Success Story: Downpour!

June 29th, 2015
The forest preserve in a downpour

The forest preserve in a downpour

It was a beautiful summer day, the perfect kind of day for an outdoor wedding in the forest preserve.  My assistant and I arrived early to set up 150 vintage wooden folding chairs in a clearing near a picnic shelter–along with games and vintage living room furniture on the patio and picnic tables in a rented tent.

The ceremony was beautiful.  The reception was fun.  And then, around the time people were thinking about leaving, the sky darkened and one of those intense summer thunderstorms was coming toward us.

We sprang into action:  Patio furniture came under cover.  Decorations came down.  And my assistant and I carried 150 vintage wooden folding chairs and stacked them under a large tree.

The wind was fierce.  The rain fell hard.  Vast puddles formed on the ground.  But the rentals were all safe–a little damp, but not ruined.  And the guests who remained had a very memorable end to the day.

Good Review!

June 22nd, 2015
A wedding or party should be fun!

A wedding or party should be fun!

I’ve been fortunate to receive some really wonderful reviews and recommendations over the years.  There’s one that has been posted on Yelp for a while, but I just ran across it again and have to share it.

I just love this part of it:

They say that every wedding has a few things that go wrong, but we didn’t even know about any hiccups with our wedding till at least a week afterward and I credit Lisa’s skill and talent with keeping everything together and moving right along.

That’s always my goal:  No one should ever know that anything went wrong!  (And, believe me, something always does.)

You can read the whole review here.  And, if you’re a former client of mine, grab your 15 seconds of fame and write your own review!  I love hearing from you.

Is a Surprise Wedding Ever a Good Thing?

June 15th, 2015
This should never be a surprise for the principals.   Photo by Ann Oleinik.

This should never be a surprise for the principals. Photo by Ann Oleinik.

A friend of mine posted on Facebook something about surprise weddings never being a good idea.  The discussion that followed was, well, surprising.

My friend was thinking it would be a bad idea to have a wedding where one or more of the people getting married was surprised.   I couldn’t agree more about that.  It reminds me of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest when Lady Bracknell says, “An engagement should come on a young girl as a surprise, pleasant or unpleasant, as the case may be.”  Although there was a time–and there still are places–when that was standard operating procedure, I’m glad to live in a time and place where it is rare.

On the other hand, two different people involved in the discussion talked about surprise weddings they had officiated at, and a third had friends who had had one.  In all cases, the couple planned it for a time when their friends and/or family were already present but they didn’t tell anyone except the person officiating (and maybe the host).  The consensus on this kind of surprise wedding was that it was a wonderful, sweet, happy kind of surprise for all the guests and the right way for some people to marry.

While this kind of wedding may or may not be right for you, I think it’s important to be aware of the whole range of options when you’re planning a wedding.  So, is a surprise wedding a good thing?  It might be.

Conservatory Wedding

June 8th, 2015

The bride and groom at this recent wedding insisted that everything be as simple as possible.  They didn’t want any fuss, just a nice time with their family and friends.  They did keep it simple, and it was also beautiful.  The guests kept commenting on what a lovely wedding it was.  Here are a few photos I took to give you an idea.

Horticultural Hall at the Garfield Park Conservatory is a good reception space.

Horticultural Hall at the Garfield Park Conservatory is a good reception space.

The Show House worked well for a cocktail hour.

The Show House worked well for a cocktail hour.

All the decor, except the flowers, was in simple black and white.

All the decor, except the flowers, was in simple black and white.

The only flowers were the bride's and the bridesmaids' bouquets.

The only flowers were the bride’s and the bridesmaids’ bouquets.

Here, a bouquet (from Flowers by Stem) brightens the water table near the door.

Here, a bouquet brightens the water table near the door.

But who needs a florist when you're at a conservatory?

But who needs a florist when you’re at a conservatory?