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A Stylish Soiree at Trump Hotel in Chicago

When one of my best friends called me to tell me her boyfriend proposed  (after digging her car out of the snow one night), I was ecstatic.  I am sure Sean didn’t intend to be stuck outside in the blistery cold Chicago weather before dropping down on one knee, but it made for a pretty cute story. Samantha and I have been friends since college and have had some incredible memories together. Samantha and Sean are two of the most sincere people I have ever met and together, they make a pretty cute couple.

Samantha and Sean fell in love with the Trump Hotel. They knew it was the perfect place for them to celebrate their nuptials and for their guests to enjoy a fun, fall evening. I had so much fun planning Samantha and Sean’s wedding because the two of them, along with Samantha’s mom, planned everything together.  I love when the groom gets involved in the planning and throughout every meeting it was apparent that Sean was there because he wanted to spend time with Samantha.  It was incredible to see two people enjoy this process so much because they were spending time together, and of course, having some fun along the way.

Samantha carried an elegant and timeless bouquet of white roses and hydrangea.   Her bridesmaids carried a smaller bouquet of all white roses to complement Samantha.  Jessica at Heffernan Morgan created a warm and intimate setting for the ceremony with an abundant array of candles.  We had two mirrored pedestals at the start of the aisle that each hosted tall silver candelabras with pillar candles. Continuing down the aisle was a series of low mirrored risers that each hosted an abundance of soft, romantic candlelight.  Samantha and Sean were married under a gorgeous Chuppah designed of modern open frame chrome legs and a white lattice top.  Suspended from the top and within the legs was a plethora of hanging votives.  Samantha and Sean’s ceremony made all of us tear up!  Rabbi Chalom told stories throughout Samantha and Sean’s relationship that made us all laugh and cry.  It was incredibly heartfelt.

Guests enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvre overlooking the city while we turned over the room to get ready for dinner service.  We used the silver candelabras on half of the guests’ tables with petite hydrangea arrangements surrounding the base.  We added a trio of varying height cylinders with floating candles to complete this elegant look.  The remaining dining tables featured a trio of tall glass vases with dramatic cascading white phalaenopsis orchids and surrounding candles.  We also elevated these arrangements with a mirrored light box that illuminated them from below.  The room looked incredible, especially once we opened the drapes for guests to enjoy the night skyline.  Greenlight kept the dance floor packed the entire evening and Tammy Leathem and Wedding Masterpiece were there to capture it all.

I was honored to stand next to Samantha while she married the man of her dreams.  I am so excited for what is to come for these two – a baby boy in January!!  Congrats Samantha and Sean!  Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your incredible day!

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Honeymoon Suite: The Trump Hotel
Ceremony and Reception: The Trump Hotel
Photographer: Leathem Photography
Videographer: Wedding Masterpiece
Entertainment: Greenlight
Floral and Décor: Heffernan Morgan
Lighting: PSAV, Trump Hotel
Hair: Lauren Logan
Make Up: Jessica Bernardi Meeker
Invitations: Invitations Creations, Highland Park
Rehearsal Dinner: Nico Osteria
Dress: Anne Barge
Shoes: Jimmy Choo and Converse
Tux: Armani
Bridesmaid Dresses: Jenny Yoo

Katy & Karl, The Modern Wing @ The Art Institute of Chicago

Katy and Karl are two of the sweetest people I know.  I was in awe of how calm and collected Katy was throughout the entire process, especially on her wedding day.  Katy is beautiful inside and out and it was my absolute pleasure getting to work with her and her wonderful family through the wedding planning process.  Katy and Karl fell in love with the Modern Wing at the Art Institute and we had so much fun bringing her wedding vision to life with the help of Revel Décor.  Greenlight kept the dance floor packed all night long (not surprised!) and Katy looked flawless.

Katy carried a loosely tied bouquet of ivory and blush pink floral accented with dark burgundy and finished with pale green foliage.  The bridesmaids, wearing navy blue, carried ivory and blush bouquets that complimented Katy.  Guests entered Terzo Piano for the ceremony and were greeted with a dramatic drape installation and cascading floral along the west windows that overlooked the city.  Katy and the bridal party walked down a custom fabric aisle runner. Greenlight’s quartet played throughout the ceremony, and we surprised guests with the bride’s uncle’s choir who sang a few songs during and ended the ceremony with, “Oh Happy Day!” Guests are still talking about the performance that started the evening on such a high.  After cocktail hour on Bluhm Terrace overlooking the city, guests were escorted downstairs to Griffin Court for dinner.  Greenlight began playing and guests quickly joined the dance floor and started dancing.  It was the perfect way to kick off the evening!

Revel designed long rectangle tables with a “floating garland” of pale and dark green foliage, white floral and pops of suspended greenery.  The square tables hosted beautiful collections of succulents, foliage and gold mercury candlelight.  The round tables were adorned with romantic ivory, pale blush pink blossoms, rich burgundy accents and trailing greenery.  We had two lounge vignettes set up on each side of Griffin Court, Hampton style bars and free standing mirrored menus.  This was the perfect completion to the garden inspired party.

Guests enjoyed a crispy artichoke and Brussels sprout salad with watermelon gazpacho.  Following the duet first course, guests were served a choice of beef tenderloin or grilled salmon.  Guests finished the meal with a tray of sweets on every table that included house made peanut butter cups, cheesecake lollipops, fruit tarts and truffles.  Vrai and One Fine Day were there with us from the rehearsal dinner on Friday until the end of the wedding night.  They captured it all!  Congrats Katy and Karl!

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Wedding Planner: Lauren Knuepfer, LK Events
Ceremony and Reception Venue: The Modern Wing @ the Art Institute
Honeymoon Suite: JW Marriott
Floral and Décor: Revel Decor
Lighting: Sound Investment
Photography: Vrai Photography
Videography: One Fine Day
Catering: Bon Appetit
Linens: BBJ Linens
Entertainment: Greenlight
Make Up: Jessica Meeker
Hair Stylist: Lauren Logan, La Vita di Sposa
Wedding Dress: Lela Rose
Shoes: J. Renee
Tuxedo: Ike Behar
Invitations and Day of Items: Ashley’s Stationary, Hinsdale
Rehearsal Dinner: Smith and Wollensky
Transportation: VIP Valet Services
On Site Painter: Betty Sitbon

Ashley & Aaron, The Field Museum

I was ecstatic when Ashley called me to tell me she was engaged! I planned her brother’s wedding a few years ago I knew this was going to be so much fun! Ashley and her family are family to me; my parents were with her in Italy when Aaron proposed – in Italy! Doesn’t get much better than that J And so it began….

When Ashley and Aaron walked into Stanley Field Hall at The Field Museum, we knew this was the place for them. They were beaming! We walked outside on the Northeast Terrace and Ashley told me that this was the place she wanted to marry Aaron. The Field Museum holds a special place in my heart and I was so excited to begin the planning for the next year.

Music was very important to these two and we contracted Greenlight who kept the dance floor packed the entire night. Ashley’s brother is an incredible musician and he wrote and performed a song for her during the reception. It was awesome!

Jessica at Heffernan Morgan designed this elegant affair for Ashley and Aaron. Ashley loved sunflowers so Jessica created a gorgeous Escort Card display with various heights and risers wrapped in custom navy and white fabric. The sunflowers held each guests’ escort card. The ceremony aisle featured beautiful arrangement of ivory and green hydrangea, yellow snap dragons, petite white spray roses and vibrant yellow roses. We used these arrangements near the lounge vignettes inside Stanley Field Hall for the reception; they looked incredible!   We had square and round dining tables adorned with the rich yellow, green and ivory floral combinations and added antique gold etched glass candles and votives that completed this garden party. We brought in lounge groupings on shag rugs accented with petite floral centerpieces that made Stanley Field Hall so warm and inviting. Guests were served from sleek double mirrored bars which matched the mirrored stage surround that added a touch of glamour to the dance floor area.

Ashley carried a soft and textural bouquet of pale yellow garden roses, white ranunculus, light yellow spray roses, butter garden stock and white freesia.  Aaron wore a white ranunculus with freesia for his boutonniere.

The menu planning was such a blast for all of us! Ashley and Aaron wanted to incorporate their love for Italy and Italian foods and Blue Plate worked with us to customize a perfect menu for them. We started the seated dinner off with an Antipasti Course; a Burrata Salad with sliced red and yellow tomatoes and next was the Pasta Course; Truffled Pecorino Gnocchi with a Parmesan Cream and White Truffle Oil and for the Secondi; guests’ choice of Cracked Pepper Crusted Beef or Herb Roasted Chicken Breast. Guests enjoyed a Gourmet Cappuccino Station and a Dolci Station with Italian and American petite sweets for dessert. We served Mini Sliders, Mac and Cheese Cups, Mini Grilled Cheese and Chocolate and Vanilla Milk Shakes for Late Night and guests were treated to a Candy Station with Ashley and Aaron’s favorite candy and Mini Gelato Cones as they departed.

Ashley and Aaron had the most perfect day and it was an honor for me to be a part of it. Matt and Vanessa with Avery House captured every precious moment from these two. We loved every minute of working together and I am so happy for them!!

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Planner: LK Events
Photographer: Avery House
Videographer: I Do Films
Honeymoon Suite: The Palmer House
Ceremony and Reception Location: The Field Museum
Dress: Vera Wang
Bridesmaid Dresses: Joanna August Newberry Long, Tangled Up in Blue
Groom and Groomsmen Tux: J Crew
Flower Girl: J Crew
Ring Masters: J Crew
Bride’s Shoes: Bridal Tom’s
Ceremony and Reception Entertainment: Greenlight
Catering: Blue Plate
Cake: Cake Chicago
Invitation and Day Of Items: Magnificent Milestones
Officiant: Bride’s Cousin
Floral and Décor: Heffernan Morgan
Lighting: Frost Chicago
Hair: Lauren Logan
Make Up: Brian Sutherby, Muse Beauty
Photo Booth: Smile Booth
Rehearsal Dinner: Quartino’s
Thursday Night Welcome Party: Parents of the Bride’s Home
Transportation: VIP Valet Services
Sunday Brunch: The University Club

Caitlin & Andy, Private Residence

I love reminiscing about our favorite summer weddings, especially this time of the year when we are all ready for Spring! Caitlin and Andy were married last July on a private residence in the resort town of Lake Geneva. Caitlin’s parents have a stunning home at the Shore Club overlooking the lake where the ceremony and reception was held. We had a picture perfect day; guests were transported to the Shore Club from their downtown Lake Geneva hotels and walked over to the lakeside ceremony. Caitlin and her bridal party walked from their home down a beautiful path to their ceremony altar under the trees.

After the ceremony, guests walked over to the Shore Club and enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvre around the pool. The sun was about to set as guests entered the gorgeous Sperry Tent while the band began. The bridal party was introduced and to the guests’ surprise, Caitlin and Andy arrived by a decorated golf cart as husband and wife. Caitlin and Andy surprised guests at the end of the evening with sparklers and wish lanterns and guests danced all nightlong to Greenlight, one of Chicago’s greatest bands. Caitlin had so many personal touches and details that made for a very intimate reception. We all had a blast up in Lake Geneva!

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Planner: LK Events
Tent and Lighting: Sperry Tent
Photography: Robert Wojtowicz
Catering: Gooseberries
Beverage Service: Drink Inc.
Linens: BBJ Linen
Rentals: Halls Rental
Band: Greenlight
Videography: Blu Couture
Photo Booth: Loewen Images
Floral: Joann Wright with Lily Pots
Cupcakes: Sweet Mandy B’s
String Quartet: Melissa Moon
Transportation: Riteway Shuttle Service
Hair and Make Up: Clearwater Salon in Williams Bay