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about


Hi! I'm Hilda, the owner, photographer, secretary, book keeper, photo editor and album designer of Angel Eyes Photography. I'm non-stop but I'm doing what I love. I especially enjoy weddings, hanging with cool couples, being in the company of chubby babies, and going on photographic adventures. Welcome to my blog. If you like what you see please leave a comment!



Arlington Heights wedding |The Belvedere in Elk Grove reception | Chicago suburban wedding photographer | Tarah & Jason



I loved photographing this wedding! I’ve worked with the bride’s family in the past, so I knew that this was going to be one well organized and super fun wedding. I was right ;)  This couple  was such a joy to photograph, they also gave me plenty of time to do my job…yes it’s true, if you give your photographer ample photo time,  you will have relaxed, beautiful photos  :)

Blush pink wedding dress, Winter wedding photos (2)

Dress – Here comes the Bride in Addison Illinois

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Makeup – Lauren Guillen of LG Makeup Design

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Loved everything about this blinged out blush pink dress!!!

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Flowers – Blooming Flowers in Elk Grove

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Hair – Gina Oliveto of Gina Renees Layers of Talent Salon

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Love so many things about this photo…she’s the baby of 3 girls and the last one to be married, (her maiden name on the wall behind her) looking out the window of her childhood home as a Meehan for the last time.

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Meanwhile Carol hangs with the men as they get ready.

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Arlington Heights wedding photos

Our Lady of the Wayside Catholic Church in Arlington Heights, IL

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Photo by Carol.
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Thank you to both families for making my (and Carol’s) job such a pleasure and for allowing us to photograph this FUN wedding!!
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From the couple…
The Belvedere in Elk Grove – We chose the hall mainly because of its convenience. It is attached to a Country Inn and Suites and it made it very easy for our guests to get home safely at the end of the night. We were very happy with everything the day of the wedding. The hall was set up exactly how we requested and the service throughout the evening was great.
 
The Baking Institute – This was one of the vendors our reception hall uses. We got compliments all night about how great the cake was! Unfortunately, we never actually got to taste the cake as it came out while we were doing rounds to the tables.
 
Sound Pro DJ – We had a great experience with Sound Pro at my sisters wedding a few years back so we hired them for our wedding. Overall, we would say the DJ did a good job, but not great. He did not do a great job of listening to requests from my parents or siblings (which he had been instructed to do beforehand).
 
Hair – Gina Oliveto of Gina Renees Layers of Talent Salon - I cannot say enough great things about Gina. She came to my home the morning of the wedding to help myself and the rest of the ladies get ready. She is truly talented and did exactly what I asked of her and replicated perfectly what I had liked from my trial. She also did an amazing job at creating styles the girls asked for.
 
Makeup – Lauren Guillen of LG Makeup Design – Lauren also came to my home the day of the wedding. She did a great job of creating the makeup look I asked her for.
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Dress – Here comes the Bride in Addison Illinois. They have a great selection and helped me find exactly what I wanted. We took my dress to a woman who does alterations in her home, and I was very happy with that more personalized experience. Shoes were Betsey Johnson flats from David’s Bridal. I am not one to wear heels, and flats allowed me to be comfortable all day and night.
 
Flowers – Blooming Flowers in Elk Grove. Vista made picking out flowers easy. I did not know what I wanted, but after shower her my dress and explaining the venue she came up with arrangements for everyone. The flowers turned out beautifully and we were so pleased.
 
Photographer – Angel Eyes Photography of course! Hilda did the weddings of my sister and my cousin and she was the first call I made when I got engaged. Her and Carol were a wonderful addition to our day, fun and easy to be around and they made taking all of the pictures fun. We are thrilled with what we have seen so far and we cannot wait to get the rest!
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My favorite wedding purchase was absolutely my dress. It was exactly what I had envisioned for as long as I can remember. As soon as I put it on I knew that was the dress I would walk down the aisle in. The shop kept putting me in more gowns and I repeatedly requested to be put in that gown again. I felt amazing throughout the entire day.
 
Favorite wedding memory: Jason – My favorite memory was when Tarah was revealed and walked so elegantly down the isle.  She was beautiful and i will always cherish that memory.
 
Tarah – My favorite moment of the entire day was walking down the aisle toward my soon to be husband. It was just me and him in the church in that moment. I had joked with him leading up to the wedding that I would turn around if there wasn’t a tear in his eye. He did not disappoint :)
 
I think the best advice we can give is enjoy your day. Make sure your wedding is what you want it to be, but don’t make it a stressful event for yourself. There will be people who have other ideas about how your day should go, but all you can do is enjoy the moment and stay true to yourselves. You only get one wedding, and the most important thing is you and your husband united and sharing it with everyone you love.’
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 Love this ring shot :) More photos on Facebook.




Venuti’s Ristorante & Banquet Hall wedding | Naperville Riverwalk wedding photos | Jessica & Tony



It was such a pleasure getting to know Jessica and Tony during the planning process. The first time we met I vividly remember Tony telling me (with a big smile on his face) ‘I cannot wait to marry this girl’.  Their wedding was everything I hoped it would be and more! Got to meet LOTS of fun people, so fun in fact that some of those photos will never see the blog ;) Good times!!!

Flowers – Enchanted Florist of Palos

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Dress – Allure Bridals (Style C170)

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Wedding Bands - Cornerstone Jewelry & Engraving

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Hotttie!!!!

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Everything was color coordinated, even the bridesmaids nail polish.

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Tuxes – Black Tie Tuxes

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Custom Converse All Stars 

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Ceremony and reception - Venuti’s Ristorante & Banquet Hall

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Cake – The Baking Institute

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DJ – Direct Hit Productions

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From the couple…
 
-Flower Shop and Jeweler are in the same shopping mall and will work on prices if you hire both businesses to do your wedding. (I still have Billy Ball Flowers in a vase from my wedding in December 2014…so awesome!)
 
-Direct Hit Production’s website is in the works so the site may not be fully functional but it will be.
 
-The cake was included in Venuti’s wedding package.
 
Favorite  Memory:
 
Bride: Sooooooo many to choose from but hearing someone yell out “Nooooo!!!” when our “fake” first dance song came on (My Heart Will Go On). It was a great kick-off to the best first dance ever! ;)
 
Groom: Seeing his Bride! J
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Favorite Purchase:
 
Bride: My Custom Yellow & Grey Chuck Taylors that said Mrs. Marino on the side! And they were much more comfortable than high heels!
 
Groom: Since our 4 pound Yorkie couldn’t come with us on our wedding day, I had him put in a picture on my tie clip!  
 
Advice:
 
Bride: Don’t forget your veil in the hotel room closet! I did…for the entire day…but I’m glad it ended up that way. I feel like it was just meant to be and the veil ended up being my girlfriend’s “something borrowed”!
 
Groom: On your big day, whatever is gonna happen, is gonna happen! Roll with it and have a blast!
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Victoria Banquets & Catering | Victoria Beau Jolie Wedding | Photo of the week, Mallory & Tom



Victoria Beau Jolie is a gorgeous venue, and the staff is incredible! Congratulations to Mallory & Tom, they are my first 2015 wedding :)

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More photos on Facebook.





Brookfield Zoo wedding & reception| Fun and Unique wedding venue | Whitney & Ben



I’ve been wanting to photograph a wedding at the Brookfield Zoo for years, and now finally I can cross it off my wedding bucket list!! Woo-hoo!  And it couldn’t have happened with a sweeter couple. Thank you Whitney and Ben for allowing me to capture your beautiful wedding.

Shoes:   Steven by Steve Madden

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Dress:   David’s Bridal

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FlowersWestgate Flower and Plant Shop

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First look :)

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All photos done at the Zoo.

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Ceremony.

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OfficiantBruce Otto

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Hello tiny guest ;)

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Cocktail hour was in the gorilla  house.

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CakeLezza Spumoni & Desserts

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FlowersWestgate Flower and Plant Shop

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DJ:  David O. at MDM Entertainment

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From the Bride…

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  • Favorite Wedding-Related Purchase:  My blue shoes!  Hands down.  I was absurdly excited about them.  After I bought them I could hardly keep them in the box.  I’ll admit, every few weeks before the wedding I just had to pop open the box for a quick peek at them.
  • Favorite Wedding Memory:  A VERY difficult question to answer!  Ben’s favorite wedding memory was when I surprised him by standing up at the end of the maid of honor’s speech to sing him a song (“The Book of Love”, originally by Peter Gabriel).  But there were too many good bits to choose from!  Driving around the zoo beforehand with the wedding party and taking photos was highlight, as well as the cocktail hour with the gorillas!  And our first dance of course – fortunately neither of us tripped  :)
  • Something would’ve done differently:  If it had been possible, we would have kept the events of the evening more on schedule – the evening ended way too quickly!
  • Advice for Couples:  Have FUN!  And make choices to create a wedding that reflects and fits your personalities and who you are.  It can be easy to get unwittingly get sucked into trying to plan the day based on ideas like what people think should be done or what other have done in the past (or, dare I mention, all the millions of things you find posted on a certain unnamed website that rhymes with “Interest”…).  Forget it!  Plan a celebration that you can imagine yourself describing as “the best / most fun party I went to all year!”

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  • Okay, so I actually gasped when I saw that last portrait . . . there’s just something completely magical about it! I love the ring shot too . . . well, and all the other photos also! Fantismo!!





Chicago wedding photographer | The Westin O’Hare wedding ceremony and reception | Rosemont IL photos | Ellen & Jason



Loved photographing at the The Westin O’Hare. Gorgeous hotel and a beautiful park in the back for photos. They are also pet friendly! Ellen and Jason’s wedding was great!  Some of my  favorite vendors were there, Ryan from StemLine Creative and Entourage-Arlen Music . I also want to mention the Videographers- Mirar Productions, this is the first time I’ve worked with them but I would recommend them in a heartbeat. Talented and fun, I hope to work with them again soon :)

Dress: David Tutera for Mon Cheri 

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Shoes: Benjamin Adams

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Hair & Makeup: Ana from United Hair Lines

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Florist: StemLine Creative

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Venue: The Westin O’Hare

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Tux: Men’s Wearhouse by Vera Wang

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Bridesmaid dresses: Bill Levkoff

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Band: Entourage-Arlen Music  

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From the Bride…

‘Florist: StemLine Creative-Ryan was amazing to work with and I really appreciated his creativeness and patience. I changed my mind multiple times on pretty much everything, yet he made every interaction very pleasant.
 
 
Photography: Angel Eyes Photography-Hilda and Carol were amazing to work with! The photos will speak for themselves.
 
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Shoes: Benjamin Adams (these were my fancy wedding shoes, but I changed into my sparkly silver Toms for most of the dancing)
 
Favorite wedding related purchase: We absolutely loved our band, Entourage! We wanted non-stop dancing throughout the night, which they did seamlessly! They kept the crowd going with their high energy and musical talent. They also learned one of my favorite songs, which made for a special dancing opportunity with my bridesmaids.
 
Favorite wedding memories: One of my favorite memories was my first dance with Jason. It felt surreal that I was married to my best friend and now I was dancing with my HUSBAND in front of all my friends and family. What a feeling!
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My maid of honor’s speech was a truly special memory as she took a very eventful trip down memory lane, which led me to none other than Jason. He also happens to have the same last name as her; I had secretly wished for that in the past as she is like a sister to me!
 
Advice for couples: Make sure you take the time to enjoy your wedding!!! Jason and I were able to talk with all of our guests, yet we were able to dance, eat and drink throughout the night. Also, go with the flow of the night, even if you notice something is going wrong. Likely, no one will notice, so don’t let anything spoil your night.
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Salvage One wedding photos, Unique Chicago Wedding Venue | St. Paul of the Cross, Park Ridge | Halloween wedding | Katelin & Robert



What’s better than a fun wedding at my new favorite venue? A fun wedding on Halloween! Salvage One is one of the most unique wedding venues in Chicago. If you are looking for something different, something with a Wow factor, this is the place! A special thanks to Planner Kim Gapinksi, Bride + Joy Events for making sure everything flowed smoothly.

Flowers- Edison Park’s Romance in Bloom

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Dress- Macy’s and alterations at Mary Catomy

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Some fun photos before the wedding! It was 32 degrees, thanks for braving the cold bridal party.

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Church- St. Paul of the Cross, Park Ridge

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Venue- Salvage One

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Flowers- Edison Park’s Romance in Bloom

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Food- Goose Island They are THE perfect solution for boring wedding food! So SO good!!

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The corn was my favorite!!

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Cake- Mariano’s | Candy- Sam’s Club 

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DJ- Toast and Jam

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From the Bride…

‘Venue- Salvage One
It was absolutely fabulous.  Brandy, the wedding coordinator, was very helpful and nice.  It has won “best place to get married in Chicago” a few years in a row.  I googled “most unique places to get married in Chicago” and this place came up.  It was the first place we visited, and we knew we had to get married there.  The downstairs for cocktail hour, was very interesting as people could walk around and look at the furniture, play games like pool, skeet ball, etc. and many other things to do. They sell everything in the ‘warehouse’, including all the seats, decorations and bar.  So the wedding guests loved it.   The dinner and dancing was upstairs.  It is a big open area of all wood and windows.  The tables and chairs are all different and unique.  There was a stage for the DJ, more games to play, and some couches next to the bar for lounging. It is the best venue I could have possibly dreamed of.

Church- St. Paul of the Cross, Park Ridge
It is a beautiful church.  The priest is funny and personable.  We had to meet with him six times before the wedding, so he really got to know us.  The coordinators were very nice and had lengthy phone conversations with us to make sure the wedding went smooth.

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Food- Goose Island
Again, best decision we made.  We choose “Chicago stations” which included stations from Chicago neighborhoods.  For instance, ‘Greek town’ had Greek food (make your own gyros, etc.), Pilsen had Mexican food (make your own tacos, etc.), Lincoln Square had German food (different types of sausage, etc.).  They even decorated each station like the neighborhoods.  We really loved the idea of this because we love the variety of Chicago’s food and hate ‘banquet’ food with chicken and green beans.  We also liked the idea of getting out of your seat and creating your own dish.  It really made an activity out of the meal.  We wanted a fun dining experience.  And it really was.  All our guests talked about how amazing the food was and how fun it was to visit the neighborhoods.  Especially since Goose Island is a quintessential Chicago restaurant/brewery.  Give that it is a brewery, we were able to go to their restaurant and taste different beers and chose one to be our ‘specialty beer’ that we got to name.  We named it “Roblin”, our name in college. It was also a big hit.  The people are Goose Island were really friendly and nice.  Ellen Frisbee was the main person we communicated with, she was sooo nice.  I talked with her for hours on the phone and exchanged hundreds of emails.  She wanted to make sure everything was perfect.  I felt very special and that this was made especially for me.  Also they gave my husband an Goose Island shirt that he has his eye on.  Only employees get this shirt and I was very surprised they even remembered him mentioning it.  It was so thoughtful.

Liquor- Binny’s
We went with Binny’s because we were able to supply our own alcohol. Binny’s was pretty cheap and we were able to return alcohol we didn’t use and got our money back.

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Dress- Macy’s and alterations at Mary Catomy
I originally bought my dress downtown at Macy’s on state street (Marshal Fields).  I grew up going to Marshal Fields and passing by their dress ‘by appointment only’ section.  There is a platform in the middle of the room with chairs lined up and fancy dresses around the walls.  It was always so glamours to me.  However, it was a little pricey.  I was going to do my alternations there as well, until they told me the price.  I picked up my dress and took it to a neighborhood seamstress, Mary Catome in Schillar Park.  Best decision I made.  She does alterations in her basement, which is a scene I will never forget: dresses everywhere, sewing machines, jewelry hanging up, pictures everywhere.  This part of the wedding planning might have been the most fun.  I got all my bridesmaids and mother to go.  We took Saturday trips over there and had so much fun.  She even made my veil from scratch and also made our masks for our ‘masquerade ball’ themed Halloween wedding.  She is a riot and calls herself the ‘boob fairy’.  She is very affordable! I love her and highly recommend her.

Flowers- Edison Park’s Romance in Bloom
We didn’t want to spend too much on flowers because we were told it would make the place look too ‘busy’.  We were having a lot of candles and didn’t want to crowd the space.  We told this to our florist and she did a great job minimizing while making it look amazing.  I wanted fun, simple, and more wild looking…my mom wanted sophisticated and elegant.  This is a problem we were having at every decision during the wedding.  We couldn’t agree on a style.  I know mine opinion is all that should matter, but I wanted her to be happy with it too.  She does have good taste.  Anyway, that is exactly what the florist did.  She put some billy ball flowers, sticks, and other wild looking flowers mixed with white and yellow roses.  These were put in very small vintage vases.  It was exactly what we were looking for.  I really liked the flowers.  It completely matched the theme…they did a good job with little direction from me.

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DJ- Toast and Jam
We had Daniel at Toast and Jam.  He was ok.  I heard many great things about this company…”the best in the city” I heard.  So I was confident he would do a great job.  He met with us once and did give us a list of music we could choose or cross out from.  I”m not sure he exactly got the vibe of my husband and my taste in music.  I think he had a playlist he was thinking about for a big wedding and we had a small wedding, 85 people.  Given that it was a small wedding, I knew what everyone would want to hear…and “Hey mickey its so fine” is not one of them.  I eventually had to tell people to tell him to change the music to what I wanted to hear.  He would not do it unless I specifically asked him as the bride.  I understand this, but not even my husband was allowed to change the song.  And I certainly didn’t want to go up every song to tell him to change it.  But everyone did say they liked the music and people were dancing, so maybe he did know the crowd better than me.  After I told him what kind of songs I wanted, he did do a good job playing those songs and I danced the whole night through.  Music is so important to a wedding, so I wouldn’t really recommend him.  Although, we did have fun and danced the whole night.
Another thing I did not like about him is he wasn’t loud enough.  People did not hear him say that we were cutting the cake and didn’t see it.  No one heard him say it was our first dance, and no one really lined up to watch because they didn’t know it was happening.  That was really the worst thing that happened at the wedding.

Cake- Mariano’s
I am not a cake person.  I knew that no cake would taste good to me, so I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on the cake.  Although, I did like the idea of it looking cool.  We had a Halloween wedding, so I wanted a Halloween themed wedding cake.  This was turning out to be kind of expensive, even for a small one.  I eventually got the idea to go to Marianos in Jefferson Park.  I brought them a picture of the style of cake I wanted, and they did it to perfection.  We wanted a day of the dead style cake and I couldn’t believe they were able to recreate my picture.  It was even 3 tier cake for less than $200. We ordered a skeleton bride and groom for the top of the cake, which really added a lot.  I would definitely recommend going to Marianos, it was tasty and really cool looking.

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Planner- Kim Gapinksi, Bride + Joy Events
She was the absolute best! I didn’t want to spend any extra money on anything, so deciding to get a wedding planner was a tough choice.  We hired Kim as a ‘day of wedding planner’ and I don’t know how we would have done it without her.  Since our wedding wasn’t at a hotel or anything like that, it required us to do all the decorating, etc.  She helped come up with a lot of decorating ideas for the wedding.  Her dad has a pumpkin farm, and she got a lot of small pumpkins from his farm and painted them silver, white, and black (our wedding colors).  She decorated the tables perfectly.  She organized the candy table perfectly.  I just had to show up the day of and it was all worked out.  She came up with a timeline for the day and gave it to all the vendors.  She came up to me to say “go get your food”, “go cut the cake”, “its speech time”, etc.   I don’t know how it would have ran if she wasn’t there.  She is also very bubbly, nice, and cool.  She was also one of the best things about the wedding.

Candy- Sam’s Club
Candy table! It was a must for Halloween! I went online to find candy buffets, but they were so expensive.  I was going to have color coordinated candy, but that was too expensive also…like $1000 for candy! Since it was Halloween, I opted for the cheaper ‘Halloween’ candy.  We bought a bunch of bags from Sam’s Club and some glass containers.  It worked out great.  We even got Chinese food take-out containers and put stickers with our names on them.  So people could take the candy home.  I think the guests really liked that.  But it was also very cool to have our sweets table as candy.

Tuxedo- Men’s Wearhouse
We liked the Men’s Warehouse.  They had a great dark grey, Vera Wang tuxedo that really looked great.  They were very nice and accommodating.  My husband got a $500 off on a suit purchase in the future. It was convinent for everyone to get to a Men’s Warehouse whatever they were. 

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Programs- FedEx Office
Making anything for a wedding it so over priced.  I googled “wedding programs templates”, made our own, and sent them to Kinko’s.  Actually it was FedEx Office.  We did a lot of our printing needs there.  We also did the seating assignments and tied them to masquerade masks as our seating assignment/give away.  Two birds with one stone!

Invitations-Jeannie’s Let’s Celebrate Inc.
We wanted to use local places for our wedding, give the small guy some business.  We worked with Jeannie herself and she is really sweet.  Our invitations were very cool and exactly us.  We went through hundreds of big books, exhausting.  But found one.  They were cheaper there than other places that I found.  She helped with fonts and wording, etc.  The envelopes didn’t stick very well and I’m pretty sure it was because we licked them too much.  She felt bad and gave us free balloons for our bridal shower.

Photographer- Hilda Burke, Angel Eyes Photography
She is the best! She was very fun to meet with and plan before the wedding.  She was very helpful with any questions that I had.  She helped with photo questions (obviously) but also with other questions she could help with…suggestions for videographer, suggestions for wedding timeline, etc.  She is very honest with everything, which was very appreciated.  I needed help and obviously never planned a wedding before, so her honesty with how the day would flow, was very helpful.  She made sure to get amazing shots while ‘staying out of the way’ so to speak.  She kept us on our timeline because we were VERY late getting ready.  If she didn’t push us, we would not have gotten to our photos, church or venue on time.  She had great suggestions for photos at The Grove, which was rough because it was 32 degrees out in October, freezing! Her and Carol were great seeing which angle would work best and what we were doing right or wrong when it comes to pictures (kiss with eyes close  ).  She has a very creative eye, that is why I choose her! Looking at her past pictures, I knew she would be great for me.  The pictures are so artistic and unique and I can’t decide which ones I want to blow up! All of them! They are all magazine quality.  I have seen a lot of wedding pictures before and I have never seen any look as good as Hilda’s.  Everyone I show is so shocked about how amazing the pictures are.  She knows the secret angles and lighting and backgrounds better than any other photographer.  She got uncover shots you never knew she saw, and forgot happened until you saw the pictures.  I would highly recommend her! Pictures are so important and everytime I look at her photos, it brings me back to the moment.

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Favorite Wedding Related Purchase :  Hmmm…everything I purchased took a lot of thought because I was trying to do things on a budget.  I really liked the decorations for the tables.  I loved the candy table.  I loved the food.  I loved the masks.  I guess if I had to choose, my favorite purchase was the dress.

Favorite Wedding Memory: I have a few favorite memories.  One was when I was walking down the aisle with my dad.  The anticipation was crazy! We didn’t know how to walk properly and were a little nervous.  It was great seeing everyone and them seeing me for the first time.  And to see Rob at the end of the aisle with a huge smile on his face.  Another favorite memory was seeing Salvage One for the first time all set up.  When we walked in and saw how everything was decorated was more than I had imagined it.  Just perfect.  Plus seeing everyone waiting for me made me feel special.  Another favorite memory was the speeches.  My two sisters and Rob’s brother had the very meaningful speeches and I loved them.  Also, my brother Matt with the surprise comedy speech.  It was exciting to know that my family really stepped up and made me so proud. Something I will say that I will remember the most about the wedding, was planning it with my mom.  We had literally spent every single day for a year and a half planning every aspect of this wedding.  It integrated in every single thought we had for that year and a half.  Every single detailed was discussed, sometimes argued :)  We spent hours traveling around the city visiting churches, venues, tastings, purchases, etc.  We tried to DIY for everything possible thing we could and worked so well together to create everything.  Waking up that day and seeing all the work that we had done, from imagination to realty, was the most amazing moment.  I will never forget all that planning and how much help my mom was.  However, if you would ask what was my most fun memory of the day, I would have to say that it was in the limo ride from the church to the reception.  It was actually snowing ice, if that’s even possible.  Traffic was crazy, crazy busy because it was Friday, rush hour, Halloween, and horrific weather.  But inside the limo it was HOT, HOT, HOT!  We we’re passing around champagne, screaming out the windows, blaring our favorite beats and dancing our butts off! I almost didn’t want it to end.  We we’re finally married, the reception party was about to begin and it was the most perfect transition between those two moments.

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There are very few things I wish we had done differently because honestly, it was almost 100% absolutely perfect.  One, I would not have hugged someone drinking red wine.  I would have my bridesmaids better learn how to bussle a dress.  I would have made the DJ better announce the first dance, and made the songs longer.  And, I did love getting married on Halloween, but having a Friday wedding made timing a little hard.  But it probably would have gone just as fast if it was any other day.  IT GOES TOO FAST!
Advice for couples:  I suppose I have the same advice other people gave me.  Always, always smile because someone is always watching, and usually its the photographer.  I made a special point to smile the entire day (wasn’t hard) and everyone commented about how happy I looked.  If you’re happy, your guests will be even happier.  Spend as much time with your new spouse as possible.  This is your day together.  I do not regret not going around saying hi to everyone, I much more will remember hugging my husband, kissing him at any opportunity and celebrating together.  And take the time to separate the two of you from everyone and soak it in.  Step aside and talk about how everything is going, what is your favorite part and take mental snap shots of the event.  It goes too fast and if you don’t take time out for yourself, it’ll rush right by you.  And DANCE! Make sure the DJ is playing your favorite jams and dance with your favorite people! Dancing the night away is one thing I will always remember from my wedding.  And have a wedding planner   You do not want to spend any time on your special day worrying about logistics.  And you don’t want your parents to worry either.  You’ve spent so much money on that one day, spend just a little more to make sure it goes smoothly.’

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Chicago winter engagement session | Engagement photos in the snow | Brittanie & Kyle



How cute are thse two? Brittanie really loves winter, so of course we had to do a fun snow filled engagement session. Thank you mother nature for providing us with a gorgeous sunny 35 degree day.

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The Chalet at The Grand Geneva Resort | Wisconsin wedding photographer| Mallory & Andrew



Let us remember fall and gorgeous sunny days as we look upon these happy photos. It did take a bit of legwork to find some colorful leaves, but once we did we took full advantage of it. Everything from the getting ready to the reception took place at the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa.
Flowers: Frontier Florist
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 Shoes: Kate Spade
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Hair: Donna Wright from Raymond’s Hair Design
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The gift from the groom came in a little blue box :)
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Gorgeous Bridal make-up:  Meghana Rose Makeup
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Bridesmaids dresses: Bella Bianca in Oakbrook
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  Waiting for the ceremony to start :)
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DJ: Chicago DJs
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   From the Bride…
‘I would say my favorite wedding related purchase was my shoes. I LOVE SHOES. I usually wear heels and am very good at it, but because Andrew is not that much taller than me he requested that they weren’t too tall. I ended up picking up these beautiful gold Kate Spade flats with a big bow on top of them. Not only are the so “me”, but they were comfortable ALL day! They also made it easier to jump rope ;)
 
Favorite wedding memory: I would say dancing the night away. Our friends took off their ties and turned them into a jump rope, which was a lot of fun! I think we just relaxed and had a blast with everyone. Having a smaller wedding made it easy to hang out with everyone and make sure that everyone was having a good time!
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Something I would have done different- I would have eaten more throughout the day and drank less through out the night. I thought I had made a good effort to eat some appetizers and even half of my dinner, but I didn’t realize that I started getting ready at 7am and didn’t eat anything all day! Because of that, the champagne hit me a little harder than it other wise would have.
 
Advice to other couples: A few weeks before our wedding we were out to dinner with some friends of our. they suggested that at one point in the evening, no matter how hard it is, take a step back and just look at the whole picture. Having that moment together really solidifies all the hard work the wedding was and how great the outcome was. Luckily, Hilda pulled us out to take some pictures,because I would have completely forgotten to do that. There is so much going on during the reception and it is SO MUCH FUN, that you don’t want to leave. But having that one on one time with your new spouse is definitely worth it!’

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Wedding Planners: Jane Allen Events, loved working with them…highly recommended!





St. John of the Cross wedding | Esplanade Lakes by Doubletree reception | Juliana & Tony



I’m always nervous when I don’t get a chance to meet the couple before the wedding, but within minutes of meeting Juliana & Tony I knew it was going to be smooth sailing. They are a super fun laid back couple, which makes me happy :) When I asked the Bride what plan B was for photos since it was raining and snowing (in October) she said no plan B we are taking photos outside! As you’ll see it was worth being cold for the amazing photos ;)

Church: St. John of the Cross – Western Springs, IL

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Bouquets: Addison Floral – Addison, IL  

Bouquets Addison Floral

Wedding Dress:  Essense of Australia

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The couples transportation was a 1971 Buick GS; thanks to Uncle Ron.

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Reception: Esplanade Lakes by DoubleTree – Downers Grove, IL

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I’m in love with her dress!

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Cake: The Baking Institute

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Band: We, Unity Candle

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From the couple…

‘Reception: Esplanade Lakes by DoubleTree – Downers Grove, IL; Every detail was taken care of and the lake and foliage were a beautiful backdrop. THANKS a million to Shantella at the DoubleTree!

Band: We, Unity Candle – Chicago, IL; Rocked. It. My friends had bruises from banging the tambourines all night…

Wedding Dress:  Essense of Australia from Sophia’s – Greenwood, IN; This was a spectacular experience. I went to a few other places that shuffled brides in and out of dresses, barely closing the curtain before being dressed – Sophia’s was personal, quaint, and detail oriented, one bride at a time.

Bridesmaids dresses (Wine) by David’s Bridal  |  Men: Vera Wang Charcoal by Men’s Wearhouse

Bouquets: Addison Floral – Addison, IL  |  Centerpieces: DLN Floral – Naperville, IL

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Both florists were so helpful in designing the bouquets and centerpieces. I was probably the worst bride in the history of brides to articulate my ideas (or lack thereof), but they somehow knew exactly what I was going for.

Hair: Style Onsite – Chicago, IL; They were great! I was in a bind at the last minute and they delivered above and beyond. The stylist came to the house and did 4 bridesmaids’ hair for a reasonable price – the convenience and comfort of being at home was well worth it!

Cake: The Baking Institute – Northbrook, IL; YUMMMM (Even better the next day!)

Transportation – 1971 Buick GS; Thanks Uncle Ron!

Printed Design: Claire Keating – Chicago, IL; Claire wore so many different hats for this wedding and absolutely knocked every one of them out of the park. She designed the invitations and the worship aids for the ceremony and helped consult on printer selection. The result was a beautifully clean, formal and personalized printed portfolio.

Photography – Hilda Burke and Carol Lea with Angel Eyes photography (duh!); What a fantastic duo! So much fun, put us all at ease, knew exactly what to do (and when), provided on the spot cake cutting advice, were stern but not too stern with the drunk uncle photo bombers, and obviously captured great memories! Can’t wait to see all the pictures, but from what I’ve seen so far, they’ve done the day justice and then some – THANK YOU!

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Favorite wedding related purchase…Probably the band – they were a blast and so easy to work with. They made the night’s events seamless and kept the party going. They also learned three songs just for our wedding – making 2 minute versions for each of the special dances. They had a versatile repertoire and were extremely flexible in timeline, announcements, and music selection.

Favorite wedding memory…Collectively, Tony and I agreed, that reading the letters we had written to each other before the ceremony was a top memory. The ‘love’ letters were a request from the Deacon for us to write to one another for him to get to know more about us and our relationship (little did we know they’d be read…in their entirety…verbatim…to the congregation). It was a very unique and personalized sermon :)

My Dad’s speech was also very special to me. He’s a man of few words, but when he has something to say, you listen. He had the just right amount of sentiment, humor, and storytelling to get an emotional tear and a joyful chuckle out of a very hungry audience :)

I wish I would have…Ordered up warmer weather I suppose, but then again, the fur was a hit! And we can say it snowed on our wedding day…in October!

Advice: Go into the cake cutting with a plan…it’s not every day you cut a massive chocolate cake in a big white dress with a super fancy knife :) Oh, and relax, have a drink, and enjoy the night.

Esplanade Lakes by Doubletree reception wedding photos (3)





Chicago sexy boudoir portraits | pinup glamour session | photo of the week



Someone’s husband is going to be very happy with this present ;)  This type of photography is very fun and empowering for all women, do it for yourself! Email me to set up your appointment :)

Chicago sexy boudoir portraits, pinup glamour session

This is what this gorgeous lady had to say about her experience….Thank you!!!

“I wanted to do a sexy boudoir photo shoot for a long time but could never get the courage. My sister in law convinced me to do it, assuring me Hilda will make me feel/look amazing! That she did!! I had a ton of anxiety the day before but I pushed myself through it. Once I met Hilda, I knew she was everything I’d been told. She knew how to help pose you in a comfortable yet beautiful way. It’s quite a confidence booster when every photo she’s taking you hear “Oh, That’s a sexy one!” Or something along the lines. I cannot wait to do another boudoir photo session with her & other photos. She really knows how to make a woman feel gorgeous!!!!”





















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