Martha and Ian’s wedding day had finally arrived, and I was happy to be alongside them documenting the celebration! This wonderful couple calls New York home, but was tying the knot with their family in Chicago. And speaking of family, here’s Martha with her mother, helping the bride into the Monique Lhuillier dress. As she prepared, Martha was surrounded by her bridesmaids, all of whom were on hand to help out in any way they could. Excitement was high, as this was one of the last details to attend to before joining Ian for the first look.
And here’s Ian, finishing up his own preparations. Once the bow tie was perfectly straight, he grabbed his jacket and headed out to the designated “first look” spot.
Careful not to cross paths with Ian, Martha took the back exit.
The first look was held under the lights of the Palmer House Hilton marquee. Ian couldn’t keep the smile off his face once he realized Martha was walking up behind him. The bride tapped her groom on the shoulder once she was at his side, and after a few moments of admiring each other, the entire bridal party set out for our pre-ceremony photo shoot.
Our pre-ceremony shoot featured backdrops that showcased Chicago’s downtown neighborhoods. Martha and Ian’s wedding was held in the winter, but luckily the huge snowfall hadn’t hit yet- we had plenty of access to these great spots!
Taking photos can work up quite a thirst! The party bus pulled over at favorite bar The Empty Bottle for a quick round of drinks and relaxation.
Line ’em up!
Martha and Ian aren’t Jewish, but were definitely in a celebratory mood! And there was a lot to have fun with at the Empty Bottle, too. Whether they were jumping in a photo booth, playing games or hamming it up on the Bottle’s stage, the group was having a blast.
The group finished their pints and we moved on to Salvage One, where the ceremony and reception were held. The bridal party gathered in the courtyard for a group portrait before Martha, Ian and I headed out on our own for a portrait session around the venue. There are so many creative and fun nooks and crannies at Salvage One- taking couples around the grounds for a photo shoot is always one of my favorite parts of the day!
With our pre-ceremony shoot over, there was just enough time left for the couple to practice their vows one last time before the big show. I left them to it and moved out to the ceremony staging area.
As guests arrived they were greeted by this adorable face. It’s Martha and Ian’s dog, Larry, and although he couldn’t be at the ceremony in person, he graced the pages of the guest book. What a cutie!
Guests began to file in and take their seats on Salvage One’s main floor. Everyone was offered a cocktail while they waited for the ceremony to begin, and guests enjoyed visiting with each other (and the drinks!).
The ceremony began with Ian walking his parents down the aisle, giving them each a hug before they took their seats.
After the bridal party filed in and took their places, the music changed over and Martha made her entrance. Ian’s eyes welled up as he spotted his bride making her way toward the aisle.
Martha was beaming as she was escorted down the aisle by her father. It was a beautiful start to a beautiful ceremony, in which Martha and Ian observed the tradition of “tying the knot”, delivered their vows to each other, and of course, exchanged rings.
And the ceremony ended with a big kiss! Congratulations, Ian and Martha!
The newlyweds stepped away right after the ceremony for a few moments alone together. I was on hand as they toasted their new marriage then excused myself to take pictures of guests at cocktail hour, which was going strong downstairs.
The celebration continued after cocktail hour with a delicious dinner catered by Blue Plate. As guests finished their meals, Martha’s mother delivered a toast in honor of her daughter and new son. Hers was a great speech, followed in kind with tributes from the couple’s brothers. Finally, Martha’s father took the microphone to deliver a moving and heart-felt toast.
Speeches ended with the newlyweds thanking their guests for joining in on the celebration and giving appreciation for the love and support shown to Martha and Ian throughout the years. After raising their glasses, they took to the dance floor to share their first dance as husband and wife, followed by spins around the dance floor with their parents.
Then the celebration was kicked in to high gear as DJ Emily from Toast & Jam played all the best party hits. Martha was in her glory, enjoying her guests and boogieing across the floor.
Ian was no slouch in the merry-making, either! Check it out in this collection of images from Martha and Ian’s dance party!:
Everything was still going full-force as I began to collect my things to go. Before I left, I ushered Martha and Ian outside for a few night shots.
I couldn’t keep their attention, though, as they couldn’t stop dancing– as it should be! I gave them one last “congratulations” as they made their way back inside to enjoy their wedding day.
Congratulations, Martha and Ian! Thank-you for sharing your day with me!! Here are the vendors that made Martha and Ian’s wedding such a success:

Their venue, the one and only Salvage One.

Artistrings made beautiful music during the ceremony, and…

DJ Emily from Toast & Jam rocked the dance floor.

Blue Plate Catering fueled the party by filling guests’ bellies, and…

Momofuku Milk Bar and Hoosier Mama Pies wrapped the meal up proper by providing wedding cake and pies, respectively.

Mark Weber from Kloeckner Preferred Flowers made things pretty with his floral design, but…

…as far as pretty goes, it was hard to top Martha’s Monique Lhuillier dress.

Great work, all!!!