Venue – Fairy Tale Manor: A+++  I truly cannot say enough great things about FTM and the staff.  Every step of the way they are soo accommodating and helpful.  It doesn’t matter if you have 5 questions or 50 you are never bothering them.  They went WAY above and beyond for me on multiple occasions because they knew we didn’t have a ton of family in town to help with decorations.  The venue looked spectacular and exceeded every expectation.  They have so many staff that are there for whatever you need we forgot food coloring for blue water so they went to Kroger, Matt button fell off his tux so they got us a sewing kit and I could go on but you get the point. They are a slightly higher price point but you honestly get so much with that price including piece of mind!

Photography – Mcgowan Images: Is there anything higher than an A+++++++?  This was my single best investment in the entire wedding.  Chelsea was a sounding board for me on soo many things related to the wedding (not even photography related) and even a few non-wedding related.  Chelsea and Mack are truly wonderful people who love their clients and do everything in their power to make your day the best it can be.  They helped with timelines,  helped me into my dress and many more things I could name.  We were done earlier than expected so Chelsea suggested they head out and she would give me some additional pages in my album for the difference, who could argue with that!  They just all around went above and beyond, I used them for engagements, boudoir and wedding so far every picture I have seen is stunning.  I even had a sneak peek the morning after my wedding!

DJ – Glenn Roush: A++++  Glenn is amazing!  He listens to all the little details.  I had mentioned I love Linkin Park and wanted to walk down the aisle to a version of My December but it was a little dark.  During dinner all of a sudden I heard a softer version of My December playing and it just put an even bigger smile on my face.  He did a Grease remix towards the end of the night (my favorite movie) and even got a mic out for our Best Man to sing along to every word of Ice, Ice baby.  We had way less guests than expected and the party started to die down a little early so between him, Chelsea and Wendy we did our grand exit and let the 7 or so guests left who weren’t in the bridal party leave and we came back inside and partied with our closest family and friends for another 30 min.  He came to the rehearsal and was really a calming presence and I was soo glad he was there.  All around just a stand up guy, I am actually sad I didn’t think to get a photobooth picture with him.

Officiant – Marty Younkin (love notes): A+++  Marty did amazing.  He really took some time to pay attention to who we were and encouraged us to do things our way even if they weren’t traditional.  He is so experienced that he just makes everything go so smoothly and really makes sure you are comfortable with everything at the rehearsal.  He has the PERFECT amount of seriousness, lovey, and laughter in the ceremony, we got SO many compliments throughout the night from our guests on the ceremony.

Photobooth - Premeire Booth: A They were there early so everything was set up with plenty of time and let me add additional time on last minute.  The attendant was dressed professionally, around and attentive all night.  We had a much smaller wedding than most so anytime we asked for 3 or 4 copies of a picture to be printed he happily obliged.  The camera and printing is fast, the booth is silver and black so it blends in and the props were a blast.  My only complaint is that I am not sure if they explained the scrapbook well enough or not as we had a stack of pictures at the end of the night and only about 12 or so with writing next to them in the book.  Other than the one minor complaint it was by FAR the biggest hit of the night with our guests!

Hair and Makeup – Erin Gobin: A I used Erin for hair and makeup on a total of 6 people including myself.  I also used her for engagements and boudoir photo hair and makeup and she always made sure I loved how I looked.  On the day of she was at the hotel before we were and had a clear plan for how the day should flow.  She had to bring in a different assistant last minute and the assistants work was good but we added one extra girl on and at the end she very loudly to the whole room said “okay who has my check”, I just felt this was a little unnecessary.  Erin even heard one of the girls saying she wasn’t in love with her hair so she offered to redo it.  Overall I loved Erin but not really the assistant.

Florist – Kirsten with Lily Pad Flower Shop: A Kirsten is so wonderful to work with.  She listened to my ideas and helped me find a compromise between my vision and my budget.  She is one of the sweetest ladies and so helpful.  She emailed me about a week before and advised that she got a huge deal on the orchids and was able to order 3 times as many as we originally though and asked if I wanted the extra at no additional cost.  I think most would have just pocketed the extra profit so I was blown away by this. The flowers looked GORGEOUS.  My only minor complaint was once I got to the venue I was told by my coordinator that some peonies were missing because she had gotten 5 bad batches in so she had to use some other white flowers.  I wouldn’t have a problem with this but I wish I would have been called and told in advance when the first few bad batches came in and not told once I arrived at the venue by someone else.  She told the coordinator that she is going to refund me for the peonies I didn’t get so that helps.

Catering – Royal Catering DFW: A+ For what we paid I feel like we got a ton of food that was of really good quality.  We did a pasta station which everyone raved about being delicious and I personally loved the warm crab dip.  They were setting up after we did our pictures and were just waiting for time to pass and I was STARVING and they had no problem with me stealing a small plate from the not even set up food.  They are not your super fancy pants catering but they are definitely solid and what we got from them was great, they also boxed up 16 containers of food and sent it home with us.

Video- Autumn Video: B (I think) I will add more when I actually see the video but so far I would say as long as the video is of decent quality then I am happy.  I had a couple minor communication issues where he took a little longer to get back with me than I would like and didn’t ever confirm a solid time for him to arrive.  He did show up at the hotel to get our first look but then disappeared between the hotel and the venue for a good 45 min in which we were taking more portraits with each other and family that I would have liked on video.  They stayed out of the way, I rarely noticed them there and as long as the video is good then I will be happy especially for the price we paid.

Cake- Candy and Cake Haven: B I LOVED my bridal cake and the cake tasted great and while everyone else thought the grooms cake was amazing it wasn’t quite what I wanted.  I brought in a picture of what I wanted and they assured me many times (I asked on several occasions) if they could replicate it.  They assured me they could and while the cake looked great it definitely wasn’t exactly what I was expecting.

Bartending – Montrail Davis with Last Night Out Bartending: A++++ Montrail was fantastic.  He helped me with cup sizes and quantities, types and amounts of alcohol and was only $25.00 an hour.  He was professional yet personable.  Towards the end of the night he was creating shots for our bridal party and taking pictures with us.  If you need a bartender he is your guy.

Dress – LuLus Bridal: C- I had a pretty good experience with them while shopping for the dress.  At first the consultant kept pulling what she thought I wanted even though it was opposite of the words that came out of my mouth.  After about 10 minutes and a few rejections we got on the right track.  I found my dress and they helped me customize it.  The sample fit and I was working out and losing weight so we ordered 1 size (2 inches) smaller.  The dress came in sooner than expected and was NO WHERE near fitting.  After a few tears and a little freak out we discovered the sample (from 2006) was stretched out 4 inches larger in some areas than the stock measurements so that is why the dress was 4-6 inches from fitting.  I was basically told it was my fault for not getting measured which I should have known better than to just trust the sample but I didn’t.  Becky Fowler ended up fixing it, lesson learned.

Tuxedo- Tuxedo Junction: B+ They would get an A except they sent Matt home with the wrong color shirt (didn’t have him check it before he left the store) and he had to go back on the day of the wedding to get the right color.  They quickly gave him the right color and were very friendly and reasonably priced. They also provided a groomsman with a shirt smaller than his measurements but corrected that as well.

Alterations- Becky Fowler: A++++++ I don’t have to say much she is amazing.  She knew I didn’t want a corset back and I could tell she was genuinely upset that she couldn’t do anything else with the dress.  Not her fault AT ALL but the fact that she cared so much just speaks to her character.  I would NEVER dream of recommending anyone else.

Hotel- Aloft Frisco: D They were soo accommodating over the phone with the booking and when we checked in everything was fine.  However while I was getting ready the boys had arrived and they had a huge mix up that shouldn’t have happened to begin with.  I had to come down stairs with full hair and makeup and Matt had to go outside while I straightened it out since the rooms were in my name.  After about 3pm the staff seems to have different training as they were all very snotty and unhelpful. 

Random other stuff – Etsy: A+++ I got a custom hanger with my new name on it, all of my paper items, my sand ceremony picture frame and my cake topper all from Etsy stores and Etsy Alchemy.  If you are interested in any of the specifics please let me know but they ALL did fantastic.