Going to the Chapel


I’m so sorry it’s been so long since I last posted – been kind of busy with the whole wedding and honeymoon thing. 🙂  But I’m back now, and very happily married to an amazing man. 🙂

I’ll have stories and I’ll post more pictures soon, including honeymoon pics.  In the meantime, enjoy the pictures from our photographer Joe from Photography By Media Concepts. 🙂

OUR WEDDING PHOTOS:

http://bit.ly/MDwedpics2010

Me with my amazing husband!

Me and my sister Cordie, also my maid of honor

 

Many of you have been asking about our months-long saga regarding our rings.  Well, folks, here’s the full story.

Quick background: Mark purchased my engagement ring at Lander’s Jewelers, a nice family owned business in the South Shore Plaza in Braintree, MA.  We looked for our wedding bands there back in August of 2009, but didn’t see anything that fit our styles or budget.  We headed downstairs to Kay Jewelers and ended up finding bands there.  And that’s when the horror began.

Now, as a PR professional, I am sensitive about critiquing a brand online based on a minor incident.  But in this case, with MULTIPLE issues at multiple stores and with multiple associates, I am happy to voice my honest opinion about Kay’s.  Across the board, they had no disregard for their customers and were completely out of sync with their repair services.  Even worse, they made errors that they didn’t even seem to care about fixing and/or blamed us.  AND, I saw them treat other customers with the same disrespect.  So I am more than glad to warn my fellow brides and grooms about shopping there for bands – or, frankly, any jewelry. 

So without further ado, here is our saga:

Rings purchased on August 1, 2009 at the Braintree location (#8407)

  1. Salesperson informed us we could notch my band so it fit against the prongs on my princess cut engagement ring and have it filled in again at any point, no charge
  2. We also could bring it to any Kay’s location to have any work done
  3. We sent it out on August 1st to be notched against engagement ring
    1. She told us it would take no longer than 2 weeks, but we asked if we could have it done by the 14th so we could get the engagement ring back for August 15th

August 12th – We received the call that the ring was ready to be picked up

  1. We were not given any details on the condition of the ring, just that it was ready

August 14th – Mark went to the Braintree store to pick up the ring

  1. The sales associate, the same one that sold us the ring, gave Mark the ring
  2. Mark, not the associate, pointed out that the job had been done improperly and the ring was notched crooked
    1. Why didn’t she check and then tell us that when the phone call came in to save us the trip?
    2. She also blamed us and said because we wanted it in 2 weeks, they probably had to do a rush job and that’s why it was botched – THAT  IS NOT OUR FAULT IF THEY DID A BAD JOB!

August 22nd – I brought the ring back to Braintree to get re-notched properly, due to be ready by September 4th

  1. Same associate as before, again she blamed the fix it shop and our need to have the job “rushed” (even though she had told us 2 weeks would be adequate)
  2. No charge because they had made a mistake

September 12th – Picked up the ring

  1. Associate had never seen that done on a ring
  2. Notches still didn’t fit perfectly, he offered that we still had plenty of time to get it re-filled at no charge
  3. I said we would hang onto it and bring it back if our mind changed

January 15th – Went to Brockton store (#1273) to have notches filled in

  1. Spoke with associate who had never seen that done before on a ring
  2. He brought it over to his manager
  3. She had never seen it done either
  4. She called an associate at Braintree to get the full story
  5. Brockton associate said that while she could send it out to get done, because their fix-it shop (different from Braintree’s) didn’t do it originally, she would have to charge us.  So I would have to bring it back to Braintree and have them send it out to their shop to get fixed and then we wouldn’t get charged.
    1. If they all send it out, why can’t they send it to the same shop, or why can’t Brockton just send it to Braintree’s shop?  Why is it so separate?
    2. Frustrating that we had to bring it to Braintree again when we were told we could take it to any Kay’s to get work done

February 13 – Went back to Braintree store to have it filled in

  1. Even though store wasn’t busy, had to wait with another customer for help – even though there were associates not helping other customers and who looked over at us and ignored our calls for help
  2. Associate had never seen that done before on a ring
  3. She recorded it as worn on the sales slip when I informed her it has never been worn (we’re not married yet)
  4. She told me because now the choice to have it filled in was purely cosmetic, they’d have to charge us to do it
    1. When asked for an estimate, she couldn’t give one – we’d just have to wait
  5. While I was helped, another customer was helped, who was picking up a ring he had bought for his soon-to-be fiancée (he had it sent out to be resized & had finally paid it off to propose in time for Valentine’s Day on the next day)
    1. The clerk gave him the ring without inspection and he looked at it and noticed a HUGE diamond missing
    2. The clerk took it back, confused, and asked him, “Oh, so you’re bringing it in to have the diamond filled?”  He said, “No, I just came in to pick it up – you just gave it to me!!”
    3. She said they’d have to send it out again to get filled
    4. He was like, “Why didn’t you check it when it came in?  Why can’t you do it here? I need it for tomorrow!”
    5. She just said, “Oh well, sorry.  We can’t fix it here.”
    6. Why don’t clerks check merchandise before it comes in?  That’s twice the fix-it shop made a mistake and the customer wasn’t notified about it until they came in.
    7. Why should I send it out again to a shop that clearly has made more than one mistake??

February 19th – Received the call on the estimate, which was in the triple digits

  1. When I explained the situation and my anger and frustration to the clerk, she was just, oh well.
  2. When I told her we were told we could have it fixed in again at no charge, she said we needed it in writing.
  3. She told me we had about a week to decide and was quick to get me off the phone

February 28th – Went back to the store

  1. We first met with a jeweler at another store to find out if they could fill it if Kay’s refused to drop the charge
    1. The other jeweler said they were ridiculous to charge us HALF the price of the ring for a $15 service.  Yes, a $15 service. 
  2. Mark and I brought this story to explain to the manager at Kay’s
  3. He remembered us and so finally decided they would fix the ring at no charge.
  4. He entered the order into the computer and we left the store.

March 11th – Received the call that the “repair” was ready

  1. I went to the store on March 13th to pick it up
  2. The manager from the last time helped out and gave me the ring – which was NOT fixed at all
  3. When I pointed this out to him, he just went, “oh”
  4. He checked the system and realized when he put in the order, the ring was ALREADY back at the store, not fixed
    1. Scary that they don’t have an updated computer system to notify them when customer’s products return to the store
    2. Why did they call 2 weeks later if nothing happened to it?
  5. He put in the order AGAIN, so now we had to wait another two weeks and come back on a separate trip

March 25th – Received the call that the ring was ready

  1. Went to the store & the clerk couldn’t find the ring anywhere in the ring holds
  2. He checked the computer, which said the ring was already picked up on March 13th
    1. I explained to him the last situation, he was in shock that it had happened
  3. He and 2 other clerks continued to search the store
  4. They finally found it, with a different work order number than my slip (which is why he couldn’t find it)

LO AND BEHOLD, the notches were filled in.  The ring was actually, truly, really, ready.

I walked out of the store and vow (no pun intended) never to walk in again.

Why did the clerk tell us how to adjust a ring if NO ONE else, at multiple locations, who have been in the industry for years, has never seen that done?  Did she “make up” a service to close the sale?  Is that why the shop can’t get it right, because it essentially shouldn’t be done?

Moral of the story: Sometimes it’s worth it to pay a little bit more at the mom and pop shop.  If you are looking for engagement rings, wedding  bands, or any other kind of jewelry, head to Lander’s first.  Trust me – it’s worth it!

Comments welcomed from anyone else who experienced such awful and unprofessional and disorganized service at Kay’s as well.

New post coming soon!  I promise.  I’m sorry I’ve been so neglectful. 😦  As most of you probably know, with exactly 2 months to go from today (!), I’ve been kinda busy planning this event thing happening in May. 😉  But I’ll try to post something here very very soon.

In fact, one post I’m waiting on putting up is a result of all this wedding planning … while good things can come out of it – like finding amazing vendors (Joe, Deb, Ron F, Em, Stephanie, Carol, etc…), bad things also do too – like finding not-so-amazing vendors (ahem, Kay’s!).  So I’m waiting on this particular situation to FINALLY come to an end … but when it does, oh boy, believe me, you will get to hear all about it …

In the meantime – planning a St. Patrick’s Day party this year?  Check out my post with some very clever ideas to help you host a lucky event. 🙂

Many of you know of the saga of the wedding shoes.  You know of my obsession with Christian Louboutins and my determination to get a pair for May 15th (the big day).  You know how I was scouring eBay for months looking for a pair, constantly refreshing Neiman Marcus’s sale page to keep an eye on the ones on clearance, trolling the web for leaks on the next sample sale in NYC.  And most of you know how when I finally found a pair, they were fakes, there were tons of fradulent claims, I had to get a new credit card, fight with Mastercard and eBay and PayPal to get my money back … and how it left me broken-hearted and frustrated.

Out of that disappoinment came my concession that it just wasn’t going to happen.  I resigned myself to that fact and by now have moved on.  I know that someday in my life I will own a pair … just not now.

I decided to take the money I would be putting towards the Louboutins and put it towards a fantastic pair that I would find elsewhere.  I would walk into DSW and for once, not look at prices, but the shoes themselves.

Last weekend I went hunting with my MOH (and fabulous sister) Cordie in NY.  We hunted around Century21 on Long Island and found a stunning $250 pair of silver designer heels, just not in my size.  We scoured Luv My Shoes in Carle Place, we window shopped in Union Square.  But we came up empty.

Today I took the chance again at DSW in Stoughton, MA.  I gave myself plenty of time and went in with an open mind.  And determination to walk out of there with a pair of shoes.  I saw a few pairs I liked, went over to TJ Maxx to keep searching, realized I had made up my mind, and went back to DSW.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to announce that after months of searching,
I HAVE FOUND MY WEDDING SHOES.

Even better – I have found not one, but TWO pairs.

Yup, two pairs.  They are completely different – couldn’t be any more different, in fact – but both express ME.  And they’re both pairs I’ll wear again.  One pair is a little subtler, a little more vintage, match my dress and are nice enough to be wedding shoes without LOOKING LIKE wedding shoes.  The other pair, my “something blue,” are fun.  Different than regular bridal shoes, quirky, they stand out, and they scream “I’m here to have fun.”  Both speak to my personality and are examples of who I want to be as I take my first steps into marriage and into the next stage of my life with my honey.

Pictures are below (sorry for the low-res, they’re straight from my cell phone).  Thanks to the ladies of the bridal party for weighing in at the eleventh hour, too.

Some girls get two wedding dreses.  I get two pairs of wedding shoes.  And I couldn’t be happier about it.

My "something blues" on the left and vintage-style ones on the right

Caparros "Elope"

Mix No. 6 "M-Onyx"

I *love* this cover.

I love everything about her outfit – the top, the jeans, the shoes (naturally, since they’re Christian Louboutins).  I love her hair, I love how her eyes sparkle, I love how comfortable and casual and happy she looks.

Back to the shoes … I have developed a strange obsession with Christian Louboutins (or CLs, as they’re known in some fashion circles).  I decided a few months ago I was going to have a pair for my wedding in May.  I was intrigued by the magic, the mysticism, the height, how the styles were oh-so-cute and fun and funky.

After hunting around ebay, I realized I needed to find out my size.  So I went to Neiman Marcus to try a few pairs

LOVES!!!

 on.  I was with my Mom, we had just spent hours searching for her MOTB dress, and my friend Cristina was waiting to meet up with me.  Needless to say, I didn’t feel like I had much time.  And eyeing the price tags made me nervous – pretty deflated my dream, to be precise.  First, the sandals seemed a little small … and then I tried a pair of black Very Prive platform heels on. 

I totally got it.  I cannot explain the power, the magic, the beauty … even though the heels were 4 inches, they were super comfy and sturdy.  I felt strong and powerful and beautiful.  It was Superwoman condensed into one teeny tiny heel.

And I knew.  I had to have a pair.

And now I’m on the hunt.  It’s been tricky & time consuming & I’ve had tons of close calls … I’ve relegated myself to ebay.  Buying them full price is too much (and ridiculous, to be honest).  The fakes are still pricey, and even the sale price on sites like Net-a-Porter are still out of my range.  So to ebay I go.

“They will be mine.  Oh yes, they will be mine.”

What’s your current fashion obsession?

P.S. Bonus points for anyone who can name the two artists who belong to the two song titles in this post’s title. 🙂

P.S. S. My size in CLs is a 38 …

Mark and I are currently featured on two Web sites!  Very exciting. =)  Check them out …

Photography By Media Concepts – Engagement Session Highlights
(PS – this is our wedding photographer)
http://photographybymediaconcepts.com/engagements/index.html

Bring to Light Candles
(a company that my Mom is involved with – very cool custom candles!)
http://www.bringtolightcandles.com/index.php

Off to Vegas for most of the week for work! 🙂

 

Mark and I have been busy, busy with work and friends but we’ve managed to get a lot accomplished for the wedding, too!  (Psst – have you seen our blog?  http://markandmem.wordpress.com – check it out!)

Here are just a few updates since my last one – as of today, we’ve got 6 and a half months to go:

  • We booked the JP this weekend!  Deb Hoch (www.aneverlastingmemory.com) is super cool and romantic and so easy to get along with.  She performed the ceremony at our friends Jo and Darrell’s wedding last May and they had nothing but great things to say about her.  So we met with her this weekend and booked the date.  She’ll be sending us potential vows and we can copy and paste them to fit our own preferences – I love the customizing option!   Also, she insisted on having music on when we met with her because she apparently always has music on.  I die! 🙂
  • The bridesmaids dresses are all set – the girls are going to look gorgeous!
  • Rumor has it that the shower(s), bachelorette party and bachelor party plans are already underway.
  • We booked the honeymoon!  We are going to the Sandals Resort at Grande Ocho Rios in Jamaica.  All inclusive.  We are super pumped!
  • The Save the Dates have been ordered and are en route to be delivered to us – so we’ll hopefully be sending them out soon.  They’re soooo cute – and we’ll most likely be ordering matching invites from the same company soon, too.  I’m finalizing the last addresses we need so we can send them out once they arrive.
Could these be my something blue?

Could these be my "something blue"?

So we’ve made a lot more progress – although I keep getting waylaid because I’m on the hunt for an affordable pair of Christian Louboutins for the big day.  Ebay has become my new homepage and I gotta tell you, it’s not easy.

I’m headed to Vegas next week for a few days to attend the AAPEX/SEMA conference on behalf of one of our clients – so it’ll be tough to start making any big plans until I get back and get all caught up.  I’m still struggling with a lot of the song choices (first dance, bridal party entrance to the reception, etc.).  But I’m probably just putting too much pressure on it and we’ll figure it out soon enough. 🙂

Keep you posted as things develop!

PS – Happy Halloween!  What’s your costume this year?  Check out one of my old posts for some fun Halloween facts.

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