Rise and shine Illinois because we have pretty as can be fête that will be sure to give you an extra jolt this morning if your coffee isn’t doing the trick! Not only is it perfectly pretty (and oh it is pretty), but it also goes to show budget-friendly doesn’t mean beauty-lacking. The Bride shares some of her great tips in her description, but make sure to allow some time to gawk over all the pretty images by gina & tony|photographers in the full gallery too!

Click here to see the entire gallery of images!

From the Bride…Mike and I knew immediately that it was important that our wedding not break the bank, and truly be a product of our own efforts.  The first, and most important decision we made was to have our wedding on a Sunday and to keep the guest list small, which gave us the opportunity to afford a beautiful venue, an amazing band and still have some funds left over for our dream honeymoon. We also worked hard on designing every aspect of the day ourselves. The majority of work came in DIYing our paper goods.  They were truly a labor of love in designing without any experience, and sometimes in printer repair after too many failed test-runs.

The overall look of the day began with my wedding dress. I chose the dress that made my mom cry, even though it was nothing like anything else had I tried on, and let it inspire a soft, modern, floral theme that was beautiful at the golf club.  Throughout the next year, I collected and crafted items while scouring the web for constantly changing inspiration.  My favorite projects were creating faux mercury glass vases from thrift store containers and spray paint, and our cupcake-in-a-jar favors.  In the end, when all the details seemed completely overwhelming, I handed everything over to our florist and coordinator and they pulled everything together flawlessly.

We hired vendors who love weddings, who made us feel like a priority, and who we knew we’d love spending the day with.  They were the key to how calm and nerve-free Mike and I felt all day long.  We feel so fortunate to have been able to work with them all, and even more so for the wonderful moments they orchestrated during the day and beautiful memories they captured for us forever.

Our wedding day turned out to be the hottest day of the summer, and our family and wedding party were amazing and tough, even with an outdoor ceremony and photo session.  In the end, my favorite moment of the day was leaving the reception, laughing with my new husband as he said “that was so awesome, that was so awesome!” over and over again all the way to the hotel.  We are so thrilled that the day was truly a reflection of ourselves, and what we love.

Wedding Photography: gina & tony|photographers / Wedding Gown: Enzoani / Bridesmaid Gowns: J.Crew / Hair + Make-up: Kimberly Piech / Floral Design: Kristen Janes of Kio Kreations / First Look + Portrait Location: Cantigny Gardens / Ceremony + Reception Location: Arrowhead Golf Club / Officiant: Barry Kolanowski / Ceremony Musicians: Windy City Chamber Musicians / Day-Of Coordinator: Samantha Hamilton of Get Hitched Weddings / Invitation + Save the Date: Citrus Press Co. / All Other Stationery: DIY / Wedding Cake: Oakmill Bakery / Band: Underwater People / Wedding Videography: Hendzel Productions / Placecards, Programs, Guestbook, Menus, Favors (Cupcake-in-a-Jar) + Faux Mercury Glass Vases: DIY

J.Crew is a member of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. Chicago Weddings is a member of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
Chicago Weddings

VIEW PORTFOLIO