My FABULOUS wedding- 7/17/10 (Jericho Terrace, Body Rock, Duet, Oksana, Royalty, Flower Barn, and MORE!)
I don’t think I could ever have planned my wedding with Long Island Weddings! This site has been more than helpful. I have gotten so many ideas from this website and have made so many friendships. A BIG thank you to Ron, Liz, and Kim for all of your hard work. A huge thank you as well to all of the 2010 brides who have been there to help me plan my wedding. I had an amazing time at TWOTY 2009, TWOTY 2010, the Bridal Extravaganzas, and the 2010 Shower. I loved all of the G2Gs I went to. Thank you for so many great memories!
Our proposal story is short and sweet! For our one year anniversary we went to Atlantic City. Brian surprised me by ordering a chocolate cake. I went to get milk from the fridge and when I came back there was a ring next to the cake. Of course I said yes!
Since weddings are expensive we had a long engagement. We were engaged in December 2007 and got married in July 2010. It worked out well for us- we had plenty of time to plan and meet with vendors.
Lighthouse Park (Roosevelt Island)
Fireside Caterers (East Islip): A++
We decided a year before our wedding we wanted to have an engagement party to give both sides a chance to meet. We chose to have an outdoor BBQ with a Yankee/baseball theme. It was very casual- but a lot of fun! The party ended up lasting about 10 hours!
We were originally going to BBQ ourselves, but decided to have it catered. We used Fireside Caterers in East Islip. They did an amazing job! The food was excellent and the staff was wonderful. They drove all the way to Roosevelt Island (there was a travel fee for this), set up, and served everyone. Our guests got all you can eat and we paid a very reasonable price. If you ever need catering done I would highly recommend Fireside Caterers.
DIY favors (peanuts)
Customized t-shirt (customizedgirl.com)
Weight loss, Weight Watchers and Synergy Fitness
After getting engaged I tried on wedding dresses the next month. I was wearing sizes 14-16. I decided then I did want to be that size on my wedding day. So in January 2008 I joined Weight Watchers. The plan was easy to follow and the meetings were helpful. I ended up losing a total of 55lbs and became a lifetime member.
In addition to Weight Watchers, I also got a personal trainer a few months before the wedding at my gym, Synergy Fitness. He really helped me tone and stay in excellent shape.
Bridal Shower, A+
My friends and family threw me the most amazing bridal shower. They rented out a hall and had food catered in from Dempsey’s (East Meadow). The food was delicious and I had a wonderful time!
Invitations and Wedding Day Stationary (menus, place cards and table numbers)
We tried to find invitations we liked without getting them custom made but nothing suited our needs. Instead, we turned to Tessa at ******** Paperie. She was very easy to work with. At first I was worried it would be difficult since all communication was done via email, however the entire process was very easy. I’m very pleased with our invitations and our wedding day stationary!
Bachelorette Party, A+
My girls did an awesome job with my bachloerette party! We first went out to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory. Afterwards we took a limo into the city. We went to Hunkmania, which was fun but very raunchy! Afterwards, we went to a club (I can’t even remember the name) and then came back to Long Island and hung out at a local bar.
Before I even had a trial, I knew I wanted Oksana to do my makeup. I had seen photos of her work on LIW and loved what she did. So, I scheduled a trial with her for my epics. I absolutely loved my makeup. It came out beautiful in the pictures. About a month before my wedding I went back to her for a wedding day trial. Once again- perfection. The day of she was great! We had a very strict timeline and she knew exactly how much time she had to work on each girl and had us all finished right on time. My mom, sister, MOH, and I all got our makeup done. My makeup stayed on perfectly all day. I have absolutely no complaints about Oksana. She honestly does amazing work.
Hair, Erica from Hair Designs
Erica has been a family friend and doing my hair for years. There was no doubt in my mind that she would do my hair for my wedding. I went in the week before and she gave me a trim and we did a trial session. I have thick hair with a very annoying cowlick, but luckily she knows exactly how to work with it. The day before I went to her salon and she washed and conditioned my hair. I let it air dry for the next day.
The day of she opened the salon early (6:30AM) and had 2 other hair dressers come help her out. All of my girls, my mom and myself all had amazing day of hair! They all worked quickly, yet efficiently. Afterward, at the reception she took me in the bridal suite to touch up my hair yet again (its good to have a friend as a hairdresser). My hair stayed perfect from 6:30AM until I went to bed at midnight. Not a piece out of place!
Ceremony, St. Raphael's
Our ceremony was at St. Raphael's in East Meadow. They had just redone the church a few years back and it was gorgeous!
Reception Hall, Jericho Terrace
Brian and I went to over 20 reception halls on L.I looking for the perfect one. The very last hall we went to was Jericho Terrace. After our tour Brian told me “I don’t think we can afford this.” We were so blown away and thought it was so nice, we knew it had to be out of our price range. We were so happy when we found out it WAS in our price range. We brought our mothers back the next day and ended up booking.
Mike Closs was our BM and I don’t think I could say enough great things about this man. Brian constantly called him for vendor recommendations and Mike always led us in the right direction. He remembered us and greeted us at every showcase we went to (we loved going there to try the food- it was so good!).
About a year after we booked we found out our room had been re-done (The Dome Room). They re-did the floor, Dome, and added uplighting. The room looked even better than when we had first booked it! The uplighting was amazing. We were afraid you wouldn’t be able to see it because we were a day wedding, but it looked fabulous. A bunch of people thought it was beautiful how the Dome lit up.
The day of the wedding couldn’t have gone any smoother. When we first got there we started taking pictures outside. Our two bridal attendants met us out there (David and Sibia). They took amazing care of us! It was very hot and humid, so they brought us out water. They also brought us out some passed hor’dours to munch on in between shots.
After pictures we went to see the Dome Room. It looked so amazing and was set up perfectly. I was blown away by the room. After pictures we went to the bridal suite. JT had a huge plate with all the cocktail hour food for us to try. The CH food was delicious. I couldn’t stop eating! After we ate the CH food my MOH noticed I had sat in something (red sauce!). The Bridal Attendants (along with Francesca) sprang into action. Between the three of them they were able to get the stain out. It was as if nothing had happened!
Once the reception started JT continued to do an amazing job. We had the eggplant antipasto for an appetizer, penne ala vodka, and the 5 entrée choice. The food was so good, I wish I had time to eat more. Their dessert was amazing too. In addition to the wedding cake we also got a cannoli shell with ice cream (I ate mine AND DH’s).
Our Maitre’d was Jose and he was absolutely wonderful. He really kept everything moving smoothly and was a big help. When it was time to toss my garter, I realized I didn’t my throw-away on. He literally ran back the bridal suite to get it! He really did a great job.
Overall, if I had to go back in time and pick my hall again- I would pick JT without a doubt. They did the most amazing job. All our friends and family were complimenting us on the food and telling us what a great time they had.
DJ, Body Rock
Before the Wedding-
We knew the DJ was one of the most important factors in a wedding. When we went out looking for a DJ, we wanted quality! Although Body Rock is pricier than some other Long Island DJ’s, you are getting what you pay for. Everyone we dealt with at Body Rock was so professional. The office staff is extremely organized, welcoming, and helpful. Any time we called with a question they had an answer or called us right back with one. We saw Body Rock at two Jericho Terrace showcases and after seeing them in action we were sold.
Day of the Wedding-
The day of the wedding Body Rock was phenomenal! Everything on our playlist was played and everything on our do not play list wasn’t played. Body Rock played the perfect mix of songs. We had a very diverse crowd (from teenagers to young adults to the older crowd). Body Rock was somehow able to please everyone. Throughout the entire reception the dance floor was packed. Our MC was great- he really got the party going! I know some girls on the site worry that people won’t dance at a day wedding. This defiantly was NOT the case at our wedding- everyone got up and danced all day long!
Flowers, Flower Barn (Seaford)
Before the Wedding-
DH and I are not flower people. While many couples have a vision of what they want their flowers to look like, we had some ideas, but for the most part were pretty clueless. We went to three other florists and were so overwhelmed. Finally, a friend recommended Flower Barn and we went to check them out.
The first meeting went very smoothly- we met with Mike who was laid back, friendly and very helpful. He showed us a lot of pictures and helped us to decide on the flowers we wanted. As soon as we left that day we were both in agreement we wanted to book with Flower Barn.
Three months before the wedding we went back in to see the sample centerpiece. Right before we went in I was so worried that I would hate it. I almost had a mini-freakout session over it! But as soon as we walked in and I saw the centerpiece set up all my worries were at ease. The sample was absolutely gorgeous! I knew that we made the right choice when we went with Flower Barn.
Day of the Wedding-
The morning of the wedding Mike personally called me about the flowers. We got married on a very hot and humid day. Mike just wanted to remind me to keep the flowers in the air-conditioning as much as possible. It was so good to know that he went out of his way to call me personally on my wedding day to confirm the flowers were being delivered.
When I got to my parent’s house all of the bouquets were delivered already. They came out wonderful! I especially loved my bouquet- it was more beautiful than I had imagined it would be! Despite the humidity the bouquets all stayed very fresh and lasted all day and night.
The centerpieces were my favorite by far. We knew we wanted low centerpieces and something bright. Mike was able to come up with a gorgeous arrangement that suited our needs. All of the guests loved our centerpieces (and some even fought over who would take them home!)
In the end, all of our flowers looked amazing! I would highly recommend Flower Barn as a florist and defiantly plan on using them in the future. Mike was a pleasure to work with and very professional. I felt that he really cared about our wedding and not just running his business.
Day of Coordinator, Francesca from Dazzling Affairs
A++++++++++++++ times infinity!
Before the Wedding-
If I had to pick a favorite vendor, hands down it would be Francesca. Like most brides, before LIW, I had no idea what a DOC was. I wasn’t even sure if I wanted/needed one. However, as part of booking with Jericho Terrace you get to meet with their house wedding planner- Francesca. When we went to go meet with her she was so helpful in answering all of our wedding-related questions. She was extremely knowledgeable about everything wedding and all vendors (she must know every Long Island vendor!). As soon as we walked out we wanted to book her as a DOC. So, we went back inside and put a deposit down because we had to have Francesca as our DOC.
Throughout the wedding planning process Francesca was a big help. Our biggest issue was timing. We had very limited time for a number of reasons: we were getting married early in the day and had only about one hour between the church and cocktail hour. Francesca created a very detailed timeline and promised she would move things along for us (yes- she defiantly kept that promise!). She was very accessible if we had any questions- I would often email back and forth with her. As I mentioned, she is very familiar with Long Island vendors. She was able to give us great advice and help with all of our vendors and wedding questions.
At our final meeting she did so much more than we planned. She took all of our vendor information to finalize information with vendors for the day of. She had copies of every vendor contract to keep track of what we were supposed to be getting from each vendor. She created and went over the timeline with us. At that meeting we also went over every detail of the wedding- who was walking down the aisle with who, must-take photos, limo timing, etc.
One of the biggest things Francesca helped us with at the final meeting was our cake. There was an issue with communication between the bakery and Jericho Terrace which led to Jericho Terrace not having our cake order. Francesca went back and forth calling both places until she got us an answer and everything was straightened out. If it wasn’t for her, we might not have had a cake!
At the final meeting, she also told us since we had such limited time, she was bringing along her assistant- Sara for part of the day. Since Francesca was going to be at another rehearsal, Sara would also be attending our rehearsal. The day of the rehearsal we met Sara for the first time at the church. She honestly did more than I had expected. She helped move along the rehearsal and answer all of our questions. The woman who was leading the rehearsal was honestly clueless (it seemed she had never run a wedding rehearsal before!). I’m so glad Sara was there, because she was a huge help that day. Sara also took all of our bubbles for us and held onto them until our wedding day. Although we didn’t expect to have Sara as an assistant, I’m really glad she ended up being there.
Day of the Wedding-
While I was at the salon Francesca was at my parent’s house helping to get things ready. She called me on my cell phone a few times too just to check in and make sure everything was moving along (which it was). By the time I got there, she had already set up my shoes, garter, and all my accessories for me to put on. She helped lace up the back of my wedding dress after my MOH had trouble with it. She was constantly touching up my lip gloss and putting powder on me to reduce shine (all of which she carried around with her!). There was an issue with the limo that morning- she was right on top of it. What I really liked was she didn’t come to me and tell me there was a problem. Instead, she waited until she had a solution THEN came to tell me- this is the problem but this is the solution. Francesca also made sure I ate, sprayed my flowers with water to keep them from wilting (due to the humidity), made sure I was constantly in the A.C, and kept everything organized.
At the church her and Sara really moved everything along well. Once we got over the Jericho Terrace they both kept everything moving. When we had to take family pictures she helped find everyone (I have a big family and she somehow managed to figure out who many of them were!). We actually finished early, were able to go back to the bridal suite and eat some food! As I mentioned in my JT review, I got a small stain on my dress. Francesca and the bridal attendants got it out very quickly.
While we were lining up for the big entrance I noticed one of the flower girls dress was completely torn at the middle. Francesca pinned it up and it looked like new!
Throughout the day I kept saying “Francesca, Francesca!” because needed something. She was always right there and able to solve EVERY problem. My mom who was doubtful that we were spending money on a DOC was calling her a god-send by the end of the day. Francesca really was a god-send. She did so much for us in the days leading up to the wedding and the day of. She has an amazing, outgoing and friendly personality and is also extremely professional. I would recommend her services to any bride getting married.
Photo and Video, Duet
Photography and Video were extremely important to us. We went to many different photographers before choosing Duet. They offered us an amazing package for a great price. More importantly, all of their photographers’ work was gorgeous! After looking at all of the photographers’ work we decided to go with Alberto.
We first met with Alberto when we took our engagement pictures a year before the wedding. He came to Roosevelt Island to take our pictures. He was very friendly, laid back and easy to get along with. I love our engagement pictures and still look through them sometimes because they came out so good! He even got in his car and drove from one end of the island to the other so we could get different shots.
The day of the wedding the Duet staff was wonderful. They were quick (as we had asked them to be) but efficient. They got in every must take photograph.
Unfortunatly, because it was there busy season we had to wait 2 months to get our proofs back. They were well worth the wait. We ended up with 3,600 proofs to look through! Our posed pictures came out gorgeous. Even better, I loved all of the unposed pictures. Both photographers got some amazing and creative shots! We’re having trouble now choosing pictures for our album.
Cake and Favors, Dortoni’s Bakery
Cake: B+ / Favors: A+
Growing up right next to Levittown, I had Dortoni’s many times and always loved them. I was so happy to find out Jericho Terrace used them for the cake! We went in for a taste testing (all of the fillings were delicious) and to chose our cake. We really didn’t have a specific idea so we looked at pictures and chose a cake we liked. We told them we were having fresh flowers on the cake so there shouldn’t be any sugar flowers.
Later on, when we had our menu appointment with Jericho Terrace we found out Dortoni’s had never sent our information about the cake to them! It took awhile and we had to go back, but we got it straightened out. Dortoni’s was very apologetic about it and even have DH a free black and white cookie (his favorite).
The day the cake was not what we wanted it to look like. We had asked for no sugar flowers on it and they put sugar flowers (which meant the florist couldn’t use the fresh flowers). What made it worse was it was so hot, the sugar flowers began melting down the side! As far as taste goes though the cake was delicious!! I loved the chocolate ganache filling- it was so good!
Since we were getting the cake from Dortoni’s we also decided to have our favors made there. In order to incorporate our shared heritage, we decided to do Irish Soda Bread for our favors. We worked with Candice who was very helpful. When we first went to check out pricing she gave us a full loaf to taste test! The price was great and the small loaves were gave our guests were a great size. Dortoni’s even wrapped them and put on our favor tags. The favors were delicious- we had guests taking more than one!
Dress, Macy’s (Demetrios)
I went to a few different bridal salons and tried on some different dresses. I had a pretty good idea in mind- I liked dresses with pickups and a-lines. Even though I had this idea, I tried on a few different styles anyway. The last place we looked was Macy’s in Manhattan. I loved Demetrios gowns and had a feeling I would find something there I liked. After about 6 dresses I found the one. It was a combination of everything I wanted. Unfortunately, the dress sample was a 16 and huge on me so it had to be pinned and pulled back a lot. Despite this, I had a good idea of what it would look like.
Because I live on Long Island I wanted to do my alterations on Long Island. Macy’s in Manhattan shipped my dress to the Manhasset store so I could have my alterations done there.
About two months before the wedding I went to try on my dress. I had lost some weight so the dress had to be taken in. It also needed to be hemmed. After I put it on something just seemed wrong. The dress looked different than when I had tried on the sample. I tried to ignore it, but when we got in the car I was looking at pictures and just started crying because I didn’t like the way I looked in my dress.
I ended up making another appointment to go back the next week. The reason the dress looked different was because the sample was so big on me, I couldn’t really get an idea of what my dress was supposed to look like. I explained what I didn’t like to the seamstress, and she worked very well with me.
By the time I went for my last fitting she had fixed the problem. I was so relieved! Macy’s was good about the problem and didn’t even charge me extra for the additional alterations (one thing I wasn’t too happy about was Macy’s does not have a cap on alterations. Luckily I didn’t have to spend too much).
Mother of the Bride Dress, Totally You
My mom does not wear dresses at all. In fact, she’s pretty much anti-dress. So finding her a dress would be a problem. Luckily, when we went into Totally You in Bellmore, the saleswoman was extremely helpful. She very quickly helped my mom find the perfect dress for her.
Bridesmaid Dresses, Lillette’s (Bill Levkoff)
I wasn’t too picky on what bridesmaid dress my girls more. I just wanted everyone to feel comfortable. My bridal party was very diverse in sizes so I knew it might be different to find something everyone would like. We went to a few different places before we tried Lillette’s. Lillette’s had a good selection and my girls ending up deciding on a beautiful Bill Levkoff dress. It was very flattering on everyone! The saleswomen at Lillette’s were very helpful. All my girls got measured and put down their deposits.
All of my girls decided to have their alterations done at Lillette’s. I’m slightly disappointed with Lillette’s in this respect. I have some tall girls in my bridal party. My MOH is 5’8”. They never measured her height or asked for her height. It turns out the dress was too short! I went with her for her second fitting, and I felt that the alterations department was really not helpful with the situation. Eventually they ended up ordering extra fabric and were able to fix the dress. However, it was such an annoying process to deal with.
Tuxes, Tuxedo Park
For tuxes we went to Tuxedo Park in Carle Place at the recommendation of Jericho Terrace. Their customer service is amazing! When you go in they really treat you well and take care of you!! We had a very positive experience here and the tuxes looked great! One issue- they gave us one less colored handkerchief (Not sure what you call it!) for the groomsmen. They had to actually cut one in half so all of the guys had one. Luckily, Tuxedo Park understood there was nothing else that could have been done and was great about the issue!
Limos, Royalty Limo
Royalty was another house vendor of Jericho Terrace. It was the only limo company we met with. They had excellent customer service and gave us a great price.
The day of there was an issue with the car that was picking up my parents and I. The air conditioner was not working (and it was a 90 plus degree day!). We ended up going in the limo with all the bridesmaids (which I didn’t mind at all). Royalty really was on top of the problem though- they had a mechanic meet the car at the church and fixed it during the ceremony. DH and I were able to use the car to get to the church. The drivers were very professional and had great, outgoing personalities. I’m so pleased with both of them! At the end of the reception, Royalty had given us a car to take DH and I back to the hotel. To make up for the problem before, they ended up sending us an 8 passenger limo! It worked out really well because we were able to take out parents back to the hotel too! I would defiantly use Royalty in the future- they had excellent customer service and are a very professional company.
The driver was so helpful and made sure my dress and veil got out of he car safely!
Hotel (night of and after party), La Quinta Inn and Suites
We blocked rooms for our guests at La Quinta for a few different reasons: they offered a free shuttle, they were close by, a free breakfast the next day, and they were able to accommodate us for an after party. We blocked the rooms with Tyleen, who unfortunately left.
Joann ended up taking over for Tyleen. Joann was very helpful and very sweet. She helped go over all of the details with us.
In the months leading up the wedding, we were calling up a few times to check on how many rooms were booked. At one point we found out that some of the rooms we had blocked were given up to ANOTHER room block! I was very upset about this because we had a contract that specifically stated we had 30 rooms blocked. Thankfully, Joann took care of this.
The biggest problem I had with La Quinta concerned the after party. We booked a conference room for 4 hours. They told us the room we would be ready at a certain time and it wasn’t. Everyone was just sitting in the lobby (which luckily had a bar). Even when it appeared the room was ready they didn’t announce it was ready, or let anyone in!! THEN, when it was time to go they began cleaning around us before our time was up and then kicked out us pretty much exactly at the time we had the room until (even though we didn’t get out until later). This is pretty much my biggest complaint about La Quinta. As far as the rooms go- everything was clean. The breakfast the next day was great (they set up the conference room for us with a free breakfast for all our guests who stayed over).
Wedding Bands, Fortuneoff and UltaDiamonds
I got my wedding band from Fortuneoff right before they went out of business and ended up getting a great deal on it. DH’s wedding band came from Ulta Diamonds.
Flower Girl Dresses, pinkprincess.com
Sash from David’s Bridal
We chose to order the flower girl dresses online. The dresses from pinkprincess.com came very quickly. The price was extremely reasonable. One of the girls had a problem with the sizing- their customer service was EXCELLENT! They were able to exchange it for another size.
Unfortunately, the quality wasn’t the best. Three out of the four girls ended up with tears and rips in their dresses.
Headpiece and Veil, Barron’s in Tri County- A+
Bouquet Charm, etsy
Bouquet Bling, weddingfactorydirect.com
Day of Jewelry, Nordstroms (Necklace), Earrings (Macy’s)
Shoes, DSW (Nina)
Name Plaque, my-sweet-memories.com, A+
Cake topper, Lenox
Photosharing Cards, Vistaprint
Card box, DIY
Slipper Basket, ***********.com
Honeymoon, Sandals St. Lucia Regency La Toc
The trip to and from the airport is not fun at all. The roads are very winding and there's no posted speed limits. If you get motion sickness- take something! Its about an hour and a half to the resort.
Our room was very nice. Strong A.C and a fan. We had a beach front walkout room with a gorgeous view. We were right next to the beach and pool. There was a fully stocked fridge and bar (that was replenished every day). When we got there champagnes and fruit were waiting for us! We also got breakfast in bed for two days! We got a concierge room and the concierge service was great. They were on top of every thing.
The pool was absolutely beautiful. Thats where we spent most of our days. The swim up bar was great. The drinks were very well made and very strong. Try the Rum Punch
All the staff is amazing. Our maid actually folded our clothes and put everything away so nicely!
The restaurants are unbelievable. I dont eat steak and I ended up ordering it on two separate occasions because it was so good. I even tried escargot at the French Restaurant (delicious!!). If you can try not to make any resturant reservations for Friday night. They have a Caribbean dinner buffet The Pavillion resturant and its SO good, along with entertainment while you eat. Make sure you make your reservations as soon as you get there. I loved the French Resturant (La Toc) and DH loved Armando's (Italian).
Another tip: get to the pool VERY early (by 8AM) to put your towels and stuff down on a seat. Any later and you might not get seats by the pool. If you want a raft, you need to get out even earlier.
The fitness center was nice. It was very clean and had a decent amount of equipment. Not too many weight machines (but a good number of free weights). I only lasted about half an hour each time I went though- it was VERY hot in there!
We had a $250 spa credit so we ended up getting a couple's massage. It was amazing!! We also got an exfoliation and then 20 minutes in a bubble bath. I loved it- so relaxing!
You don't need alot of cash though. Just make sure you bring a credit card. Everything you buy there (from the resort) will just be charged to that. . Some people have told me the staff is not allowed to accept tips. The drivers, maid, bellhop all did. However the bartenders and waitstaff did not.
They do complimentary photoshoots on the beach, around the resort and when the sun sets. I loved all the pictures. We ended up spending $300 on pictures because they came out so good.
We did two excursions. The Land and Sea and the Sunset Cruise. TheLand and Sea is great because you really get to see everything on the Island- botanical gardens, waterfall, volcano, mountains- close up.
We had alot of fun on the Sunset Cruise as well. There were drinks, music, but unfortunately no sunset due to the rain.
We ended up going during rainy season. it rained every day. Only 1 or 2 days out the 10 had full on rain all day. The rest of the day it rained for a minute or two then stopped.
I recommend you bring bug spay! I kept bitten. And also sunscreen and apply it often. I used SPF 100 and still got a little red on some days.
Also, there are quite afew cats walking around. They're friendly cats so dont worry they wont bother you. They're there to keep the rodents away.
Overall, I highly recommend Sandals Regency!!!
Our breakfast in bed:
Dessert from La Toc:
Botanical Gardens (Land and Sea Tour)
The view from our room:
Message edited 10/10/2010 11:19:34 AM.