Wedding planning: The people who make us look good

by W. Andrew Powell

Sassafraz in Yorkville

Sassafraz in Yorkville

A lot of time goes into planning a wedding, and a lot of personality on top of that, but what makes a wedding really outstanding is finding the right people to work with leading up to your big day, and I’m not just talking about your family and friends.

With less than a dozen weeks left before our wedding day, almost everything has been planned out for us, so I wanted to recognize some of the all-stars that have made it all possible.

For Aisha and I, we picked these wedding partners for a dozen different reasons, and generally it all came down to style, expertise, creativity, and of course, price. I absolutely love who we’ve decided to work with, and I can’t recommend them enough, but for anyone planning a wedding I would also just recommend that you weigh your options and get a few quotes. For almost every thing we needed, we looked at two or three alternatives and then weighed the pros and cons of each, but these were the ones that stood out for us and worked in every way.

VENUE: Sassafraz | 100 Cumberland Street, Toronto |
As I’ve pointed out already on my groom blog, Aisha and I debated a number of venues over the early part of this year, but Sassafraz was almost an immediate choice once we had a tour of the space and met with Dennette, their sales manager. This is a classy, stylish venue and their second floor space offers just enough room for a smaller wedding reception. The food is obviously spectacular, if you’ve ever eaten there before, and the room requires just a few decorations to make it look amazing.

HOTEL: Hazelton Hotel | 118 Yorkville Avenue, Toronto |
Considering our reception location, we had a lot of choices for hotels in the Yorkville area, and we took a tour of almost all of them, but the Hazelton stood out because it’s quite simply a stunning boutique hotel. The rooms are big, the location is a short walk from Sassafraz, and there’s even a small movie theatre in the hotel, which is perfect since we’re doing a film theme for our wedding. The award-winning hotel also boasts what I can only call a purely glamorous, effortless style that I’m looking forward to basking in for a couple of days.

PHOTOGRAPHER: Joseph Michael Photography | [email protected] |
There are a lot of hard choices to be made during the wedding planning process, but the hardest was picking a photographer. There are literally dozens upon dozens of wedding photographers in Toronto, all vying for your big day, and for the most part I wasn’t a fan of any of them until I met Joseph Michael. I literally stumbled on his website and once I met with him, Aisha and I knew he was the right choice. He’s got a sharp eye for detail, he’s professional, and like me, he also works as a photographer covering entertainment events, which also suits our theme very well.

CAKE: Bake Sale | Various Toronto locations |
In terms of delicious cupcakes, Bake Sale is a sort of addiction Aisha and I have been feeding for months now, so when we were picking where we wanted to get our wedding cake made, it was a total no-brainer–there simply weren’t any other bakeries in the running. Once we had our cake tasting with them, that decision was rewarded completely, and the price was very good, especially since they’re doing a very unique design for us (you’ll just have to wait a little while to see the results).

FLOWERS: Ladybug Florist | 513 Church Street, Toronto |
Aisha took the lead when it came to hunting for a florist, but aside from one store, I was involved in helping pick the right place and by far my favorite was Ladybug Florist. We looked at three quotes in total and for what we needed, nobody could beat Ladybug. Their specialist, Meagan, who is working with us on the order, was full of creative ideas to help us decorate the space, without throwing wads of cash away on expensive flowers. I could not recommend these guys more.

THE SUIT: Harry Rosen Outlet | Heartland Outlet, 5985 Rodeo Drive, Mississauga |
Finally, there’s one of the groom’s most important choices: the suit. I had plans to go to a few places, but after my brother-in-law-to-be went to Harry Rosen’s outlet at Heartland mall to pick up a suit for his wedding, I decided I should try them as well. The experience was fantastic, and one of their managers, Basil, was an incredible help to me. He recommended a stunning suit, and I also picked up shoes, and it was a lot cheaper than going to a regular Harry Rosen store. (The only things I still have to pick up are a shirt, tie, and a handkerchief for my jacket pocket.)

Let me know if you have anyone you recommend, and why you chose them for your wedding.

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