A little late but here's our reviews!
Venue/Catering - Krippendorf Lodge/Elegant Fare - Loved the venue, staff was great. Julie's a tad slow at responding to emails but I know she's really busy. They worked with all of our requests and we had a great menu that fit our budget. They set up all our tables and helped with other decorations. Hubby and I had a little break between photos during cocktail hour and reception entrance so they brought us snacks and drinks without asking They packed everything up at the end of the night and we went home with plenty of extra food. They did lots of little stuff that really helped make everything stress free! Not to brag, but we had the most perfect fall weather! Even though the forecast was good, we still got the patio awning. We weren't considering it at all but the weekend before the wedding we went to the nature center to take a walk. A wedding going on had the awning and it we thought it looked so cozy (and kind of formal) so we took the plunge! Luckily the wedding the date before ours also got it so we split the price. If you're having your wedding there, consider the awning!
Dress - Kotsovos - I went here because I knew they sold Nicole Miller gowns and there was one I wanted to try on. Victoria helped me in my dress and didn't pressure me to try on or buy anything else. I was also worried about being treated differently because I went in by myself (family lives out of state) and I'm a young college student so I didn't want them to think I wasn't serious about dropping $$$$ on a dress. Didn't have any issues with that at all! I knew the dress I tried on was the one so I bought it right then and it arrived about 2 weeks later. I bought it a year before the wedding and they offered to store it for me but I ended up keeping it at home. Brought it in for alterations before the wedding and the staff there took it in a little and added a bustle. Everyone was great! Would definitely recommend them to other brides.
Groom Attire - Folchi's - We checked here first, found something we liked, but went to Men's Wearhouse anyways, just to look. Ended up going back to Folchi's because Men's Wearhouse just has too many options and the we like the small/personalized feel of Folchi's better. The tux prices were the same and we liked Folchi's options more than MW. Staff was helpful, no complaints at all.
Photography - Innovatory
- Joe and Amanda were great! I loved how much stuff their package included and the price for it all (they're recently bumped it up but it's so worth it). They got all the major shots and tons of the behind the scenes pics we were hoping for. They were really go with the flow, especially because instead of doing bridal party shots (we didn't have one), we did a bunch of full family photos. Hubby and I don't look the best in photos but we are so pleased with the wedding pics. So many to choose from. Here's a link to their blog to see a couple pics: http://innovatoryphotography.com/blog/katarina-nate-wedlock/
Cake - Sugar Cupcakery - Wedding cake is so expensive so we went the cupcake route. I think we got so much more for our money. They let us have two tastings because the first one my parents were in town but Hubby wasn't so we did another when Hubby was around. They have so many flavor options and they're SO GOOD. We've gone back to the store multiple times just to get cupcakes for ourselves. In the end we chose: Matcha Green Tea w/ Raspberry Icing, Whiskey Butterscotch, Smores, and Pumpkin w/ Honey Marscarpone Whipped Cream. They were such a hit with the guests! We also got a 8" cake for us to to cut and eat. They set up an adorable display...everyone loved it. FYI, we got the mini size cupcakes which worked out well. I think the larger ones would have been to big. People seems to like the small sample sizes.
Officiant - Steve Means - I basically booked with him because I liked how well his voice carried and his tone when he spoke. Oratory skills were so important to me (has anyone else gone to a wedding that they couldn't hear, even with a mic? Terrible!) so I knew he was perfect. We wanted a super quick ceremony and he was totally fine with us cutting the script down a bunch. There was actually a little snafu in the beginning where he said something that wasn't in the script and it threw us off a bit but it totally broke the ice and got me to stop crying. We were all laughing so it wasn't a big deal at all.
Musicians - Fontainebleau Strings - To be honest I didn't pay attention to the music much since we weren't around but of the bits I could hear at the ceremony and a little at cocktail hour, they were wonderful. Booking/planning with them was very easy and Kelley was great with communication. We originally weren't going to have live music but I made sure a quartet fit in the budget and it was definitely worth it. I think it gave the wedding some class!
Hotel - Holiday Inn Eastgate - Probably one of the nicest HI's I've ever been too. It's nice that it's so close to the venue. The wedding rate was OK, didn't really seem much like a discount. Because we booked so many rooms we got our suite for free AND we got a free shuttle to/from the nature center for our guests so in the end it was worth it.
Florist - Adrian Durban - I crocheted my bouquet and my family did the actual major centerpieces ourselves but we got greenery to encircle the vases. I brought in a picture from the internet and Eileen went into the back and came out with a sample of exactly what I was hoping for. I also ordered garland for the fireplace mantles inside the lodge. The staff set up it nice and quick and everything looked exactly how I wanted. I've heard horror stories about how much florists cost but the greenery was so affordable! Flowers aren't a necessity so maybe consider going this route if you don't think you can afford blooms. Here's what ours looked like: