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We’ve Discovered the Wedding Dress Of Your Dreams

You made it to Friday, in the dog days of summer no less, so I declare a necessary celebration. And so I present to you a wedding full of rustic, glam details – starting with this Berta Bridal dress. The intricate lace – from the stunning v-neck to those elegant long sleeves – have me rethinking all my wedding dress dreams. Tamara Gruner captured the whole look and more – including this bouquet from Fionna Floral that I predict will be all over Pinterest within hours. See it all starting now!


From the Bride… We were living in California when we got engaged, but knew we wanted to get married in our hometown of Chicago with all of our family and friends. We both grew up in the Chicagoland area, and went to college and lived in the city, so we knew we wanted to have our ceremony in the city. Holy Name Cathedral has always been a special church for me growing up, with its beautiful architecture and long history in Chicago.

We wanted an intimate and romantic space for the reception, and we found the perfect room at Concorde Banquets. The big windows overlooking the grounds, the soft lighting, and delicious food made the entire evening magical.

I have always had a picture in my mind of what my gown would look like – anything but ordinary. My style is very simple but detail oriented. The silhouette of the dress is very elegant, but the lace adds a layer of romance I knew would blow Daniel away. The dress struck the right balance between modesty and sexy. While I didn’t initially look for a long-sleeved dress, my mother’s wedding dress was also long-sleeved – so when I tried it on, and it fit like a glove – I knew it was meant to be.

It was very important to both Daniel and I to bring our California life into the wedding. The colors we chose – dusty blues, muted jade greens, ivory and slate gray with a touch of blush – were inspired by the colors of the Pacific ocean. The soft gold in the chairs, votives and decor brought the warmth of the California sun. My former boss and good friends from Fionna Floral in Santa Cruz flew the flowers and herself from California and provided the lush, intimate, romantic setting that evoked the sunsets off of the Pacific Coast Highway that we cherish.

Our theme phrase was “Love in a Mist”, reminiscent of our days at the beach in California. The flowers in the long, cascade bridal bouquet were white and blue veronica, dusty blue hydrangea, tillandsia, garden roses in ivory tones, tulips, green hanging amaranthus, dusty miller, eucalyptus, passion vine, air plants, and some olive leaves and berries. The boutonnieres were white roses, lilac, olive/bay leaves and berries.

We wanted our guests to have a piece of our wedding that lasted longer than the night, so we bought baby succulents from California with little white pails for them to take home as a reminder that love continues to grow with the proper care.

Vault CTA

Vault CTA

Photography: Tamara Gruner Photography | Floral Design: Fionna Floral | Wedding Dress: Berta Bridal | Cake: Central Continental Bakery | Ceremony Venue: Holy Name Cathedral | Reception Venue: Concorde Banquets | Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Rings: Cartier | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BCBGMAXAZRIA | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BHLDN | Catering: Concorde Banquets | DJ: DJ Leon | Groom's Attire: Prada | Bride's Handbag: Prada | Earrings: Helmut Lang from FarFetch | Film Processing: Richard Photo Lab | Groom's Ring: Benchmark

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Romantic Winter Wedding in Chicago

There are about a million reasons this sweet Chicago affair is awesome, but I’ll start with the obvious: it’s crazy pretty.  From the luxe champagne and blush hues to that beautiful bouquet from Joseph Events to the freshly fallen snow adding just the right touch of romance to the proceedings, this, my friends, is elegant with a capital E.  See it all captured by Jacqui Cole Photography right here in the full gallery.

Event Venue

From Jacqui Cole PhotographyEvery bride dreams of snow flakes falling on her winter wedding day. On November 15th, 2014 Crystal and Eric had the first snowfall of the year – on their big day!

Their wedding day was elegant and romantic. Crystal’s colors were champagne gold and neutrals with a touch of blush in the beautiful florals. Crystal and the bridesmaids got ready at her mother’s house, which made for incredibly beautiful bridal portraits! Crystal’s daughter, Riley, was the junior maid-of-honor. The sweet getting ready moments between mother and daughter were some of my favorites of the entire day.

For the ceremony Crystal wore a lace, off the shoulder bolero. The ceremony included traditions from Eric’s German heritage and Crystal’s Mexican heritage. At the reception, just after the speeches were finished, we noticed the snow flakes falling outside. The brave couple didn’t hesitate to head into the cold for some of the most romantic images I have every captured. I am truly blessed to have captured such a beautiful day for this wonderful Mr. and Mrs.!

From the Beautiful Bride… Eric and I met through a mutual friend during the summer of 2009. We dated for four years before getting engaged in Aspen, Colorado on September 19, 2013. With a secret photographer there to capture the moment, Eric planned out everything perfectly and proposed in front of the Maroon Bells.

When we started planning our November wedding we really wanted to keep it elegant and romantic, with a neutral color scheme and a few rustic touches. Classic black Vera Wang tuxes for the groomsmen, champagne and nude colored dresses for the bridesmaids, and touches of blush in the flowers. With my name being Crystal and Eric being a carpenter, I incorporated some crystals and different wood ideas throughout the reception decor.

We chose Concorde Banquets in Kildeer for a number of reasons. Between the delicious cuisine, the elegant decor, top notch service and professionalism from the owner John, we knew this would be the perfect venue for our wedding reception. When we talked about our priorities for our wedding, we both really just wanted to throw a good party and make sure our guests had a great time. Every vendor we chose was a referral, or was from one of the many weddings we had either stood up in or been guests at. We felt the music would be really important, so we chose a DJ from our friends’  wedding. We had high expectations from John Grammatis and he did not disappoint. He played a perfect mix of old and new, and kept the dance floor packed all  night. We used Joseph’s floral in Libertyville for all of the bouquets and boutonnieres. I had to let go of my original florist three weeks before the wedding, so needless to say I didn’t have much time to meet with Joseph’s. I emailed them only a couple of pictures and when I got to the church and saw my bouquet I couldn’t have been happier to see it was EXACTLY what I wanted. Given the short notice, they were so patient and accommodating.

As far as photography, I knew right away I wanted Jacqui to be there. As a long time family friend, I’ve seen her amazing talent and watched her grow her photography business in such a short time. We have a similar style and I knew she would capture every special moment. You can tell Jacqui loves what she does, she was an absolute joy to have around that day. When she noticed it had starting snowing she pulled us outside to get some shots, and we are so glad she did that because those are by far ours and everyones favorite photos. The unexpected snow set the scene, but she captured one of my favorite moments of the whole night.

Then there was the choreographed dance that Eric and my daughter Riley performed, it was such a fun and emotional moment. To be able to look back at the photos and see their smiles and expressions is just priceless. Also, our guests really enjoyed when the German drum and bugle corps that Eric plays in came out and performed. It was important to us to have all of these personal touches. We loved looking around the room and seeing all of our friends and family there from all over the country, and some family from Mexico and Austria. We felt unbelievably blessed that day, and had the time of our lives!

To future brides, keep in mind what this celebration is really about and try not to let the stress of planning a wedding get to you. Choose what you and your groom like because it is your special day! Take help that is offered to you from friends and family, try not to have a specific vision of how everything will be, and trust that the day will be amazing. Because it will be!!!

Photography: Jacqui Cole Photography | Floral Design: Joseph's Florist | Cake: Central Continental Bakery | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BHLDN | Hair And Makeup: Avalon Salon | Wedding Venue: Concorde Banquets | Bridal Sash: BHLDN | Bridal Store: Gigi's Closette | Groom And Groomsmen's Attire: Men's Wearhouse

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Elegant Chicago Wedding from Jenelle Kappe Photography

I’m tucking this fabulously elegant Chicago wedding safely at the top my list of weddings that prove classic soirees will never fail to impress. It’s all made even more impressive when you find out that the gorgeous Bride planned it all herself. Amazing, right? With images from Jenelle Kappe that define picture perfect and not one detail left unnoticed, this gallery is one gorgeous place to be today.

From the Bride...Our wedding was nothing short of gorgeous! I am proud to say that I (the bride) planned 100% of our wedding without a wedding planner and without any details lost. From buying our own table linen and chair sashes to doing some DIY projects….I did it all. Our wedding was everything we wanted plus more. I had visions of what I wanted but never expected our wedding to turn out the way it did. From our traditional catholic church ceremony and release of doves, to our 1958 white Rolls Royce, my bridesmaids blushing pink dress, and our pictures in front of an outdoor movie theatre where they wrote on the marquee “Mr. And Mrs. Woods”. The feel of our wedding was nothing but true elegance with a little bit of old Hollywood.

Photography: Jenelle Kappe Photography | Floral Design: Trellis | Wedding Dress: Brides by Demetrios | Cake: Central Continental Bakery | Reception Venue: Concorde Banquets | Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids Dresses: Watters | Grooms Attire: Kenneth Cole Reaction | Limo: A Dynasty Classic Cars | Dove Release: White Dove Release