1YEARANN

WEDDING DATE:

Jun 30, 2007

1YEARANN
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Distinctive Designs Bridal
 
( 4.0 / 5.0 )
I had a particular brand of dress that I was looking for, and was pleased when I found that Distinctive Designs offered the brand, and had a good selection in stock- even when the dress I ended up buying was from a few seasons back! The shop looks like it would be pretty small from the street (just a storefront rowhouse type building) but there is a huge warehouse space in the back with dressing areas. It is not the most elegant, but it did the job. My dress was altered by the in-house seamstress at the Bridal Shop, Distinctive Designs. It wasnt easy to schedule an appointment with the seamstress, and I had to go back for a few appointments within the last week before the wedding, so if you are working during the day up until your wedding, this is not the best option for you. I appreciated that she ended up sewing in bra cups at the last minute to solve the bra problem, but I always thought the hem of the dress looked kind of off.
Services used: Dress & Attire

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AnnTaylor.com
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
I chose Ann Taylor because I knew that the quality would be high, and it would be easy to find a dress and get an appropriate size in a short period of time. I didnt want to wait months for the bridesmaid dresses to arrive, so with Ann Taylor, it took only about a week or a little more. Plus, returns were easy, and no alterations were needed. It was also easy to coordinate accessories, and the dresses looked great!
Services used: Dress & Attire

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( 4.0 / 5.0 )
Reception site: Darcy, the event planner, really helped us to make our reception what we wanted it to be. The banquet room turned out perfectly, and the food was delicious. They had a private room upstairs for the bridal party to come to enjoy appetizers before being announced. The cocktail hour was held outside near the gazebo, and our guests raved about it. There are also some great opportunities for pictures outside at the Inn at Brookeville Farms. My only complaint is that I didnt like the chairs in the banquet room or the chairs that were used for cocktail hour outside, but not a major complaint. Food: Delicious!! We loved all of the food at the Inn at Brookeville Farms! We selected two plated options- the steak and the Cornish hen. Both got great raves from our guests. The crab cake appetizer was especially popular. There was no option for a tasting beforehand, but we did get a $100 credit to use in the restaurant in advance of the wedding. While the restaurant didnt serve identical items to the catering menu, we got a good feel for the food and were thoroughly pleased with the Inn at Brookeville Farms. They also accommodated children with chicken fingers and French fries and vegetarians with a vegetarian entre.
Services used: Wedding Venue

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Celebrated Strings
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
The Celebrated String Quartet was fantastic! They sounded so lovely, and were great to work with to develop a song list. They had great recommendations for songs to use as well. They played during the ceremony and sat near the front of the church, yet I hardly noticed that they were there (other than the wonderful music). They also traveled to the reception site to play for the 1 hour outdoor cocktail hour. I would definitely recommend them!
Services used: Ceremony Music

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Arthur Murray Dance Studio (Bethesda, MD)
 
( 2.0 / 5.0 )
Very pricey, and not very worthwhile. While we did learn a few basic steps, Im not sure that it was worth the large expense. The package came with individual and group classes. We didnt really enjoy the group classes, so we never even finished the group classes from our package. They really try to sell you on more classes while you are there, even sending you to the office of the head salesperson. We had to say over and over that we werent interested in lessons beyond the wedding. I wouldnt recommend Arthur Murray.
Services used: Unique Services

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The Only Olney Flower Shop
 
( 4.0 / 5.0 )
The florists here were easy to work with and had good suggestions for ways to cut costs. By the time I got to wedding flowers, I didnt have much money left in my budget. The florist spent the bulk of the money on beautiful bouquets, and at my request, cut back on the reception centerpieces. He did a good job for the cost. They have a very small shop, so our meetings were a bit chaotic (other customers coming in and out) but we got the job done!
Services used: Unique Services

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Bethesda Marriott
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
This was a great hotel to work with to set up hotel blocks! They gave us a reasonable rate, and plenty of time for out of town guests to call to reserve a room. The hotel is comfortable, clean and elegant, and conveniently located in Bethesda, MD. Our guests were pleased.
Services used: Wedding Venue

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Skytop Lodge
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We chose the Skytop Lodge in the Poconos for our honeymoon, after hearing wonderful reviews, and were thrilled! It is quiet, elegant, and stunning. The grounds are gorgeous, with lots of places to take quiet walks and relax on the back porch on rockers. There are also plenty of daytime and evening activities available if you prefer a more structured experience. We were there over July 4th, and they had a great fireworks display on-site. The food was all included, with lots of options (sit down restaurant, casual deli, or room service all included). We loved the room service meal even more than our fancy sit-down dinner! A great, relaxing honeymoon experience.
Services used: Unique Services

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( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Victoria Stiles was a wonderful find for a makeup artist. We played around with several different makeup looks until selecting one that I felt most comfortable with. We had a trial several months prior to the wedding, and she offered a second trial within 2 weeks of the wedding to finalize choices. She came to us and used MAC products for a great look. She also gave me some of the products she used for makeup touchups throughout the evening.
Services used: Beauty & Health

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Men's Wearhouse
 
( 4.0 / 5.0 )
Mens Wearhouse was fine for our mens attire. The tuxes and accessories came fine, with no problems or missing pieces. The prices were reasonable as well. With several locations in the area, it was easy for those in the wedding party to get their measurements taken and pick up their tux as well.
Services used: Dress & Attire

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Reverend Bruce Jones
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Reverend Bruce Jones was wonderful to work with. He met with us a few times to go over all of the details, help us with our questions, and make sure we had the ceremony exactly as we wanted. He was sick the day of our wedding, but still made our ceremony beautiful. He wasnt able to attend the rehearsal or reception, but we enjoyed working with him thoroughly.
Services used: Unique Services

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( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We loved working with Borrowed Blue Photography! They are not inexpensive, but well worth every penny! From the engagement photo shoot (they came to the location we requested) to the wedding day, they were wonderful and always seemed to disappear into the surroundings. They provided cards for our guests with information about accessing the proofs online, and were easy to meet with to select and finalize our wedding album. We are thrilled with our pictures and the album!
Services used: Photography

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Retrospect
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Retrospect was probably our favorite wedding vendor! They just made the whole wedding experience so much fun! The band leader, Larry Elliott, stopped by our reception site to make sure that there would be sufficient space to set up before we even booked them. On the day of the wedding, they arrived earlier than initially planned to make sure that they could set up and be ready to go before guests entered the banquet room. They are very high energy, and offered a great selection of songs that pleased everyone. They look and sound great. They really made our wedding so much fun!
Services used: Band

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Maggiano's Little Italy - Chevy Chase
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Great rehearsal dinner selection! We had a small rehearsal dinner of about 25 people, and were able to select a quiet, intimate space that accommodated us perfectly! They provided us with a private bartender, and the food was served family style. The food was delicious, and we cant wait to go back sometime. The prices were reasonable, and the service great. They even worked with us to make validated parking for our guests a simple process. I wasnt able to get down to the restaurant ahead of time to pick up parking tickets, so I created something on my own and e-mailed it to the restaurant, and our guests were able to use that for quick, free parking.
Services used: Wedding Venue

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Modern Occasions
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We opted to use a day of wedding coordinator to take care of all of the little details of the wedding. Laura was fantastic! We had two meetings ahead of time to work out the details, and she came through on every request. It was wonderful knowing that someone was there who could handle a conflict or challenging situation. She handled everything we needed, and made sure everything ended up packed in my parents car at the end of the night. All of this for a very reasonable price!
Services used: Wedding Planning