Intimate Outdoor Wedding ceremony at Firehouse Chicago | Leslie & Perry

I first met Leslie when she hired me to photograph her daughter when she was just a was a toddler. Throughout the years we kept in touch, and when she told me about her engagement, I was sooo happy for her! When I met the handsome Groom, I could clearly see why Leslie was glowing whenever she talked about him and when she looks at him she just radiates happiness. Congratulations to Leslie and Perry, thank you for allowing me to witness and capture your joy!!

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Make up: Valencia’s world of Beauty

Ceremony and reception at the uniquely charming Firehouse Chicago. Yes, it used to be a real working fire house, that’s been converted to an event venue.

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Saville Flowers
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Caterer:Tamale Spaceship

From the couple…

Venue: Firehouse Chicago: The moment we stepped in this space we knew this was where we wanted to say our vows. It was rustic, intimate, and charming. We would be married outside in a beautiful garden and Paige was an absolute dream to work with… and how can you resist sliding down a fire pole in a wedding dress. I mean… 

Caterer:Tamale Spaceship: My husband was pretty easy going when it came to planning. His one request – a Food Truck.  We decided on Tamale Spaceship as tacos, no matter the occasion, are always a good idea.  When we opened the huge, beautiful, wooden firehouse doors to reveal the taco truck – it was SO much fun. Also, Manny and his team were so attentive and accommodating.

Brides Dress:BHLDN: My dress was The Blake by BHLDN. I knew I wanted something fitted and sophisticated but would make me feel very much feel like a bride.  My stylist Caprice was so great. I was nervous about trying on dresses as I am a curvy girl. Every dress I tried on was more beautiful than the next. Ultimately, the gorgeous train and classic fit of The Blake won me over.

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Maid of Honor:  Wore The Mila in Lilac also by BHLDN. Went perfectly with her powder blue converse.

Groom: My husband wanted to be relaxed and casual but a smidge dressy. He wore a tan suit and sneakers by Dolce Vita; His bow tie and pocket square by Brooks Brothers. He was the most handsome groom.

Saville Flowers: I chose Saville Flowers in Evanston as they did all the flowers pro-bono at a charity gala I chaired. Mark and his team were AWESOME. I simply gave him a budget and a couple of ideas and said run with it. I arrived at the venue and was blown away at how GORGEOUS our tables were.  I ordered these beautiful lace runners and the arrangements they did with the pops of yellow and white wild flowers, rosemary, greenery and candles were stunning and our guest got to take the arrangements home.

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Cake: Our wedding was a tad un-traditional so we wanted some  element of tradition.  Our cake was a classic three tiered Red Velvet cake with buttercream frosting by Sweetie Pie’s in Skokie. We’ve frequented this bakery often for treats after school and  several special occasions  They actually retired the business at the end of our wedding season.  It was so fitting to have the owners whom we had grown to know from living in the neighborhood do our cake. They were so excited for us and the cake was deelish.

Officiant: Elder Tony McClain, is my husband’s God Father. Having him know my husband so intimately and welcoming me as a daughter was super special. There were so many moments of our ceremony that were my favorite but one that stands out is when he had our family and friends stand and take a “Vow of Support” in being part of our community that remains steadfast with us on this journey of marriage.

Rings: Her Ring: Purchased from a shop on Etsy, Tallie Jewelry. Its a beautiful, two tone yellow & white gold band with milgrain engraving. I love it.His Ring: Was purchased as a birthday gift while on a weekend getaway for his birthday at a local artisan shop in Michigan. Its a thick, steel band with beautiful tree trunk carvings. He could not imagine anything else as a wedding band. He simply switched from his right hand to his left. Grooms words: “I love it, it has a story, and it’s the first thing you purchased for me”.

DJ: Just Press Play was the best choice for the Spotify playlist of modern Jazz (think Despacito but on Sax), House, R&B Soul, and 90s music curated by the Bride and Groom.

Bar Service: Drinks on Me Catering was the perfect touch for our intimate wedding. Their mix of beers and wines were perfect for our afternoon, summer soirée .

Photographer: Angel Eyes Photography: Saving the best for last! The very first decision I made in our planning was hire Hilda. I am familiar with her work so I know that she is uncompromising when it comes to her clients. She has a keen eye for catching THEE most beautiful moments and she’s not afraid to be bossy (in a nice way) to get them.   She arrived early to our house to take getting ready photos and her energy and enthusiasm just made the mood even more celebratory.  It was such a busy day she made sure to communicate with me at every turn ensuring we get all the photos we wanted plus some artsy fun ones too. Honestly, at one point it felt more like a magazine photo shoot than wedding photos ha-ha!  She absolutely loves weddings and love and that comes through in every single click of her camera.

My favorite purchase was definitely my dress. I did not see myself as a bride who would like a train but when I tried my dress on – it was just so beautiful. I fell immediately in love with it

 Aside from our vows – hands down the recession when my daughter (and maid of honor) sang us up the aisle to  Ingrid Michelson “The Way I Am” on her Ukulele.  Hilda got the sweetest shot of me telling her how good she did. If you look closely, you also see my husband in the photo. My heart could’ve burst from joy in this moment with the three of us.

 Advice….Definitely schedule more time for makeup. We ran an hour late getting to the venue. We were taking photos when guest arrived, YIKES! I didn’t care though, I was marrying the man of my dreams and honestly having guest walk in and see me gave it an even more casual feeling that I loved.

My advice to couples is to do what’s important for the two of you.

Our biggest goal was not to focus on the “wedding” but on our story, our gratefulness in finding each other, our love for each other, and to celebrate that with the 50 or so people who had  been there with us when we were single – praying for us, our future mate, and encouraging us every step of the way. We recently had friends who have been married some time share they were recently growing apart but attending our celebration and baring witness to our love has drawn them closer. I love that.

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