What a beautiful day for a wedding! This picture was taken from the bridal suite of the Congress Plaza Hotel
where I was with Allison as she prepared for her Jon’s wedding day. The view of the Field Museum
was so appropriate, as it was serving as the venue for the couple’s ceremony and reception. And as two dinosaur fans (check out their engagement session
for more dino fun!), the Field was a perfect choice to host their big day.
But first things first, and the first thing to do was get the bride dressed and ready to go. That process began with Liska working on hair and Andrea & Christina from Flawless Beauty applying makeup on Allison and the rest of the bridal party. Allison couldn’t have been happier, surrounded by her mother, three bridesmaids Jon’s mom as she made her preparations.
When the hair and makeup were complete, everyone present helped Allison into her fantastic gown, and then the bride surprised her attendants with gifts. Allison put a lot of thought into the gifts, as well as the words written in their corresponding cards, and all three bridesmaids were crying happy tears by the time their presents were opened. I can’t think of a better way to start the day!
Here’s the Maid of Honor, making some last minute revisions to her speech.
Allison’s mom helped out with the train as everyone cleared out of the hotel room and stepped outside to grab cabs. It was a short jump from the Congress Plaza to the Field Museum, and before we knew it, we were bounding up the steps, and making our way in to the museum’s lobby.
Famous Chicago resident Sue the T-Rex was the first to greet and congratulate the bride upon her arrival. Sue passed word along that Allison was on site and ready for her first meeting with Jon. Since the day was so gorgeous, we decided to stage the first look outside on the museum steps.
Jon was waiting patiently just outside the entrance, and his face lit up when his bride tapped him on the shoulder. The two spent a few minutes checking each other out and, of course, sharing hugs. The bridal party was nearby, and watching as this all went down, and luckily, they were well-behaved, keeping the cat-calls to a minimum.
With the first look complete, I rounded up the troops for a quick tour around the outside of the museum. The building is flanked on all sides by gorgeous scenery, but there’s a special draw for Allison and Jon- a Brachiosaurus (I hope I spelled that right) fossil that was begging to be included in some pictures. Check out this collection of images from our outdoor tour of the Field Museum:
And, of course, we headed inside for a few portraits as well. We had just enough time to check out a few picturesque exhibits before it was time for the Ketubah signing.
Allison and Jon’s family gathered together as their Ketubah was read aloud and signed… and I feel that their Ketubah is especially gorgeous! Soon after the document was signed by the bride, the groom and their witness, everyone headed out to the main lobby of the museum for the ceremony.
Allison (and the rest of the wedding party) made grand entrances, utilizing the stairs on either side of the ceremony location. The bride was escorted to the chuppah by her parents, and her father was smiling from ear to ear as he lifted her veil. After a hug from her mom (and a few sniffles from her bridesmaids), guests settled in to watch the ceremony, and some of my favorite images from their “I do’s” are featured below:
With vows and rings exchanged, Allison and Jon were declared husband and wife. Congratulations!! The left the ceremony area and had a few minutes alone while guests enjoyed cocktail hour. I took a few pictures of them in their post-ceremony bliss before giving them some privacy and heading out to take photos of their reception details.
The space is so amazing…
I mean, who doesn’t want to eat dinner with the elephants!?!? There were tons of beautiful details from the day that were on my list to capture, and Anthony Navarro from Liven It Up Events
played no small part in helping Allison and Jon make all their ideas come to life.
The tables were all set, ready for the delicious meal skillfully prepared by Food For Thought
And there were gorgeous little touches everywhere, like this display set up by Phil from Kehoe Designs
. The crew from Kehoe did an excellent job with all the floral design for the day.
After cocktails were finished, guests found their seats, and when everyone was settled, the bride and groom made their big entrance. The celebration began with Jon performing a special song for his bride, followed by the couple sharing their first dance.
Jon and Allison both worked so hard rehearsing the choreography for their first dance and were very excited to show off their skills. The dance was executed flawlessly, and was met by hearty applause from their guests.
The party really started when everyone gathered on the floor to dance the Hora with Allison and Jon. They held on tightly to their chairs as they were lifted into the air. I always say this, but the Hora is one of my favorite parts of the wedding day… so much fun!
After the Hora were speeches, which were led off by Allison’s mom and dad. There many laughs, but also many emotional moments as they remembered special loved ones who have passed away.
Allison and her father shared a dance…
…and then Jon and his mother took their turn.
Speeches continued with the Maid of Honor’s toast, and then a toast by one of Jon’s groomsmen. Finally, the newlyweds wrapped everything up by thanking their friends and family for sharing the day with them.
Time for the dance party! Everyone piled on to the dance floor and started showing off their best moves, all set to the sounds provided by David Rothstein Music. Guests partied well into the night, and I was there to capture all of their best moments. Check it out!
These two were having the time of their lives. I think it’s safe to say the day was a huge success!
The final shot of the day was of the wedding rings. They placed them on top of a list of things Allison and Jon want to do (and have done) together. It’s a list they’ve been compiling since the beginning of their relationship, and it looks like they’re going to have a busy, full and happy life… and I’m very honored to be present as they began the next chapter! Congratulations again, Allison and Jon!