Yes, I work in social media marketing, but nothing beats word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing. Which is why I trust my friends and online contacts more than a review I’d find on theknot.com or any of the other bajilion bridal websites out there. That’s why each and every one of our vendors was referred to me by a friend, online connection or they were someone I already knew and trusted. And I’d fully endorse and refer anyone planning a wedding to each and every one of these talented people.
I’ve known Eric for a couple years now. We met at one of the many #CLEtweetups I organized while working at cleveland.com. I was beyond intrigued to meet the man (or woman!) behind the hilarious @clepoops Twitter account. There’s about 2 degrees of seperation in Cleveland and it turned out we know many of the same people, plus, he sold me with his Rod Stewart shout-out in his video. Eric did a fantastic job and even shared his Spotfily playlists with me…I’ll have our songs foreva! He was also great at reigning me in and keeping things on schedule. Oh yeah, he played Blurred Lines numerous times. Eric was so impressive, he rocked out MacKenzie’s wedding, a marina party while we were honeymooning and at least 3 other events based on my referral (WOM!!!).
Hair and makeup: Kelley (Munro) Domin and Emily Nowacki
My cousin has done my hair since I was about 15. She’s an Aveda-trained hair-styling bad ass. It’s no wonder her clients have always included some Browns players’ wives! Through Kelley, I met her close friend Emily who in-turn became my roommate before I moved in with Dean. Emily is off in NYC pursuing her makeup dreams. My bridesmaids and mom looked like babes.
Photographer: Tom Forrest Photography
My friend, Janet, was kind enough to not only share her photographer’s info with me, but she also shared her videographer’s digits! Tom Forrest and Kevin Chuey were awesome. Again, I knew Kevin from the same cleveland.com TweetUp I met Eric at. After traveling to Hudson to check out Janet’s photos along with some other albums, Dean and I connected with Tom and appreciated his non-traditional approach to wedding photography. Kevin spent the first part of his day with the guys while Tom shot the gals getting ready. Both were professionals but made everyone feel comfortable. It’s no wonder Tom was already booked when my cousin tried to book him for her 2014 summer wedding.
Florist: Spencer at Life in Bloom
Thanks to Crystal at Eat*Drink*Cleveland, she raved about Spenser out in Avon Lake. To me, flowers were never important. Sure, we needed bouquets but we put so much time and effort into other features of the wedding, I didn’t think it was necessary to spend an absurd amount of money on flowers that would die within a week. Enter Life in Bloom. Dean and I visited Spencer at her Avon Lake shop in May (less than two months before the wedding). She told us she could fill each mason jar center piece and the shepherd hook jars with 1-2 blooms per jar for only a around $2 (per jar). Well, she absolutely outdid herself. Not only was I in love with our bouquets, the arbor flowers and the boutonnieres, Spencer filled those jars to the brim! Now, she’s my cousin’s florist!
Wedding cake: Cousin Lori!
Not only was Dean’s cousin a greeter at the wedding, she also designed and made the cake! It was absolutely picture perfect and tasted amazing. Lemon cake on a warm July evening? Yes, please!
Bridesmaid dresses: Bella Bridesmaids
Lori is a woman of many talents. On top of making & transporting the cake and greeting our guests, she was so incredibly vital in picking out the beautiful bridesmaids dresses at the shop she manages. I wanted each girl to feel comfortable so let them choose their own dresses. All the girls picked Joanna August dresses. Plus, the variation looked amazing if I do say so myself!
And that’s how you get married.