Continuing from the first part about Wedding Registries Online and Traditional, let’s deep dive into Amazon & Zola! I’ve also updated the previous post with all the ratings if you are curious. I’ve only seen one other couple who also registered on Amazon, and it was so easy to just order something with our Amazon prime account! Most of our friends and my parents specifically are very familiar with ordering stuff from this retailer. It was actually my father that introduced me to this for ordering books over a decade ago. Zola on the other hand I have never seen anyone else use until after our bridal shower. (It’s actually the wedding we will attend this weekend!)
Ah registries! One of the many tricky aspects of a wedding (as I’m reflecting on our wonderful gifts from the continued session of Thank You note writing). I honestly had no familiarity with this concept until we started receiving invites directly addressed to us! As a guest, most people don’t start looking at the registry until 2 weeks prior to the event. Be it a wedding shower OR the actual wedding. As the couple getting married, they also must walk the line of picking out appropriate items without coming off as greedy: wide price range and quantity for guests to choose from. For someone who hates surprises, I love registries now!
Do people (our age) still follow the convention of sending a gift even though they can’t attend the wedding? We’ve encountered several flustered friends who when we have talked to them immediately mention they will send a gift without us mentioning. Do or don’t, just be candid with us haha. There’s no need to avoid us over this awkward topic! We enjoy quality time with folks and appreciate friends making the effort to reach out to catch up. Etiquette suggests that they still have up to a year after the wedding date. However, I just learned that it’s a MYTH that you have up to a year from the wedding/receiving the gift to write a thank you note back. Gulp… according to this we have until the end of July!
We set up 4 separate registries with Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond, Target and Zola!
TheKnot website mentioned that they would donate a portion of any purchase made through the website link to a charity of my choosing, American Cancer Society up to 6 months post wedding date. All items purchased after will not be counted. (It’s really unclear if they will show you the actual amount contributed. Better than nothing?) Similar to the wedding website post(s) this will be a 2 parter as well. I will do an actual full blown review next week of Amazon and Zola, as that was where 90% of our items were located.
Get your tickets since this train is leaving the station right now! It’s almost peak wedding season in the summer! I’m so glad that mine is done at this point even if I was a bit under the weather. Everywhere I turn I can’t avoid engagement announcements or upcoming nuptials. Even some unexpected department stores are getting in on the Wedding industry action. Namely slapping the “W” word on anything white, ivory or special occasion looking.
Let’s play a game and look at the image to guess which (unexpected) business wants in on the wedding game?!
Fresh floral arrangements can tie together your wedding colors quite nicely. Unfortunately for us the flowers we received from Judy’s Village Flowers (JVF) missed the most important accent color along with a few other elements! In fact anyone with eyes can plainly see they were not the flowers we agreed upon at all. For once my incessant photo taking proved quite useful when looking back on the ones we originally selected months before the wedding back in February. As you can tell from the harsh intro, this review is more of a cautionary tale for potential customers looking for a florist.
Orange / Coral flowers are clearly missing!
Thankfully we were able to coordinate with the venue, Raffael’s whom we purchased the package for a refund. They must have negotiated an amazing rate with JVF for $10 per low centerpiece per table. Good on Raffael’s for responding immediately by calling me as soon as they saw my e-mail and cutting us a refund check for $120.
Between my me and my husband we have 4 left feet… The thought of awkwardly tripping all over each other or swaying lifelessly for our first dance as our friends and family watched on me queasy. My original plan was to DIY our dance routine by just using our favorite resource, YouTube! (Seriously I used this to learn how to swim.) Time slipped by — fast forward to February with the wedding around the corner! While browsing Groupon I noticed a deal for dance lessons at db studios which was very conveniently located for us. Of course I browsed reviews ahead of time to make sure we weren’t walking into a trap, and noticed that they had several glowing reviews. What did we have to lose trying them out? (BTW they also just started April 2016.) Congratulations to db studios too for celebrating their 1 year anniversary!
Another similarly priced location is Dance in Boston (DiB). Many other dance studios do not even publish their rates online and you have to call to get more info.
We decided that our first dance song would be I Am Always Gonna Love You by Jon McLaughlin  before we started our lessons. That way we could hit the ground dancing!
The owner and instructor, Kendall, responded immediately to our initial e-mail inquiry and we set up a FREE consultation dance lesson with her. I may have inadvertently made her update the website since it now says the Groupon/Yelp deals can’t be combined. Oops!
Free lesson cannot be combined with any other offer, including Groupon/Yelp etc. Groupon- Not eligible for free consultation offer.
True to their website slogan, Kendall is an extremely knowledgeable, patient and friendly instructor! She has a strong background in competitive ballroom dance and has over a decade of experience teaching adults and kids. We felt comfortable trying new steps the entire time with her guidance. We even overcame my biggest fear of being dropped while doing the dip finale. We did not create specific choreography for the dance so each time we performed the song, it was slightly different. There were so many times where we were either too early or too late for the ending!
One of the highlights of the wedding planning process was definitely the various tastings! Believe it or not, we actually got to a point during the cake tasting where we reached our capacity – sweets overload. I wouldn’t mind lending my help for any future brides to be for this aspect if you catch my drift. Anyway let’s kick off the post-wedding series Wedding Wednesday series with Konditor Meister (KM) for our wedding cake! As I mentioned previously my SO and I chose this place as the cake vendor through our Raffael’s venue as it was included in our package. We also had a choice of Montillio’s, but from the venue tasting, we overall loved KM more!
I will be using the WeddingWire vendor rating system below, they break out the ratings by categories and average everything for a final verdict so these ones will be much more precise than even half stars! (Yes I made an account on there solely to use their rating.)
Cue that Blues Clues song ♫. Last pre-wedding wedding series post! Fret not, the actual vendor reviews are not far yonder. Let’s talk about the lovely Save the Date reminder and actual Invitation to send your beloved guests! You’ve got to think of something fridge worthy to compete with the limited real estate in some instances. I’m sure it’s always a pleasant surprise to break from the endless litany of bills and spam offers to receive personalized mail! I’ve seen cute custom fridge magnets, postcards, announcement cards and online graphics. You can show off those snazzy new Engagement photos you took to test out your potential photographer right. OR if you skipped the photo session, you can send out a beautiful graphic with all the key details. (TIP: Don’t forget to insert your wedding website so guests know where to look for info.) However you wish to present yourself, this will be your guests’ first glimpse what to expect for the wedding!
We sent our Save the Dates 10 months prior, and painstakingly wrote (with Wai’s help) each guest’s name and address. I personally used Vistaprint, since one of my other friends used them, and hers turned out amazing! (I actually used hers as a reference along with all of the other weddings we attended last year.) My bridal party decided on using Minted for my tea party themed bridal shower invites. Then for the actual wedding invitations, thankfully they were included with our venue package through Raffael’s! (I’m still sleuthing to figure out what vendor they used. We had a huge book of invitations we looked through.) We learned from the Save the Date struggles and created our own design to print the addresses directly onto the envelopes. (We also fiddled with labels but the coloring just looked off.)