When one of your favorite people (Kristi Helm) asks you to shoot her BFF’s wedding and tells you that she’s the wedding coordinator, you thank your lucky stars and immediately say yes! The first time we met was over a FaceTime date. Almost immediately, I could tell that Amy + Chandler were my people. They got my humor :) And they were sweet as ever. And oh so trusting <3

This has been a wedding that I’ve been looking to ever since that day! When you really connect with someone, it becomes more than just being their wedding photographer. You develop this love for them. An excitement for their wedding. To see them marrying their best friend. It’s like shooting your friend’s wedding. You become so invested in everything, which for me is what makes good photography. That genuine connection <3

Their February wedding at Journeyman Distillery was just so beautiful and full of so much emotion and love! Journeyman, alone, is seriously an awesome place – so if you’re planning your wedding, go check it out! It’s not far from Chicago and literally has everything in one spot – from getting ready all the way to the reception! And did I mention whiskey? Yea, lots of whiskey!

The entire day had me in tears. The look on Chandler’s face when he saw Amy at their first look? Tears of laugher (and bitter cold) during their portraits. Total laughter with their awesome bridal party who braved the frigid temps! And their ceremony. Babes, their ceremony was everything! Listening to each ceremony’s message is one of my favorite parts. I find myself getting sucked in. And shedding a tear because how beautiful love is! I wish I could relive this wedding every day! Congrats, Amy + Chandler <3

Photography — Jenna Marie Photography Wedding Planning — Kristi Helm |  Getting Ready + Ceremony + Reception Venue — Journeyman Distillery | Florist — Flowers for Dreams | Hair Stylist + Makeup Artist — Hannah Bonham Blackwell + Amorena Shaver | Invitations — Lauren Rosario Cake — Jenny Thornton | DJ — John Norman Music | Videographer — Nick Haddad | Catering — CK Catering | Bridal Dress — Wtoo by Watters | Bridesmaid Dresses — Azazie Groom + Groomsmen Attire — Combatant Gentlemen

Isn’t life funny sometimes? My biggest motto in life is that everything happens for a reason. Life is kinda like a game of dominos – one decision affects the next and the one after that, etc. Need proof? In steps Krysta and her gorgeous wedding at Ovation Chicago!

A few years ago, my beloved girl that does my hair left the salon I used to go to. I was so heartbroken because it’s so hard to find someone that gets you. Fastforward to being on instagram. I see a fellow photographer friend post a pic of a Chicago blogger. I literally die. I loooove her hair and needed to know who did it. See where this is going? After a light stalking research, I finally found who did this bloggers hair – the one and only Krysta! Literally if I wasn’t on instagram at that moment and saw my friend post, I never would have found Krysta… and wouldn’t have this gorgeous wedding to share with you!

Krysta + Rado are seriously two of the sweetest, most in love, and hilarious people! I already had an awesome friendship with Krysta, because um HELLO she’s the most amazing hair artist out there. Seriously babes, she’s a must. She always talked about Rado. It was so cute to see her talking about him, how her eyes would light up. THE CUTEST!

They got married on Friday, January 13th! I think it’s a trend. I have 2 of those this year :) Remember how I mentioned Krysta’s the best hair artist ever? Well earlier this year, she opened up her very own (and ridiculously gorgeous) salon in Chicago’s West Loop – Base Salon #bossbabe! Luckily it opened in perfect timing allowing Krysta and the girls to get ready there! Krysta, being who she is, couldn’t resist doing hair for her girls and flower girl! The day was for sure cold, but it couldn’t have ended up more perfectly! Some of my favorite moments from their day?

— Their first look. Just Rado. He wears his heart on his sleeve, and I love that!

— Their candlelit ceremony. 

— Their pup walked down the aisle in a bow!

— Their close friend, Devin, who officiated the wedding! He was such a great speaker!

— During the vows, Rado became overcome with emotion after beautiful vows from Krysta. So he ripped up what he wrote and just spoke from his heart!

— The balloon drop they had drop from the ceiling after their first kiss, with Rihanna + Calvin Harris setting the mood!

Ovation’s Rolls Royce that took us around the city, including a stop by Krysta’s salon – Base Salon!

— Their food! Um hello Uncle Julio’s. You’re delicious!

— Their first dances, especially Krysta with her dad. All the love, plus some Mexican influence <3

— Possibly the highlight of the night, a surprise drag performance by none other than world famous Beyonce impersonator, DiDa Ritz, who did killer!

— Krysta + Rado jumping behind the bar to bartend!

— The little hints of Serbian culture throughout the day, including the delicious looking Serbian cakes.

— Their cake / dessert table!!

Photography — Jenna Marie Photography | Wedding Planning — Wrap It Up Parties | Ceremony + Reception — Ovation Chicago | Hair Stylist + Makeup Artist — Joel Marrufo | Invitations — Vistaprint Florist — Steve’s Flower Market |  Officiant — Devin Savage | Balloon Drop — Anthony’s Balloons | Catering — Uncle Julio’s | Cake — City Fresh Bakery | DJ — Style Matters | Performer — DiDa Ritz | Videographer — Lightfield Lewis | Getting Ready Salon — Base Salon Bridal Dress — Maggie Sottero | Bridal Shoes — Audrey Brooke | Bridesmaid Dresses — ASOS Groom Attire — Etro

I love when people come to me with unique, different ideas! Something about it sparks a fire, an excitement! These ladies reached out to me last fall with an idea to do a combined sister bridal session of sorts. Their goal was to surprise their parents as a thank you for all the love, help, and support they’ve given these ladies over the years! The three sisters are all married – the longest about 6 years ago and the shortest 2 weeks before our session! Each got their hair and makeup done, put on their wedding dressed, and got beautiful bouquets! Little do you know it was 10 degrees (literally) that day, so luckily we had one of their hubbies with us to carry coats and hand warmers :) I don’t know about you babes, but I’m so in love with how this turned out!

Leah + Julio met in college at U of I! Julio was the manager of a popular campus bar that I used to frequent when I was there :) Leah was a bartender. According to Leah, Julio manipulated the schedule so Leah worked with Julio was there. And you know what they say, the rest is history!

The morning of the wedding, before the bride and groom see each other, is my favorite! So much anticipation and excitement building. Wondering what Julio will wear, what he’s thinking, how he’s feeling. Wondering how the day will go. How you’ll feel walking down the aisle. What the weather will be like. What the reception will look like. When it came time to read Julio’s letter he wrote to Leah, I teared up as I heard bits and pieces. I think most of us on our wedding days realize how lucky we are, but there’s something in that moment when you read that letter that it hits you!

The wedding day was beautiful, full of all their friends and family! Leah and Julio wanted a wedding that had a Spanish flair. All throughout the details of the day, you’d see little pieces – from the invitations to the homemade sangria made by his family to the incredible music playing all night long!

Wedding Planning — Cristina Roman |  Photography — Jenna Marie Photography | Photographer Assistant — Carla | Ceremony — Century Memorial Chapel at Naper Settlement | Reception — Meson Sabika | Bridal Dress — House of Brides | Bridal Shoes — Benjamin Adams | Groom + Groomsmen Attire — Suit Supply Hair Stylist + Makeup Artist — Patty McGuire | Invitations — Daniels Printing Florist — Celidan Creations |  Cake — Blue Plate Catering | Cupcakes — Nothing Bundt Cakes | DJ — Forever Young DJ 

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