- 8 years ago
- Wedding: January 2010
I’ve been meaning to write up vendor reviews for a while – life just gets in the way, I guess. Hopefully this will be of some use to Austin bees out there! Let me know if you have any questions!
Ceremony – St. Austin’s Catholic Church. I’m Catholic, my husband is not, and the church was very accommodating to both of us. The wedding coordinator, Pat, is the sweetest woman alive and was a calming presence the day of the wedding. The church itself is beautiful and we had a great experience here. This is now the church we regularly attend.
Reception/Catering – UT Alumni Center. We were looking for a reception location in central Austin, to make things easier for our guests, the majority of whom were from out of town. This was a beautiful venue that didn’t require much in the way of decoration – having windows on three sides of the ballroom did most of that for us! The food by RK Catering was fantastic and we got lots of compliments on it. We were easily able to have the specific wines and beers we wanted, as we weren’t crazy about the house wines. The one annoying thing was that our wedding was passed between four different coordinators from the time we booked the event until the big day. Having a new coordinator less than two months before the wedding stressed me out, but Rebekah was impressive at getting everything together. The RK Group, who handles all events at the Alumni Center, are very professional and have big events like this down pat.
Photographers – Bend the Light Photography out of San Antonio. Jenn and Kaylinn are ridiculously talented; just looking at their portfolio makes that clear. But what is even better is how fantastic they are to work with! A big reason why we chose to work with them was because we just felt comfortable telling them what we had envisioned and they are just fun to be around. Since the wedding, I’ve been impressed at how quickly they put together all our photos! A blog post was up within two weeks, an online gallery of over 500 photos up the week after that, and we just got our DVD of all the photos this weekend, only five weeks after the wedding. Even better, the praise from friends and family for the photos has been overwhelming. You can see some of our photos here: http://www.bendthelightblog.com/chris-veronica-are-married/
DJ – Look No Further Entertainment. At first I just wanted to do an iPod reception, because all of the wedding DJs I’d seen and researched were cheesy and horrible. Once we met with these Ross and Laura, though, I knew we found people who got our taste in music. As soon as we started talking about the kind of music we wanted played – David Bowie, Phoenix, loads of 80s songs – they immediately began making suggestions that showed that they were personalizing it to us, not just working off a usual “wedding playlist.” And the reception music was a hit! Everyone kept complimenting us on the music and the dance floor was packed all night. I barely had a chance for a break, because with each song I just wanted to keep dancing! Afterwards, I saw friends chatting on Facebook about how we had ‘the best DJ ever!’ Most importantly, I found their services to be fair priced and both of them easy to work with. We filled out a detailed info and song recommendation sheet, and they took it from there. Laura called me the week of the wedding to go over details, and she handled everything else. I can’t recommend them enough.
Florist – Allieflower. Allison is a very talented florist and was patient with me and my non-floral brain! She sat me down and went through countless books of flowers until I could figure out what I liked. She was a great resource in helping me figure out what was reasonable within our budget and what was available in January. She went out of her way to pick up vases, didn’t mind when I changed the centerpieces a month before the wedding, and made sure everything was right on the big day. Sometimes I found that contacting her via email was slow, but she was always quick to respond to phone calls. And our flowers were even more gorgeous than I had imagined!
Cake (well, cupcakes) – Sweetish Hill Bakery. – Truly delicious cupcakes and beautifully decorated as well! Leila, who’s in charge of wedding cakes at Sweetish Hill, is laid-back and has a great talent for cake decoration. We had cupcakes for each of our guests, as well as a top layer of cake so we could do a traditional cake cutting. Everything was made fresh, using local and organic ingredients when possible, which I appreciated. What I especially love is that we get a new top layer made for our anniversary! Hooray to non-frozen cake!
Makeup – Faces by Lisa. Lisa was great at listening to what I wanted for makeup, and at the trial she was happy to make any changes. She did a great job giving me the dramatic eye look I wanted, along with smooth foundation that looked natural. Overall, my makeup lasted over twelve hours, even through tears and endless dancing! She also did the makeup for my mom and my mother-in-law, neither of who wear a lot of makeup. They looked beautiful and were happy with the result.
Alterations – Nelda’s Tailors. I was nervous to get my dress altered, as it has a lot of lace in the bodice. The seamstresses at Nelda’s were very professional and the final result looked like my dress had been made for me. They even didn’t mind that my mom make me stand for pictures for a good ten minutes in the middle of the fitting area! I thought their prices were quite reasonable for the quality of the work.
Rehearsal Dinner – We had a rehearsal dinner for about 30 people in their private upstairs dining room. The food was fantastic and very different from your standard Tex-Mex, which worked out great as that’s what we served the next night at our wedding. Cathe, the owner, has clearly hosted tons of rehearsal dinners. She knew exactly what to have on the menu and was careful to make sure we had plenty of vegetarian options. We didn’t have to plan a thing, other than the date! They took care of the food, wine, menus, decorations and setup. I loved it!
After the rehearsal dinner, we also held a welcome reception at Scholz Garten for any guests in town at that point. It was easy to set up; we just had to pay $250 to rent a private room. We ended up buying the first round of pitchers and our guests went from there. A very ‘Austin’ location that was walking distance from the hotel we had a block of rooms at.