Alex & Christine {married}

As if to add emphasis to the rapidly approaching holidays, the wind blew fiercely on the morning of Alex and Christine’s wedding day. Tucked inside the historic Harrington Inn, however, nothing could diminish the joy of the soon to be married couple. Christine’s suite brimmed with family and attendants as she donned her exquisite dress and prepared to meet her groom on the elegant front staircase.diamondinsetweddingbandA porter1 lacebackbuttonupweddinggownAlex waited excitedly for his bride as family gathered around to witness their first glimpse of each other. waitingtomeetthebride porter2 firstlookBecause their wedding day’s timeline the couple had the entirety of their bridal party and family photos take prior to the ceremony. They moved between two nearby locations, the Harrington Inn and Riverside Receptions. The stunning old architecture positioned on the Fox River provided unique and lovely photos. porter6 porter4Christine, you were the epitome of a radiant bride. Alex is a lucky man! porter9 porter11 porter7 englishbried gazeboweddingphotos fallweddingcouple bridalglamour porter3Don’t let the ease of their smiles fool you! The wind was frigid and temperatures continued to plummet. Clearly this did not diminish their excitement or anticipation for this long awaited day. casualweddingcouple blackandwhiteweddingphotos photojournalisticweddingphotos romanticweddingkiss vintagestyleweddingphotos vintagebridalstyle porter8 porter5Because Alex & Christine took their photos early in the day to accommodate the short amount of daylight they were able to enjoy a leisurely cocktail hour with their guests. Fires blazed on Riverside’s massive stone hearths decorated with twinkling lights, candles and photos of various family members on their wedding days. Ice tinkled in crystal glasses while laughter and warmth illuminated the beautiful, old stone walls – every corner reverberating with happiness as guests congratulated the newlyweds.cocktailhourThe dining room was beautifully appointed with a stunning view of the river and city skyline. Gold details added a warm glow to the tables while the scent of chocolate cake permeated the room. candlelitdiningroom chocolatenakedcakeAlthough incredibly cold and windy, Alex and Christine stepped out into the night for a few more special photos. Together they took a quiet, chilly moment to let all the events of the day sink in. The icy silence interrupted only by the sounds of the river contrasted sharply with the laughter and warmth that spilled out the opened door, a few sweet kisses later Mr. & Mrs. Porter rejoined their guests and danced the night away.porter12Alex & Christine, it was such an honor to be a part of your beautiful day, congratulations!!!

Giuseppe & April {married}

Conversation flowed from every room and the open front door of Giuseppe’s childhood home. Parents, siblings, cousins and friends filled the gracious home to overflowing as Giuseppe excitedly prepared with his best man’s help. groomstuxdetailsIn the months prior to the wedding I was continually struck with Giuseppe’s attention to detail and creativity. In his parent’s home, built and designed entirely by his father and immaculately decorated by his mother it was a simple matter to see where these attributes came from.  brothersonweddingdayGiuseppe’s twin brother and best man kept the morning light with his laughter and jokes, their older brother – who designed the April’s wedding rings – had a final, stunning touch: hand made, perfectly finished cuff links. comp1Lovely blue and silver themes ran throughout the wedding party’s attire, the decor and of course this stunning paper suite. navypapersuiteGiuseppe had prepared a beautiful boudoir table for April’s arrival later in the morning, gorgeous long stemmed roses, a hand-written letter and surprise gifts all lay in ready. brides wedding day giftsbridesweddingmorning peach and white bouquetApril’s flowers, in the palest peachy hues, provided a light contrast to the deep blue shades found in her bridesmaids dresses. Both her mother and mother-in-law were on hand to help arrange every last detail. momputtingonveil gartersAs the final touches were placed April eagerly opened Giuseppe’s letter. Tears immediately started to gather in her eyes and she softly took a deep breathe before continuing, “He’s such a romantic, how am I going to read all of this?!”bridesgiftGiuseppe’s eyes shone just as softly 30 minutes later when he laid eyes on his beautiful bride coming down the aisle; love, joy and a just a little pride spilled out of his smile at the stunning woman who joined him at the altar.groomseeingbrideforthefirsttimegroomataltarInspiring words tinged with humor, traditional vows and a sweet kiss later Mr. & Mrs. Campobasso emerged from the chapel amid the cheers of their family and friends.just marriedAs they rounded the corner Giuseppe caught his bride up in a sweet embrace – they were married!!justmarriedThe rain that had been softly coming down all morning paused long enough to visit a nearby park with the wedding party for a few memorable photos.quietweddingmoment comp15April, you are lovely – I really can’t say it any other way!  comp4 comp12 comp6 comp7 comp8Giuseppe’s brothers definitely kept things light and he congenially put up with their ribbing. comp13 comp14 comp11 comp10bridesmaidslaughing sassybrideblueweddingshoescomp16comp9brideholdsgroomsfaceThe reception venue was exquisitely appointed and every detail was carefully chosen by the couple. Flowers, candles, gemstones and color were a profusion throughout the ballroom – completed with rich blue up-lighting and delicious food.beautifulplacesettingsLove and laughter filled every corner of the room as April and Joey cut their cake and enjoyed their families toasts, a surprise slide show and many heart warming stories.cake fight cuteGiuseppe’s father was on hand to make sure a unique perspective of the garter toss was captured!hilariousgarterphotoApril’s bouquet was caught by Giuseppe’s sister = perfection!funbouquettossgarter tossA beautifully choreographed, perfectly executed first dance was finished with a picture perfect dip and kiss. Giuseppe and April, you had a truly incredible wedding day and it was such an honor to be a part of it! May you have many, many happy married years to come!!!romanticfirstdancekiss

Derek + Brianna | married

Derek and Brianna’s share something unique – a mirthful connection that’s brimming just below the surface that they bring out in each other at a moments notice. Their wedding day was true to form full of laughter and took place on a chilly fall day at the newly renovated Fisherman’s Inn in Elburn, Illinois.
12Bri was surrounded with her mom and bridesmaids as she prepared to meet Derek – partially through her uncle called her out to the hallway where he had a special gift for her – a beautiful heirloom necklace, and a gentle hug followed by sweet congratulations.
171819Derek had plenty of help getting ready to meet his lovely bride, and everyone gathered excitedly at the foot of the staircase waiting for their special moment to unfold.ha
Brianna excitedly flew down the stairs to meet her groom to the cheers of their bridal party and family. The chilly wind and threatening storm clouds did nothing to diminish their enthusiasm.
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The venue has gorgeous grounds that Derek, Brianna, and their awesome bridal party bravely explored in spite of the wind and cold.
1213hi611109hi7hi13hi5ahi1ahi116hi253hi6a64hi11hi4Derek is a fireman (as were several groomsmen). We loved all of the touches of the ‘firefighter’ theme they incorporated into their wedding, especially this antique fire truck.
hi7bhi987hi7ahi7chi8hi10hi12Even though it was a lot colder than what you would expect for the first weekend of October, we were so happy the couple still decided to go forward with their outdoor wedding (don’t let the photos fool you – it’s so much colder than it looks!) They were such troopers!
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After a night full of love, dancing, and so much celebrating, Derek and Brianna exited their reception through a sidewalk full of family and friends cheering with sparklers and ended the night with this sweet kiss.
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What a fun night! Derek and Brianna, we were so happy to capture and celebrate your love with you. We wish you a lifetime of happiness together!

Ryan & Jessica {married}

Light streamed through the window of the bridal suite at the James Hotel, but all was silent as the bride and her attendants had not yet arrived from the salon. Jessica’s dress hung from the mirror, beautiful flowers – hand crafted by the bride – and perfectly coordinated accessories all lay in readiness; each detail evidence of a great eye and careful planning.deets dressThen laughter began to drift down the hallway and in mere seconds the room was filled with the bridal party – and joy – so much joy! Jessica slipped into her dress with her mother and maid of honor’s help. Jessica’s other attendants gathered around as she finished preparing surrounding her with support and a few well-timed jokes. Laughter, anticipation, lots of hugs and a few teary eyes here and there and the bride was ready for her groom! 7104 7120 7146 7165 1717Just before she was whisked out the door to the limo waiting outside, Jessica opened her gift from Ryan – a bracelet and set of beautiful charms – but she opened a little note/cartoon first. As she unrolled the paper she looked up and said, “I guarantee it’s a drawing!” seconds later, prediction proven accurate, she was surprised to see 4 small boxes in addition to her ‘illustration.’ Ryan even included a tiny owl – her favorite animal! gift 7180While the girls readied at the James, Ryan, his brother and other groomsmen prepared at his childhood home. Ryan, his mother and siblings share a deep, loving connection and it’s easy to understand how he and Jessica have created such a remarkable relationship with each other. Their wedding day a beautiful back drop for their love and connection.s1The Schram Chapel was overflowing with friends and family. Once again each aspect of the interior was careful arranged and hand-crafted by the bride with the help of her father. After arriving at the chapel Jessica’s father shared a few tender moments with her as he laid eyes on his beautiful daughter for the first time that day.S2ceremonyRyan’s eyes were just as soft as he saw his bride for the first time – Jessica you are deeply loved by the men in your life!7296S3Not to be outside of the moment when he handed their daughter to Ryan, Jessica’s father looked back at her mother. A moment any parent can understand in a heartbeat – love – pride – joy – mixed with just a little nostalgia at this next step in life.731973527349S47480A sweet kiss in a shower of bubbles and cheers and Mr. & Mrs. Standridge joined their wedding party for toasts and a few photos!limo S6 S5 7558 7736 7794 S17 7604Ryan & Jessica had a truly talented videography team we were priviledged to work with for their wedding day, Luis did an incredible job directing memorable moments for the entire wedding party! 7825 7541 S7 7555 7713 S16 S18 S12 S11 S8 S9 S10 S13 S15 S14 7791 7652 7681After a few last quiet moments for the day Ryan & Jessica emerged to the exuberant cheers of the guests on the Empress banquet hall. Once again Jessica and her father outdid themselves in exquisitely hand-crafted centerpieces and many other personal touches – every corner glowed with candles, flowers and gems.jessreceptnS19S20Ryan & Jessica shared a tender first dance after which Jessica was joined on the dance floor by her father – who had another surprise for her – he sang!jessdance jessdaddance thanksjessnryRyan & Jessica, thank you so much for allowing us to be a part of your day – it was stunning! We wish you the very best and many, many happy years ahead of you!

Chris & Caitlyn {married}

High school sweethearts, best friends, husband & wife. Chris & Caitlyn have been a part of our family’s lives for the past 7 years. I’ve watched them grow, change and adapt as their relationship has endured each new challenge. Such an honor to have the chance to photograph this next step as they become a Mr. & Mrs.!1 2 As her mom, mother-in-law, sisters and friends bustled around her on the morning of her wedding, Caitlyn exuded joy in every excited glance and happy laugh. 3 4 5 6 7 8.5 8Chris & Caitlyn were joined by their hilarious wedding party and the celebrating that began with the excitement of getting ready in the morning, saying “I do” in the afternoon, and joking through photographs then stretched into hours of laughter and dancing the night away. 9 10 11 13 14.5 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31Chris & Caitlyn’s families did an awesome job decorating the Kendall County Fairgrounds and after a great meal, some handcrafted treats and signature drinks, the Ethan Bell Band provided plenty of music and fun. Caitlyn’s grandmother made their cake and stocked the dessert table in lavish fashion.chriscaitkendallco cake32 33 34Chris & Caitlyn, we are beyond happy for you, may God bless you with many happy years and so many more adventures together.

Cody & Kelly {engaged}

Cody & Kelly have smiles that immediately light up a room – they are genuine and funny and LOVE their puppy, Harleigh. When Kelly called me and asked if it was ok for them to start their session in Cubs jerseys (Harleigh included) I knew we were going to have a great time. 5834 5863 5854Cody & Kelly have been friends since high-school, but it wasn’t until much later that they started dating. Kelly smilingly said it was the most well-thought out decision of her life! Thoughtfulness seems to an underlying theme in their relationship – this February Cody created a treasure hunt for a date night with Kelly – each new clue a part getting ready for and eventually going on a memorable date. The very last letter she found asked her to marry him! I loved this story, but thought it was even sweeter after becoming friends on Facebook and seeing another one of Cody’s thoughtful date lists posted: (this isn’t my photo, but the man deserves applause for creativity!)codya588558755989a5918When asked what they most appreciate about each other it was increasingly apparent how much they truly ‘get’ each other. From Cody two simple, direct sentences wrapped up the awesome heart Kelly has: “I appreciate her hard work and dedication towards anything she puts her mind to. She’s loving.” Kelly was equally direct, saying “I appreciate his support. He has always been there, for the good and the bad, and gives me his opinion. It may not be what I want to hear, but it will always make me feel better in the end!” Hard work, love and honesty – what better way could you embark on marriage?  Sometimes you don’t need thousands of words, a few heart-felt ones say volumes. 5924 a5928 a5957 a5971 a5984 a5995 15997 6007 16002Cody & Kelly, your wedding day will be such an incredible celebration of the fantastic relationship you already have. We are unbelievably excited to have the chance to be there when you say the vows you already are living out!