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1/11/14 Vendor Reviews

I don’t post too much here, but vendor reviews were the most helpful for me in planning my wedding, so I wanted to provide a review for others. This will be pretty lengthy, so bear with me! Now, all of the vendors reviewed here are getting good reviews. I am crediting part of this to my philosophy while booking vendors: If it was hard to get in touch with them or they seemed complicated/uptight, I refused to book them. I flat out refused to book with anyone who took more than 3 days to back in touch with me. Wedding planning is hard enough, there is no sense in having it be even more complicated when you can’t get a hold of people!


Phipps Conservatory (Ceremony): A

We were able to book our wedding while Phipps was still hosting its Winter Light show. We were married in the Broderie Room, which was absolutely gorgeous. I did speak with a Phipps employee who said after we booked our wedding, they decided to not book more weddings during the Light Show (we booked over a year out), so we got really lucky! Anytime I had a question, there was a quick reply. The employees were always friendly and helpful. There were chairs & water and cups for our guests, plus we were able to use a microphone and a podium. I originally wanted a spring wedding, so to be able to use Phipps was so nice.


Embassy Suites (Reception): A+

My husband and I are both originally from other states, so 98% of our guests had to travel to PGH for the wedding. Because of all of the out of town guests, we decided to hold our reception at a hotel. The staff at the Embassy Suites is SO friendly and incredibly helpful with anything we needed. Most of our guests arrived on Friday and it was a weekend away for everyone, so it was fantastic to have such a great place for them to stay (Free manager’s reception with alcoholic beverages and snacks in the evening, free continental breakfast which rocked, and a nice bar and restaurant). The wedding coordinator, Linda, is so nice and answered all of my rather numerous questions. The food was great and plentiful, the room looked exactly how I envisioned it, and any need I had-the staff was on top of it. Plus, it is so pretty inside that my husband and I were able to take some pics at the hotel.


The Botanical Emporium: A+

The centerpieces were included in our reception package and we chose to go with Elizabeth at the Botanical. Elizabeth is an eccentric character, but she knows her flowers. I explained to her the basic idea of what I was looking for in centerpieces (lit tree branches) and she was able to go off that idea and come up with something gorgeous. We also decided to do the other wedding flowers through her and my bouquet was drop dead gorgeous. The flowers held up lovely throughout the day/evening.


Cakes By Tammy: A+

Our cake was also provided through our reception package. Seriously, Tammy is the nicest person. I am pretty picky about food (I used to work at a bakery) and I was so pleased with her. Normally, I feel like wedding cakes taste dry/overly sweet and just plain gross. Our cake tasted amazing! We were able to do different flavors for the different tiers at no additional cost and the sample cake sizes are pretty large. I am also in love with her buttercream frosting. We will be ordering our anniversary cake through Tammy next January!


Curt’s Photography/Entertainment Tonight (Photographer/DJ/Photobooth): A+

In all honesty, I sent my husband to a bridal show alone while I had a trip scheduled out of town. (Head’s up: vendors don’t harass men walking around by themselves) and it was he who discovered Curt and Tracy, the DJ. They are brothers who work together, but also do events separately. They have been working as photographers/DJ’s for YEARS in Pittsburgh and know what is up. They were always prompt and professional, and most importantly, I was comfortable with both of them. I Hate being photographed, so this was important to me. Curt was respectful of the photos I specifically wanted (He kept my shot list with him during the day and made sure to get everything I wanted), but mostly we followed his direction because he knows what he is doing. He was also speedy and kept us on time throughout the day! Tracy listened to our wants for the wedding music (Fun, but nothing too risqué) and played appropriate and non-boring wedding music. Truly, I feel like it is a fine line to walk and he did great! He played all of the songs we wanted throughout the reception and I enjoyed every minute of it. We also booked a photobooth through Curt and the photobooth is SO nice. Our guests loved it. The photos just looked nice and clear and we have a photo album of all of the pics. The company also offers a discount for off-season weddings!


Tortorice Limo: A+

Another vendor that my husband found. We went through review after review, spoke to a few companies, and booked Tortorice. The car was clean and our driver was super friendly. Not only was there champagne and cold water, the driver made sure to have tissues and even brought TWO umbrellas (It was a raining in the am). He knew his was around Pittsburgh and there was no crazy-scary driving. It made our day so much easier.


Other vendors:

ShearConvenience (Updo): A+. Kay is so nice and easy to chat with while getting ready. My hair looked great and stayed up the whole night.

Clarissa Boutique (alterations): A

Oakmont Bakery (cookie favors) A+

NashvilleWraps.com: A. If you have a company, you can order through NashvilleWraps. We used them to order bags for favors/out of town bags. Made in the USA and they use recycled material!

Zazzle.com: Our save the dates were personalized Pittsburgh postcards. Loved doing this!


From Etsy:

RunkPockStudios (Wedding Invitations): A+. We had a small wedding and didn’t need to order 100 invitations and I also didn’t want a lot of frills, so it made life a little complicated. Rozena has some gorgeous designs and the speed in which she replies to questions/comments is crazy! I loved our invitations.

RSVPPaperie (Monogrammed PDF cards for Thank You Notes) A.

OneSwellStudio (Invitations/Thank you cards for my bridal shower) A+. Gorgeous. Also, the shop owner lives near PGH, which I love!

TwoPoochPaperie (Personalized Recipe Cards) We used these at various showers to have guests bring me their favorite recipes and I loved them!

SarahMorganBridal (Veil): A+. I wanted a veil with an antique look to it and found it through this shop. Super reasonable prices and I loved my veil.


Just a head’s up for out of town bags: If you contact VisitPittsburgh, they provide free visitor guides for the bags, you just have to go pick them up. We were able to get 25.

Hope this helps the newly engaged! 

Re: 1/11/14 Vendor Reviews

  • Congrats!  We were at Embassy Suites in September and loved it and our OOT guests thought it was great too from the hotel aspect.  We also used Botanical Emporium and thought they were really good too.

    I love that your husband went to the bridal show :)

  • I'm curious why Clarissa Boutique (alterations) just recieved an A.  My dress is getting altered there.  Any words of advice.



  • My dress alterations were super simple (Taking in about 1/2 inch on the sides and hemming about 1-2 inches, plus a bustle). It wasn't that I didn't dislike them, I just wasn't blown away due to the simplicity of what I needed. It was a perfunctory job and I was in and out within a couple of dress fittings. I probably could have taken my dress elsewhere and had the same results. I will say that they were friendly and polite and altered my dress nicely. I feel like if I had spent more time there (either shopping for other items for the day) or needed major alterations, I would have reviewed them higher. For a more in-depth review, I would check with other brides who spent more time there. 

    Seriously, I now think men going to bridal shows alone is kinda of genius, especially if you trust your fiancé! No one bothered him, he was able to walk/explore in peace, and he spent quite a bit of time talking to different photographers. 
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