Hi all! Just wanted to share feedback on all of our major vendors. If you have any questions, I'd be happy to answer them.
Venue - Georgetown
Wilshire's / Canewood Golf Course: A+
Everything was great. The food was fabulous. The setup was perfectly done. The service was speedy. The staff was friendly and excited for us. All in all, it went perfectly. And, the price was outstanding. It was inclusive of the tent for the reception, ceremony chairs, linens, service, food (appetizers for cocktail hour, dinner, and late night snack), champagne toast, cutting and serving cake, DJ, etc. We had a consumption bar as well. We priced the same things at a number of venues in Lexington, and the cost at Canewood was at least 30 to 40% less. Even the bar came in under budget in the end.
We did break a cardinal rule of knottie wedding planning, though - we didn't have a detailed contract. Because of that, it meant we didn't have any idea how they would handle changes to the number of people or food (such as adding the snack). And, there are a number of management folks there who can be quite helpful, but pricing is up to the owner, and he's sometimes way too busy and thus nearly impossible to get in touch with.
If you want to use Wilshire's, I can't recommend it highly enough. But, I also recommend getting a contract. In the end it didn't cause us any financial issues, just some extra stress.
Also - I was very detailed and organized in my directions to them on how to set up the tables, etc. I gave them diagrams, sample photos, etc., so that it would be easy for them to set things up without me being present. It worked out really well, and I would highly recommend doing the same to anyone else.
Photography - Louisville
Bella Grace Studios: A+
Josh is the best. He was awesome to work with, and the teasers I've seen so far are amazing. He and his assistant took thousands and thousands of photos, and I have no doubt that they're all top-notch. They got all the photos we specifically requested, and had tons of things they wanted to do to get some great shots. They were really respectful of H being in uniform for the ceremony & didn't ask him to do anything inappropriate (we've been in some military weddings with clueless photogs who asked for WAY weird things). They were also everywhere and nowhere at the same time once the ceremony started - they didn't get in anyone's way, obstruct anyone's view, etc., but the still got every shot.
Videography - Lexington
Bella Blue Studios: A
We had two cameras, both with operators. We opted out of any editing or final video production, due to budget. I'll do the editing myself. They were nice and unobtrusive at the wedding, and still got everything on film!
Cake - Nicholasville
Judy Myers: A
Judy makes awesome cake! I can't WAIT to dig into the top layer that we saved. White chocolate with raspberry filling and buttercream frosting.
She doesn't do anything electronic, though. Her husband checks and answers her email, but if you want to work with Judy, you'll have to call her and go visit to see photos of her work. It's worth the drive (to Nicholasville), though. And, plan at least 90 minutes for a tasting. She's very chatty.
Florist - Lawrenceburg
Lawrenceburg Flower Shop: A+
I had planned to DIY my flowers originally, but decided that was just too much work. After being turned down by most of the major florists in Lexington due to Mother's Day and not even getting return calls from two in Louisville, I heard about this shop from a friend. I gave some pretty specific direction as to what I wanted, and he delivered. We kept things simple due to the budget, and I was pleased.
DJ - Georgetown
Agency Entertainment: A-
They goofed up the entrance songs for the WP, but they did get it right for us. Also, they missed a "MUST PLAY" dedication that we wanted. But, overall, things went really well. The mishaps were ones that WE noticed, but that didn't affect the guests. And, they tolerated H belting out Journey and Bon Jovi over the mic, which earns anyone points toward sainthood.
Attire - Louisville
For my dress, I'd give Rebecca's an A+. We also ordered the BMs dresses from them, and 2 of the 3 were just fine. The third, they ordered the wrong dress but in the right size. However, they worked with the BM directly to find a resolution. (They found an in-store sample in the right fabric/color/designer and had it altered to fit her for free.) So, they get a C for their ordering and an A+ for customer service on the resolution, which all averages to an A in my book.
Hair - Louisville
Angela Priddy (at Bravada on Hurstbourne): A+
Angela has been doing my hair since I moved to Louisville, and I really like her. So, when we got engaged, I asked if she'd be willing to travel to Georgetown to do all the girls' hair (including my mom), and she was! She did a great job! We did a trial about a month before, as well.
Makeup - Louisville
Hope Mitchell: A+
It was gorgeous, easy to wear, lasted all day & night, and looked really natural. If I could afford it, I'd have Hope do my makeup daily! She also did my mom's makeup, and the BMs who wanted theirs done, and everybody was thrilled.
Hotel Block - Georgetown
Hilton Garden Inn: A
Initially, they were REALLY tough to get in touch with, due to several personnel changes. But, once they settled on a sales director, we got the block set up and they were very accommodating for us. They also handed out our OOT bags for no charge to our guests as they checked in. I'd use them again in a heartbeat.
Shuttle Bus - Versailles
The office folks are wonderful. Very nice, organized, easy to deal with, and they have the best prices in Kentucky - by FAR. The bus itself was nice too. And, the driver got the bus from point A to point B safely with no issues. However - he had to be encouraged to actually leave on time in order to get people from the hotel to the wedding. Once there, he parked the bus in the only spot they told him NOT to park in - which put it right in the background for our ceremony. And he did that during our vows.
I would use Wombles again. But I'd have some very specific, pointed conversation with the nice people in the main office about WHO would be driving the bus, the importance of timeliness, and where to park the bus.
DIY & Planning
Mom to J: 2011
Mom to H: 2014
Dresses may be easier to take in than let out, but guest lists are not. -- kate51485