My photographer called me 2 days before my wedding to tell me that she was not going to come to the bridal prep because it was a 45 minute drive which was “just too far” for her. She knew when I hired her almost a year ago where we were doing bridal prep. We were getting ready at my childhood home and my mom had decorated the entire house and planted flowers in the spring in anticipation of the pictures. We were all devastated. I scrambled trying to find another photographer for just the bridal prep. My brother’s ex-gf just started a photography business so I called her and since she had just gotten back from vacation, she was free. My brother’s wife was my Matron of Honor so it was a bit awkward but they were all cool about it. Day of the wedding, we left the favors and place cards at home. We were already at the venue almost an hour away so there was no way if someone went to get them that they would be back in time. Our only thought was maybe my brother’s ex-gf (the photographer) would bring them. I felt terrible asking but I knew my idiot family would make a huge fuss about not getting favors. We had her break into my parents house, gave her the alarm code so that it wouldn’t go off, find the favors, and drive almost an hour to the wedding that she wasn’t invited to, to give them to us. She got a hefty tip. We got a gormet pizza truck to cater the wedding. They were supposed to have a table set up inside with fancy pedestals and table cloths and servers in formal wear to serve the pizza. I walked over to see that the guests had been released to go outside and were waiting in a huge line at the pizza truck with paper plates to get the food. Nope nope. Shut that down quickly, but not before a lot of people were very confused and upset about why they were eating pizza off paper plates, standing outside during a formal wedding. Time came for toasts. My dad was last so he did the whole “raise your glass” thing. I noticed guests were looking around awkwardly and holding up their water glasses. I never got champagne. Totally forgot. Back to the photographer. She didn’t take any of the pictures we asked her to. We wanted lots of candids and she made us to all these stupid poses like bridesmaids blowing kisses at the groom. When I finally got the photos 5 MONTHS later, they looked ridiculous. Not to mention I never got any money back for her not shooting the bridal prep. I threatened to hire a lawyer to get my pictures before I actually got them. They are all cropped to awkward sizes so I can’t even print them. She sucked. For all of you living in Connecticut looking for a photographer, do NOT use Kate Speigle Photography. But definitely use Visual Appeals Studios (my brother’s ex’s business). They take fabulous pictures, you won’t even know they are there, and they (husband and wife team) will go above and beyond for you. My only regret with all the other stuff that happened was not hiring them for the entire wedding.