An April Wedding

April 25th, 2016

My first wedding of the new season was on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.  The ceremony was at the unparalleled Rockefeller Chapel in Hyde Park, with the ceremony at Osteria Via Stato in River North.  You’ll see flowers from Flowers by Stem and a few photos of the Lisa Rene Band.  These are a few shots taken by my assistant and by me.

rockefeller chapeldining roomplace settingbouquetdance partyband

Planning Anxiety

April 18th, 2016
Congratulations!  All that worry paid off! Photo courtesy of Artisan Events, Inc.

Congratulations! All that worry paid off! Photo courtesy of Artisan Events, Inc.

I know that some people find planning of any kind stressful, so sometimes wedding planning can cause acute anxiety.  If that’s the case for you, you are not alone.  I can’t promise that it will always be easy or free from stress, but I do have a few tips to help.

First, don’t try to do everything alone.  If your fiance(e) isn’t willing or able to be an equal partner in planning, find someone else you can rely on.  It might be your best friend, your sibling, or a professional planner.  Find someone who is willing to commit to being there for you through the entire process.  This is a lot to ask of someone, so, if you are not paying that person,  be sure to do something very nice for them.

Next, try to limit the number of things you are worrying about at any one time.  Decide on (for example) three things that need to get done first, and then worry about those.  If numbers four, five, or six try to get your attention, put them aside and just concentrate on the first things.  When you finish one project, add another one to the list.

Finally, the most important thing is to do something.  Anything.  When you’re looking at a big project, it can be daunting.  But every time you cross something off your to-do list, it gets a little easier.  So, make that phone call.  Look up that thing you’ve been meaning to find out.  Make that list.

It isn’t always easy to make all of the decisions that go into planning a wedding, but if you can narrow your focus a little and start making some progress, you’ll start to feel more and more confident that it will all get done and that it will all be all right.

Dog Ring Bearers

April 11th, 2016
We do love our dogs! Photo by Allison Williams Photography.

We do love our dogs! Photo by Allison Williams Photography.

I’ve written a little about children in weddings before, but there is also the question of animals.  Should you have a dog be your ring bearer?

I have to say that my reflexive answer to that question is, “No.”  But I will say that there are some exceptions to that categorical negative.  There are certain circumstances where it might not be a bad idea.

If you are having a very formal wedding and/or you are worried about things happening outside of your control, a dog in the ceremony is very likely going to do something you don’t want to have happen.  But if your wedding is casual and you are extremely easy-going about what happens, you might not mind the unexpected things that dogs can do.

I would still only recommend doing this if: 1) the dog is yours or is one who knows you very well; 2) the dog is very well behaved in crowds and under superb voice control; 3) the dog is happy to carry or wear something; 4) the dog’s person can spend some time working with the dog to be sure he or she knows what is requested; and 5) you can assign someone to be full-time dog handler.  If any of the above is not true, I would think twice about it.

There are other things you also might want to consider.  For example, where will the dog go after the processional and during the ceremony?  It’s very cute to have a dog walk down the aisle, but will it then go and put dog hair on everyone in the front row?  And, as with children, let your officiant or best man carry the actual rings!

Perhaps the most important thing to decide is whether you want to allow a dog to be the star of your wedding.  As actors always say, never work with dogs or children, because they always steal the show.

The Great Wedding Recyclery

April 4th, 2016

wedding recycl_SAVE THE DATE_2016It’s time for the 2016 edition of the Great Wedding Recyclery, sponsored by the Green Wedding Alliance.  On Sunday, April 17, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Loft on Lake (1366 W. Lake St.) will be transformed into Chicago’s largest wedding garage sale.  There are two different ways you can participate.

If you are planning your wedding and would like to find previously-used wedding items, this is your chance to shop for decor items and other things that might otherwise cost you a lot of money.  If you recently got married, you can rent a table and sell items you think other couples would be interested in.

The Recyclery happens every year right around Earth Day.  Here is your chance to get some fabulous stuff for your wedding or sell things you no longer need, and to keep things out of the landfill.