I got married back in August and really wanted to wait a few months to let things settle before posting reviews. My reviews are short, so you can actually get through them. If you have any questions, page me or shoot me an email at jhkh09 at gmail dot com. I don't check the boards much these days so I might miss your page. Bride's dress: VOWS (Newton, MA) Met Expectations: yes Would Recommend: yes Overall Grade: A Vows is basically like a TJMaxx for wedding dresses. I got mine at 1/10th the list price, and couldn't be happier. I would recommend going elsewhere for the "bridey" experience, and to Vows when you want to get a great deal on your dress. I got a 'free' veil, which was nice (I didn't end up using it--my mom made mine). I did some shopping around at the now-closed Yolandas (Waltham, MA), Pricillas of Boston (Boston), The Plumed Serpent (Westport, CT), and Marie's Bridal (Fairfield, CT). Overall good experiences with each, but I didn't want to spend $4k on my dress. Bridesmaids Dresses: www.netbride.com
Met Expectations: yes Would Recommend: yes overall Grade: A Netbride was great. My girls got measured, ordered the style online, and paid $129 including shipping for dresses that were listed as $250+ in various brick-and-mortar shops. Shipping was fast; dresses were due in June and came late April. Tuxes: Men's Warehouse (Alabama, Texas, Brighton MA, Westport CT, West Hartford, CT) Met Expectations: yes Would Recommend: sure Overall Grade: A- My husband already owned a tux, as did one other groomsman and our dads. So we just sent the rest of the guys to their closest MW to get measured, and they picked up tuxes in town. Some of the sleeves were a little long; MW had them altered by the next day. Rehearsal Dinner: Black Eyed Sally's (Hartford, CT) Met Expectations: almost Would Recommend: yes Overall Grade: A- My Texan inlaws wanted something casual, but nice, for the guests that "wasn't stuffy and New England." Black Eyed Sally's was the closest thing we could find in Central Connecticut. They were a little hard to pin down, and frankly, given that my father in law was footing the bill for the bar all night, the drink service could have been better-- they were really focused on the rest of the restaurant. To be fair, it was restaurant week in Hartford...but they had our party on the books for months and could have staffed more appropriately. Food was great, they accommodated our party of 40, and they didn't mind (much) that the ring bearer threw cornbread all over the stage because his mom drank too much (eye roll). If you're looking for something intimate, you won't find it at Black Eyed Sallys, but we had a great time. Ceremony: Venue: Chapel at Trinity College (Hartford, CT) Met Expectations: almost Would Recommend: yes Overall Grade: A- The chapel has a lot of restrictions, which we knew going in, so it's not the place to pick if you want a runner, flower petals, and rice thrown at you
. I found the communication between the Reverend, the Chapel Assistant, and us to be really spotty, and the rehearsal was really unhelpful. That being said, everyone was incredibly wonderful to work with-- it just felt like they don't really do that many weddings and weren't really sure what to do with us! Reception: Venue: 960 Main/Gershon Fox/Marquee Catering (Hartford, CT) Met Expectations: (day of- yes) (planning process- no) Would Recomment: yes, with hesitation Overall Grade: (Day of- A) (planning process- D) Here's the deal. The wedding coordinator(s) at GFox were a pain to deal with from day one. I say coordinator(S) because our first one was let go mid way through the planning process. Our second one was really flakey, would say something over the phone and contradict herself weeks later, and by and large was really unprofessional...for the 7 months I planned my wedding. I felt like there was a 16 year old planning my several-thousand-dollar wedding. Up until the time I walked into the ballroom, I thought there was a 50/50 chance that my wedding wasn't going to happen. Papers didn't get signed, documents were lost, checks weren't cashed, emails were often left unanswered, etc. To be fair, my second coordinator was also getting married on my wedding day, so she was preoccupied in the weeks leading up to my wedding. BUT YOU THINK THEY COULD HAVE FOUND SOMEONE ELSE to take her place. I did not pay her to flake out on my wedding. Ahem. In any case, the night of my wedding, the catering manager [who is NOT involved in the planning process that drove me crazy!], Erik, and his team were absolutely incredible. The night was everything we had expected, and more. Erik and his team were worth the 7 months of headache leading up to the evening, and if you see the facility and fall in love, you can feel comfortable that things will turn out as you envision. I would caution you that Marquee Catering is new, and --at least when I dealt with them-- had minimal experience dealing with all of the clauses that are really important in wedding contracts. I drew up extensive documents that WOULD hold up in court, and they signed them without a problem.