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Wedding season kicked off a few weekends ago with Ruby & Somu’s super fun Chicago South Indian wedding!  I have had the pleasure of photographing more than one Chicago South Indian wedding and am always absolutely thrilled and honored when friends refer me!  I meant to take a picture with all my past brides at this wedding but we were having so much fun that I completely forgot!  Ruby & Somu were such a lovely couple to work with.  They are both easy going and down-to-earth.  There was much laughter and love between the two and it was such a joy to see how much their friends truly loved them!

I started out the day with the bride and her bridesmaids at the hotel.  The girls were in their personalized robes, getting their hair & make-up done and enjoying their time together.  After we took some pictures of all the girls in those adorable robes, it was time for Ruby to put on her dress.  I loved the attention that her bridesmaids gave her during this time!  After her dress was on, I took a few bridal portraits of Ruby before we headed to her home for her blessing & prayer.

Meanwhile, my second shooter, Erica, met up with the guys at Somu’s house.  She spent time capturing Somu with his best buds and family members before his blessing & prayer time.  I personally love this tradition of the bride & groom getting special blessings from family members before they head off to the ceremony.

After the prayer and blessing time, we headed to the Mar Thoma church in Des Plaines.  Ruby & Somu decided to have a quick prayer together without seeing each other which was really sweet.  The ceremony was filled with beautiful singing and several traditions including the tying of the minnu, the crowning ceremony, the blessing of the rings and the Manthrakodi.  After the service we took some time for family photos and then headed of to Flick Park for some quick shots of the bridal party.

If you have never been to a Chicago South Indian wedding, then you might not know how much fun the reception part of the day is!  The bride and groom’s introduction did not disappoint as they created an intro video that was played before their big entrance.  The bridal party formed an arch with sparklers as the couple walked in.  After their introduction, Ruby and Somu went straight into their first dance and cake cutting.  The reception time was filled with fun dances and songs performed by their closest friends.

I’m going to give a shout out to their MC who sang an amazing rendition of Ed Sheeran’s song, “Thinking Out Loud” and also to one of the best men who created an unbelievable portrait for them.  Ruby & Somu, I hope you felt showered with love by all.  Your day was truly spectacular, thank you for allowing me to capture it!

Ceremony | Chicago Mar Thoma Church

Reception | Skokie Banquet & Conference Center -Holiday Inn

Wedding Coordinator | Sheril Philip

Videography | David at George Street 

Flowers | D’s Flowers and Morton Grove Florist

Cake Artist | The Baking Institute

DJ | MDM Entertainment

Make-up | Nicki Hala of Hala Beauty

Hair | Gigi Philip of Hair styles by Gigi

Tuxes | Emanuele Tuxedos

Wedding Decor | Prestige Wedding Decor

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I am so excited to share Sarah and Hendrik’s Chicago Athletic Association Wedding Photos because these two were so incredibly fun to photograph! I quickly learned how down to earth these two are during their downtown Chicago engagement session.  We hit up a few places in the city that were meaningful to them, including their office at the Boston Consulting Group where they met!  We also shot some of their engagement pictures at Millennium Park where we went back on their wedding day.  I love when couples like to recreate one photo from their engagement session at their wedding!

The day began at Sarah and Hendrik’s gorgeous home in Chicago.  When I arrived, Sarah was relaxing and having a great time with her bridesmaids.  I quickly fell in love with the large floor to ceiling windows she had in her living room!  Beautiful natural light during getting ready photos is a must!!  Sarah got in her dress, put on some killer shoes, and was ready to rock her bridal portraits!  Meanwhile, my second shooter, Erica was busy rockin’ the groom getting ready photos.   Shortly after, we all headed to the GORGEOUS St. Alphonsus Catholic church where the ceremony was to be held.  This church had the most beautiful blue ceilings which led for some dramatic ceremony shots.

After the ceremony, we stuck around for a bit for family photos and then headed off to take more of those Chicago Athletic Association wedding photos.  Thankfully, the hotel is walking distance from Millennium Park and the Art Institute of Chicago so it was super easy to get around for pictures. We wrapped up the portrait session with a picture of Sarah & Hendrik in front of the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, as well as one of them inside on their stunning grand staircase!

The reception room was amazing as well.  We had an incredible view of the city!  It’s fun to look back on this day because I captured a picture of one of the buildings with the window lights set up to say “Go Cubs Go”.  This just happened to be the night that the Cubs won the game that would take them to the World Series!  I don’t think anyone will forget where they were that night!

Sarah & Hendrik, thank you for allowing me to capture your spectacular wedding day!  It was certainly one to remember!

Ceremony | St. Alphonsus

Reception | Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

Videography | Aaron Bean Cinema

Flowers | Bunches

DJ | Toast & Jam

Hair & Make-up | Hairs 2 The Bride

Dress | Macy’s Bridal Salon

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Chris and Emily’s Chicago Saddle & Cycle Club Wedding is another favorite from last summer.  The overall ambience of the Chicago Saddle & Cycle club is just dreamy.  It has the perfect mixture of romance & sophistication in this hidden urban gem.

We began the day off photographing Emily at her grandmother’s historic house in Winnetka.  Emily had grown up visiting her grandmother’s house and had some pretty special memories hanging out on her front porch, so we made sure to get a picture of her and her bridesmaids there.  It was also the perfect getting ready location because it just so happened to be right around the corner from the Winnetka Congregational Church where the ceremony was being held.  This church was also very special to Emily and her family.  We took a few pictures in the church garden where Emily’s grandfather is actually buried.  I loved that the ceremony space was bright, letting in a lot of outdoor light.  It allowed for some beautiful photographs.

This gorgeous Chicago Saddle & Cycle Club wedding continued at the reception.  We lucked out with some perfect end of July weather!  Guests were able to enjoy the outdoor patio and seating as well as some of the grounds.  The night ended with some amazing music and dancing by the Blue Water Kings.

Ceremony | Winnetka Congregational Church

Reception | Chicago Saddle & Cycle Club

Videography | Something New Media

Flowers | Edward’s Florist

Cake | Sweet Mandy B’s

Band | Blue Water Kings

Bridesmaid Dresses | Brideside

Tuxes | Combatant Gentlemen

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Maya and Andrew had the perfect Chicago Marriott Wedding in Burr Ridge!  We started and ended the day at the hotel.  Maya had rented out a beautiful suite with a spacious living room and some beautiful window light which made for some rockin’ getting ready shots!   One of my absolute favorite moments was seeing her mom tear up as she helped Maya into her dress.  It was such a sweet moment to witness and capture.

The ceremony was held at the St. Francis Xavier Parish.  The church was just beautiful!  Maya and Andrew included some South Indian traditions in their ceremony which was also fun to watch.  Afterwards we headed to Cantigny to take some of their bridal party and bride & groom shots.  The lighting and weather were perfect!

This Chicago Marriott wedding continued back at the hotel in one of their ballrooms.  One of Maya’s friends created all of the beautiful decorations for the reception.  I also really loved that they had a whole sausage table which I’m guessing had something to do with Andrew’s Polish background.  There were some real fun moments during this reception including a choreographed first dance as well as some fun spontaneous dancing that happened throughout the night!

Venue| Chicago Marriott Burr Ridge

Ceremony| St. Francis Xavier Parish

Flowers| Old Oak Florist

Cake| Il Giardino Del Dolce

DJ| A Posh Production 

Hair & Make-up| Tamara Makeup + Hair Artistry

Dress: David’s Bridal

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This Aquaviva Winery wedding is long over-due considering it was one my favorite venues of 2016!  There were so many special details and moments throughout the day that I asked Lindsay if she would share some of her thoughts on her day.  I really love what she had to say about how she and Alex picked out their venues.
“Luckily for us, when it came time to pick a venue, we knew exactly what we wanted! We had been frequenting Acquavivia Winery for years celebrating anything from graduations to anniversaries, and even date nights. We had always talked about the future in those moments and said that whenever we decide to get married how amazing it would be to have it there. My love of wine combined with Alex’s Italian ancestry made this an easy decision for us. We also love that it is a restaurant allowing us to easily go back and continue to celebrate many more firsts as husband and wife.

Having both lived in St. Charles for most of our lives, we knew we wanted to get married in a church in our home town and Baker Memorial United Methodist Church was the ideal location for us. The sanctuary is absolutely stunning and we were able to design a ceremony that was reflective of us as a couple as well as our ideals. We both wanted to write our own vows (well me more than Alex, but he was willing to go along with it to make me happy) and now looking back we are both so glad we did! Another moment we loved was when we had all of our guests light a candle to represent the unity of our friends and family joining us on this journey. Looking out at all of our guests in that moment is something we will never forget! It wasn’t the first time that day that I got choked up, but it was such a surreal moment that it truly took my breath away! ”

Every moment of this Aquaviva Winery Wedding was truly spectacular.  It was so easy to see just how loved these two are.  One of my favorite moments of the night was hearing people talk about what an amazing friend Lindsay is to everyone.  Lindsay and Alex, thank you for allowing me to share this special day with you all!

Ceremony Venue: Baker Methodist Church| Reception: Acquaviva Winery| Videography: Imagination Designers| Flowers: Wild Orchid Floral Designs| Cake: Domino’s Bakery |