Friday, October 4, 2013

Real Wedding 2013 | Elizabeth & John

Couple | Elizabeth & John, 7-20-13
Welcome Dinner | Iroquois Hotel
Strolling Violinist | John Van Patten
Ceremony | Saint Anne's Catholic Church
Officiating | Father Pawel
Schola Choir | Cathedral of St. Andrew
Ceremony Trio | Mike Davis Trio
Ceremony Florist | Margaret's Garden, Grand Hotel
Hair & Makeup | Astor's Salon, Grand Hotel
Reception | Straits of Mackinac II, Arnold Line
Reception Quartet | Classic Impressions
Photographer | Andrejka Photography
Caterer & Bar Service | Pellston Market
Cake | Bella e Dolce
Day-of Paper Products | 6.25 Paper Studio
Reception Florist | Pearls Events
Rentals | Fancy Fray, Refunktion Junktion, La Tavola Linens, Events by I. Candy, Special Events Rental
AccommodationsGrand Hotel
Trumpeter | Bob Hicks
Pearls Events Service | Event CoordinationEvent Design

John called me one day late Spring and started telling me what he envisioned for his wedding day with Elizabeth. I must admit I wasn't sure if he was for real, because I am quite certain I've never worked with a groom as closely as I worked with John. I tell you one thing - Elizabeth is one lucky gal. This guy thought of everything!

Mackinac Island. Victorian. Boat dinner party. Crystals. Chandeliers. Horse-drawn carriages. Trumpeter. Fireworks. Dancing on the dock. We did it all!

Thus began our six week journey to Mackinac Island. John & Elizabeth had many things set - the all-important dress, the guests (only 30!!!), each other. But many of the details were still up in the air, so we got to work right away.

We met in Mackinac just after Memorial Day weekend and there, we selected linens and rentals. We had a last minute change in reception venues (the first boat wouldn't be Coast Guard-approved in time...), and of course all of the "what-ifs" with working on an island with no motor vehicles, but everything was set by mid-July and we were ready for roll on July 20th.

My team and I arrived Friday afternoon. I headed to the island to run through rehearsal at Ste. Anne's with Elizabeth & John, while the rest of the team got settled into the hotel room & grabbed dinner.

Saturday, Adrien & I were off to the island via ferry to coordinate the carriage processional from the Grand Hotel to Saint Anne's Catholic Church, and then the ceremony, while Leah & Greg stayed behind to load into the boat. Yes, my husband worked this wedding with me - for the second time in Pearls Events' history, he assisted with setting up and we couldn't have done it without him.

We loaded in sofas, chairs, side tables, linens and what seemed like a million candles while Special Events Rental loaded in chiavari chairs, tables & draped the entire boat with fabric and lights. We set linens, centerpieces and candles while Bella e Dolce set up their amazing cake covered in roses. Nancy Kelly from Pellston Market and her culinary team started getting ready for the most amazing small-bite 10 course meal I've ever seen presented.

After the ceremony, and a horse-drawn carriage ride around the island, guests enjoyed tea at the Grand Hotel. Later in the evening, guests began arriving on the dock. The couple arrived to a grand trumpet entrance, complete with sparklers, and we were off into the sunset! Dinner was amazing, the quartet played the entire four hours, and we ended with an extra-long firework show out of St. Ignace.

We returned to the dock, where the Pearls Events team had set a dance floor for the couple's first (and last!) dance of the evening, after sending off a couple of wish lanterns into the dark night sky.

I cannot tell you how memorable this wedding was to me. It's not everyday I get a call from a groom for a Victorian-themed wedding with a boat reception. And then it happens on a perfect July day with gorgeous weather.

John & Elizabeth - thank you for trusting our team with your vision on your big day. It was a delight working with both of you making sure this things went as you wanted. I LOVED all of the details you wanted to incorporate, and I'm quite certain your guests will remember your wedding weekend for years to come! Best wishes for a joyful marriage!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Real Wedding 2013 | Kirstin & Khoi

Couple | Kirstin & Khoi, 7-6-13
Ceremony | Fountain Street Church
Officiating | Chip Sauer
Rehearsal Dinner | San Chez Bistro
Reception | Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts
Caterer & Bar Service | Martha's Vineyard
Entertainment | Wiser Productions
Makeup | Faces by Linda G.
Hair | Echo Salon
Photographer | Bryan and Mae
Cake | MiraBella Confections
Florist | Posh Petals
Linens | Pearls Events
Rentals | Events by I. Candy
Photobooth | ShutterBooth
Candy Buffet | It's Personal by Sweet Cakes Design
Pearls Events Service | Event Coordination

What a great couple to work with! Kirstin & Khoi were in the midst of moving from DC to Chicago at the end of their planning, and didn't miss a beat with all the details. I enjoyed both of their families, and getting to know them a bit before their big day.

Kirstin and I spoke over the phone initially, and then met up at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts to go over the layout of the space. The linens we worked with were some of my favorites - clean, modern, bold, and the flowers that Posh Petals designed were perfect for the UICA and Fountain Street Church. The paper products, designed by the groom's sister, were some of my very favorites - soft pink & white, and graphic with their monogram & a bit of chevron; perfect!

Because one of my very good friends was also married this day, I dropped breakfast off to Kirstin at the Amway Grand Plaza and spent the morning setting up the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts before I handed the coordination reigns over to Leah, Leah & Adrien. I received a text from Leah B. that afternoon (after the ceremony) saying it went so smoothly and that I would be so proud; and I was. I LOVE knowing my team can handle everything I can and not having to worry about a thing.

Based on the photos from Bryan and Mae and follow up meeting of the Pearls Events team, I know that dinner from Martha's Vineyard was wonderful, the various cakes(!) from MiraBella Confections were out-of-this-world, and the dance floor was packed all night long thanks to Randall from Wiser Productions.

Kirstin & Khoi - thank you for trusting the Pearls Events team with your big day! I had a wonderful time getting to know you both a bit, and we all wish you nothing but the best in Chicago (and beyond!) on your new adventure.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Real Wedding 2013 | Elise & Kenny

Couple | Elise & Kenny, 6-29-13
Ceremony | United Methodist Church of the Dunes
Officiating | Pastor Dan Duncan
Makeup | Hanna Wager
Hair | Kayley Heeringa
Reception | Spring Lake Country Club
Photographer | Bryan and Mae
Videographer | Coastline Studios
Florist | Hey Gorgeous Events
Cake | MiraBella Confections
Entertainment | Collision 6
Chair Rental | Chiavari Chairs of Michigan
Rehearsal Dinner | The Lakehouse Waterfront Grille
Transportation | Elite Services & Crystal Limo
Pearls Events Service | Event Coordination

I had the pleasure of sitting down to coffee with Elise, her dad, aunt and cousin a year prior to Elise & Kenny's wedding in Grand Haven. It was a lovely afternoon getting to know more about her and Kenny's relationship and how they wanted to celebrate their wedding day.

Elise's mother's family had vacationed in Grand Haven for years, and sharing Elise's love for the resort town with Kenny, and all of their family & friends was what mattered most to this couple. Each and every guest traveled to Grand Haven for this wedding - a destination indeed!

After the ceremony at my personal favorite Grand Haven church, United Methodist Church of the Dunes, the couple and their wedding party (the largest we've ever had!) headed to Lake Michigan for beach photos. And even in the midst of the sand soccer tournament, Bryan from Bryan and Mae was able to capture everyone on the sandy shores.

The couple arrived at cocktail hour at Spring Lake Country Club and mingled a bit before being announced into the dining room. They cut their amazing peach-hued cake by MiraBella Confections, and sat at their darling sweetheart table, designed by Hey Gorgeous Events.

Guests ate a delicious meal, and then the band, Collision 6, kept the dance floor packed all night long! The Pearls Events team passed out glow necklaces late into the evening, and then sparklers for the grand exit at the very end of the night.

Elise & Kenny - Congratulations on your marriage! It was an honor working alongside you through your planning journey, and coordinating all the wonderful details of the day. Leah, Leah & I wish you nothing but an amazing life together!!!

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