I knew immediately after meeting Rachel and Eric that their wedding day would be nothing less that EPIC. I mean, if you remember their ENGAGEMENT session, you know these two are the sweetest couple and so fun to photograph. Rachel and that smile and Eric with the way he looked at her the whole time. <3 <3 <3
It didn’t change for their wedding one bit. These two and their HUGE wedding party were a BLAST. And rain all day?? What rain?! No one seemed to notice, especially with the most amazing dance floor I’ve seen in quite a while. KEEP SCROLLING – THE DANCING IS SO FUN!
Rachel & Eric, THANK YOU for creating the most fun wedding to end my 2017 season with. You two are simply beautiful and this day was unforgettable. Congrats!
Florist : Carole, Petal Peddlers
Video : Don, VDO Productions
Caterer : Beyond Events
Cake & Sugar Cookies : Sweet Mandy B’s
Makeup : Andi Frankenthal
Hair : Sarah Delaine Agency
Bridal Dress : Doris Bridal, Highwood
Bridesmaid Dresses : Brideside
Suit/Tux : Gents Custom, by Genna Katz Friedman
Balloons : Shop Paris 312
Venue : Noah’s
I started the day out with Rachel and the ladies in their hotel down the street from Noah’s. Rachel pulled out ALL the stops when it came to her details. I LOVED the lace and her comfy reception shoes!All of these ladies were so much fun to work with. Everyone was so happy to smile and goof around for pictures, but immediately there for Rachel whenever she needed anything.
BEST BRIDAL PARTY!This excitement never left Rachel’s face ALL day. She was the most happy bride ever and so fun to watch as she reacted to everything all day.
The first, getting her amazingly gorgeous dress on…I mean, holy SHOES batman! <3 <3 <3All dressed and SOOOOO happy!!!Seriously, this was just the beginning of the day and we were already having a blast!Veil on = RACHEL ECSTATIC! 🙂Love all of these pictures with Rach and her girls. <3Then mom came in and the tears came out! <3For about 1/2 a second, the rain seemed to slow down and I rushed Rachel outside for a quick picture. Hey, we got you some fall colors after all! HA! 😉Right after reading her letter from Eric, we made our way over to the guys to prepare for their first look.Meanwhile, Eric and his brother were putting on his stylish finishing touches.
LOVED his velvet coat!Those big smiles were evident with Rachel AND Eric all day. Love it!Eric, you are just too fancy for words. 😉A surprise gift from his bride to be……and some final touches before seeing Rachel.If you remember their engagement session and the BIG balloon we used for some of their pictures, then you will love what Eric surprised Rachel with at the venue entry way…He had a TON of balloons placed in the entrance of their venue for Rachel to walk in and see.
Needless to say, she LOVED it!Where to do their first look?
Why not around the balloons???Through the balloon strings, these two with SO MUCH excitement, turned around and finally got to see each other for their wedding day.
I think they look happy. But can’t really be sure. 😉Eric already had the tears flowing and got all of us going too. <3He was in awe of Rachel and couldn’t stop staring and telling her how gorgeous she looked. It was seriously the sweetest!LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!
Remember when I said they were fun to photograph for their engagement pictures? Well they stepped it up even more so for their wedding. You two are the BEST!
I made these balloon shots into a GIF on Instagram. Go check it out – SO FUN!HA! Seriously love you two!GORGEOUS COUPLE!!! You two belong on the cover of a bridal magazine!Their wedding details were so beautiful and classy. CHEERS!!!! Off to wedding party pictures before they say I DO!I mean HELLO BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE!!!These ladies were so much fun!And the guys were the sweetest! I love the classic tux and bow-tie look!JUST CALL US BOND. WE ARE ALL BOND.
Seriously the BEST group!
Before their ceremony began, we made our way to the bridal suite for a traditional Jewish Ketubah signing.
Rachel and Eric were surrounded by their family and closest friends for this and it was beautiful to watch. I love traditions!It’s OFFICIAL!!!!Rachel, your reactions to life happenings = GOALS! 😉Oh this picture? Just Eric and his mom celebrating with a happy dance. HA! So awesome!CEREMONY TIME!They each were joined by their parents while walking down to the alter.<3 <3 <3That far right picture? That was the first of MANY kisses they shared throughout the ceremony. These two are seriously the cutest! They made each other laugh, cry, and smile all day and they couldn’t help but lay multiple kisses on each other before the official ‘You may now kiss‘ was announced. <3Their vows were heartfelt and got everyone crying and laughing.Kiss #2! 😉Just as Eric placed the ring on Rachel’s finger, he looked over to his brother, his best man, and brought out……an ADDITIONAL diamond band for Rachel to wear. Her reaction was the best!
And with the traditional stomping of the glass…
THEY ARE MARRIED!!!Can you tell they are excited?! 😉<3 <3 <3
Mr. & Mrs. Hills!!!Off to the cocktail hour FILLED wall to wall with friends and family and delicious food.After the ceremony, the reception room was quickly put together with gorgeous lights and details.One of my favorite details? Their ‘HIS‘ and ‘HERS‘ wine glasses. 😉We recreated this picture of their cake topper during their engagement session, so it was great to finally see it in person. So cute!Dancing their way in to their reception!An amazing first dance to my favorite – Ray Lamontagne!They had everyone join in on the dance floor before dinner, and let me tell you – THIS CROWD CAN DANCE!!!There are so many more dance pictures! It was the BEST crowd of people!Followed by dancing, friends and family gave beautiful speeches to toast to the newlyweds. Rachel and Eric, you guys are awesome and I can’t say that enough! So animated and fun to photograph! Just love ya!Some of the funniest……and sweetest moments during these toasts.Now I believe I have prepared you all, but here we go…
EVER!!!And just when you think it can’t get any better…the traditional HORA begins! I think Rachel’s face of anticipation says it all…HA!This has to be one of my favorites! Rachel’s face is priceless!!!Yep, that’s pretty much my facial expression too dude! 😉 LOL!It became a family affair! HA! So awesome!!!YOU TWO ARE AMAZING!!!I had such a blast closing out my wedding season with you two!
p.s. thanks for the yummy treats! 😉
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A little about Rachel & Eric & their wedding :
Q. When did you meet? Where?
A. We technically met for the first time at a happy hour. My two best friends, Becca & Amy, went on Birth Right with Eric and when they came back from the trip, we all went out. The funny thing is, Eric and I hardly talked that first night. It wasn’t until about six months later at a concert in Milwaukee when we saw each other again. This time around, the connection was immediate and we talked all night long. We hung out the entire next week and before we knew it, weeks turned into months and months turned into 5 incredible years.
Q. When did you get engaged? Where?
A. We got engaged Saturday June 18th, 2016 at Vivo in the West Loop (3 days before my birthday). Eric reserved Table 70, one of the coolest tables in the whole city because it sits at the top of an old elevator shaft. The exposed brick, metal-work back bar and draped curtains made the table incredibly romantic. But for Eric and I, the real draw was our love for people watching. Perched above the dining room, this table overlooks the rest of the diners, giving us a prime view for our favorite activity. We had been trying to get a reservation at this exclusive and private table for months, and thus when Eric said he wanted to take me there for my birthday dinner, I didn’t think it was anything other than a fun celebration.
Q. How did the proposal happen?
A. The plan was to go to dinner before I had a few friends over Saturday night to celebrate my birthday. I had just returned from a girl’s trip with my college friends two days earlier, so I was pretty distracted with getting back to my typical routine. Saturday night rolled around, and we headed to the West Loop. It was an outstanding 5 course dinner and we spent the night laughing and people watching from Table 70. Toward the end of the meal, Eric went to the bathroom. When he returned, he closed the curtains behind him and I was like “what are you doing”. Suddenly, Eric got down on one knee and from there, it was a blur of happy tears and the sweetest words I’ve ever heard. It truly felt like a dream. Of course, I immediately called my mom and when she answered, it sounded like I had woke her up. I asked Eric why he didn’t tell our parents to come down and celebrate, but he explained that we were having a big family party the next day so everyone would come together then. That sounded believable so I didn’t think twice, and we gathered our stuff to leave. As we walked down the stairs, the entire restaurant began to clap and cheer – I could not stop crying! When we got back home, we opened the door and to my surprise, both our families were there with tons of balloons and adorable decorations! Overwhelmed with happiness, I couldn’t help but be a little sad because my college friends all lived out of state, and I knew they wouldn’t be able to come since we had just returned from Vegas two days earlier. But of course, the party still went on and the doorbell kept ringing. Everyone kept telling me to open the door and greet everyone. Eric’s friends came, my high school friends came, it was so fun. And then, the doorbell rang again, but this time when I opened the door, I saw my best friends from New York, DC and Arizona – standing right in front me!! They all flew in for less than 24 hours just to be there with Eric and I. To this day, opening that door, seeing them, knowing Eric made sure all the people we love most were there, is easily one of the happiest moments of my life. I have never felt surrounded by that much love and happiness…well until October 14th, 2017 🙂
Q. What’s one thing about your spouse that made you realize you wanted to marry them?
A. We really are best friends. People say opposites attract, but with Eric and I, not only are we similar, but we love most of the same things. We truly appreciate the little things – from sitting on the couch watching our shows (anything and everything Bravo) to date night at Panda Express, decorating the house for every major Holiday, as long as we’re doing it together, we’re happy.
Q. What was the most important aspect for you two when planning your wedding?
A. Making it a true celebration – big dance floor, amazing music and of course, an incredible photographer 🙂 (Thanks guys! <3 )
Q. What was your favorite thing about your wedding day?
A. The Ketubah signing! We were surrounded by our family and best friends – one of the most special moments of our lives.
Q. What were the first dance songs?
A. • First Dance – “You are the Best Thing” Ray Lamontagne
• Father Daughter – “Forever Young” Rod Stewart
• Mother Son – “Someone like you” Van Morrison
Q. Where did you (or plan to) go for your honeymoon?
A. Thailand!! (AH!!! I have to go there!) 😉
Q. Can you give any advice for future couples planning a wedding?
A. Chill on the Pinterest – it can be a black hole 🙂 At the end of the day, you want a day that feels like you and your partner, so be true to yourselves!
Q. How did you hear about ME – your photographer?
A. A recommendation from Ed & Aileen – the best recommendation we ever received!! You truly made our wedding day perfect and we cannot thank you enough for your energy, talent and positivity!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
THANK YOU FOR SHARING!!!
I cannot thank you both enough for letting me be a part of your day! It was amazing and I loved every second of it! Thanks for the dance too! HA! 😉 I wish you both so much love and happiness in your future. Cheers to many, MANY happy memories to come!