Soniya + Erick, Part 4

Both the bride and groom changed into different outfits for the reception.

Would you guess that this is the Magnificent Mile? Posing in front of the Tribune Building.

Finding a private moment before they rejoin their guests.

The tables varied in shape and were draped in merlot, silver and fire orange.

One of the centerpieces featured an ornately carved gilded box topped with deep plum carnations.

Photos honoring the couple’s relatives. I love juxtaposition of the formals with Soniya and Erick’s playful snapshots.

The next post will feature some highlights from the reception.

Soniya + Erick, Part 3

The bride was escorted down the aisle by her brother. Her father escorted Erick into the ceremony.

The bride and groom’s parents place a sacred thread around Soniya and Erick to bond them together.

Together, Soniya and Erick take seven steps symbolizing their vows to one another.

The couple receives blessings from a family member.

The mandap (ceremonial area) was draped in eggplant and fire orange linens and strands of orchids. A chandelier added dramatic lighting.

The bride and groom wore garlands made of red and white carnations and marigold blossoms.

Finally married! Guests threw orange rose petals as Soniya and Erick exited.

The bridesmaids wore matching orange and red sarees while the groomsmen wore kurtas with orange scarves.

Tomorrow: wardrobe change!!!

Soniya + Erick, Part 2

For the bharat, the groom arrived on a white horse. The group started on Grand Ave and turned onto Rush Street.

The horse was pretty used to bharats and even had her own outfit!

Erick’s friends and family sang and danced on the way to the venue.

Erick and his mom having a spin. Erick’s sister is applauding just behind him!

The groom’s family was then welcomed by the bride’s family during the milni ceremony.

In the soft candlelight, the room looked magical.
The wide gold and silver aisle was flanked by columns draped in eggplant linens.

My next post will feature their ceremony.

Soniya + Erick, Part 1

I met Soniya and Erick about 7 months before their wedding. They were planning a traditional Indian wedding here in Chicago and another wedding in Madison, Wisconsin. Planning two weddings is a fairly bold endeavor, coming from a wedding planner!

Their Chicago wedding took place at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile, where I had my own reception two years earlier. The hotel has done some major redecorating since then but despite looking different, it was really cool to be back in the same space.

This was my first Indian wedding and I was fascinated with so many of the elements, especially all the bold colors. So this is going to be an unusually long series of posts – I hope you enjoy it!

Venue: Chicago Marriott Downtown on the Magnificent Mile – Kristina Capozzoli
Hair: Perfect Hair Anywhere – Jillian Strong
Makeup: Andie Cumber
Floral and Event Design: Botanicals
Linens: BBJ Linens
Ceremony Musicians: Malhar Orchestra
DJ and Dhol Player: DJ Raja
Photographer: Angela Swan
Videographer: Rusty Dog Films
Bharat Horse: A Zoo to You

All photos by Angela Swan.

The Sangeet ceremony took place the night before the wedding. The groom’s cake was a replica of the groom’s favorite books.

Traditional Indian sweets (called ladoos) were given to guests at the Sangeet.

Dramatic sky with a view overlooking the lake on the morning of the wedding. Luckily, the weather held out all day.

Soniya putting on some of her wedding jewelry.

A closeup of Soniya’s wedding outfit (called a lehnga), bracelets, and her bridal mendhi (henna designs).

The bride’s shoes – in gold, of course.

Finishing touches before the ceremony.

Tomorrow: something I had never seen on Rush Street before!

Amazing Contest: Enter today!

Paula Leme is having an amazing giving away that is valued at $5,300 that includes wedding day coverage by paula leme and a second shooter, engagement session, day after session, and 400+ retouched files. See, I told you it was amazing. Since Paula is based out of Michigan, the bride and groom will provide travel expenses from Michigan & 3 nights hotel if outside the Berrien County area.

How do you enter? Email Paula at with the following information:
  • wedding date and location
  • photo of both of you
  • details such as color scheme and the theme of your wedding

Paula is selecting the winner will be evaluated based on creativity and originality! The deadline is December 13th, 2009. Winner will be announced on New Year’s Day!

Off to India!

When I first started dating Denton, there were a few things that I found special about him. One was that, not only did we have a shared passion for travel, but we both had travelled internationally solo. It was one of things that made me think, “wow, maybe this guy is meant for me.” Six weeks later, we headed off to Thailand for 17 days together. Some eyebrows were raised but we both landed back in the States thinking we had found the perfect someone.

Every year since then, we have taken one major international trip. Besides our first trip, we have spent quite a bit of time on the road: 25 days in South America, 9 days in the Canary Islands, and 19 days in Turkey.

Well, it’s that time a year again. This time we are spending 17 days in India. We’ll start off in Mumbai, where I hope to fulfill my dream to be a Bollywood Star (or at least an extra). Then we’ll relax in Goa before seeing some famous ancient caves. We have a few days that are TBD but we’ll end up Agra for a day to see the very romantic Taj before flying out of Delphi.

Don’t worry, I’ve scheduled some blog posts in my absence as well as having Marilyn post a very fabulous (and very appropriate) real Indian wedding.

Free Deodorant!

Saving for a wedding can get expensive! Enjoy this great deal and a fun night out for a Dove PitiCure!

Dove deodorant is offering Chicago women the opportunity to trade up and treat themselves at participating spas! Now through December 22nd, you can trade in your old stick of deodorant to participating area spas in exchange for a free full-size stick of Dove Ultimate Visibly Smooth anti-perspirant/deodorant – plus 10% off any spa or salon service up to $120. Details are here.