Chad & Jackie: March 21, 2015

Although we’d already shot 3 weddings in 2015 so far, we considered this day to be our ‘season kickoff’ if you will.  Not that the other weddings weren’t incredible- but this weekend was the first weekend of many consecutive ones to come to make up our ‘wedding season’.  And we knew this one was going to be amazing!  Why?  Well, Chad and Jackie for one.  They seriously are the most funny, fun loving, genuine people you’ll ever meet.  We had a complete blast at their engagement session in Pontiac.  I legit leaned on a fence and it broke. like fell over.  and so did I.  I was hysterical.  Jackie brought ME a present to HER engagement session.  A Christmas present.  Seriously- they are like the sweetest things ever.

And I knew their family was going to be awesome too.  I met Jackie because she’s the cousin of our sweetie pie bride Amanda from last July.  Amanda and Jackie’s family is crazy  huge, crazy fun, and I adore them all.  So I knew that going in- the families were going to be amazing, and they were!

And then add on a crazy lineup of vendors.  I can’t put into words as much as I’d like to be able to- but there is a sense of belonging and security in our little wedding industry.  You have those vendors who you just ‘click’ with- and you know that you can focus more on your job that day because everyone has got a hold on their own jobs and you know things will run smooth as a baby’s butt.  And they did.  When you have a team of vendors who you know are truly invested in making the bride and groom’s day the best ever- you know you will have the best day ever.

And so went 3.21.

We met Jackie at the Hyatt in Champaign.  She was so calm and cool and of course, funny.  The ladies of B.Loved Stylists were already there doing their magic.  Jackie is such a beautiful girl anyhow- but I was so excited to watch her transform into a stunning bride:)  Jackie spent her morning telling us about her gifts for Chad on the wedding day- which included a mug with their cat’s face on it:)  She so sweetly wrapped up ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, and something…orange.’   Hehe:)  That’s so them:)  The something old was a penny that they had put in one of those flattening machine things on one of their first dates together.  She still had it and hers- and asked him to carry it the day of the wedding.  He actually choked up while reading it.  It was so incredibly sweet.

The first reveal was adorable.  Chad’s first words were how beautiful Jackie looked and how he loved her dress.  She answered ‘thanks…it’s new.’  totally my type of humor- I laughed out loud:)

We started our portraits in downtown Champaign and I was seriously having the BEST time.  These two are just so easy to be with.  They genuinely enjoy being together and making each other laugh- so my job was easy:)  We started playing a game where everytime I’d put them in a pose- we’d think of a song.  It was a riot:)

When we arrived at Pear Tree- it was just as magical as always.  Shaina and her team at Pear Tree had everything perfect.  So Chic Events and Sara O’Shea had everyone set and ready to go.  DJ4U was already there in full force and lining up songs.  Amazing.  Vendor power.  No worries=happy bride=awesome photos.

The ceremony was so gorgeous.  My personal favorite was the testimonies the pastor read of why Jackie loved Chad and why Chad loved Jackie.  They were so heartfelt and sweet- there weren’t many dry eyes in the house:)

Jackie and Chad entered their reception to a full out dance to ‘Bring Em Out’.  The reception was an absolute blast!  The toasts were awesome! The dads, the maid of honor, and the best man.  The prayer consisted of a ‘letter’ from the ‘Pope’ declaring that all Lenten sacrifices could have a night off:)  Jackie and Chad’s thank you speech included a shout out to the vendors who made their day possible:))  It’s always so amazing when a couple thanks us:) It makes me feel all appreciated and gooey inside:)) The meal- incredible, the same-day edit of the wedding video by Park Life Films- AMAZING, and details- so cute.  I loved all of their cute signs and funny sayings everywhere.  We ended the night with homemade Pokey Sticks (for those of you who are unfamiliar, I’m sorry for one.  Pokey Sticks were a product of Gumby’s pizza, and a staple for us University of Illinois students.  Particularly after a long night of ehr…’studying’.  Gumby’s has since gone out of business- but Mel, the chef at Pear Tree, is a U of I alum and understood the significance.  Best.end.of.night.snack.ever.

I left this wedding with an incredible smile and a grateful heart.  So thankful for my job and the ability to spend a gorgeous Saturday in a city I love shooting photos.  So thankful that I got to spend it with a couple who truly enjoys people, making people laugh, and being together in love.  So thankful for an incredible team of vendors (my team KKP included) that are not only my co-workers but my friends.  And so thankful to this industry for caring so much about making the best day in someone’s life truly the best day in their life.


Congrats Jackie and Chad! I am so excited for you two start your life together as husband and wife:)  Thank you for having me as part of your day:)  Love, Kara

#321 #howdoyouspelltrachsel

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To see more head over to the second shooter, Sydney’s blog on her website here!