2013 wedding planning is well underway so please enjoy more tips and inspiration to create the wedding of your dreams…
Support Local Food Artisans For those of you who follow my Blog, you know I am obsessed with desserts and anything sweet and I have found that many of my brides and grooms are not only incorporating unique sweets, but they are also searching for local products which is a huge trend right now. Think chocolate, honey, or tea? I recently tried some delicious local honey from Bron’s Bee Company in Elburn that was chocolate! I paired it with raspberry tea and it was amazing. Look for local chocolate makers in your area for hand crafted truffles or caramels for your candy bar or favors. One of my favorites is All Chocolate Kitchen in Geneva. Chef Roby makes each truffle by hand and they are not only beautiful on the outside, but they are creamy and delicious on the inside.
Farm or Vintage Themes Rustic farm settings and vintage wares continue to be popular with brides and grooms. Incorporating elements such as rustic wooden farm tables, crates or mason jars filled with flowers or even a signature drink give an event an entirely different look. How fun would it be to sip your favorite cocktail from a mason jar or enjoy your favorite dessert this way!
Unique Backdrops Crystal Curtains, Ceiling Draping and Lounge Furniture can create a whole new ambience at your reception. Creating a “lounge area” allows guests to socialize and mingle during cocktail hour or when then they want to take a break from dancing.
We had the pleasure of attending one of the most beautiful and unique weddings on Sunday at the historic Mercury Theater in Chicago. The amazing couple, Walter & Eugene were married on the stage of the theater, with gorgeous chandeliers, a black grand piano, and a crystal curtain backdrop with the words “today, tomorrow, forever” projected. Being a theater, the sound and lighting for the ceremony was flawless, and friends sang the most incredible Broadway songs accompanied by a professional pianist. The reception was extremely unique as guests were seated at 2 different restaurants attached to the theater: Deleece & Cullen’s Bar & Grill. After dinner, guests were invited to the stage to watch the happy couple cut a beautiful 3 tiered wedding cake covered in crystals and a cake topper that read “Happily Ever After.” It was now time for the “dance party” to begin with music provided by Something 2 Dance 2 DJ Jay Sims. Eugene & Walter danced the night away on the Mercury Theater stage along with their friends and family and I can honestly say this was one of the best weddings I have ever attended. The day was captured by Colin Lyons Photography.
If you are looking for a unique venue for your upcoming wedding or special event, the beautiful 292 seat Mercury Theater is available for rental. Contact the theater at 773-325-1700 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a visit.
Be Creative with your First Dance! Your first dance is a great opportunity to “set the tone” for your wedding reception. Don’t feel that you have to dance to a traditional slow song. If you love to swing dance, select a jazzy version of a classic. Or feel free to bust a move after you have danced to a few minutes of a slow song. This will be a fun and welcome surprise for your guests.
Plan Interactive Food Stations! Great food makes great celebrations, but customizable and creative food choices are even better. A mashed potato bar, made to order pasta, or grilled cheese stations where people can choose their own toppings and sauces will leave you with happy, well-fed guests ready to have a good time.
Play Danceable Music! If you want to keep the dance floor packed, plan a playlist of songs that will please the crowd, not just you two. Remember, you will have guests at your wedding ranging from age 8 to 89! You may love obscure rap music, but now isn’t the time to show off your discerning taste in music. People love dancing to Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas, and Madonna–so let them!
Give out Party Favors! Don’t forget that a reception is a party! Let your guests know that is ok to let loose after a formal ceremony by handing out fun party favors at your reception. Our clients enjoy glow necklaces, hats for the guys and feather boas for the girls. It also makes for great photos on the dance floor!
Late Night Snacks! If you want to ensure an all-night crowd arrange for your caterer to bring out trays of late-night snacks like Gene & Jude’s Hot Dogs, cheeseburgers and fries, mini pizzas, mac & cheese or warm donuts. If you stick with yummy comfort foods your guests will wish the party would never end! One of our favorite events had a Cupcake Truck waiting outside as guests were leaving..a perfect way to end a party! I recently ran into a bride who was married in 2009, and she told me her friends still comment on how much they enjoyed having cheeseburgers and fries at her reception!
Tell me about yourself and your business. I grew up out in the southwest in Santa Fe New Mexico and moved to Chicago to attend the Art Institute. Being a photographer comes from my neighbor, a studio photographer who I worked with and watched for years. After graduating from school I become a second shooter for established wedding photographers and got to see how a lot of different wedding photographers shot weddings. It was great experience as I developed my own look and direction within the photojournalist wedding photography style. I really want my work to be about celebration. My photos are undoubtedly influenced by my artistic background at the art institute as well. The work should be fun, be uplifting, and show success in a personal sense. In 2010 I began carefully adding associate photographers who can also provide great work to the brides who want fun and artistic photography.
What town is your business located? I am located in downtown Chicago.
What type of event makes up the most of your business? I almost exclusively shoot weddings.
What other services can you offer? I also do Engagement Photography.
What sets your company apart from other photographers? This is perhaps the ultimate question for me and my brides. The work I provide is unique in the sense of how much I am able to cover in a single wedding day. My style of photography takes me from traditional family portraiture through outdoor magazine style location photos, and finishes with action photography of the dance floor. I always provide the disk of the work to my couples, and I have a great online slide show to help share the work with guests and friends.
Do you have a favorite location in Chicago that you like to shoot? I went to school at the Art Institute of Chicago and I have an affinity to shoot in the Art Institute for sure. There is a great city view from the roof of the new modern wing.
What a small world…we just did a wedding there on May 21, and it is a beautiful space for a wedding!
What are some 2011 Photography Trends? Sparklers for photos have been huge recently. I like them too!
If you could only have one song on your I-pod, which song would it be? For today it would be Kid Cudi “Day and Night”, but I am very trendy with my favorite song.
To learn more about booking Colin Lyons Photography for your Wedding please visit: http://weddings.colinlyonsphotography.com