my wholesaler.

I ordered all the ribbon we used in wedding projects, including girls sashes from JKM Ribbon. Very reasonably priced, excellent quality. I saved over $100 buying their ribbon verses the midori satin ribbon at Romantic Flowers and JKM's ribbon was just as nice.

I was very happy with the results. All in all I think they ended up costing about $2.50 an invite.

Rental Company - Meredith Party Rentals
Grade: A

We rented silver charger plates through them. They let us pick them up a day early and were easy to work with. We didn't like that you had to return them clean though, it would have been nice if they provided this service. Even if you had to pay more for them to do it.

Tuxedos - MW Tux
Grade: A

Everyone's tux fit except for the jr. groomsmen and they got a new jacket in for him in time. Over all went well.

My Dress - I Do Too Bridal in Plymouth, MI &
Grade: A+++++ / A+

I Do Too Bridal in Plymouth, MI was wonderful. So many bridal shops are rude to brides that aren't able or willing to spend a small fortune on a dress they'll only wear once. I Do Too treated you like royalty. I've since gone up there to shop with friends and they've been just as helpful. I fell in love with my Casablanca 1827 dress there and planned to purchase the dress from them until I found it new, in stock, in the right size, and color I needed for half the price online. I ended up buying my dress from I was very happy with the dress and it arrived in less than two weeks. I just felt bad not ordering from I Do Too.


I Do Too Bridal
Best Bridal Prices

Bridesmaid Dresses - Ann Taylor Celebrations
Grade: A+++

100% Silk dresses for $79.99 can't really beat that. I think the girls were thankful. :) We ordered them offline and they all came in quickly and with garment bags. We ordered the smallest size Ann Taylor carried and had it rebuilt for my 9 year old niece (which was on clearance for $29.99 at that point.) Some of the girls had trouble with their alterations, hence the reason why my sister's dress was so much shorter than the other girls. But everything worked out in the end.

Hair Stylist - Amy at Shamas Perrysburg
Grade: A+++

I had an archive of pictures I had collected and not a clue what I actually wanted. Amy was able to combine ideas for my pictures and run with it. I was extremely happy with the results. She truly has bridal hair down to art form. My hair held all night even after a drive down 795 in a convertible. She was extremely sweet and worked to fix any concerns I had along the way. Including almost redoing it because I wanted more texture than we were achieving with my insane, never wanting to hold curl, hair. Everyone complemented on how much they loved my hair all night. Amy was more expensive than many of the other options in the area but in my opinion she was worth every penny!

Makeup Artist - Shannon at Shamas Perrysburg
Grade: A+++

Shannon was amazing. She did a fabulous job with my makeup and never once tried to talk me out of the dramatic look I was going for. I couldn't have been happier. I searched high and low for airbrush and couldn't find it in Toledo. The makeup Shannon used paired with My Laura Geller's Welcome Matte Primer lasted all night with minor touch ups.

Wedding Coordinator - Didn't have one
Knottie LisaNowSpitnale told me on her wedding day that I needed a day of coordinator. So not yet having hired one my mom and I agreed we should. Unfortunately my mother-in-law talked me out of it. I cannot stress how much I wish we would have had one. If you haven't hired one yourself I'd highly recommend finding room in your budget to do so. Your wedding will run smoother and be far less stressful on you and your fiancé.

Honeymoon Destination - The Vallarta Palace
Grade: A+

The Palace was amazing. The service was wonderful especially when you tipped. Every room has a large walk in shower, Jacuzzi, and well stocked mini bar. Almost all rooms have ocean views. The pools were amazing and the poolside service was even better. The restaurants were all very good; though my husband and I went through salt withdraw by the end of the week. Proof of how salty American food really is. We swam with the dolphins at Sea Life Park and did the Rhythm of the Night dinner. On our last full day there we went into town and bought souvenirs and took pictures of the art on the boardwalk. We had a great time in Mexico until 2am on the morning of our departure. I woke up feeling like I was going to die. [Whole Mexican stomach thing; and no I didn't drink the water] By the end of our 16 hours of traveling I almost wished I were dead, lol. I went through all three airports in a wheelchair because I didn't have the strength to walk but a few feet. It's funny how quickly you get through customs and security when you're in a wheelchair though. The flight from Puerto Vallarta to Phoenix felt like the longest flight I've ever been on in my entire life. I didn't think we'd ever get on the ground. Luckily the staff in Phoenix gave us the last row of the plane to ourselves. So I used my husband's lap as a pillow, curled up in the two seats I had graciously been provided, and slept the entire way home. I was just thankful it happened at the end of the honeymoon and not the beginning of it.

If you plan to honeymoon in Puerto Vallarta I recommend finding a hotel in Nuevo Vallarta [new Vallarta]. The hotels are all fairly new in this part of the city and It really made the difference. Also the Rhythm of the Night is a must! Vallarta Adventures does it and it was one of the most romantic things we had ever done. You depart by boat and are treated to drinks and snacks as you cruise the Vallarta coastline and Sierra Madras Mountains. As the sun sets you arrive on a part of the mainland that feels like a deserted island. There's no electricity to that area so everything is lit by candlelight and torches. They put on a show depicting a Pre-Hispanic wedding and then serve an amazing dinner complete with live music [non-cheesy mariachi band]. On the way back the host of the boat taught everyone how to salsa. It was a great way to spend the evening and the best meal we had all week!

Other Vendor - Wedding Night Accommodations – Belamere Suites in Perrysburg
Grade: A++++

INCREDIBLE! We enjoyed our stay so much! We stayed in the standard room on our wedding night and the presidential suite the next night it was wonderful. We've already talked about going back. I'd highly recommend the presidential suite however, I'd have to agree with the lady who helped us book the rooms, you won't have time or energy to fully enjoy the presidential suite on your wedding night.