- 2 years ago
- Wedding: October 2017
Hello, everyone! I don’t write on here much and I’m not sure if I put this in the right category, but I thought I might share my story for anyone who feels like reading it. Maybe it will help some brides to be prepare for what can happen so that they can avoid the heartache I’ve had to endure, as well as possibly encourage those who might know anything about legal stuff to give me some advice as of what I can do.
So, I’ll begin with the wedding. For those who would like to read only about the rings, I will put an asterisk where I begin talking about that experience.
Because I do living history I decided to plan a Victorian themed wedding a year and a half ago to take place this October. It took a tremendous amount of online shopping, sewing and reaching out to literally every vendor I could find in order to put together the type of wedding that I wanted. It ended up looking pretty nice, but if I could do it all over again I would just have a simple wedding. For how much work went into it I can’t say it was worth it. Literally everything had to be custom and that means either money or time.
Anyway, I decided to do my own flowers in order to save some money since everything had cost me a fortune. I am a custodian so I don’t really make a whole lot to begin with, and my fiance at the time was cooking and delivering mail to earn money to help us save up. Finally, the week of the wedding arrives. The flowers that I ordered from FiftyFlowers.com came two days before the wedding and they looked amazing! However, it was just my mom (who I have a very strained relationship with due to us not having anything in common) and I to do them. My aunt stopped by for a couple hours to help, but other than that it was just us. I still had to make some alterations to my gown the night before we left to drive to where my wedding was being held in a separate town, and so I wasn’t really able to help her much other than giving her instructions and approving her work. Luckily she had experience arranging flowers.
Well, we were up ALL night working on wedding stuff and packing. Neither one of us got even a minute of rest. I had to leave first thing in the morning to make it to a nail and lash extension appointment, and my mom was supposed to follow soon after. She had made an appointment to get her nails done too, so that we could get them done at the same time. I had to drive very carefully because the back of my car was full of vases and urns filled with water to keep the flowers alive. We had to set down a tarp to keep my interior from getting soaked. When I arrived at the salon I was made to wait 45 minutes, but I just sat on my phone and read articles while the lady who was supposed to apply my extensions finished with another client.
She eventually got me in and it was a pleasant enough appointment, but once they were done my eyelids felt heavy and they were not comfortable to wear. It felt like I could barely keep my eyes open with them on. I would later find out that these were cheap extensions and that nicer ones feel real. Sigh.
Then it was time for my nail appointment. I had never had acrylics done and I wanted to have nice looking nails for my wedding, so I decided to go ahead and get those. Halfway through my appointment my mom shows up and speaks with the salon owner, who informs her that the appointment was actually an hour prior and that she had been late, so they couldn’t get her in until half an hour from then. So, as she typically does when things don’t go her way, she huffed and went to go sit down and ended up waiting about 20 minutes before she got up and stormed out. My nails still weren’t done so I had to apologize to the girl who was doing them and once she was through she let me know that I had to find out where my mom was if she wanted hers done because if she didn’t start right then and there there wouldn’t be enough time to make all of her appointments.
So, figuring she was outside smoking or something, I told them to hang on and went outside to look for her. Her car was gone. I called her and she immediately started screaming at me while I stood outside of the salon and didn’t let me say anything. When there was finally a lull in her screaming I asked her what was wrong and she tore into me, telling me that I made her feel like my “bitch”, that she was my slave, that I was ungrateful for all that she’d been doing, that I showed more affection to everyone else but her. Then when I began crying (which you are not supposed to do after getting lash extensions done) she mocked me and said “who cares, that’s what you tell me when I cry”. Which is not true, by the way. :\
She basically took all of her frustrations out on me, the day before my wedding.
So I cried through my entire rehearsal and I cried through my entire rehearsal dinner. Yay.
The only good thing about the entire day was that I was so exhausted from crying that I ended up being able to fall asleep at a decent time, which was a concern of mine leading up to the wedding because I already have a hard time sleeping even when I have nothing going on.
So, the day of the wedding comes, and everything is going smoothly so far. The stylist shows up on time, friends and family come early to set up. Unfortunately I am not able to be around much to give instructions, but I give them a basic outline of what I want and where everything goes and then I head to the bridal room to get ready.
Hair and makeup take a little longer than I expected and the friend who’s pressing my dress and veil is moving really slow. I don’t have time to help my one bridesmaid into her outfit, which is kind of an issue because it’s a historically accurate gown with a hoopskirt and a matching headdress and she doesn’t do living history. Just when I am about to slip into my gown I realize that no one had brought me my bouquet and I ask someone about it. They go out to the kitchen to ask the caterer about it (who is taking care of the cake, food, and bouquets) and no one is there. So, I call her.
“Hey! What can I do for you?”
“I was just wondering when you think you might be here.”
She thought the wedding was NEXT weekend.
This was fifteen minutes before I was supposed to walk down the aisle, by the way.
I didn’t cry, though. I must have gotten it all out of me the day before. I am so grateful I didn’t cry all of that makeup off my face. I did almost pass out, however. That may have partially been due to the corset I was wearing. My mom took the phone and spoke to the caterer for me. Apparently a lot went on behind the scenes that I didn’t see after this. My friend who had sewn the bridesmaid gown got one of the centerpieces that my mom put together and wrapped a ribbon around it. She also did this for my bridesmaid. My fiance sent everyone out that he could to buy plastic forks and knives, plates, cake and Olive Garden, since they were the only ones in town who could come up with something at such short notice.
I didn’t even know I was going to have a bouquet until I was handed the centerpiece as I was leaving the room to walk. I was so relieved when I realized I would have something to hold… it wasn’t the bouquet I wanted, but it was something.
The ceremony went well, at least.
We leave immediately for photos at a nearby mansion that I’d paid to use for an hour, and when we returned for dinner we got to sit down to a lukewarm meal of overcooked pasta, sausage and salad with plastic utensils. I know that I sound like an ungrateful whiner right now, and believe me, I am SO grateful that my now husband took initiative and did all of that stuff. He seriously saved the day. I didn’t even think that we were going to have any food to serve. However, it is really difficult to not be upset about it when I spent literally months carefully planning a historically accurate menu, printed out beautiful custom menus and had everything planned right down to the garnish.
Speaking of which, the caterer was also supposed to handle custom appetizers for cocktail hour as well as refreshments, so luckily we had purchased some vintage looking sodas as well as some fancy cookies, mixed nuts and other things for people to snack on while waiting for us to return from the photoshoot. If we hadn’t thought to do that in order to save money my guests would have had nothing at all and I was too busy getting ready to know any better.
Then it was time for cake cutting. Instead of my gorgeous two tier white cake with buttercream roses, I got a Costco sheet cake. This is probably what I am most unhappy about because I will never get the opportunity to cut a wedding cake ever again.
At least I had a cake at all, I thought…
So, fast forward to the honeymoon. Day of, we wake up before the sun to make our flight. When it’s time to board, a voice on the intercom announces that there are technical issues and that it will be a 7 hour wait. We call the car rental company as well as the B&B to let them know we’ll be late. Car rental company says it’s fine, but the B&B isn’t picking up. We try several more times throughout the course of the day, but still no answer. Finally, it’s time to board the plane. Of course, we are not seated next to each other for any of the flights. When we arrive at the Richmond, VA airport we head over to the Budget counter to pick up our car and because it’s now 10 at night they are about to close. A very rude woman at the desk informs us that she’s given away our car and that there are no more cars at any other local car rental company. My husband has a bit of a temper sometimes and becomes very upset, so I look up some local companies to call around just to be sure. One of them says that they have some cars and that I can pay for it over the phone, so I reserve one of the more inexpensive ones and they give me a confirmation number. I make my way to the desk for this other company and they tell me the same thing that the other desk lady told me. Why did they say they had cars when they didn’t? So then I had to call back and cancel the reservation. I had to wait 5-7 business days to get my money back for it.
The B&B was STILL not answering, so we were stranded in Richmond with no car and no place to sleep, and it was almost midnight by now. I had managed to keep it together until then, but at that point I was pretty much losing hope. My husband spoke to a taxi and it was going to cost $150 just to go where we needed to from the airport, and we still had no place to stay. Luckily my husband once again saved the day by getting us a room at the second place we were going to stay for the other half of the week, and he got us an Uber for only $50.
The rest of the honeymoon was great, thank goodness.
* So, the rings. When I return from the honeymoon I immediately got to work on changing my name, getting my dress preserved, etc. I took my rings into what I thought was the nicest jeweler in town. I needed to have them resized, as well as have a small area beneath the diamond cut out because the original makers of the rings had left the “gallery” filled in. They recommended that I have the makers do the work, and I really respected their honesty about it.
When I left, however, I got a phone call from the owner assuring me that they could do it and that it was no problem. I foolishly returned the next day to hand over my rings and let them do their thing.
Well, the rings only took three days to work on, and I came in shortly after they were done, excited to have them back. The gallery was lopsided and looked sloppy, like they just melted out a bit of metal and sanded around the edges. There were black flash marks on the engagement ring as well. I was a little put off that they didn’t even bother polishing it before giving it back to me. The area they resized on the band looked nice, though. It had been sized down, and although it had seemed like a good idea to size it down to that extent the day I dropped them off and tried on their sizers, when I put the rings on that day my finger turned purple within seconds. They agreed to send the rings back and try to make the gallery look better, as well as polish the black marks and size up the rings.
When I got a call that the rings were in, I refrained from returning for a week or so because I knew it wasn’t going to be good. There was no way that they would be able to fix them. But, I eventually did go in, and when I saw the rings I just started crying because I didn’t know what else to do. The beautiful engraving near where they resized was melted, and the band was wavy. The black marks were gone, but the gallery still looked lopsided. Originally I was grateful that at least the wedding band was okay, but once I took a closer look I noticed that the area where they resized it was waving and the engraving was melted on it, too. Just like the engagement ring.
When it was obvious that I was upset the owner came over and basically explained in a very unsympathetic and aggressive tone that it was the best job I was going to get in town, and that I was just being emotional. Then she asked me “Did you marry a good man?” “Then, that’s all that matters”. How dare she ask me that question? That’s none of her concern. Her concern as a jeweler is to make sure that I’m happy with the product or service that she provides.
She did not offer to help pay for a replacement and said that I should wear the rings because they would “grow on me”. I am seriously blown away by the thoughtlessness and unprofessional conduct of this woman and her business.
I later took the time to look up reviews on her store and there are many that claim that she is a “bulldozer” of a woman, that customer service is very bad and that she is very rude to customers.
After all the awful things that have happened to me over the last year and a half, I have no idea how I ended up handing over my rings to this store when I had no idea how good they were. I usually research everything to death before I leap, but I must have been so burned out from doing that that I just brought them into the nicest place I knew of in town and assumed they would be able to do a good job.
Now I have been married for a month and a half or so, and I have no rings to wear. I do not earn enough money to replace them and probably won’t be able to for a long time.
Again, I know that I sound like an ungrateful whiner. But, when you spend this much time and money trying to make something go the way you want and practically everything goes wrong, it’s really hard to smile. I did manage to enjoy the majority of my wedding and honeymoon in spite of the insane amount of things that went wrong, but I am very sad about not getting the wedding cake I have dreamed of my whole life. And, I am devastated that I do not have any rings to wear, after the amount of toilets I had to scrub and floors I had to vacuum just to have the rings I wanted.
I don’t understand how this woman can get away with ruining my ruins without having to help me replace them. Some people have suggested taking her to small claims court, but the rings were only $1,200 and it’d probably cost more in lawyer’s fees than it would to just buy new ones…
I’m not sure what to do now. Any advice would be great. I doubt that anyone made it through this novel of a rant, but it is my hope that if I do not get some advice for how to proceed, I can at least help to prepare future brides for worst case scenarios. Because I had a lot of them the last month and a half.
Anyway, thanks a lot for reading. 🙂 I appreciate it.