Elizabeth Nord Photography » Everyone has a story. Let me tell yours.

My husband and I met Leynee and Doug when we first moved to Chicago in September of last year. We all became immediate friends!  We typically go on double dates together and often times spend holidays (like Easter, 4th of July, and Halloween) together since we consider each other “our Chicago family.” We always loved hearing about the beautiful Miami beach, their adventures in Florida and DC, and how they fell in love. Last winter, Doug and Leynee went on a ski trip to Colorado, where Doug proposed to her on a mountain top. Seeing the pictures when they returned and getting to hear the whole story was so exciting!

Vince and I had always planned on attending their wedding in Miami, but I was so honored when they asked if I would consider photographing their wedding day as well. Getting to photograph a friend’s wedding is unlike any other wedding I’ve done before.  One thing that I took away from photographing this wedding was how it reminded of why I want to love my couples, why I like to know their love story before the wedding day, and why I want to remain friends with them even after it’s all over.  I ask a ton of questions beforehand so I am able to understand them individually as well as a couple. In other words, I like to know what makes them tick. Because I knew Leynee and Doug individually as well as a couple, I truly believe that I was able to capture their wedding day unlike any other person would have been able to do.

Something else that made this wedding incredibly special to me is that I was there when Leynee found THE dress. We ventured to Valparaiso, IN together to a small boutique bridal store, enjoyed lunch and a quick stop at a cupcake store (we LOVE cupcakes!), and then decided that this dress was IT! It was the first dress that she tried on that day and we both cried as we saw it on her. It was SO Leynee.  As I took the dress out of the bag on the wedding day to photograph it and all of her gorgeous accessories, the memories of finding the dress flew back into my head. I couldn’t help but smile! Leynee and I also happen to master brunchers. (I’m not sure if that’s a word, but if it’s not- it is now!! lol) We love to find new restaurants around Chicago, enjoy “fancy eggs”, and enjoy a mimosa (or 3). We could literally spend all day having brunch together. I was also able to attend her bachelorette cruise along with some of her closest friends, which was so much fun! I’m still gushing over the fact that I went on a cruise to the Bahamas!! Over this past year, we’ve really gotten to know one another and become such amazing friends.

I am so happy to have been able to watch their relationship over the past year and to have been chosen to be their wedding photographer.  Gosh, what an incredible honor. What an AMAZING job I have. I feel so incredibly blessed to have such amazing friends in my life and to have them trust me 100% with their most precious memories. I could go on and on about how special this wedding was and how amazing Doug and Leynee are, but I will leave you now to look at the images from their incredible wedding. It was simply perfect in every way.

 

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Last week we celebrated the last Chicago Tuesdays Together meeting of the 2015 year! Instead of the normal topic meet up, we decided to celebrate with a Christmas party where we could get to know one another better, drink wine (duh), and have fun!! We met at Elizabeth Bankmann’s STUNNING home in Logan Square and it couldn’t have been more perfect!

As I reflect back on the past 6 months, I can’t help but smile. I am so thankful for all of the friendships this group has brought me and for everyone that comes to the meetings each month. Your support of the group and of me as a leader means more than you will ever know!

I also want to thank all of the people in this group that continue to support each other, lift one another up, offer advice, and give hugs when needed. YOU are the reason The Rising Tide Society and Tuesdays Together is a success. As we quickly dive into the 2016 year, I urge you to keep encouraging one another and spreading the word about Community Over Competition.   Give smiles, hugs and laughter… Continue to be a shining light in someone’s life and in their business! I love this group so much and cannot wait to see it (and everyone in it) flourish in 2016!

XOXO

 

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Although a little rainy and windy at times, this gorgeous fall day was truly a perfect day for Elise and Dan’s wedding.  Elise’s dress and details were to die for!  Dan was dressed to the nines and was so excited to see Elise for their first look. I just love their sweet personalities that shined throughout the entire day and their obvious love for one another.

 

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On October 29th I had the unique opportunity to photograph the La Perla grand opening on Oak Street in Chicago alongside Vogue Magazine. The store is absolutely stunning! They opened the doors to some of Chicago’s most influential people, amazing entrepreneurs, CEO’s, and celebrities such as Melody Hobson (President of Ariel Investments and wife of George Lucas), Donna Hall (owner of Donna Mondi Interior Design), Suzy Biszantz (CEO of La Perla), and so many more amazing people!

Guests were greeted at the door and invited to browse the store, drink champagne, and enjoy light o’heuvres. Following the opening they held an exclusive dinner at Fig & Olive decorated by gorgeous floral centerpieces and personalized menu cards.

These photos are also seen across the media! See a few of the links below.

Social Life Chicago

Chicago Business

SPLASH: Sun Times

 

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As I walk in the door to Gotam’s family home, I am greeted with hugs and escorted to the garage where his parents were hosting the prayer ceremony (also known as Graha Shanti) for Gotam and Shveta.  As everything was getting set up, their family members quickly began to gather around the couple who sat on multicolored rugs that were placed throughout the floor.  According to Hindu traditions, this ceremony is a formal engagement announcement.

This experience was like no other for me. It was really beautiful to watch the Indian rituals and to hear the language spoken. The happiness in everyone’s eyes and the laughs they had will be something that Gotam and Shveta will never forget. Something I will personally never forget is the fact that the parents invited me to be a part of the ceremony. I put down the camera for a few moments so I could bless the couple by anointing my forehead with pithy (a specially prepared paste), drinking water and then putting it on my head.  Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your special day!

I am beyond excited to be their wedding photographer and to spend so much time with them throughout the planning process over the next few months. They will become a regular on the blog over the next few months, so be on the look out for more photos from this amazing couple!

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Erin and Dave really wanted the gorgeous fall leaves for their engagement session, so they opted to wait until after their wedding to do their engagement session! While it’s not the traditional route, I loved this idea!  It was so much fun to see them again after their wedding day, talk about their new pup Lincoln, and what they were going to dress up as for Halloween. What better location for this than at Graue Mill!

It’s easy to see why Erin and Dave were among my favorite couples to photograph this year! They are kind, fun, oh so cute together!

 

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I am so excited to announce the new (and first!) Love In The City: A Wedding Photography Workshop!  This will be a positive and encouraging workshop for photographers who want to strengthen their craft and their business. I can’t wait to meet you all!

 

Loveinthecityworkshop

 

When?  

February 20th from 10am-6pm followed by a Welcome Night from 6-8pm.

February 21st from 10am- 5pm.

Where? 

Elizabeth Nord’s home in Chicago, IL

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Sammy and I initially met at a local networking event for wedding professionals a few months ago.  From there, I kept seeing her sweet self at other events and one evening I was able to meet her fiancé Michael as well! My husband and I had the pleasure of hanging out with them for the evening and we were like instant friends. They are both so sweet, funny, and absolutely perfect together! A few weeks later when they asked me if I’d want to photograph their wedding, I was ecstatic! I love any chance to photograph my friends and fellow wedding professionals!! 🙂 For those that don’t already know, Sammy is the event sales manager at Zed451 and Michael is a wedding officiant and he also owns his own personal training business called Michael Moody Fitness.

Sammy texted me one evening and asked what I thought of a travel themed engagement.  Um….LOVE! I asked her if they’d be interested in photographing part of their session at an airport with a plane if I was able to swing it and from there, I was on the hunt! Thanks to my new friend Charlie, I was able to photograph their engagement session at a small nearby airport and then at a forest preserve afterwards for some amazingly gorgeous fall images!

Sammy and Michael, I cannot wait until your wedding in April! We’re going to have SO much fun!

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As I walk into Jenna’s parents’ home, I’m immediately greeted with hugs and offers to eat something. Jenna’s smile was from ear to ear, her family and bridal party wore shirts in relation to their part in the wedding (so sweet!), and the dogs were excited as ever to have so many people in their home!  Speaking of dogs, Zach and Jenna LOVE their dog Dan. Probably just as much as I love my Charlie! I was so excited when they asked if it was okay to bring Dan along for some photos at the farm. My response: ABSOLUTELY!! Any chance I get to work with animals, I’m in! Plus, I mean…c’mon! Dan is such a cutie! Anyone that knows Zach knows that he is just as amazing as Jenna is.  The way he holds her gently and cares about her is enough to make any girl swoon.

The Stonebridge Country Club was truly the best venue for Jenna and Zach’s wedding day.  The weather was beyond amazing, the timing of their ceremony was JUST right, and their love made everything about their special day all the more perfect.

I am beyond excited for the two of you!!! Congratulations Mr and Mrs Fasick!

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Elizabeth Greve

GORGEOUS AS ALWAYS!!! LOVE the sunset pictures! 😉 Great job lovely!

Susan Noble

Absolutely Stunning

When I received a call from the lovely ladies at CityGirl Weddings, I knew this proposal was going to be an amazing one. I’ve worked with them before on a proposal so I’m always excited to see what they have planned for the next one! Each proposal is so unique and special to the couple.

Andrew had just finished running the Chicago marathon.  Exhausted, he quickly changed into a suit that his friend brought for him at the finish line so that he could surprise his girlfriend Ann as she finished running the marathon too.  Keeping up with her whereabouts, he met her near the finish line and she was, at first, confused as to why he was wearing a suit, wondering if he even ran the marathon.  Then, it hit her! He’s proposing! Being proposed to after running a marathon had always been a dream of Ann’s so this was literally a dream come true! Ecstatic, she said yes and he gave her a bouquet of flowers that was created by ZuZu’s Petals and introduced me to her.  She was so excited and happy to have this all documented! They then rode on a pedicab to the Lincoln Park Zoo where we ended with a few portraits of the two of them.

 

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A few months ago I had the opportunity to second shoot alongside my amazingly talented and gorgeous friend Britta with Britta Marie Photography. Madeline and Michael’s wedding day at the stunning University Club of Chicago was like a dream.  The guys dressed in custom tuxes while the ladies dressed in pale pink bridesmaid dresses.  The University Club reminds me of something out of a Harry Potter movie (which is a GREAT thing)! Large chandeliers , stained glass windows, and family crests lined the walls.  I hope I get the chance to shoot here again. It’s breathtaking!

 

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When I initially met Erin and Dave, I just knew they were going to be amazing to work with. Erin has the sweetest smile and such a grace about her.  Dave is such a gentlemen and you can tell how much he loves Erin by the way he looks at her.

Their wedding day was simply perfect. Erin had elegant pearl and diamond accessories to accent her absolutely stunning wedding gown. I really loved Dave’s copper colored cufflinks! They were married at their local parish in Western Springs and celebrated their reception at the gorgeous Edgewood Valley Country Club. The sun shined bright and warm, which made for some absolutely magical images.

Congratulations Erin and Dave!! SO excited for you guys!

 

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My sister is married! I’m still in shock, honestly. I still remember the days when neither of us thought we’d ever get married, but look at us now, Lauren!

Lauren, you’ve truly been the best sister a girl could ever have. You continue to inspire me, to lift me up, and to be a bright, shining light in my life. You are absolutely radiant and I know that you’re going be one amazing wife… and mother one day. Marriage looks good on you, sis. I’m so proud of you.

I am so glad that we had the chance to sneak in a bridal session the week I was home for your wedding day.  I will treasure these memories and these photos forever.

I love you!

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For those that don’t already know, I just got back from Las Vegas. It was my first time there and it was SO much fun! I was there along with my sister and mom for my sisters’ bachelorette party.

It was a trip I’ll never forget. We had such a wonderful time together, just us three ladies.  Taking a trip together was something we’ve always wanted to do and it was truly a dream come true to experience Vegas for the first time together.

We stayed at the MGM Grand. I was floored at how large it was! It literally had anything and everything we’d ever need- restaurants, shops, a night club, bars, casinos, a candy shop, cupcake store, coffee shops, pools, etc. EVERYTHING.

Our second day in Vegas we spent the day exploring the Las Vegas strip.  We walked just about the entire thing, weaving in and out of some of the famous hotels to explore everything they had to offer.

 

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For years I’ve had the dream of shooting a masquerade styled wedding.  When I met my friends Kristina and Devika back in January, I mentioned this idea to them and they said how they’d been wanting to do something like that as well!  For many months, we went to meetings, picked out the perfect details and color schemes, and made the shoot come to life.

This shoot was literally a dream come true.  It was featured recently on the popular wedding blog  Elizabeth Anne Designs and we could not be more excited!  Be sure to check out the video at the end of the feature (I’ll also post it at the end of this blog post!)

As an added bonus, FortyOne Films gave me a special Behind the Scenes Video of me shooting the styled shoot.  I’m obsessed with it and hope you like it too! 🙂

 

Vendor Spotlight

Venue- The Armour House
Photographer- Elizabeth Nord Photography
Planner, designer, stylist, and Florist- Vision of Elegance
Invitations and other paper decor- Pink Elephant 
Videographer- FortyOne Films
Plates/Glasses/Bar cart- The Festive Frog
Hair- Debbie Petrielli
MUA- Joanna Bastermajian
Linens- Nuage Designs
Baker- Elysia Root Cakes
Models- Lauren Dod and Chris Maher
Dress- Doris Bridal
Jewelry/Shoes/Veils- The Left Bank Jewelry and Bridal Finery
Swarovski Crystal Mask- Rodwall Couture
Tux rental- ESQ

 

 

 

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It was raining cats and dogs outside.  My feet, hair, and equipment bags were soaking wet as I entered the Hotel Arista lobby that blustery day.  I was met and greeted with a hug by the sweetest of wedding planners, Sam Dockery with Bliss by Sam, who told me what room Winna would be in.  As I entered the suite, Winna was absolutely glowing.  She smiled from ear to ear SO excited to be marrying the love of her life, Ernest.  In the guys room, Ernest and his friends were cracking jokes and getting ready.  Ernest had on the sweetest grin and was so happy to have everyone together.  The mood was simply perfection.

Ernest and his family are originally from Liberia so he wanted to incorporate the African culture into his wedding day.  His mother, grandmother, and several of his guests wore the traditional Liberian wedding attire which included gorgeous fabric that was full of color.

During the ceremony, Ernest’s grandmother gave her blessings to the new couple which was spoken in her native language.  They also celebrated with a candle lighting ceremony, a tasting of an orange drink, and the “jumping over the broom” ritual.  In African culture, jumping over the broom symbolizes the wife’s overall commitment to the house and to who ran the household (the man).  I love learning about different traditions and cultures…how unique!  Oh and did I mention that the cocktail hour had African drummers!? Too cool.  This amazing wedding day was truly filled with dancing, laughter, and love.  What more could you ask for?!

Winna and Ernest, I could not be happier for the two of you and cannot wait to see where your lives lead you! xoxo

 

Vendor Spotlight:

Photography- Elizabeth Nord Photography

Second Shooter- Martine Jeanty

Wedding Planner- Bliss by Sam

Videography- Kevin Wagan Cinematography

Florist- Annie Occasion For Any Occasion

African Drummers- Lande Sanusi

Men’s Suits- Men’s Wearhouse

Cake Designer- DeEtta’s Bakery

Caterer- CityGate Grill

MakeUp Artist- Lena Clark

DJ- DJ Prince Diony

 

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Elizabeth Nord – VC

[…] of 27 is considered one of the top 22 best wedding photographers in Chicago where she can be found. Elizabeth met her husband when she was 16 and got married at the age of 20 (read her love story here). She […]

Ashley (originally from Louisiana) and Joe (originally from the Chicago suburbs) opted for something a little different to celebrate their engagement: a night time engagement session. Excited for the session, Ashley decided to rent a dress from Rent The Runway for their session in the middle of downtown Chicago while Joe decided to wear a tuxedo.  You know this couple is a fun one when you find out they’re having an amazing destination wedding in Louisana next year! Best wishes, you two!

 

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This couple was filled with laughter, never stopped smiling, and were absolutely hilarious!  I love how they just had fun with one another on their wedding day. No stress. Just fun.  Audre looked like a stunning Greek Goddess in her simple, yet perfect wedding dress and headpiece that stopped me in my tracks.  Marius rocked his gray suit that featured his favorite robot cufflinks, a pink pocket square, and green tie from The Tie Bar.

Both Audre and Marius were students of the University of Illinois at Chicago and were very familiar with the famous Mario’s Italian Lemonade stand (thank you for introducing me to this amazing find! YUM!).  They had their first look in front of the always busy lemonade stand and finished by eating some of the yummy goodness themselves! We then traveled to Pilsen to find some of the coolest graffiti and old abandoned buildings.

Audre and Marius celebrated their Lithuanian wedding at the amazingly cool venue, Lacuna Artist Lofts.  Their Lithuanian traditions were shown throughout the entire day and man did they dance the night away!! I was second shooting this day alongside the amazingly talented Amanda Miller Photography! See more from Audre and Marius’ wedding day on her blog!

 

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As always, second shooting alongside the amazing Amanda Miller never disappoints. This amazing wedding was one I won’t forget for many reasons! Matt and Lydia, two amazingly sweet people, welcomed me to their wedding day with open arms.  Lydia’s details were spectacular and well thought-out, while Matt’s details were sentimental and classic.  They got ready at the stunning GuestHouse Hotel and had their ceremony and reception at the Armour House, which is one of my absolute favorite venues.  To see more, be sure to see Amanda’s blog post!

 

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Today marks one year that I’ve called Chicago my home. When I say it out loud I immediately think “wow! I can’t believe it’s been that long already!” but then again, I think “wow! It’s only been a year?!”  Today was the day that I hadn’t even moved into our home yet, but I already considered Chicago my city.  I was proud to call it home and I couldn’t wait to explore it with Vincent.

Growing up in Tennessee, I was from a small town called Gadsden which has a population of like 400 people. It’s super tiny and if you needed gas or groceries, you had to drive 20 minutes to either Humboldt or Jackson to get them.  I’m talking about a town with no stop lights and cows for neighbors. Now don’t get me wrong, Gadsden is absolutely gorgeous.  It’s full of open land where either cotton or corn typically grows, there’s plenty of room for dogs to roam the yard, and there’s lots of areas to ride a four wheeler.  Can’t go wrong with that!  But when I moved to the city, I realized how easy it was to just walk everywhere.  I found that if I needed something in a pinch, there’s a 7-eleven right downstairs that I can go to or a CVS just a few blocks away.  Talk about convenience! Chicago, you spoil me.

This time last year, I was currently living with my sister in law (for a few days) so I could come here as soon as possible and photograph a wedding alongside Amanda Miller.  I was so excited to work with her and to start making friends in the wedding industry.  I was really nervous to move to the big city where I didn’t know anyone, but thankfully, Amanda welcomed me with open arms and I figured if everyone was as sweet as she was, then I’d be okay here.  Like anywhere and anything, I quickly learned that not everyone would be as welcoming, but that’s okay.  I love the quote “Your vibe is your tribe” and I find that this is very true.  I have been blessed with some amazing friends this year and I can’t imagine my life without them.

Honestly, if you would have asked me a year ago if I’d be where I am today, I would have never believed you. I was not sure how I’d fit in here or if I’d even make friends.  I kept thinking “I’m just a girl from small town Tennessee. How will I ever make a name for myself in such a big city?” I will tell you though, there is SO much opportunity here and I truly believe that there is enough business for everyone.  I’ve been positively encouraged by all the networking events and education-based opportunities that there is here.  It’s really quite amazing! I have been introduced to highly talented business women and men and have been invited to events and groups that I never knew existed.  I’ve been a part of a amazing group of creative women entrepreneurs called Creative Chics and I’ve even started a Tuesday’s Together group in Chicago.  With each month that passes, I get more and more excited (and surprised) at the opportunities and experiences I’ve been given here.  Some of my favorites include photographing a proposal at the Trump, an pop-up elopement, an Indian, Jewish, Chinese, Indonesian, and Lituanian wedding, and an event for Francis Coppola. This year, I’ve been accepted to be a member of Style Me Pretty’s Little Black Book and I’ve been featured on the Knot, Huffington Post, How He Asked, Elizabeth Anne Designs, and other amazing wedding blogs! Not to mention, I was recently given the opportunity to shoot for a magazine and it’ll be coming out in October! I mean, seriously!? This year ROCKED! I would have NEVER believed this would ever happen to me.  I’m still in shock, honestly.

I don’t say this to brag…truly. I say all this 1. Because I’ve worked really hard to get where I am today and I believe that we SHOULD be proud of our accomplishments and 2. Because I want to say that if I can do it, so can you!  Seriously.

I just want to say a quick thank you to everyone that has trusted me with documenting their special memories, has invited me to events, has let me second shoot for them, has given me advice and opportunities to grow, and has been a constant encourager and supporter over this past year.  You guys have made me feel so welcome here and I can’t thank you enough! If I could hug each one of you right now, I would! 🙂 A huge thank you to my husband and my family for being my biggest fans. Thank you to all of my new Chicago friends and thank you to all of my Tennessee and Florida friends that have supported me as I moved from city to city over the past 4 years trying to regrow my business each time.  It’s because of people like you that I am able to pursue this amazing dream of documenting life and love.

THANK YOU

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Photo by Britta Marie Photography

Giedre Krulikas Sidrys

Yay!!! Congrats!! Also, whose Lithuanian wedding? There’s a good chance I know em 😉

lizard

Thanks girl!!

Christian and Johanna, like most couples, know just how stressful planning a wedding can be.  Together they agreed that they wanted their wedding day to be small, intimate and full of stress-free fun, so they decided to get married at the Justice of the Peace and then have a reception at Tanta where they would be surrounded by their closest family and friends.  However, this did not mean that they wanted to skip out of the photographs documenting their downtown Chicago wedding, so when they called me with their unique request, I was more than happy to say YES!

You would never know that Christian and Johanna had never been in front of the camera, because they were seriously amazing!  They nearly posed themselves throughout the entire session and they even broke out into their own version of the pose I put them in (which I LOVE!)  More than anything, I love that they trusted me whole heartedly with location choices, lighting situations, and with capturing the best moments of their day.  Just makes my little photographer heart SO happy!

Congratulations Christian and Johanna! I am so incredibly happy for you guys and wish you the absolute best in your new life together!

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NIKON RULES. Okay, now that we have that settled we can continue. haha Just kidding 😉

Nikon or Canon? 70-200 or 85mm? Nikon brand or off brand flash? SO many choice and decisions to make!  I’ll tell you one thing, though.  Every photographer is different.  When it comes to lenses, camera bodies, flashes, memory cards, etc we all prefer different brands, accessories, and capabilities. I can only speak for myself as to what I use and why I use what I use, so this is a list of everything that I typically bring with me on a wedding day (some things not pictured).

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When Elise mentioned that Dan went to Loyola University and wanted to do their engagement session on campus, I was so excited! Loyola University is absolutely stunning!  It’s right next to the lake, filled with wide open areas and interesting architecture…a photographer’s dream! Not to mention that Elise and Dan are absolute PROS in front of the camera! Hello, gorgeousness! I could not be more excited to photograph their wedding in October! eek! Let the count down begin!

 

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On July 25th, my husband’s sister, Jackie, got married to the love of her life, Alex, on the beautiful Notre Dame college campus at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart.  You might remember these two from their swoon-worthy engagement session in Ireland last year- seen here!

I first met Alex over Skype one night and even though we just exchanged a quick “Hey! Nice to meet you! How’s it going? Okay, bye!” I knew I liked him.  I had a good feeling about him and I could see how much Jackie really loved him.

It was so much fun to stand by Jackie on her wedding day (alongside my husband who was a groomsmen) as one of her bridesmaids.  I will have to tell you guys that it was very strange being on the other side of the camera for once.  It was so great though!  It’s such a rare occasion now to be a guest or even a member of the wedding party!   I will say though, it was really hard not to take ANY photos with my digital camera on her special day, so here’s a few that I particularly loved and was able to capture in between the awesome craziness that is a wedding day!

Special shoutout to my husband, Vince, for carrying around my camera bag so I didn’t have to, and so I could just worry about wearing heels and trying not to sweat my makeup off. 🙂 Isn’t he the best?!

In case you didn’t already guess, I was not the main photographer. I cannot imagine how I could have done it all and honestly, it was nice to trust and recommend my friend Tuan Bui for the job. He was absolutely amazing on the wedding day and the photos I’ve already seen from him are absolutely stunning. I cannot wait to see them all!! Thank you Tuan for everything and for being so kind to everyone! The whole family just loved you as I knew they would! 🙂

 

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Special thanks to my friends at Ed & Aileen Photography for taking these photos of the event!

This month, our meeting was co-hosted by Kelley Kohler with Haviland Events at her gorgeous home in Lincoln Park. With 34 attendees, we shared and asked about ways we could grow our Instagram following, post relevant and gorgeous images, and how to gain clients through this amazing social media platform.

We talked about posting consistently, whether or not you should post personal things on your business account, how often you should post and when, using hashtags that are relevant to what you’re posting, and how to collaborate with other users by being social and making friends!

It was a huge success and I was so happy to meet so many new faces this month!

 

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Emily Asher

Sad I missed it! Great pics!

lizard

We missed you there that month, and this month too!

It was one of the windiest days I’ve ever seen on a wedding day. The sun was bright and hot. The wind was blustery and strong. But it didn’t matter.

Loredana, who had just a few days ago moved to Illinois from her hometown in Italy, slowly walked arm in arm with her father, trying to not to cry as she began to walk down the aisle to join the love of her life. Their sweet vows were exchanged in Italian and family members that could not make the trip from Italy were there via Skype.  Pasquale, a local restaurant owner, looked lovingly into Loredana’s eyes and gently took her by the hand.  That day marked the beginning of their new life together.

Loved the opportunity of getting to second shoot alongside the beautiful and talented Cassandra Eldridge Photography for this wedding at the Butterfield Country Club in Oakbrook, IL.

 

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Max and Sara, both originally from China, met as children but began to date while in college. When Max proposed, he created his own computer program that showed Sara pieces of what he wanted to say to her, day by day for a week.  She anxiously waited for the messages each day and even though she tried, she couldn’t break the code for the program herself to read all of them at once! At the end of the week, the final question was asked, and of course, she said yes!

It is tradition that before the ceremony begins, the groom is to knock on the door of the bride’s room (or parents home) which is followed my a series of questions that he must answer before he is let into the room.  Once he is in the door he must then perform a physical test of some sort.  In this case, he was asked to do a push up with the flower girl on his back to prove his strength and his devotion to take care of the bride. After the physical test, he is taken to the bridesmaids to answer their questions as well.  Finally, he repurposes to the bride in front of everyone.

After the series of questions, physical tests and reproposal, the bride and groom present tea to the brides parents, the grooms parents, and then to grandparents.  They are then presented with red envelopes filled with money.  The bride and groom sip the tea filled with dates, eat some of the dates, then spit out the seed.  The seed represents the number of children they will have and the prayer for quick child bearing.

Their closest family and friends all traveled from China and met at The MileNorth Hotel in Chicago for Max and Sara’s intimate rooftop wedding day.  Even though red was not a primary wedding color, dashes of red were definitely seen throughout the wedding day because it symbolizes good luck.  Red was seen on the tea cups used during their traditional tea ceremony, on the money packs that were used to hold money given to them from their family and friends, and on the decorations throughout the cocktail hour.  The ceremony and reception was filled with different shades of pink and white, showcasing the gorgeous city rooftop.

 

Vendor Spotlight

Photographer: Elizabeth Nord Photography

Wedding Planner: Elisa Juster with The Simply Elegant Group

Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist: Kate Johnson Artistry

Florist: Victoria from Atmosphere Events Group

Bride’s dress: David’s Bridal

Catering: MileNorth Hotel

2nd Photographer: Jennifer Ruetten

 

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