Wedding season 2020 sure hasn’t looked quite like any of us imagined, but I am loving these smaller weddings. Don’t get me wrong, I love a wedding with all of your family and friends filling the ceremony space and the dance floor, but there is something so sweet and special about weddings as they are happening during this crazy time in our lives. Alice and Erik’s intimate Geneva wedding was a perfect example of that.
When I arrived at the Herrington Inn on their wedding day, Alice was hanging out in the room with her mom and bridesmaids. I was amazed how calm everyone was. Alice had the most amazing group of girls from her sister to her new sisters-in-law to her closest friends. While I was photographing details, they were all just enjoying each other, eating popcorn and listening to some relaxing music.
One of my favorite details was a necklace that Alice wore that was also worn by 4 generations of women in her family. It was so sweet that she got to wear the same necklace that her mom and grandmas had worn. Another personal touch was the invitation suite designed by Alice’s sister. I love to hear the stories behind the details, because that reminds me how important those details really are. I totally related to Alice’s story about her perfume that she had chosen for this day. She mentioned that she went into Sephora and when the salesperson showed her a list of options in various levels of sweetness, she immediately started at the sweetest smelling one to find her final selection. I can totally relate, and as a person who really doesn’t care for perfume, I loved the smell of this one.
When it was time for Alice to get into her gorgeous dress, the girls were surrounding her in their gowns that all had pockets. Ladies, you all know how amazing it is to have a dress with pockets, right?! 🙂 Alice’s mom helped her into her dress and veil, and then we stepped outside the Herrington for some gorgeous photos of her and her bridesmaids with the Fox River behind them.
Once everyone was ready, we all headed over to Johnson’s Mound for the ceremony. This site is a 200 ft hill rising above the surrounding prairie that made for the most beautiful quaint ceremony spot in the woods. With natural steps in the side of the hill leading up to the ceremony spot, this location was the most unique spot for these two nature-lovers to say their vows and become husband and wife.
Right before the ceremony, Alice and Erik decided to do a “no look” prayer together. While they didn’t want to see each other before walking down the aisle, they did stand in the clearing back to back and prayed with one another. They both held back tears as they held hands and asked God for His blessing on their marriage and that their marriage would be a depiction of God’s love for His church.
After the prayer, it was time for the ceremony. Erik headed to the front as their immediate family sat in anticipation for this beautiful union. As the bridesmaids and groomsmen walked down the aisle, it was so very clear that they were all SO excited for Alice and Erik. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a more joyful wedding party. Once the wedding party was down the aisle, Erik turned around so that he wouldn’t see Alice until just the right moment. Erik was so excited to see Alice that you could literally see the nervous energy in his body as he waited until the moment he could turn around.
As Alice made her way up the steps with her dad, Erik finally turned around and the look on his face was priceless. He couldn’t help but yell, “Patootie!”, which is his sweet and playful nickname for her. Everyone laughed and then welled up with tears as they watched these two people that they love so dearly become husband and wife.
My favorite part of the ceremony was a foot washing that they did for one another. It was such a beautiful symbol of serving one another. I had only seen this done at one other wedding, my nephew’s, and I just love the meaning it adds to the marriage ceremony.
Following the ceremony, we did some photos in the woods and then headed to downtown Geneva for the rest of the bride and groom portraits. I loved the locations we found along the Fox River. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, and I could have photographed these newlyweds for hours. But, they had guests waiting at Alice’s parents’ backyard, so once we finished up with photos we headed there for a beautiful celebration. It really was a perfect day for their Geneva wedding. I can’t wait to photograph their large celebration in Chicago with all of their family and friends in 2021.
Florist: Studio Poppy
HMUA: We Only Do Pretty
Wedding Dress Designer: Essense of Australia
Wedding Boutique: The Crystal Bride
Bridesmaids Dresses: Birdy Grey
To see more weddings like this Geneva wedding, head here.
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