Wheaton Wedding at Cantigny from Gina & Tony Photographers
September 4, 2012

 The warmth and love at this wedding are contagious. From the homemade favors to the touching guest thank you notes to the twinkle in the bride's eyes, this affair at The Red Oak Room at Cantigny Golf is the perfect combination of DIY rustic charm and contemporary style. I also can't stop looking at the bride's gown -- Those ruffles and folds just seem to go on and on, don't they!? I am obsessed with this romantic look! Check out the full gallery of photos right here, courtesy of Gina & Tony Photographers.

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From the Bride... I like to describe our wedding as rustic chic with a romantic feel. We used a color palette of blush pink and ivory with touches of navy blue and gray. We also incorporated burlap and succulents for a rustic feel and tea light candles to create a romantic glow. I have to admit, my vision for the day changed quite a few times, but luckily I had a very easy going fiance (now husband) who supported me the whole way. I loved planning our special day, but it was definitely overwhelming at first. I wanted the whole day to feel like us and be filled with those cute little personal touches. So I scoured the internet for months trying to figure out just how to accomplish this goal. I never thought of myself as the crafty, DIY-type bride, but somehow with the help of friends and family, our vision began to take shape. For our outdoor garden ceremony, guests were welcomed with a pink lemonade stand using an old bistro set my mom has had for years. They also grabbed a homemade ribbon wand and a program made by our florist Kristen from Kio Kreations as they walked in to take their seats. I chose to have my father and step-father walk me down the aisle, as they are both very important parts of my life. My step-father is very handy and was a big help with the DIY creations. For the ceremony, he made the directional post sign and the box for our "wine box love letter ceremony." We chose to write love letters to each other describing our feelings for one another and why we love each other. We sealed them up and placed them into the box with a bottle of our favorite wine, with the intention of opening it up on our 25 year anniversary. However, if we ever find that our marriage is in trouble, we will open it up and remember all the reasons that led us to get married and how strong our love for each other was the day we married.

For the reception, we wanted our guests to be able to relax, drink, dance and eat lots of good food. My made of honor and I created a signature drink with limoncello, inspired by our honeymoon destination on the Amalfi Coast in Italy. I found an old barn window on the internet and had my step-father fix it up to use it for a seating chart. For our guest book, we had everyone sign a square of fabric, which my husband's grandmother will sew into a very special quilt for us. I found lots of fun things on Etsy, such as the personalized table number holders and cake stand, the card box and the cake toppers, which were a surprise for my husband because he is firefighter. That was a big hit! I made the burlap Mr. and Mrs. banner and the table numbers, which were all numbers that held significance in our relationship. The favors were definitely my favorite DIY project. Two days before the wedding, my mom and I spent hours making homemade berry fruit crisps in mason jars and my step-father made the mirror that sat on the table with them. All of these things added up to the perfect day, but the best part was that I got to marry the man of my dreams and share it with all the people who love us. We couldn't be happier with the way it all turned out. I am also so grateful for our wonderful vendors who helped make our day go off without a hitch. Jen and Kate from The Smitten Bride were my day of wedding coordinators, a.k.a. "life savers." I had the vision, but they made sure that it was executed perfectly so that I did not have to worry about a thing!Our photographers Gina and Tony are two of the most awesome people in the world and were so fun to be with all day. Not to mention they are crazy-talented and captured our wedding day so beautifully! All I can say is, our wedding was definitely a group effort, and we would not have changed one thing.

Wedding Photography: Gina & Tony Photographers / Ceremony: Cantigny Park in Wheaton, Illinois / Reception: The Red Oak Room at Cantigny Golf in Wheaton, Illinois / Floral Design: Kio Kreations / Wedding Day Coordination: The Smitten Bride / Wedding Invitations: Designs in Paper / Cake Topper + Table Number Holders: Etsy / Wedding Dress: Sottero & Midgley via Eva's Bridal of Orland Park / Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Makeup: Tamara Makeup + Hair Artistry / Bridesmaids' Dresses: Watters / Groom's Suit: Astor & Black / Groomsmen's Ties: Express