Our Modern Latina Bride Locks In a Priest, Florist, and Photographer!

I’m so happy to say that Hec is better and I can get back to wedding planning. Now that I found the venue, it was time to research vendors. My priorities were finding a florist, photographer, and a priest to officiate our wedding. A DJ is the one thing the groom-to-be decided to handle himself, hence why everything else has been checked off the list except that (sigh).

When I began researching these services, I was shocked when I saw the rates just because the word “wedding” is attached to them! Although you can negotiate, the prices usually range from expensive to who-do-you-think-you-are?!, so the key here is to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth and the people you choose know what they’re doing.

While I definitely do my research, I tend to make decisions quickly. For the photographer, I gathered recommendations, and after meeting a ton of photographers, I came to Teresa Horgan. I absolutely loved her style of photography. I learned I was attracted to a partly journalistic style, which means lots of pretty candids. Teresa also had a sweet, great personality.

The same goes for the priest I found, an 80-year-old bilingual (speaks English and Spanish) Holocaust survivor and a former Jew turned Catholic turned monk; a social and environmental activist and part-time yoga instructor for the elderly in an inner city—need I say more? He is perfect! Just the right amount of knowledge, wisdom, and culture I want surrounding my wedding.

My florist was a different story. When my sis and I first walked into Petals Premiere we had a plan. We were going to negotiate, tell him we would shop around, and act as if we weren’t pressed for his services, but little did we know Adam, the owner, had a plan of his own—to impress us greatly, so that we would leave there wanting nothing more but his floral decorations. Let me tell you, Adam was successful. While my sis and I did fairly well on the negotiating front (or so he allowed us to think) Adam wowed us with his modern technology and quick responses. As I would explain my vision, he would pass me the wireless mouse and keyboard for me to show him the online inspiration. Once he saw it he would take over the mouse and keyboard and show me a similar arrangement in his large archive of images from past work. I estimated the size I wanted for my bouquet with my hands and in no time Adam had different sized dummy bouquets for me to touch and feel. After all the other cheesy providers we had visited that had broken binders with pics from 10 years ago, we were sold. Adam sealed the deal by drafting up a contract on the spot. I know now I must have my flowers done by this man. Whether he will deliver or not, I still don’t know, but simply put, he has his sh*t together and that speaks volumes when commissioning a service.

What do you look for when paying for a service? Did I fall too easily?

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About this author1

Verky Arcos, Fashion Director

A  writer and editor with expertise in fashion and lifestyle coverage, Verky Baldonado is currently Latina magazine's Fashion Director. Baldonado has written Latin-inspired travel and food related content and has contributed to celebrity Q&As, red carpet video interviews, and the annual “Reasons to Love Being Latina” feature. Verky is U.S.-born and of Ecuadorean and Puerto Rican descent who speaks and writes fluent Spanish. Prior to Latina, Verky worked as a photo shoot coordinator at Universal/Island Def Jam Music Group. Verky holds a B.A. in Communications Arts from Montclair State University and currently resides in Manhattan with her husband and daughter.

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