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Stephanie & Chris, Morgan Manufacturing

It was an honor to help plan Stephanie and Chris’ April Wedding last year. Stephanie and I have known each other for years as she used to be the events coordinator at the Chicago History Museum while I was working at Food For Thought.  Together, we planned countless weddings and became fast friends.  When she got engaged to Chris, needless to say, I was ecstatic.  Stephanie has impeccable taste and after choosing Morgan Manufacturing for her wedding venue, I knew this was going to be an incredible wedding weekend.

Food was one of the most important parts of the wedding planning process to them since they had traveled all over the world (and would soon be living in China) so we wanted to create a menu that was a reflection of their travels but also unique and fun for their guests.  Food For Thought designed Stephanie and Chris’ worldly menu that consisted of a Dim Sum Station with bahn mi’s, shu mai and pot stickers served in mini bamboo plates with chop sticks and accompaniments, a South American Station with skewers, mini chorizo sandwiches, rice and beans and plantain chips served on a black griddle top and a Middle Eastern Station with shawarma, gyros, gnocchi and a traditional Greek salad.  We ended the evening with mini Chicago style hot dogs and fried cheese curds (thanks to Chris’ alma mater), Madison, Wisconsin style….with Tiger Sauce.   Chris also flew in Milkbar (the bride’s favorite bakery in New York City) to surprise her with her wedding cake and cake truffles.  Stephanie was so surprised and loved it!

Revel Décor provided a gorgeous landscape of botanical based floral that was seasonal and organic – exactly what Stephanie had envisioned for her wedding day.  Stephanie carried a lush white bouquet with herb elements and black ”berry” accents (navy centered anemones and black seeded eucalyptus).  The bridesmaids wore varying shades of grey and held red anemones and red ranunculous.  They looked amazing all put together!

The ceremony was held inside Morgan Manufacturing and Revel hung a cluster of natural Manzanita branches showcasing draped greenery that hung behind the couple. We lined the aisle with pedestals and candles adding a glow to the walkway.   We had three looks for the reception design each on wooden rectangle dining tables.  One table had a greenery garland with botanical elements, votive candles and mixed metal candle holders.  The second look had a collection of candles and botanical elements that included lisianthus, anemones, white roses, black berries and greenery.  The third design had a knotted drift wood piece on the dining table with succulents, airplants and white floral finished with an ambient glow from the candles.  The reception looked stunning and we finished the look by hanging a large Edison bulb chandelier over the dance floor. The room looked amazing!  Amanda Hein captured this day beautifully while the Gold Coast All Stars kept the dance floor packed all night!

Stephanie and Chris met in graduate school at Northwestern.  They are two of the funniest people I know and they were always making each other laugh.  We had the best time together but more importantly I was honored to be a part of a dear friend of mine’s wedding.   Stephanie and Chris are a perfect match and I am so excited to see where life takes them.  For now, they are beginning their life as a married couple in China.

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Wedding Planner: Lauren Knuepfer, LK Events
Ceremony and Reception Venue: Morgan Manufacturing
Honeymoon Suite: The Westin, River North
Floral and Décor: Revel
Lighting: Sound Investment
Photography: Amanda Hein
Catering: Food For Thought
Linens: BBJ Linens
Entertainment: The Gold Coast All Stars
Wedding Dress: Vera Wang
Make Up: Shayna Shapiro, NARS Cosmetics
Hair: Megan Manzer
Invitations and Day Of Items: Magnificent Milestones
Rehearsal Dinner: Lux Bar
Transportation: VIP Valet Services

Blair & Rob, Chicago History Museum

Even though a couple’s wedding day is nothing about me, there are some couples that just bring me so much joy and laughter. This was the case with the stunning Blair and debonair Rob. Our journey together in planning their wedding was filled with fun and continually crossing off items on our To-Do lists!

When our team arrived at Public Chicago on the morning of the wedding, Blair and her ladies and her mom were in the midst of all of their beauty appointments with Lauren Logan and Brian Sutherby. There was much excitement in the air and soon we were putting Blair into her wedding dress. It was a very special moment as this was her mother’s wedding dress and doesn’t she look stunning? We then brought up Rob to have a look at his bride and their moments were absolutely priceless.

Rob, Blair and their Wedding Party then left with Taylor Lord for some fun photos around Chicago! We then joined up with them again at the Chicago History Museum for a few more photos until guests began arriving. Allison from Stems completely transformed the South Gallery with beautiful large arrangements with lush floral, branches, foliage and vines. This is definitely one of our favorite ceremony set-ups! When guests entered the room they were greeted with Ginger Rosemary Lemonade and lovely prelude music from artistrings.

Rev. Dave Angle performed a lovely ceremony for Blair and Rob and soon we had guests out on the Plaza for the Cocktail Hour. It was a beautiful July day and guests enjoyed the Specialty Cocktail of Bees Knees and hors d’oeuvres like Ahi Tuna on a Lotus Root Chip and Chile Rubbed Chicken in a Crispy Wonton. While guests mingled and congratulated Blair and Rob, the North and South Gallery was transformed into an elegant summer evening reception. From the ivory shantung linens to the fruitwood versaille chairs and the stunning centerpieces, the room was a perfect picture of elegance.

Blair and Rob chose for just the two of them to be introduced into the room for dinner and both of their fathers provided a short speech before dinner was served. The meal that evening featured Blair’s recipe for Blue Cheese Grits alongside a duet of Flat Iron Steak and Pan Seared Chicken. The guests absolutely devoured it all! But there was still room for some delicious Red Velvet Cake from Amy Beck Cake Design. Then to top off the celebration of Blair and Rob, the Gold Coast All Stars kept all of the guests on their feet all night. What a wonderful evening and congratulations to Blair & Rob!

PS – Please check out some of Blair’s thoughts on her wedding and follow her at The Fox & She.

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Tuxes: Men’s Wearhouse
Wedding Gown: Redesigned Mother’s Wedding Gown
Hair: Lauren Logan
Make-Up: Brian Sutherby
Bakery: Amy Beck Cake Design
Florist: Stems
Food: Food For Thought
Bridesmaids Luncheon: LuxBar
Rehearsal Dinner: Gibson’s Bar & Restaurant
Hotel Room Block: Public Chicago
Musicians (Ceremony & Cocktail Hour): artistrings
Musicians (Reception): Gold Coast All Stars
Officiant: Rev. Dave Angle
Photographer: Taylor Lord
Stationery & Calligraphy: The Bride
Transportation: V.I.P. Valet Services
Venue & Beverages: Chicago History Museum
Wedding Planner: LK Events

Laura & Kevin, Union League Club

One of the joys of being a wedding planner is the interaction I get to have with other people’s families. Sometimes I will have even more interaction with the family if I work with the mother of the bride through the planning process. This was the case with Laura and Kevin. Laura’s mom, Rosaire, reached out to me to help coordinate the celebration since Laura lived in CA and Kevin was in training sessions with the Marines. Rosaire and I hit it off right away.

When I arrived on the day of the wedding, the suite of ladies was filled with laughter and music and I knew we were going to have an amazing wedding day. The dynamic duo of Tony & Sharon of T&S Hughes Photography were capturing the moments shared between friends and family and all of the details of Laura’s stunning lace dress and Kevin’s immaculate uniform. Doesn’t she remind you of the Duchess of Cambridge?

After their First Look photo, the wedding party had some more photo opportunities around the city before heading to St. James Chapel for the beautiful ceremony.  One of my favorite moments of the ceremony was that Kevin received his father’s wedding ring – so bittersweet. In fact the entire ceremony featured special loved ones and made it very unique to Laura & Kevin.

After the celebration at the church ended, guests boarded buses to the Union League Club of Chicago for a lively cocktail hour with passed hors d’oeuvres like Duck Quesadillas and Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus.  As guests made their way into the Crystal Ballroom for dinner, they were greeted with a stunning floral and light display from W. Andrew Holitik. The evening progressed with heartfelt speeches, a salute to all of the men in uniform, an amazing meal featuring Filet Mignon and Herb Crusted Halibut, a very funny attempt to cut the groom’s cake and a packed dance floor courtesy of The Gold Coast All Stars. Congratulations Laura & Kevin!!

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Grooms Cake: Lizzie’s Bake Shoppe
Hairstylist: Toni Scavo
Make-up Artist: Nicole Ventura
Caterer: Union League Club of Chicago
Florist: W. Andrew Holitik
Musicians (reception): The Gold Coast All Stars
Photographer: T&S Hughes Photography
Rehearsal Dinner: Private Residence
Room Block Hotel: Union League Club of Chicago
Transportation for Couple: V.I.P. Valet Services
Transportation for Guests: Metropolitan Limousine
Venue (ceremony):  St. James Chapel
Venue (reception): Union League Club of Chicago
Wedding Coordinator: LK Events