Classic weddings have my heart. I have a feeling that will never change. It’s the beautiful tradition stamped with sweet little moments shared by the couple that truly win me over. So this chic Chicago wedding made my entire day. You can just tell every moment was magic to this couple, and thanks to Tim Tab Studios we can share in that joy here.
From the Bride…It sounds cliché to say it, but it’s true- my wedding day was the best day of my life thus far. While I knew I’d wanted to marry Mike for a while, I hadn’t been planning the details of our future wedding which allowed us to take inspiration as it came. We actually had a blast planning it too. We knew we wanted a city wedding with contemporary, yet warm décor. The W City Center in Chicago (a former men’s club with some classic early 20th century details updated with a modern look) had exactly the style we wanted. It also had separate spaces for the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception, each beautiful and unique in their own way. We thought this would create a nice flow to the evening and we could focus on each event separately. One of the main style points of the space was the beautiful golden arched ceilings in the mezzanine level that overlooked the lobby. This space would eventually be where all of our guests met for cocktails after the ceremony. But it also inspired my choice of dress. After a short search I settled on a metallic lace gown, with a low-cut back. It was formal but not traditional and very elegant. It perfectly complimented the look of the space and definitely had a wow factor. On the day of the wedding I was ball of nerves but 10 seconds into seeing my husband during our “first look” those nerves disappeared. My husband loved the dress and he looked handsome in his classic black tux.
The most important thing for us is that we could spend as much time during our wedding with the people we loved. That is why we chose to do the majority or our photos before the event. Our photographers, Tim and Bethany, a husband a wife team, couldn’t have been a better choice to shoot the event. They made us feel at ease and guided us through the early parts of the ceremony experience, staged pictures with family and friends, and of course shots of us in cool urban settings in and around downtown Chicago. They also were really accommodating to our request like the big group photo we took with all our guests in one shot. It took some wrangling but it is definitely a highlight to see every time I look back on it. With the staged photos out of the way by the time we got to the ceremony everything was set up to enjoy the evening.
The ceremony was held on the second level of the W hotel, up a beautiful set of granite steps, down past the arched mezzanine overlooks and through the two large wooden doors that led to a sanctuary type space the closely resembled the nave of a church. It was accented with candles and our “altar” was set up in front of a lovely fireplace set with more candles. Our mutual friend — who actually introduced us to one another — presided over the ceremony while a string quartet, hired through the Merit School of Music, provided warmth and feeling. One of the highlights of the ceremony was definitely a performance by our friend Heidi, a trained opera singer and wife to our officiant. As we walked down the aisle to cheers from our family and friends we couldn’t be happier. But the real fun was about to begin.
During cocktails we had a chance to mingle with all the people that came to celebrate with us. Our wonderful wedding coordinator Allison Goldwasser who worked for the W helped guide the evening and ensure that everything ran smoothly. As a lover of Chicago architecture, we named the tables after our favorite buildings. And as any good Chicago foodie would have it, we found a venue with top notch dinner and added a late night snack to the menu of Italian beef and Chicago style hot dogs- local favorites. We kept centerpieces on the reception tables more focused on candles to bring that added warm light into the ballroom. We just wanted to it to feel cozy and romantic during dinner and Allison of Stems provided the look we needed. We added personalized mints in the bathroom, M&M favors (our initials) and a Chicago architecture coffee table book as our guest book to bring in more personal touches.
After some fantastically funny, heartfelt speeches and a lovely dinner people we ready to dance. Thankfully DJ Angie Ma who we hired through Toast & Jam kept the dance floor packed all evening long. Honestly it was the most fun party I ever had; the music was incredible, everyone seemed to be having a great time and we never left the dance floor. When it was all over I was sad to see everyone leave but grateful that we got to spend so much time with all the people we loved.
I was a ball of nervous energy on the day of the wedding, but once it all got underway we just went with it, enjoyed our day and got a chance to celebrate our love and life together with all of our 130 family and friends there to help. Hiring great vendors we trusted to get the job done took any potential stress away and allowed us to focus on what really mattered. I recommend them all!
Photography: Tim Tab Studios | Florals: Stems, inc. | Wedding Gown: Dimitra's Bridal Couture | Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas | Bride's Shoes: Calvin Klein | Makeup: Chris Khasho | Hair Stylist: Kelly Cardenas | DJ: Toast and Jam | Ceremony And Reception Venue: W Chicago City Center | Ceremony And Reception Venue: W Chicago City Center | Ceremony Musicians: Melanie Clevert Sarapa