“We were really pleased with Joan’s services for our wedding. We hired her to coordinate all the day-of stuff. We met with Joan three times before the day of the event. I really felt she had a great handle on everything that needed to be done. She made great suggestions when necessary, but also listened to everything that I had to say. All of my friends and family were really impressed by her services too. She really made it so that my mom, my husband, and I did not need to worry about anything that day. We knew she had it all under control.”
“I would recommend Joan to ANYONE. She is so organized, consistent, responsive and professional. She was a joy to work with and was calm, cool and collected on the day of the wedding. She handled any problems that arose immediately and without me even knowing. She made sure everything went smoothly which is not a small feat for a wedding of just under 400 people! Joan is building a great reputation in the industry and is truly an asset to anyone looking for assistance for Day of Planning or full service. She exceeded our expectations over and over again!”
Brittany and Dave’s wedding was definitely one of the most entertaining weddings I had the pleasure of being a part of last year. I knew the bride and groom from college, but interestingly enough, they were referred to me by my downstairs neighbor (thanks Todd!) without him even knowing the connection! Britt and Dave wanted a great big party for a wedding reception and that’s definitely what they got, as I’m sure you’ll see from the photos, all courtesy of Steve Matteo Photography.
I met the ladies at their suite at the Holiday Inn bright and early on Saturday morning as they were beginning to trickle in from their hair appointments at D’Marie Salon in Frankfort. The lovely Tiffany Berry of Flawless by Tiffany got to work on Brittany’s makeup while the bridesmaids got to work on their mimosas.
Unfortunately the weather forecast was not looking good. It had been pouring all morning and there was no sign of it letting up! Luckily Britt’s step-mom, Karen, was prepared with several large umbrellas and galoshes for Brittany.
Before long, the flowers had arrived and it was time to get dressed! Brittany’s gown was a lovely silk shantung with a few crystals for accent–so simple and beautiful. The Bridesmaids donned elegant long navy dresses while the Maid of Honor (Britt’s twin sister, Ashley) wore the same dress in a deep purple which matched the sash on Brittany’s dress. The four lady ushers wore purple dresses of their own choosing. The Enchanted Florist did an amazing job with some of the most vibrant blues and purples I’ve ever seen featured in the bouquets.
Meanwhile Dave and his groomsmen were getting ready at Dave’s parents’ house nearby. While the ladies had been up since the crack of dawn for hair, make-up, and prep; I’m pretty sure the guys spent 95% of the time sitting and drinking and about 10 minutes on the “getting ready” part. It always cracks me up how quickly a groom can get ready for one of the most important days of his life!
Much to our surprise and contrary to all weather reports, the clouds broke and they were able to fit in a few outdoor shots before the ceremony. I love this one of the guys with their beer bottles!
Brittany and Dave had a lovely nuptial mass at the beautiful and modern St. Stephen’s Catholic Church. They did a wonderful job of incorporating family members into the ceremony and making sure everyone felt included.
Post-ceremony, as soon as family photos were done, it was time to party! The bridal party hopped on a limo bus for a few photos while Sara and I headed over to the Odyssey Country Club to set up. The couple definitely put their personal touches on every part of the day. They had a slideshow of photos from infancy to current times going in one corner of the room, little after-dinner mints placed on each table for their guests’ enjoyment, and bottles of wine as their alternative to a guest book! As big oenophiles, they chose to put out 10 bottles (one for each of the first 10 years of marriage) for guests to sign. Now for each anniversary they will get to relive their special day by reading the notes and messages from their friends and family.
Britt and Dave kicked off the evening by cutting their DELICIOUS, and I mean delicious, cake from Creative Cakes. They were good…no cake smashing, just enjoyment.
We all enjoyed a family style dinner and heard toasts from the Fathers of the bride and groom as well as Maid of Honor, Ashley, and Dave’s Best Man, (Dave’s brother) Brian. As soon as dinner was over it was like a gun shot went off. Everyone hit the dance floor and it was packed immediately and for the rest of the night. Matt from Electric Blue Entertainment kept the party alive and everyone enjoyed themselves immensely! There may have even been an icing or two (or twenty?) Hilarious. My favorite kind of wedding.
Brittany and Dave, I enjoyed every minute–of working with you for your wedding. Cheers to you both, and all the best for a lifetime of love and happiness!
“Our florist (Fleur) recommended Five Grain Events, and I can’t thank Kelly Marie enough! Leading up to the wedding, Sara took on all communication with our vendors, and even helped negotiate a couple issues with our site that came up – resolving them in our favor! She was great about keeping us on task and organized, and helped us think about little details that hadn’t even crossed my mind. Her help the day of the wedding was most valuable to us, though. Being able to just enjoy the day without worrying about how everything was being handled was priceless. Knowing I had an “advocate” of sorts to help make quick decisions on the fly, keeping our best interests in mind and the stress away from us, helped all of us just relax and enjoy the day. Would highly recommend these lovely ladies in a heartbeat – they’re fantastic!”
Ayelet and Aaron booked Five Grain Events well in advance of their October wedding, but with good reason! Their selected date, 10.10.10 was not only a very popular wedding date, but it was the day of the Chicago Marathon. There were certainly some interesting logistical issues, but luckily everything turned out beautifully for their fall-toned celebration.
It was wonderful to spend the day with two very talented photographers: Lisa Green and her assistant, Meg. All photos below should be credited to Stephen Green Photography.
The ladies started the day with hair and makeup in a huge suite at the Hard Rock Hotel. Hair and makeup were provided by Ginger Damato and Cynde Hoffman respectively. It was so much fun to see each bridesmaid transformed. As it turned out, the hairstyle Ayelet chose to wear for the day looked very similar to the way her mom wore her hair on her wedding day!
After Ayelet and Aaron shared their First Look in a quiet corner of the Hard Rock Hotel, the bridal party walked over to Millennium Park for some photos. With all the leftover marathon spectators on top of the fact that it was an unseasonably warm day I don’t think I’ve ever heard so many hoots and hollers congratulating the bridal party :). The golden fall foliage was the perfect color compliment to the pumpkin-colored bridesmaid dresses and beautiful bouquets created by Fleur.
The Bedecken and Ketubah Signing were held in the presence of Ayelet and Aaron’s families. Ayelt and Aaron had their Ketubah created during a trip they took to Israel and it was signed by the Rabbi and witnesses from Aaron and Ayelet’s family. The Bedecken is a ritual based on a Jewish tradition which requires that the groom see the bride before the ceremony and cover her face with the veil. This custom dates back to the Biblical episode in which Jacob was deceived into marrying Leah instead of his chosen bride, Rachel, because she was hidden behind the veil. Aaron did the honors just before the bridal party lined up for the processional.
Finally it was time for the ceremony to begin. Both the ceremony and reception were held in the Chicago Cultural Center’s GAR Hall. It is an incredibly grand room with ornate ceilings and huge picture windows overlooking Michigan Avenue. The aisle was lined with candles and Art of Imagination created the fabric chuppah and all the draping, giving the space a very romantic feel.
After a big “Mazel Tov!” guests headed out to the Rotunda for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while GAR Hall was changed over for dinner. The delicious food was created by Shallots Bistro Catering and I just have to point out the beautiful arrangement Fleur made for the place card table featuring branches, leaves, and even pomegranates and grapes!
When everyone re-entered, GAR Hall had been transformed! Candles illuminated every corner of the room and Entourage was already playing up a storm. The dance floor was quickly filled and continued to be throughout the night as guests sat down to enjoy each course and returned immediately for more dancing. Instead of a traditional head table, Ayelet and Aaron hosted their immediate family and their significant others at a Feast Table. The rest of their guests sat at tables named after places they’ve traveled together! [clear]
An extra special part of this wedding was that I’ve known the bride’s sister, Sharon, since I was in high school. So hearing the speech she and Ayelet’s other sister, Karen, gave was especially touching.
One of the most fun traditions of a Jewish wedding is the dancing of the Hora, and this may well have been the best one I’ve seen. I don’t think ANYONE sat out! It was amazing. When the bride and groom were lifted onto the chairs, Ayelet looked like she was having the time of her life, while Aaron appeared terrified. Hopefully he’s recovered since then.
The party continued until the clock struck midnight. Everyone left with a smile on their face (and maybe a cupcake to go!). Ayelet and Aaron, thank you so much for including me on your special day. It was a joy to see how wonderfully you compliment one another. I wish all the best to you for the future. Mazel Tov!