May 31, 2008
David's Bridal does offer lower cost dresses, but be very careful here - there is a reason these places are cheap (other than cheaper material). Their staff is not well trained at all in customer assistance or professionalism, so if anything goes wrong, be prepared to be very, very stressed. I found exactly what I was looking for at David's Bridal for my bridesmaid dresses (which is why it gets 2 stars), but that is where the fun ended. I had created an account there and they had inputted the style and color of the dress I chose for my bridesmaid dress, and I thought all was well. However, when the girls went to try on the dresses and give their sizes to order, we were told that the dress was discontinued in my color... and I was never notified of this at any point, even though this selection and color was in their database, and it had been no longer than 1 month from the time I had this put into the system to the day my friends went into the stores. I was horrified and didn't know what to do, and the girl helping us just stood there telling us "too bad," when what she should have done was a) get a manager and b) begin calling around to other stores to see if there were any left - which, eventually there were, but we had to call around to all the stores personally to find them which was unbelievably difficult. David's Bridal didn't even offer to help us call around to the stores after they had made this horrible mistake. It was nearly a total nightmare. Be very careful here; I don't see any way of preventing this from happening again to anyone.
Services used: Dress & Attire
Butterfly Cakes is the bakery that the Omni San Francisco exclusively uses. Basically, if you're having your reception at the Omni, you have no choice but to use Butterfly Cakes unless you want to pay a $5 per person fee on top of what your baker charges you for the cake. I gave this 3 stars because the quality of the cake itself was amazing - it was hands down the best wedding cake I've ever tasted! It was dense and moist and absolutely delicious. The problem was that they didn't make the cake look exactly as I wanted (after I had provided a photo of the cake I wanted, they drew it out on a piece of paper, and made notes that should have made it fool-proof to design), and unfortunately there was a very large bubble on the top tier that really ruined the whole thing. My instructions were explicit to them, and they wrote them all down on the order. I wanted rounded edges, but they gave me hard and boxy edges. The focal point of the cake was the ribbon and large, fluffy bow, which I provided for them personally, and even with a photo of how it should look and a promise that copying the photo was no problem at all, they ended up tying a very stupid looking little bow around it that was nothing like what they said they were going to do. Between that and the large bubble that looked like a pimple on the side of my cake, I asked for a partial refund. The cake tasted great, but it was not what I asked for in design.
Services used: Wedding Cake
Lensa Digital Media
Lensa productions is a wonderful company. I am so glad we found them! Their packages are fairly priced and there are no hidden details. Adi worked with me to determine the best package for me and was always honest and professional. On my wedding day, he and his assistant arrived early and were there to film every moment. He is a kind, talented person and his staff is great. When we were approaching the end of our predetermined block of hours, he graciously approached me and asked me if I would like him to stay longer, which I was so appreciative of. The charge for doing this was not bad at all, and I was aware of all of this beforehand - he is a very detailed person. My video arrived and I was absolutely floored by how beautiful it was. I didn't expect to get that quality, as I'd never seen a wedding video so professionally done before. He captured everything that I had hoped he would, he edited it beautifully, and it goes without saying that I needed an entire box of kleenex in get through it. I would recommend Lensa Productions a thousand times over!
Services used: Photography, Videography
Laura Turbow Photography
The quality of Laura's photos is very, very high. She is a very talented photographer. We met with many photographers and looked at their material, but Laura's was by far the best. I had no idea what to expect when the photos came, but they exceeded my expectations by far. These photos are art, plain and simple. If you are going to spend money somewhere, spend it on your photos. My wedding photos are so beautiful that word has gotten out in my charity group and other women are asking me if I'll email them a link to my photos because they heard they were so amazing. Above that, Laura is great to work with. You need to choose a photographer that you're comfortable with on your wedding day, someone who you trust to capture your moments. Laura is definitely that person; she is very detailed and takes care to understand your family and friends before the wedding day. She helped to avoid any awkwardness that could have arisen because of the care she took! She was really, really great.
Services used: Photography
Elizabeth Arden Red Door
I had my makeup and hair done here because I wanted something "special" for my wedding day, but honestly, I should have saved myself the money and done it myself. I'm not that picky of a person when it comes to this, but they did not do a good job. The quality of my own makeup was probably better overall, and I have to say that the hair stylist did not achieve the look I wanted, despite having gone to her for a trial run and bringing in photos of what I did want, and what I didn't want. At the end, I felt it looked a little like prom hair, which is cute but isn't right for your wedding day. I had expected something very special from a place like Elizabeth Arden, and I was really very disappointed. Nice people that work there, but I should have done it all myself.
Services used: Beauty & Health
I had already purchased my dress from Clarissa's 10 years ago for my debutante ball, and the dress quality was exquisite. I wanted to wear my dress again for my wedding, but wanted extensive and very difficult alterations done to it, and Clarissa's did it all for me beautifully. They have a very, very talented staff of seamstresses, and their selection of wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses, and mother of the bride dresses is gorgeous. Not cheap, but gorgeous. When you walk into Clarissa's (make an appointment), you feel like you are the only bride in the world. They give you the attention that makes you feel beautiful and special. I loved going into Clarissa's every time I needed to for a fitting; it was a time I truly felt like a "bride." :) This place has the highest quality in everything that they offer, and a wonderful, wonderful staff.
Services used: Dress & Attire
Saints Peter and Paul Church
This church is absolutely beautiful! It is where Marilyn Monroe and Joe Demagio (sp?) had their wedding photos taken (but they weren't actually married there). It is across the street from Washington Square park, a beautiful patch of greenery which is hard to find in SF, and the inside of it is absolutely majestic. You really don't need any decorations inside the church because it is so beautiful. We had a violinist way up high in the balcony, with a vocalist and the organ, and it was like something out of a movie. If you want to have a ceremony that others cannot rival, this is the place to do it. Of course, you have to be Catholic. :)
Services used: Unique Services
East Bay Flower Co.
Ask for Viki - this place is amazing. Their flowers are beautiful quality (and I mean, BEAUTIFUL) and they work with you to get the exact look you want. I wish you could see my bouquet, it was the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen. They are a pleasure to work with, are very dependable, and their prices are fine. The experience with them went off without a hitch!
Services used: Unique Services