Derek & Melissa {married}

After 8 years of dating (much of which was long distance), Derek and Melissa finally woke up and prepared for their wedding day. Happily surrounded by her family and bridesmaids, Melissa eagerly prepared. Perfect touches were added in a last curl from her hair stylist, an excited hug from her sister and a beautiful cameo ring from her mother-in-law.213456Derek got ready in their home with his groomsmen and some family. Everyone was very relaxed and ready for the big day ahead of them.

We always love when couples opt to do a first look. Derek and Melissa’s was full of so much happiness and joy. It’s easy to see the love between these two.
Melissa, your eyes are incredible! Such a gorgeous bride.
Their ceremony took place outside on the patio at Klein Creek Golf Club in Winfield on a gorgeous Sunday afternoon in early September. Surrounded by their family, friends, and coworkers, Derek and Melissa became husband and wife. The ceremony was full of sincerity and heartfelt emotion. 9 10
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The tented pavilion at Klein Creek Golf Club was decorated beautifully with personal touches from the couple. During the first dance, the room was full of 8 years worth of romance mixed with fresh, newly-wedded bliss.
Derek and Melissa, you two are so incredible together. We love the way you laugh together and how easily you can make each other smile. It was so special for us to capture your wedding – being in the presence of your love all day made our hearts so happy! We wish you two all the best! Congratulations!


Sean & Colleen {married}

We could hear laughter bubbling from the kitchen where Colleen’s bridesmaids were snacking over girl talk while Colleen and her maid of honor were upstairs putting the finishing touches on. Sean and his groomsmen were over at Prairie Landing Golf Club enjoying the view and soaking up the sun. It was a beautiful start to an even better day.
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Sean and Colleen were so excited to see each other so they opted to do a first look. Sean waited for Colleen on the bridge where the happiness and laughter continued, and the excitement for the day began to escalate.  
Their ceremony was outdoors at Prairie Landing on a beautiful, sun-drenched afternoon in late August. Surrounded by their family and friends, Sean and Colleen became husband and wife. There was so much happiness throughout the ceremony and just looking at the smiles on their faces, you could see the pride they shared in knowing that they had just married their best friend.
Everything flowed so perfectly on their wedding day – it was like a dream. At sunset, the couple stepped outside for a few more quiet moments together. 
Then the night continued with a romantic first dance. Shortly after, the dance floor was packed with all their guests and they danced the night away.
Sean and Colleen, thank you for letting us be a small part of your wedding day. You two are incredible together and we’re so happy to have been able to celebrate your love for one another. Congratulations!

Check out more of their beautiful wedding day here:

Zach + Courtney | married

Zach and Courtney have a deep appreciation and respect for each other. When you see them together, you can tell they have been together for a long time and are very comfortable in each others presence. Their wedding day was perfect for an outdoor ceremony. The sun was shining at Emerson Creek in Oswego, where Courtney, her maids, her mother, and her and Zach’s children (the adorable Grace and Jaxson) calmly prepared for the day together in the ‘Bridal Coop’. Grace was the flower girl and loved to refer to it as ‘her’ wedding day, and Jaxson made an adorable ring bearer.
02820248 m2Zach and his groomsmen were joking around, anxiously waiting for the ceremony to start. Zach’s excitement picked up even more when he saw Jaxon in his little man tux.m308830475 m4 m50492 m6
The intimate ceremony took place outside on the Emerson Creek grounds overlooking a pond surrounded by beautiful, serene prairie. Grace cried many happy tears watching her parents become husband and wife. They make such a beautiful family!
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During cocktail hour the couple happily walked around the Emerson Creek grounds in their freshly wedded bliss. These are some of our favorites.
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m14Courtney and her mom lovingly handmade beautifully personalized details, centerpieces and so much more. The reception barn was overflowing with tasteful decor, delicious food and a welcoming coffee bar and cupcake station.reception desertbarA beautiful sunset filled the sky with color and Mr. & Mrs. McCoy enjoyed a few more moments together before joining their friends and family in dancing the night away.0951
Zach and Courtney, it was an honor to be a small part of your wedding day. We are so happy for you and wish you great happiness in your lives together! Congratulations!

Venue – Emerson Creek Pottery & Tea Room 


Ryan & Rachel {married}

Ryan & Rachel are an incredible couple. Their steady, deeply considerate affection for each other resonates through every encounter you may be blessed to have with them and extends to the people around them. For more on their love story, click on over here.      Their day began at the Stade home, filled with sunlight, laughter and the occasional happy tear. Rachel descended the stairs to the delighted smiles of her family and bridesmaids, before being whisked away to the church and her eager groom. gsb20 gsb23 01The church was beautifully enhanced with some of our favorite flower arrangements ever – provided by Erin of Event Floral.  After a heart-felt ceremony, the bride and groom made a quick get-a-way in a fantastic antique car. After formal church photos the bridal party was taken by an old fashioned Trolley and transported in style to the grounds of the Ellwood House for wedding photos.02 03gsb19 gsb16 gsb15 gsb13After a laughter-filled time of photos, the new Mr. & Mrs. climbed aboard the trolley with our final destination of Aquaviva Winery and a stunning reception. The entire day was meticulously coordinated by Amanda of La’Di Events and could not have been more seamless. The vineyard was just showing glimpses of a new summer’s crop – it was a perfect backdrop for the new couple to have a few quiet moments together.gsb9 07 06 gsb8 gsb7 gsb12 gsb11 04 05gsb41009gsb5gsb1gsb2The Aquaviva dining room was candlelit, filled with flowers and overflowing with delicious smells and of course, wine! The night was filled with beauty and lots of dancing to the stellar sounds of Hey Jimmy – Rachel is a talented musician and the music at her wedding and reception reflected both impeccable taste and equally talented friends. 11glab_band-dancegsb6Ryan & Rachel, thank you so much for sharing your wedding day with us, it was truly an honor and we pray God’s richest blessings in your new life together.

Vendors:                                                                                                                          Wedding Coordinator – Amanda Stowe                                 Flowers – Erin, Event Floral                                       Transportation – Carla, Village Trolley                                        Photo Location – The Ellwood House, DeKalb IL                 Reception – Aquaviva Winery, Maple Park IL                    Music – Hey Jimmy                                                         Photography – Pulse Photography & Design     

Andy + Shawna {married}

When Andy and Shawna met on a blind date in 2008, little did they know they were meeting their future spouse that night. About 5 years later, Shawna went to visit Andy out of town and after going to dinner at her favorite restaurant they walked around looking at Christmas lights, then Andy ended the night surprising her with a proposal!
Andy and Shawna decided to start with a first look (which we love!) and Andy was so excited to turn around and see his best friend standing there. Their big day had finally come and they were able to take a few minutes together alone.
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They had a sun-drenched, outdoor wedding on the patio at Pinstripes in Oak Brook. When it came time for the ceremony, Andy and Shawna were so happy to see all of their family and friends that came to support and celebrate their wedding day with them. They honored family members in different ways throughout the ceremony. Shawna included dried flowers from her grandmothers funeral into her bouquet and the instrumental version of ‘I Love How You Love Me’ by Bobby Vinton, one of her grandomother’s favorite songs, as she walked down the aisle in between the loving arms of both of her parents. The couple chose to have Andy’s uncle marry them, which meant a lot to both of them as well as their families.
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It was obvious that Andy and Shawna wanted their guests to have a blast when they chose Pinstripes as their venue. It’s an Italian/American Bistro where guests got to enjoy bowling, bocce, and fire pits in a fun atmosphere.
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We are so excited for your new lives together and can’t wait to see where your journey takes you. The love between you is beautiful, and we’re truly honored to have been part of your wedding day. We wish you nothing but the best, congratulations again!

Chase + Heather {married}

Chase and Heather knew each other for a long time, became friends, then co-workers, and after a night out together, they knew they couldn’t live without each other. Chase surprised Heather with a proposal on a road trip to Montana. Heather thought they were setting the camera up to take a photo of them with the beautiful sunset, but Chase set it to ‘record’ got down on one knee and asked her to marry him while the camera filmed the whole romantic proposal!
The couple was married on a gorgeous day in May at Whitetail Ridge Golf Club. There were beautiful rose-gold details woven throughout the day that matched her engagement ring perfectly. After all the final touches were ready, the couple had their first look and it was such a special moment between them – they were so happy to see each other and have a moment to themselves that they will never forget. The happiness on their faces said it all and you could tell it was one of their favorites parts of their wedding day. Then their bridal party joined in for some fun group photos. 01
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ch-hands ch-swinging ch-heather2 ch-walking07 06 05 The ceremony took place outdoors on the patio where the couple exchanged vows surrounded by a lot of family and friends. It was a very personal ceremony, officiated by a close friend. 13
ch-ceremony1415 Shortly after the ceremony, the ballroom was filled with friends, laughter…oh and the smell of doughnuts! After the heartfelt speeches, Chase and Heather got to enjoy their first dance together as husband and wife – and the romance and fun continued throughout the night. 16
ch-danceWe are so happy for you two and wish you a lifetime of love together! You two are incredible together and your happiness is contagious – thanks so much for letting us be a part of your beautiful wedding day!

Michael + Kate {married}

Michael and Kate knew of each other long before their relationship started. They went to the same high school, but it wasn’t until years later that a casual conversation of country line dancing ended up sparking their love story. Another shared interest of theirs is traveling, so 11 months later, they went on a trip to Cabo San Lucas and Michael surprised Kate with a proposal on a sunset cruise.
Kate is a genuine person, who truly cares for others and shares gentleness that others can feel when they’re around her. Even her gown and matching delicate, lace accessories seemed to mirror old time gentility reflecting the beauty of the bride they adorned. Michael always seems to have a smile on his face, whether he was staring at his new bride, hanging out with his buddies, or out on the dance floor – he is always showing off his great smile. They are so beautiful together, completely comfortable and so happy to have found one another. He holds her so tightly – you can tell there’s no place else in the world they would rather be than in each other’s arms. knapp_01knapp_02knapp_03knapp_04knapp_05 The couple decided to do a first look (which we love!) in a field, with the Dunham Castle in the distance. While Kate waited for Michael’s arrival, she read a letter from him expressing his anticipation of the day’s events. When Michael first saw his absolutely stunning bride, he was a little speechless, but his smile said it all.knapp_09 knapp_10 knapp_11knapp_12 knapp_13
Their wedding ceremony was outdoor at the Dunham Woods Farm in Wayne, IL. The weather had been questionable all day, but thankfully it held off raining and storming just long enough for the ceremony. Kate surprised Michael by riding up in a horse and carriage. They wrote their own vows and –  wow – were they beautiful. In them, they shared their love for one another, and for Jesus Christ. Their greatest desire for their wedding day was that Christ’s love and glory to be shown through their relationship and life together.knapp_19knapp_20knapp_21knapp_22knapp_23knapp_25knapp_24knapp_26knapp_27knapp_28knapp_29
The reception was just next door at the Dunham Woods Riding Club. It was an incredibly beautiful and unique venue. Everywhere we looked, there was something beautiful, inside and out. We were told that there is a 300 year old tree outside, and inside there were original hardwood floors, and the original marble bar. The staff was great – all were incredibly sweet and helpful. knapp_06knapp_08knapp_07knapp_14knapp_15knapp_16knapp_17knapp_18knapp_30knapp_39knapp_38knapp_37knapp_36knapp_35knapp_34knapp_33knapp_32knapp_31
We were so thankful when the sun came back out after dinner and we were able to sneak outside and get a few more pictures of the bride a groom. Then the sky really lit up and gave us a beautiful glowing orange sunset. It was magical watching the new Mr. & Mrs. dance together under the vibrant sky.knapp_40knapp_45knapp_44knapp_43knapp_42knapp_41knapp_46
Michael and Kate, we can see how easily you two fit together and how happy you make each other. We hope that happiness continues to grow throughout your many years together. We pray that Christ stays at the center of your relationship and His love and glory continues to be shown through your lives together…and lastly – that these photos capture just a glimpse of you having the time of your life! Thank you for letting us be a part of your day and we pray that God will continue to bless you two!