Big decisions about the big day

Planning a wedding comes with a lot of stress and a stream of never-ending decisions. Three local brides weigh in on theirs—from cake to music to makeup and more.

Planning a wedding comes with a lot of stress and a stream of never-ending decisions. Three local brides weigh in on theirs—from cake to music to makeup and more.

THE PANEL:

Kelly Striff

Canton bride-to-be Kelly Striff looks forward to her casual, vintage wedding to groom Eric Doyne in May. This savvy, budget-minded bride will take advantage of her best resources—her three crafty sisters and her laid-back attitude—for her wedding in Doyne’s parents’ backyard in Norton.

Holly Robinson

Alliance newlywed Holly Robinson married her now-husband Jerome Robinson at The Johnson Center at Malone University on October 4, 2014. This truly traditional bride peppered her classic wedding taste with eclectic extras such as dancehall music to honor her Jamaican groom and fake flowers that she will keep as a lifelong memento.

Andrea Ferriell

Green resident and bride-to-be Andrea Ferriell will wed her groom-to-be, Kyle Smith, at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chapel in January 2016. The classic-oriented future bride will flavor her winter wedding with Italian-inspired trimmings and personalized details.

A lot vs. a little guests:

A little:
“Big weddings come with a big price tag. Eric and I have been dating for more than five years, and if it were up to me, we’d be going to the courthouse. We are trying to keep our cost as low as possible, while having our close family and friends there to celebrate with us.” — Kelly Striff

A lot:
“My mom is one of 16 children. Needless to say, our wedding was quite large. A wedding is one, big celebration—(the) more people, the better!” — Holly Robinson

A whole lot:
“My family doesn’t have small weddings very often! I come from a fairly large extended family on both my mother and father’s side, so it would have been a nightmare trying to make the guest list small. We are estimating around 250 people attending the wedding at this point.” — Andrea Ferriell

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DJ vs. live band:

Neither:
“We won’t be having a live band or a DJ. We would rather have incredible food and mediocre DJ skills than skimp on the food and have spent an arm and a leg on music. For music, the venue has a jukebox free of charge, and a family member will also make us a playlist on her iPod that we can play over the speakers on the dance floor.” — Kelly Striff

DJ:
“Jerome is from Jamaica, and we wanted to incorporate some dancehall music into our wedding reception. The DJ for our wedding is from Antigua, and he is very familiar with different genres of music. He was able to smoothly transition the songs and keep the dance floor hopping.” — Holly Robinson

Indoor vs. outdoor setting:

Outdoor:
“We are fortunate that Eric’s parents have offered their gorgeous backyard for us to have our wedding in. They have beautiful flowers everywhere you turn and space to fit our small crowd. It’s perfect. We opted for a small restaurant with a room upstairs for rent to host our reception. The venue has a sort of rustic feel to it with exposed brick, wood-burning ovens and stunning woodwork.” — Kelly Striff

Indoor:
“Jerome and I both wanted an indoor wedding. Especially with having our wedding in Ohio, we did not want the added stress of weather conditions.” — Holly Robinson

Indoor:
“My fiancé is an assistant baseball coach at the University of Akron, and we had to either pick an off-season wedding date or get married in-between innings. I don’t think my guests would come to an outdoor January wedding in Ohio, so indoor wedding for sure.” — Andrea Ferriell

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Destination vs. hometown wedding:

Hometown:
“Early on in our relationship, we took a vacation to Vegas and told our families we got married. We didn’t. While it was a fun prank, it didn’t go over as well as we hoped, hence squashing all eloping plans for the future. I can see why many couples opt for destination weddings, though. It’s so much less stress, planning and decision-making.” — Kelly Striff

Hometown:
“By having a hometown wedding, people are more likely to attend than if it was a destination wedding. Most of your close friends and family will be able to come, which is what makes the wedding so much fun and memorable.” — Holly Robinson

Hometown:
“As much as we love the beach and the warm, sunny weather a destination wedding could offer us, our hearts were always with our hometown.  Family and friends are very important to us, and having everyone there to celebrate was the most important thing.” — Andrea Ferriell

Real vs. fake flowers:

Fake:
“Fake flowers are so easy to put together and arrange, without worrying you’re going to break stems or rushing the week of the wedding so they’re fresh. I can make bouquets six months prior to our wedding and keep them (or donate) for as long as I wish. The only downside to fake flowers is that they don’t have any kind of fragrance to them.” — Kelly Striff

A mix of both:
“We are doing a combination of the two. The ceremony and reception décor will be artificial flowers. My bridal bouquet, the bridesmaids’ bouquets, and the boutonnieres for the groom and groomsmen will all be fresh flowers.” — Andrea Ferriell

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Traditional vs. novel wedding cake:

Novel:
“I love desserts, and my fiancé loves desserts. Along with an extremely small traditional cake, we’ll be having a slew of mouthwatering treats. Key lime pie, cheesecake, chocolate sundaes, etc. Traditional cakes are boring, and it’s hard to find a cake that’s reasonably priced and actually tastes good. Having a combination of options allows our guests to choose what they’d like for dessert.”  — Kelly Striff

A mix of both:
“We will be having a traditional wedding cake that will be served after the meal, but we will also have a cookie table. My mom’s family is Italian, and for anyone that has been to an Italian wedding before knows—you do not skip the cookie table! It is a fun tradition in our family to get together and make all the cookies prior to the wedding.” — Andrea Ferriell

DIY vs. wedding planner:

DIY:
“My sisters and I have always been DIYers. It all started in high school, when we would make boutonnieres and corsages for many of our classmates to wear to the school dances. Naturally, we’ll be doing the same for the wedding. Centerpieces, flowers, decorations and more. As far as finding venues, vendors and the like, I also think doing your research pays off. While I’m sure having a wedding planner would be beneficial to some extent, it’s an expense I’m not willing to fork over cash for.” — Kelly Striff

DIY:
“We planned the wedding ourselves. A couple things that made the wedding planning go smoother was having a great support system, a planned out budget and schedule and good time management.” — Holly Robinson

DIY vs. wedding planner:

DIY:
“My sisters and I have always been DIYers. It all started in high school, when we would make boutonnieres and corsages for many of our classmates to wear to the school dances. Naturally, we’ll be doing the same for the wedding. Centerpieces, flowers, decorations and more. As far as finding venues, vendors and the like, I also think doing your research pays off. While I’m sure having a wedding planner would be beneficial to some extent, it’s an expense I’m not willing to fork over cash for.” — Kelly Striff

DIY:
“We planned the wedding ourselves. A couple things that made the wedding planning go smoother was having a great support system, a planned out budget and schedule and good time management.” — Holly Robinson

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DIY vs. professional makeup:

DIY:
“Being that I come from a family of talented girls, we will be doing all of the hair and makeup ourselves. My older sister is an unbelievably great hair stylist, so I’m covered there. I dabble in cosmetics myself and feel confident doing my girls’ makeup, as well as my own. If we did not have experience, I would highly recommend paying someone who does. Hair and makeup can change the bride’s entire appearance.” — Kelly Striff

Professional:
“I think that having a professional help you enhance your own personal beauty and style is the way to go. They know all the tips and tricks to really bring out your natural beauty in front of the cameras. Plus, what bride doesn’t want to be pampered on their wedding day?” — Andrea Ferriell

Where to buy

The Repository
Select Rite Aid Stores
Spee-D Foods
Buehler's Fresh Foods
Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations
Aultman Hospital Gift Shop
Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop
Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace
Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations
News Depot
Avenue Arts Marketplace
Yum Yum Tree Alliance
Grapes in a Glass