Meeting Anna and Josh was a whirlwind of emotions. We connected immediately, and I can honestly say that I have never, in my 15 years of capturing events, come across two people who feel more, care more, and are as open about their emotions as Josh and Anna are. Anna is one of those effortlessly magnetic people who makes you want to know more and pulls you in with her quick wit and raw honesty. Because they were planning a more traditional Orthodox Jewish wedding ceremony there were a lot of little details to go over and questions to ask, and at the end of our first meeting, I felt like I knew both of their life stories, in a good way 😉

Fast forward to their wedding day and the maybe not so traditional location for this beautiful Orthodox event was the Irish American Heritage Center to echoes Annas roots, and lent itself to such a grand event. Having use of the entire building and more rooms than I think I’ve ever seen utilized on a wedding day for all of the various traditions and ceremonies. Orthodox Jewish weddings have a component called the Badeken where the groom sees his bride, but then pulls the veil over her face which symbolizes the idea that however beautiful she may be, her character and soul are the most valued. This was such a beautiful moment and my favorite photo of the day is when Josh finally came into the room where Anna had her Tisch and the look on his face of just utter joy at the sight of his bride was overwhelming, to say the least. This day was full of more laughs, tears, heartfelt moments, and above all, Love, than I have seen in quite some time. I feel truly blessed to have been able to be a part of this couples life. Learning more about the traditions of the Jewish faith was also something I relished, and in a time when many weddings are bucking tradition for a more modern streamlined version of the idea of marriage, I found it humbling and incredibly special to witness a piece of tradition that has endured for ages… and feel how much the meaning of every single ceremony and event resonated with these two souls.

Thank you so much Anna and Josh… you have no idea how much I enjoyed every single minute.

~With Love,

 

Genevieve

 

Venue: Irish American Heritage Center

Floral: Juliet Tan

Lighting & Decor: MDR Creative Inc. 

Catering: Gold Coast Catering

Band Leader: Doug Lofstrom Ensemble

DJ & Sound: Stand & Clap DJs

Planning Services: Jamie Bauer – JB Events – 224-221-0129

Sweets Table: Bites Of Pleasure Foods

Suit: Etro

Dress: Jenny by Enzino

 

 

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This love was made in the most modern of places you can imagine… the Apple store.

Nathan & Bethany are just, a match. They fit. It makes sense on every level when you are around them because they vibrate at this frequency when they are together that smooths out all of their rough edges, and makes them glow from that other worldly place. Their relationship is literally what we all dream about, and yes folks, it started at the Apple store! No wonder their gadgets are so addicting. 😉 When we met I felt how much Nathan wanted to make every detail of this day perfect for her, and it was even more evident when he showed up to do a bunch of the decor himself the morning of his own wedding! You just can not get more dedicated than that… and the day was not only beautiful, but because they had created it, it seemed to vibrate on that same amazing frequency the whole day through. Shooting at the ultimate Chicago wedding venue, Salvage One, is always an absolute treat. This place curates an amazing collection of vintage wonders from furniture to stained glass, wall decor and even two gigantic elephants that guard the entrance to the ceremony space itself. It is magic and ever changing and has beautiful light… what else could a photographer ask for? This particular day I was able to sneak outside for one last shot of the back courtyard and that oh so famous “Chicago” sign but also show the “SO” as well which is often overlooked but just as cool. The delicate floral decor by A Stem Above was perfectly fall inspired without being too over the top, and if dinner wasn’t amazing enough, the PIES that came with it by Fig Catering were the icing on the cake. (Please excuse that terrible cake/pie pun thing I just did there). In short… meet Nathan and Bethany. They are insanely in love. They have impeccable taste in just about everything. They know how to party. And most important of all… they allowed me to come and document it all, and for that I am eternally grateful.

~With Love             Genevieve

Getting Ready Hotel – Crown Plaza Metro West Loop

Ceremony & Reception Venue – Salvage One

Floral Design – A Stem Above

Lighting & Decor – AV Chicago

Caterer & Pie – Fig Catering

Dress Designer – Bhldn

Celebrant – Chosen With Bonnie

 

 

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On a foggy Wednesday in January, Kasia & Radek got ready in their Evanston apartment together, spent a couple of hours taking some lovely portraits around the area, and then said I do in judges chambers. The simplicity of a couple so truly in love and so effortlessly comfortable with one another is one of my favorite things to photograph. All of the quiet little moments that I managed to capture, coupled with an oh so lovely foggy winter day in the Northern woods made for a love story like I haven’t seen in a while. Quiet. Real. Timeless. These two exude that kind of happiness around each other that we all strive to have in our own lives someday, and when I am really lucky, I get to photograph it too. Thank you Kasia & Radek… for being you and letting me tell your story.

Stunning bouquet and boutonniére by Atmosphere Events

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Today, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and here in Chicago its a balmy 60 degrees which for January is insanely awesome! I thought it appropriate to showcase all of the magical Spring Style I photographed a couple weeks ago at Debi Lillys Bride Style 17 at the always chic DL Loft here in Chicago. The queen of style herself was styled by Kate Johnson of Kate Johnson Artistry who gave her a pretty bright purple lip I was obsessed with!
It was a beautiful day full of style trends that featured the Pantone color of the year, Greenery! Debi being the style maven that she is, showcased some of the best talent in the city and brought them together with some excited brides to be to see how they can turn their big day into the fantasy they always dreamed of. Table settings dripping in pink, gold and white with unique floral motif vases gave way to a more green approach (which I love, being a member of the The Green Wedding Alliance) by using live potted flowering plants in place of cut flowers held in pretty pots with all the feminine touches one could want. The vintage place settings and glassware provided by The Festive Frog are also in keeping with a green theme, and the pretty pink and green plates and glassware made everything feel fresh. Speaking of fresh, the mediterranean inspired fare by Olive Mediterranean Grill was amazing! I actually went back for seconds because their baked falafel was beyond delicious. Moving on to the over the top pretty that is everything that Toni at Toni Patisserie makes, it was hard to want to eat anything it looked so beautiful. I love photographing her work because it is always so perfectly detailed and each individual cookie, cupcake, or pastry is a work of art.

The event was fun, bright, full of happy faces and yummy champagne cocktails. Its so nice to be able to enjoy days like this during an otherwise cold Chicago winter, and when you’re at Debi Lillys place, it always feels like springtime in Paris. <32017-01-21_0036.jpg
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When I was 11, I saw A League Of Their Own in the theater and spent the next 6 months throwing around a baseball at school pretending to be the feisty redheaded pitcher Kit. Unfortunately, I have almost zero hand eye coordination when it comes to sports where balls are thrown at my face (insert “Clueless” joke here), and so I went back to running, skiing, hiking, and other less dangerous sports. I did however grow up in a very sports heavy household that mostly revolved around The San Francisco 49ers and Monday Night Football with my Dad. I of course being a super tomboy and a daddy’s girl, made sure to pay attention and follow the game as much as I could. I collected football cards, I loved Joe Montana and I was always jumping up and down when we won… which in the late 80s and 90s was a lot. My Grandmother however was a die hard Giants fan even though she had lived in Oklahoma for over 30 years, and she was still yelling at the screen at her boys days before she passed. Loving your team was ingrained in me, but even though I loved the San Francisco teams I grew up with, I never felt like I was truly in love with them like other more diehard fans were and I always felt a little outside of what it is to be a true fan.

Fast forward to spring 2015, and I had been living in Chicago for 5 years at that point and still couldn’t quite wrap my head around the Cubs mania here. Why does everyone love a team so much that never seem to win? Then my Dad came to visit and we went to a Cubs game at Wrigley Field. It was my first time in the stadium and I can not deny that the energy and love that fills that place when the Cubs are playing was something I had never experienced before. My Dad isn’t a huge baseball fan either, but I have never seen him so excited to be at a ballgame and being able to sit inside the incredibly historic Wrigley Field was really exciting for both of us. I brought my huge DSLR that day even though I was a bit worried about it getting knocked around, but I knew it was going to be one of those days I wouldn’t soon forget and my Dad was beyond tickled to take pictures around the park even after the game. We lost that day… but I came out of the ballpark completely transformed into a Cubs Fan. Please excuse all the cheesy selfies we took… though I will say I’m so glad we did. These images are some of my favorite moments with my dad in recent years.

This world series win for the Cubs is not only important because it’s historic, but because it is a huge win for the fans. I’ve met so many people since I’ve lived here in Chicago that are die hard Cubs fan year after year, lose after lose… but they continue to love their team with a fierce loyalty that is unfortunately scarce in this world. My Dad is now a part of this too, loving the cubs since that day as well and when we won we called each other crying with happiness. Flying the W here has become a symbol to keep the faith, never give up hope, and never ever stop believing. Schwarber, Russel, Bryant, Rizzo and the rest of the boys have given Chicago, and really… all of America a reason to believe in miracles, because when you put all of yourself into loving something and striving to achieve a goal it will eventually pay off. So today, no matter what team you love, Fly The W for the hopeful dreamer in all of us, and know that anything is possible.

And in the oh so eloquent words of Cubs Pitcher John Lester at the rally this morning… “How ’bout this shit!?”

GO CUBS GO!!!

~With Love,  Genevieve

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