Where to begin on my favorite things from this wedding. Let's start with the scented wooden floral bridal bouquet. I love the texture and how they will forever look fresh. These beauties will become keepsakes for years to come. Speaking of keepsake, the bride borrowed her grandmother's handkerchief with delicate crochet. I am helpless when it comes to heirloom pieces from the past.
Scroll down to see the GIANT earth balloon! Yes, this wedding took place on Earth Day and it happened that Hosanna Lutheran Church of St Charles had the perfect prop to represent the day. Although it is not a the theme for the wedding but we definitely had fun with it. Another unbelievable backdrop for photos was the windmill of Fabyan Forest Preserve. For locals this might be a familiar landmark but it is an amazing site to see if you have never been to the park. We got really lucky with some perfect sun flare in the photos as well.
There was one more unique element during the reception at The Riverview Banquests of Batavia IL The venue is right off of the Fox River which provided amazing light reflection for the lantern release. That's right the bride and groom had an intimate lantern release with immediate families which was inspired by one of my favorite Disney film Tangled.
Some of my favorite moments...
The bride’s first look with dad was so touching that I (the photographer) got choked up with emotions. Only about 30% of my brides do a reveal with dad. It is climbing up the ladder to be one of my favorite times of the day. I would love to see more brides incorporate this into their day.
This newlywed sprinkled little dashes of the past through out their wedding. We stopped by the groom’s childhood church for the wedding portrait. The church had historic beauty at the same time represented personal significance to the couple. The bride and groom opted out on the sand / candle ceremony that we often see. Instead they chose to do a soil ceremony where they combined the grounds of important landmarks of their past. Now that is a unique and original idea.
I love the idea of a generational tradition at weddings. The bride ordered a small second cake from Jarosch Bakery. This is the bakery her grandmother used for her own wedding back in the 40s. The mother of the bride also ordered her wedding cake from the same bakery. I love the idea of continuity from a local business that have been around for so long.
One of the sweetest moments was the transition from the father of the bride speech to the father daughter dance. It was so smooth and seamless. The father was sharing stories of how the bride loves to play princess then the song Cinderella by Steven Curtis Chapman came on. He then reached out his hand to lead the bride onto the dance floor like a scene from a fairy tale. It was a wow moment for me followed by awwwww.
Wedding Ceremony: First Congregational Church of West Dundee IL
Wedding Reception: The Seville of Streamwood IL
Soft and subtle colors usually come to mind when we think about winter weddings. This particular wedding was personalized with bright blue accents, shimmery details, and a bright red firetruck. That's right, the groom asked the team to bring the truck to McHenry County Fair Grounds for photos. How cool is that? My only regret is that I did not grab a photo of myself with the couple in front of the truck. I love the fact that we had so much time for outdoor portraits after the St. Thomas ceremony. Thanks to Elite Mini Bus, the wedding party were kept warm and cozy between locations. Our last stop was at Three Oaks Recreation Area in Crystal Lake. That's where the sun peaked out at the most perfect time. We wrapped up the wedding portraits with some golden hour light which is a rare find during the winter months.
The wedding party were a blast to spend the day with. Upon our arrival at The Seville of Streamwood IL is when I found out that I am further blessed with guests who are very talented dancers! The night partied on with the amazing music and lighting provided by djpatufiesta.com who specialize in bilingual events. The vibe of the reception was intoxicating. The Seville delivers once agaain with their interior ambiance, great service, and delicious food.
Based on the fact that I picked around 150 images to share from this wedding, I think it's easy to say that I am in love with everything about this day. Let's start with the light and airy entrance of The Cove Hotel which provided great fall decor for me to stage everything from rings to shoes. Those metal bars you see are actually baggage cart! I love using what I can find to dress up the detail shots. A new tip I added to my tool kit of ideas for achieving great getting ready photos is for the bride and groom to provide a small surprise gift for one another. It really adds to the emotions in the photos and a great way to stay connected during the preparation.
Upon arriving at the Hawk's View Golf Club, I was immediately impressed by the flow of the floor plan. Everything just made perfect sense. There's this amazing heated covered outdoor seating area that allowed for late fall weddings over looking at a to die for golf course sunset view. Fireplace, roomy bridal suite, and a separated full bar are some of the other features of this venue. Did I mention that the entire building is wrapped around with breath taking golf course view? Check out those clouds! We were able to get a variety of different settings for the wedding party portraits simply by moving from one side of the building to another. That's a dream situation for a wedding photographer.
As a photographer I had the perfect day. My clients and their families are a dream to work with. The wedding party was cooperative and fun. I worked along side with some great vendors such as Andrew the videographer from Aerodef Production and Jason from Elite Mini Bus The only thing that I would change is to increase the temperature by 10 degrees and tame the wind. My girls brave through the wind though and pulled of great smiles for the pictures!
There are two types of downtown weddings that I love. One is chic and modern. Another is historic and sophisticated. Elizabeth and Ben's wedding at the Intercontinental Hotel of Magnificent Miles in Chicago Downtown fit the second vision perfectly. Stepping out of the elevator of the 3rd floor is like stepping back in time. The intricate details on every wall, trim, and corner is unforgettably breathtaking. As I was testing the light, no less than 3 groups of people accidentally stopped at the King Arthur Court level. As soon as I hear that "ding" and the elevator door open, I was greeted with gasps, Ohhhhhs, and Woooows. The refined style was also carried out through the bride's dress, floral choice, and her gift to her groom. The beading of her wedding gown ( with just a tint of pink) shimmered with the city lights. The classic white rose bouquet from Blushing Bride Boutique stood out beautifully around the dark wood panels of the venue. Now I don't know much about whisky, but I know that special bottle was enjoyed by many on this memorable day.