- Your wedding date – November 19 2011
- City you live in – Coquitlam
- Ceremony venue – Swaneset
- Officiant – Tina Stanley (READ BELOW FOR WARNING!!!)
- Reception venue – Swaneset
- Caterer – Swaneset
- Coordinator – Chelsea Rae
- Videographer – my sister
- DJ/Band – Maximum Beat DJ
- Florist – Maple Ridge Florist
- Cake – Anna Belisario
- Dress – Lisa’s Bridal
- Shoes – Aldo
- Bridesmaid or Best Man Dress – Ebay
- Invitations – Papercircle
Tina Stanley, Marriage Commissioner:
If what I’ve written below is tl;dr for you, long story short: HIRE ANYONE BUT THIS WOMAN. She is a flake who will only completely ruin any grace and tempo your ceremony is SUPPOSED to have. And she’ll sound almost drunk as she skips words and mispronounces your names throughout.
The long version:
We chose Tina for two reasons: she was the closest to our wedding venue, and we saw her do a friend’s wedding that ran smoothly enough. Apparently though, Tina is very hit and miss with her service.
First, she offers an extra charge for what she claims to spend hours (minimum 6 she says) in custom building a ceremony for you, but what she really does is email you a zip folder of snippets she’s used in the past and other random templates (bible passages, poems, etc) and has you enter in your own names wherever it says “bride” and “groom”. She asks you to select what you like for each section (welcoming remarks, wedding vows, ring ceremony, pronouncement) and basically makes one or two adjustments for the “repeat after me” stuff (like where to put the pauses). It was obvious that I was the one putting in the 6 hours custom building my own. I’m not sure I paid for any real extra service there, but this is a minor detail in the other issues we had with Tina.
The consultation was fine, we went to her house and she presented herself very well, a professional woman who knows how to carry herself. She explained that she is a lawyer and spoke very well. She asked considerate questions like what colours the wedding was so she could compliment them in her outfit on the day of, and clarifying exactly how to pronounce both of our names. Unfortunately, both of these things she conveniently forgot leading up to the day, even though I saw her write them down in her portfolio.
The kicker came when just over a week before the wedding, Tina emailed me saying her husband had surprised her with a trip to Cabo for their anniversary and she was ditching out on our rehearsal but would be back for the wedding. I was enraged and dumbfounded. She tried to play it like she was doing us a favour, saying that we at least save the sixty-something dollar cost of the rehearsal. But I didn’t care about cost – I just wanted my ceremony to NOT be a trainwreck. How was I to know how things were supposed to go? Who walks where? How will the script that ‘I’ wrote sound? To rub salt in the wound, she also mentioned that I was to send the ceremony script to our coordinator at swaneset and have her do her best with helping us at the rehearsal, when Tina easily could have taken a smidgeon of effort and sent it herself, in an attempt to make some small reparation for bailing on us.
I was furious, and terrified for the ceremony that our commissioner was now going to simply “wing it”, but there was nothing I could do: she had our marriage license in her possession, and it was far too short of notice to interview other commissioners to find someone else we liked.
Then the day of the wedding came. Tina stumbled through and misread entire sentences, mispronounced my name throughout the ceremony (even with both my husband and I correcting her when repeating after her), and even mumbled my husband’s name at the end! She also corrected us with who should be getting up or sitting at the license signing, as people are all watching us. She was running through it like it should have been a rehearsal, making us look like idiots who can’t remember simple directions.
In all, Tina was a complete waste of our one special day, and I regret deeply choosing her as our commissioner. If you want peace of mind, choose anyone else!