Phil and Colleen were my third couple that lives in Chicago and didn’t get married there. After watching their save the date video, I knew I’d struck gold with them. They are extremely passionate and active with human rights, they met at Cape Cod at an Obama function, they started dating while both living in New York City, they’ve spent extensive time in Africa, and they got engaged in a hot air balloon over the Serengeti…so yeah, they’re pretty dang cool.
Big thank you to Ben Massey for second shooting with me! And now, a plethora of photos.
Probably my favorite cake to date. It was designed based on Colleen’s dress and the fabric they used on their wedding invitation artwork. That particular fabric was purchased in Zambia shortly after they were engaged and, in Colleen’s words, “without having any idea what type of wedding we would have we said this will be used at our wedding.”
Each place card had a story about the item and how Phil and Colleen came upon it. The back of the placecard made guests aware that in lieu of party favors they donated money to Heifer.org and bought flocks of chicks for villages in Africa.
I love all the photos that Ben took, but this one of Phil is my favorite!
Highlight of the ceremony was when Phil and Colleen made guacamole. He said, “we liked the idea of a unity ceremony, but the candle is very conservative, and everyone just waits for it to go out. It’s like watching NASCAR and waiting for the crashes. We wanted some way to become one and let everyone enjoy that unification, and Ed gave us the idea of making something. So we made guacamole, with each ingredient representing an aspect of marriage, and set it out for guests to eat during cocktail hour.”
Reception detail win! The tables were a mix of African fabric and artifacts collected throughout their travels together (and when Phil lived in Africa for 2.5 years) and the flowers were Protea, which are native to South Africa.
The father of the bride’s surprise disco performance…it was as awesome as it sounds.