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03 May 2007

Bridal Package Hunt

Here's a narration on our hunt for our most ideal bridal package, and the happenings along the way... and my frank opinions on what I encountered.

Our first experience on negotiating for bridal package was at the most recent BOWS... get to learn about packages from Thomson Wedding Design and The Wedding News over there. It was our first ever experience and before that we have never been visiting any bridal studios with friends or siblings or friends etc before. I didn't know what a bridal package normally covers and just started learning from scratch via talking to the coordinators there. Everything I know about getting married, signing up a bridal package, etc... is from the SgBrides forum!

We wanted to go and find out about the offers from more bridal studios but already took too much time at the 3 booths we went in to talk to. Also went to the Stefine booth cos he was quite interested in the flash animated love story... but that's not cheap at all! In fact, our budget's quite tight now...

My worse experience at BOWS 2007 was at the Seletar Broadway booth... I was dragged into the booth by one uncle and initially a young lady attended to us, but when we wanted to leave, another more senior lady joined her to persuade us. They were super pushy and wouldn't let us leave! Furthermore, they kept claiming that they are the best and everyone who walked around would go back to them so... why not just sign on the spot? Kaoz! We didn't think much people will sign up with them lor. And I had to verbally fight our way through to get outta that booth!!!

"If you are so confident that everyone will come back to sign at your booth, then might as well let us go, if you are so good and so confident, you won't worry that we won't come back one right??" And the more senior lady (think is the lady boss?) still told us need not consider so much, just sign. I told her that we wanna go back and discuss about it first, and she told us not to leave the booth. She said we could just discuss in the booth and make the decision on the spot. I shot back at her, "We still prefer to discuss about this in privacy..." and walked off! The people there are super pushy till I find it kinda scary!!!

On the other hand, my first experiences negotiating about BS package with Thomson and Wedding News were good. They were nice and friendly yet not pushy.

One fine Sunday afternoon... we went to Tanjong Pagar Road and went back to Wedding News where we were shown their gowns and Ken showed us some photos before and after editing too. I totally love Ken's photography style! All the nature around the couples, greenery and sea, the natural expressions, candid poses... I love his pics so much! And his friendliness put us at ease too.

Then we went to Di Gio where Casey immediately let me try on 3 bridal gowns (for my first time ever!) which fitted my plump figure very well and I was very impressed! His service was excellent and we liked the album layout and the acrylic album covers as well. I still prefer Ken's photography, but I love the gowns at Di Gio and the designer Casey really impressed me.

Our last stop that day was at Yvonne Creative which I wanted to check out at BOWS but spent too much time fighting at Seletar Broadway that we didn't get to.

Yvonne Creative's staff was nice at the beginning. The gowns are nice, but we were super unimpressed by their photos... the contrast and vibrancy not there. Guess our expectation pushed too high up after seeing Ken's splendid photography (Wedding News). Towards the end the staff turned pushy she kept saying they are "designer brand", so must be compared with other designer brands like Milan etc, and cannot be compared with common brands like Di Gio etc. I was rather disgusted by her tone, and then she started rushing us to sign on the spot before we leave... we didn't of course. Her attitude totally turned us off!!!

I work in the west of Singapore so one evening after work I went to IMM with 2 girlfriends to browse around and enquired about the packages at DoubleUp and E-Bridal... the uncle (DoubleUp) and auntie (E-Bridal) there were great salespersons and made their packages sound very nice and very attractive... but I wasn't impressed by them at all, cos have seen so much better at Wedding News and Di Gio.

Finally we signed up at My Bridal Room (MBR)... forum friend Jonathan recommended MBR to me first. Coming from a guy who's experienced in wedding planning, I wouldn't doubt his choice. I checked out MBR in SgBrides forum and saw lots of raves, so told him that I wanna at least go down to MBR and take a look before deciding (we like both Wedding News' photography and Di Gio's gowns and service, and have already discussed about their packages in depth, such as how much more we have to budget if we want extra pages, extra poses, all photos' softcopy returned, etc). I was thinking that we could also take a look at Bridal Concept (which we didn't get to visit in the end) since it's around the same area.

Uncle Quek attended to us and threw in lots of stuff that we asked for into our package, such as hotpressed album, acrylic album cover, more pages and more poses, all softcopies returned etc... our package actually added up to be rather pricey in the end, but we were happy about the contents of our package, and we thought Sam's photography is reasonably good too. At that point of time (first visit to MBR), we still love Ken's photography... we uber like his friendliness and natural candid style. But now I'm sure Sam can do a very good job for us after seeing fellow MBR bride (and fellow Multiply.com BTB) Verene's photos. Uncle Quek is very warm and sincere, and we really feel at home at MBR. After some discussion, we decided to sign the package on the spot, saving ourselves the hassle of going to other bridal studios to bargain, plus thinking hard to make the decision later. So MBR is our final decision.

We already went to MBR for our first appointment last Sunday, and the designer Sandra was really great and helpful! I brought my younger bro and his girlfriend along, and told him how lucky he was to have a sis like me to always help him along the way... he never had to pick up things from scratch because I'm always there to help lay his path out nicely for him... will super duper miss him when I gotta move outta parents' home!! Anyway yea, tried on some gowns which didn't fit me as I'm still fat. But we've settled with our designs and Sandra has been wonderful, helping us visualise the gowns and now I can't wait to see my gowns... both MTM so really gotta wait!

While hunting for our bridal package, I surfed SgBrides forum a lot and found out about which are the bridal studios that are more ranted about or raved about among the BTBs. The plan was that we would just go to the more raved-about ones and save the hassle to talk to those pushy ones or with many complaints. SgBrides forum did help me a lot, and I'm a very happy BTB now because I'm assured that with my comprehensive bridal package from MBR, we are definitely in good hands, and I'm going to enjoy all my fitting and photography sessions. (^_^)v

*first published in Multiply.com and migrated over here on 12 January 2013

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