bebina

WEDDING DATE:

Apr 26, 2006

bebina
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White Heather Tea Room
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
I wanted an opportunity to get all of my women supporters together moms, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, nieces, girlfriends, mentors and more so I booked us all for high tea at the White Heather. For less than 1/3 the price per head of some of the more famous local teahouses, and in a much more casual atmosphere, we ate til we fell down, drank from china teacups, and were pampered excessively by the proprietresses (with authentic Scottish accents to go with the authentic Scottish food). The food was amazingly good traditional tea fare with a gourmet twist, everything fresh and local and made on site. They catered to the children among us, soothed stressed parents, provided alternate dishes for ladies with allergies, refilled countless teapots, and basically let us take over half of the restaurant for several hours. It was a wonderful way to relax before our ceremony, and a lovely gift to the wonderful women in my life. Highly recommended, whether you want tea for two or a large party. Book ahead, as reservations book early and the tearoom is not open on holidays.
Services used: Unique Services

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Eiffel Printing and Design
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Brittany at Eiffel Print and Design created custom save the dates for us. Her final product was professional, beautiful and very affordable. She provided envelopes and addressing as well as a lot of assistance with wording and etiquette, and the whole experience was fun, and not the least bit stressful. Even the shape of our save the dates was customized we chose to go with bookmarks, rather than a calendar or fridge magnet, and our friends and family were all delighted. All said thats so YOU! It was wonderful to have completely unique and custom save the dates, in our colours, to match our style and personality. Brittany from Eiffel design, working entirely via phone and email, create our unique and custom wedding invitation packages. They were affordable, too (we discussed budget at the start of the design process). We were able to choose our colours and fonts (with help), and a final surprise design detail was the most delightful: a photograph of our wedding venue was worked into the invitation! Our guests raved about the whole thing, which included: envelopes, invitations, RSVP reply cards, schedule of events, map, and several funky design elements.
Services used: Unique Services

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Blue Nile
 
( 4.0 / 5.0 )
My engagement ring came from Bluenile.com. My husband was able to build a completely custom ring on their website, which arrived exactly as described. It was valued by an appraiser later, for insurance purposes, at more than it originally cost. Its a beautiful ring a single stone in a platinum setting, and I love it. So nice to be able to tell friends and colleagues that my beloved designed it, and selected every element, just for me!
Services used: Jewelry

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On the Fringe Hair Design
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
I asked for a very natural wedding day look, as I dont normally wear any make up at all, and the wonderful women at On The Fringe created a natural but very pretty look for my afternoon wedding. I felt glamorous without being overly made up. They were also able to update my mothers look, so she also felt pretty without too much makeup. My initial consultation and practice run were provided for free, and matched the final wedding day look exactly. The makeup artist asked about my dress and wedding colours, ensured that my makeup matchd my hair and dress, and respected my wishes regarding how much glamour I wanted she also sent me off with touchup makeup to take with me, which I really appreciated as well. All I knew going into my hair consultation was that I wanted a very natural up-do. I left the rest to the hair professionals, and the created an amazing hairstyle that matched my dress, the tone and style of our wedding, and didnt feel too heavy or unnatural for my tomboy self. I asked for a bun, which is a bit of an injoke between my husband and I, and they worked that into the style perfectly. I wanted a minimum of styling product and hairpins, and they obliged that whim too. I was so happy with my final look, and it lasted all day and well into the evening. More importantly, when it came time to undo the hairstyle, it came out without pain or suffering! On the Fringe made me beautiful on my wedding day, and I recommend them to any bride in Victoria they werent put off by my cluelessness, instead helping and advising me to create a perfect look which matched my personality, too.
Services used: Unique Services

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Saxe Point Park
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We opted to pay $35 to book a public park for our wedding ceremony. The park itself is beautiful a huge expanse of green ending in gorgeous blue ocean. There are ocean lookout spots, but we choose a grassy spot overlooking the water for our perfect location. We booked the site via email, paid with a cheque, and thats all we had to do. They dont allow you to mess up the park, which was fine with us (confetti, etc. are not permitted), and there are a few other rules to be aware of before you book. We did have to ask a group of rowdy teenagers to move and turn off their music, but they complied willingly when they were told there was a wedding happening. Our ceremony was beautiful in every way and the sun started to go down over the water as we were ending, so the pictures were magazine-gorgeous too, with boats and the sunset in the background. The venue also has a forested part on one end, for more great photo ops. It was perfectly west-coast in every way, and we were so glad we chose it. We chose it to save money in the beginning, but ultimately, it turned out perfectly.
Services used: Flowers

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Joan Hoffmann
 
( 4.0 / 5.0 )
We chose Joan Hoffman based on a number of recommendations from friends, and she has since married more friends, so we highly recommend her to all local couples. We started with a telephone conversation, and then met in person to go over the ceremony and make decisions about how the ceremony would go, what would be said, which vows to use, etc. On the actual wedding day, Joan arrived early and helped organize the wedding party members, and the ceremony ran smoothly. If I had any complaints, it would be that the ceremony seemed to take forever we asked for short and sweet, with no speeches or sermonizing, and she did quite a long preamble about love and marriage which we couldve done without. When it came time for the rings, my adorable 4 year old niece refused to give them up, and Joan negotiated with her to great success. She also managed the registry signing (both of us, two dads, and a four year old) within the time wed planned. Joan opted not to attend our reception, in the interest of fairness (I cant attend all of them, so I opt to attend none of them, she said.) She gave us a souvenir copy of the vows wed chosen, as well as the registry signed by our family members, to take away, and overall provided us with a wonderful wedding experience.
Services used: Unique Services

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Jennings Florist
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
I searched for a florist for months before my cakeshop recommended Jennings Florists. I was so upset that several local florists told me that my dream wedding flowers were impossible (tulips in april!), that I had low expectations when I met with Jennings third generation owner. I was so pleased not only was he not bound by tradition, he didnt treat me like a kid, ask me where my mother was, or try to bump up my budget (all common events at wedding florists). He accepted my claim to not want to be a twinkly princess type bride, asked first about budget and style desires, and created a sample centerpiece on the spot. When I asked him to scale down, he produced another sample at half the price, and it was lovely. He told me that tulips are in season in April, and in fact could get them from a local producer right here on the Island which he did, to great effect. My wedding was a purple tulip wonderland, and I was thrilled. Ultimately, he did the bridal bouquet, a wreath for the 4 year old to wear on her little blonde head, four poesy bouquets for maids of honor, four boutonnires and five corsages for moms and grandparents. Everything matched, but with unique touches: rosemary (for remembrance) in the dads flowers, for example, and white roses for the 4 year old. He worked tiny photos on ribbons into my bouquet (remembering lost family members), and loaned us vases for centerpieces at minimal cost. Flowers were delivered to our hotel, and the reception flowers were delivered and set up at the reception venue. Overall, we received amazing service for a great price, with wonderful bonuses. Highly recommended. Even my photographers, whove surely seen it all, commented on how absolutely beautiful my flowers were.
Services used: Unique Services

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Focus on Photography
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
Kerri came to my workplace for our initial meeting, bringing me samples of her work to review, and right away I was impressed with her work. I brought samples to that first meeting too I want the opposite of these! I said, and Kerry said that would be no problem at all. She gave us a great rate (compared to other photographers Id contacted), and we were able to purchase our negatives as well, for further savings down the road. We did a combination of black and white and colour photos, mostly candid, and they turned out so well. Both my husband and I are camera shy, and my wedding party are camera hogs, and Kerry and her assistant worked around these issues (as well as the various family feuds that reveal themselves at weddings), in a very professional manner. She got photos of everything I asked for, and a number of things I forgot to ask for, too. She did amazing candid portraits of the important people in my life, and most importantly, my wedding photos tell a story nothing was staged or posed, and thats what I wanted. Two weeks after our wedding took place, Kerry arrived with two huge assembled albums of 4x6 prints, a folder of negatives, and two CDs of digital files for us we reviewed the photos together, decided what would work well as gifts and large prints, and relived the day! Now I have amazing photos, and the negatives to play with, too. Ive since recommended Kerry to a number of friends and colleagues, and all have had nothing but positive things to say about her work. Honestly, my husband I were terrified of the photographs, but Kerry kept it fun and relaxed, and produced very attractive photos too! When I look at them, I remember the little moments of the day, and thats the best thing of all.
Services used: Unique Services

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Swans Suite Hotel - Wild Saffron Bistro
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We used the private function room at Swans Hotel (Victoria) for our reception. The staff did our set-up and take-down as per our instructions (quite a lot of work!), kept the beer and wine flowing during dinner, and served our cake, too. The hotel staff managed our deliveries as well. We had 2 servers plus a supervisor for our 30 guests, so no one was kept waiting. Part of our catering included our choice of two local wines, as well as the opportunity for our guests to indulge in beer-tasting, which all the Dads especially loved. Its a beautiful room wrought iron, exposed brick, and west coast native art, so all we had to do was bring some centerpieces, our cake and favours. We added lots of candles for the table and side tables, and had a table for favours and guest book, which was also decorated. Keeping the dcor minimal kept the costs down and allowed everyone to ooh and ahh over the rooms own beauty. After dinner was served (a choice of salmon or roast chicken with lovely seasonal sides, or a vegetarian option for our veg guests), we cut the cake, said a few words, enjoyed tea and coffee and cake (lots of cake, in some cases), and then sat and visited for several hours, during which the tea and coffee and wine continued to be served. It was a wonderful dinner in an amazing restaurant we couldnt have asked for anything better.
Services used: Unique Services

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Pure Vanilla Bakery & Cafe
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
We sampled cakes around the city, but werent happy until our free tasting at Pure Vanilla bakery. They provided us with 4 4 cakes, fully decorated, to sample, and every flavour was heavenly. In the end, we settled on a lemon cake with cassis filling and white chocolate frosting (no fondant) all of our guests were impressed with the unusual and elegant flavour. I was impressed by Pure Vanillas willingness to customize the flavours (the cake originally had lavender, which my husband didnt like) and the decorations. Our three tier square, blue cake with waves piped onto it may not have made sense to anyone but us, but it was beautiful and exactly what we wanted. The cake was delivered and assembled by a bakery professional, and no one questioned our desire to serve the cake as dessert (which meant much bigger pieces than normal). Pure Vanilla accommodated our need for an alcohol free cake, as well. Highly recommended. Pure Vanilla supplied us with individually wrapped 4 sugar cookies, cut and decorated to look like seashells, and they looked and tasted incredible. They used our ribbon on the bags, to ensure the correct colours were used, and before we ordered the cookies, provided us with lots of free samples! When the sparkly cookies in their pretty bags were laid at each table setting, in blue and lilac and white, it not only made our tables but half the guests did without appetizers, choosing instead to eat cookies before dinner! (Luckily we had extras, so everyone got to take one home).
Services used: Unique Services

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Fort Rodd Hill National Park
 
( 5.0 / 5.0 )
One of our favourite historic sites, Fort Rodd Hill allows families to book picnics on their extensive grounds. This was our rehearsal site, without the rehearsal. We brought a huge picnic and 40 people (we paid for their park entrance in advance), and the park staff brought picnic tables and a tent for us to use. The kids ran around the park, the parents chatted, the younger couples hiked or toured the fortifications everyone had a ball, regardless of their age or tastes. The park has washrooms for public use, and during the summer, sells food ice cream. We were there in April, so we were nearly alone in the entire park. The park has extensive forest trails, a working lighthouse, oceanfront hiking, a number of historic fortifications from various eras, and comfortable picnic areas. The staff was friendly and helpful, providing each guest with a site map and directions to our location. Parking is free. I preferred this casual picnic to a proper rehearsal dinner- everyone was able to relax and the two families got to know one another with no stress. The park setting made that all possible, for the small cost of the entrance fees.
Services used: Unique Services