Category Archives: Chicago wedding venues

Fourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding

Fourth Presbyterian Church Chicago weddings are always a treat to photograph, but they come with a unique challenge. The church has a particularly strict set of photo restrictions that require careful planning to be able to get a variety photos that encompass the whole scene as well as closeups of the key ceremony moments. In a search online, most of the wedding photos at this church look pretty similar, but there are ways around this. The wedding ceremony coordinator requests that photographers stay stationary throughout the ceremony. Photos from the same location all look the same (you’ll see what I mean with a quick Google search) but after photographing here so often, I’ve developed a plan and technique that allows me to capture a variety of wedding ceremony photos even with the restrictions.

I met Matt and Lacey in New York City for their Central Park and New York Public Library engagement shoot in the winter and learned about their wedding day plans. at “Fourth Pres.” Fourth Presbyterian Church is a majestic Gothic landmark located right across the street from The John Hancock Center and has some of the most striking architecture of all Chicago’s ceremony venues. I especially love the Tudor-style buildings that surround the church’s courtyard. Its a charming backdrop that allows for stunning editorial style wedding photos.

Onward to the wedding day – I began photographing Lacey, her mother and her bridesmaids in the bridal suite at the Ritz Carlton Chicago where their reception would later be held. The team from Sonia Roselli Makeup Studio provided hair and makeup on location for the girls.

wedding suite Chicago Wedding at Ritz Carlton

Lacey had timeless and luxurious wedding invitations, Badgley Mischka peep toe pump bridal shoes and glamorous wedding gown – everything was so tastefully coordinated ahead of the big day.

Fourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding invitation Badgley Mischka peep toe pump Wedding shoesI headed downstairs to the groom’s suite to photograph the Matt prepping for the wedding day. I was nervous that I would get confused between he and his identical twin brother Dan who was his best man but I was able to tell them apart. Phew!wedding suite Chicago Wedding at Ritz Carltongroomsmen wedding suite Chicago Wedding at Ritz CarltonBack up to the ladies suite, Lacy gifted personalized pink satin robes and unique jewelry to her bridesmaids.Ritz Carlton Chicago bridesmaid gift at wedding Ritz Carlton Chicago bridesmaid gift at wedding Ritz Carlton Chicago bridesmaid gift at weddingI thought it was so sweet that Lacey had gotten embroidered handkerchiefs for her parents. They were visibly touched by the personal message to them.Ritz Carlton Chicago weddingChicago mother of the bride Chicago mother of the brideIt was time to for Lacey to get ready for her wedding ceremony. The bridesmaids in their lavender dresses helped her with her gown and shoes, while the mother of the bride helped her with jewelry.Fourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding gownFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding gownFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding with Reception at Ritz CarltonFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding gownFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding mother of the brideBefore heading to the Fourth Presbyterian Church on Michigan Ave, Matt waited patiently to see his bride at the Promenade at the Ritz Carlton. Ritz Carlton wedding ChicagoRitz Carlton wedding ChicagoWe headed over to the church for some quick portraits in the cloisters and courtyard area before the ceremony began. Fourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding with Reception at Ritz CarltonFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding with Reception at Ritz CarltonFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding with Reception at Ritz CarltonFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding groom and twin brother best manFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding bridesmaids in lavenderFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding portraits

The wedding coordinator at Fourth Presbyterian has a set of guidelines for photography, the ceremony and portraits that works very well. Its known to be one of the most strict churches in Chicago from a photography standpoint, but knowing this ahead of time, a great set of photos can be had with the right planning.

Fourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoI have yet to see another set of wedding photos from Fourth Pres that have the same variety of wide photos and closeups that I have learned to be able to capture even under stringent church guidelines. It all comes down to planning!

Fourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoFourth Presbyterian Church wedding ceremony in ChicagoChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosFourth Presbyterian Church Chicago Wedding with Reception at Ritz CarltonChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosChicago wedding ceremony at Fourth Presbyterian photosI look forward to sharing a followup post that showcases the second half of this wedding day with a reception at the Ritz Carlton Chicago in the Grand Ballroom.

Chicago Wedding Photographer at the Ivy Room

It’s always lovely hearing a couple loved their wedding photography so much, they referred their friends to me. You might remember when Annie and Sunil got married last year at the River East Arts Center in downtown Chicago. Sunil knows Rich, so when Rich and Jo were going to get married, Sunil recommended me. The rest is history! The wedding ceremony and reception were held at the chic Ivy Room at Tree Studios. Any venue in Chicago that allows for a couple to have natural light incorporated into their wedding day wins in my book!

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Ivy Room | Rich & Jo by Heather Parker Photography Boston / Chicago

Getting Ready Hotel: Fairmont Chicago Millenium Park
Ceremony Venue: Ivy Room
Reception Venue: Ivy Room
Caterer: Blue Plate Catering
Dress Make: Jenny Yoo
Tux Make: Indochino
Hair: Nkauj’lis Lyfoung (also did the hair at Annie’s wedding)
Makeup: Nkauj’lis Lyfoung (also did the makeup at Annie’s wedding)
Officiant: Pastor Jonathan Ramos
Wedding Coordinator/DOC: Tiffanie Yau and Olivia Pan
Band/DJ: Roberto Monastero Entertainment
Florist: Event Creative
Lighting design: Event Creative
Wedding stationery company: Wedding Paper Divas

University Club of Chicago Michigan Room wedding

University Club of Chicago is a classic Chicago venue to have a wedding in. It’s an iconic Chicago landmark with great architectural details. The reason its one of the most popular wedding venues in Chicago is because its right in the heart of the city and located right across from Millennium Park. Orchestra Hall and The Art Institute are very close and out of town guests can enjoy attractions such as the Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, and of course Navy Pier. Its always a treat to photograph a classically glamorous wedding reminiscent of yesteryear. The welcoming sight of a fireplace, the warm chime of the dinner bells, and the unsurpassed park views are why so many brides choose this timeless wedding venue to host their wedding reception. When Sara met with me to talk about her wedding photography, I was excited to shoot in the Michigan Room since I had previously shot in Cathedral Hall. When their wedding day arrived, it was one of the most perfect days filled with sunshine. I began shooting in a suite at the hotel within the University Club of Chicago.

University Club of Chicago Michigan Room wedding

University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

After Sarah put on her Vera Wang and Jimmy Choos, we headed downstairs to the grand staircase where Ryan was waiting for a first glance at Sarah.University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

We journeyed onward via trolley to some pre-selected locations for photos with the bridal party. While a lot of couples enjoy smiling in front of landmarks, some of the more special moments are the candid ones. I love how Sarah’s attendants are smiling, helping her with her gown, and looking back to see that everything is just right.University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

The next photo was from an impromptu stop at a location that provided a some urban decay contrast paired with a stunning couple.University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

Ryan and Sarah were wed at St. Joseph Church with a packed church full of family who traveled as far from Minnesota, South Dakota, and North Carolina. The bride’s 3rd grade students were also in attendance to see their teacher marry.

St. James Church Chicago wedding photographer Heather ParkerDilly Lily rocked the centerpieces, cake florals, and bouquets with hydrangeas and glass cylinder centerpieces wrapped in leaves. They also added a modern flair to classic glamour providing some tables with the popular floating candles.chicago wedding photography at university club of chicago by heather parker

Like Cathedral Hall, the Michigan Room has an impressive stone fireplace, rich mahogany walls soaring to a hand-painted ceiling, and signature stained glass windows.
University Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather ParkerUniversity Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather ParkerUniversity Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather ParkerUniversity Club of Chicago wedding photographer Heather Parker

Chicago wedding vendors the bride and groom selected for their wedding:

Ceremony Venue: St. Joseph Church
Reception Venue: University Club of Chicago
Coordinator: Charlotte Dillner-Hasapis
Photographer: Heather Parker Photography
Gown make: Vera Wang
Bridesmaid dresses: Priscilla of Boston
Bridal boutique: Vera Wang Salon Cary, NC
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Veil: Etsy
Makeup Artist: Linda Giuntini
Hairstylist” Sarah Dowdy
Etsy veil was from Bella Bridal Veils.
Tuxedos: Formally Modern
Florist: Dilly Lily
Wedding Stationery: William Arthur

Union League Club Winter Wedding Photos Chicago

Winter weddings are just as delightful as spring and summer celebrations except they are a million times more cozy. That’s why winter tops my list for my favorite wedding season. It’s hard to find a better spot than Chicago’s timeless Union League Club. If you both love the holiday season and have picked a wedding date close to Christmas you know you’re going to have fun choosing a wintry color palette of red, navy and green. I adore venues with candlelight and crackling fireplaces. There’s no better way to warm up a room with old-fashioned ambiance. Rather than working against holiday decor and trying to compete with it, work with it! This couple added some festive touches by integrating stringed lights and evergreen garlands to create an elegant Christmas-inspired theme.

Union League Club winter wedding ChicagoChicago wedding pictures at the Union League Club taken by Heather Parker Photography featured in The Knot Magazine.

Gown make:  Romona Keveza
Bridesmaid dresses: Lula Kate
Bridal boutique: A L’Amour
Tuxedos: Ralph Lauren
Church: Holy Family Parish
Reception Venue: http://heatherparker.com/blog/chicago-union-league-club-wedding-merry-christmas/
Officiant: Fr. Ed McLaughlin
Band: Steve Edwards Orchestra
Florist: Blumgarten & Co.
Wedding Stationery: The Design Group

The Union League Club has a capacity of up to 350 guests in the Main Dining Room. My favorite feature is the deep blue walls. The room is decorated with an impressive collection of fine art, crystal chandeliers, ornate gold-leaf crown moldings, and of course fireplaces!

winter weddings union league club

Gallery 1028 Chicago wedding | AJ & Laura

Could this wedding ceremony be any more fabulous? Gallery 1028 is hands down my favorite venue in the city. I’m drawn to this unique space because while it is dark and more of a challenge to photograph in, there’s something undoubtedly magical about weddings that almost always are filled with countless votive candles flickering amongst exposed brick and unfinished wood floors. The venue creates a warm, cozy atmosphere with its brick and beam loft like space. While it is a blank slate, my clients tell me the team at the venue works with your choice of floral and decor to customize it to your liking. When AJ and Laura hired me over the phone, I happily shared with them dozens of photos of the many Gallery 1028 weddings I’ve had the opportunity to photograph because being able to see some photos of how a blank canvas like Gallery 1028 can get transformed would be very helpful. Not one wedding I’ve shot at Gallery 1028 has been the same and that is why I adore it. I’ve seen everything from rustic chic to sleek and modern. During one of the open houses at Gallery 1028, I ran into AJ and Laura so it was great to meet them in person. On their wedding day after they got ready at Hotel Sax and had a first look in the Crimson Lounge, we were able to take some outdoor photos before the rain showers arrived. The schedule that Laura and I created allowed for time before the wedding ceremony to take some family photos since the sun would be setting shortly after they would officially tie the knot. Going by guests expressions as they enter the space, it certainly doesn’t disappoint and is a pleasant surprise to generations who have been to many weddings at typical venues. AJ and Laura had family in Minnesota and Indiana meet in Chicago which was the perfect location for their friends and family to come together. AJ was exceptionally dapper and Laura took everyone’s breath away as she walked down the aisle in her gorgeous gown. This autumn wedding was a delight to photograph. While the newlyweds are on their honeymoon spanning four islands in Hawaii, I hope they get to see a few of my favorite photos from their wedding day!

Chicago wedding ceremony Gallery 1028Chicago wedding reception Gallery 1028Gallery 1028 Chicago wedding | AJ & Laura

Gallery 1028 is owned and operated by one of Chicago’s best wedding caterers, Calihan Catering. Their team consists of innovative chefs that offer creative menus with seasonal ingredients. Their artful presentations and top-notch service have earned them quite the array of awards. Their award-winning pastry chef is nationally recognized.

Wedding Photography: Heather Parker Photography
Wedding Ceremony + Reception Location: Gallery 1028
Catering: Calihan Catering
Wedding Gown: Provinias
Bridesmaid Dresses: Bill Levkoff
Bridal Boutique: Mestads (Rochester, MN)
Hair & Makeup: Lillian Toma – Starlight Makeup
Florist: Studio AG
Tuxedo: Calvin Klein
Officiant: Bruce Otto of Spirited Weddings
DJ: Max of Style Matters
Decor: Studio AG

Chicago & Boston wedding photographer | hotel wedding for June & Mike

June and Mike contacted me the winter before their summer wedding. They had just moved to Chicago from New York City. June had taken a job at The Field Museum and dove right in to plan her Chicago wedding. In the months leading up to her wedding, I learned bits about the big day. Her bridesmaids would be wearing bright poppy colored dresses and we’d be making a stop at the Field Museum for some photos of the bridal party. A friend of the couple officiated and aunts assisted with the traditional Chinese tea ceremony. The reception was in a ballroom with floor-to-ceiling windows and the space was decorated with countless floating candles, really warming up the room. The Hou and Chen families along with friends and coworkers, came in from all corners of the globe to celebrate with the newlyweds. The vibrant colors and fun bridal party are what I will remember most about this super fun wedding! Here are a few photos from their wedding day.

shoes at the hotel wedding by heather parkerBoston wedding photographer at the hotel Boston wedding photographer at the hotel June and Mike's wedding at the hotel by Boston wedding photographer Heather Parkerhotel wedding by Heather Parkerwedding gown at hotelbouquet from Ashland Addisonorange wedding tie on grroom at hotelbride and groom at hotel rooftopField Museum weddingwhite flowers with red bridesmaid dresses Field Museum wedding photos Field Museum wedding photos red modern asian wedding groomsmen on a bridge june and mike on their wedding day groomsmen heading to the hotel wedding ceremony floating candle flower arrangement with red placecards floating candle cylindrical vases for hotel wedding ceremony decor chinese wedding ceremony tea ceremony at a chinese wedding hotel wedding ceremony with great city views wedding vows at a hotel ceremony silver and white modern wedding reception decor with floating candle centerpieces silver and white modern wedding reception decor with floating candle centerpieces silver and white modern wedding reception decor with floating candle centerpieces white and pink elegant wedding cake sleek modern hotel reception decor first dance at a hotel reception with great city views first dance at a hotel reception with great city views wedding cake at a hotel reception

Photographer: Heather Parker Photography
DJ: Style Matters – Duke Shin
Gown: Jenny Yoo, achiffon style
Bridesmaid dresses: J. Crew
Florist: Ashland Addison Florist
Cake: Take the Cake
Photo booth: Shutterbooth
Hair: Danielle Asay
Makeup: Julie Booma
Transportation: Nightstar Limo
Tailor: La Modista
Officiant: Liliana Chen
Save the Dates: Hello Lucky

The Knot Magazine Real Wedding at Union League Club & Holy Family Church

You really can’t go wrong when you go classic for a sophisticated wedding. The Knot Magazine featured this stunning gorgeous wedding at Holy Family Church and the Union League Club. A classic feel has timeless elegance and will stay in peoples’ memories for years. You will swoon over this winter wedding – one of the prettiest ways to end a year! Matt and Katie both attended Saint Ignatius College Prep For a festive wedding, the well-decorated Holy Family Church and the Union League Club were the perfect wedding venues. Crackling fireplaces and classy chandeliers warmed up the rich blue ballroom which was decorated by Blumgarten & Co. with white and red flowers adorned with evergreen sprigs. Matt and Katie tied in their Irish heritage with bagpipers at the reception and the groomsmen were gifted plaid scarves. The bridesmaids wore navy dresses from Lula Kate and kept warm with faux fur black shawls provided by the bride. Because their wedding was held less than 10 days before Christmas, the Steve Edwards Orchestra played a mix of holiday music and classic hits.

Boston wedding photographer in The Knot Magazine boston-photographer-the-knot-2 boston-photographer-the-knot-3

The Knot Magazine Real Wedding at Union League Club & Holy Family Church

Gown make:  Romona Keveza
Bridesmaid dresses: Lula Kate
Bridal boutique: A L’Amour
Tuxedos: Ralph Lauren
Church: Holy Family Parish
Reception Venue: Union League Club
Officiant: Fr. Ed McLaughlin
Band: Steve Edwards Orchestra
Florist: Blumgarten & Co.
Wedding Stationery: The Design Group

Modern wedding with lots of laughter | Kristen & Mike

There is no shortage of laughter and smiles at this wedding that was shot at the Greenhouse Loft in Chicago. Kristen and Mike had one of the biggest bridal parties I’ve worked with and a group of families and friends that knew how to celebrate. While this wedding was loaded with tasteful details making their outdoor ceremony space rival their indoor loft reception decor, it was the emotional moments of the day that were constantly catching my eye that day.

greenhouse loft wedding bridesmaids photo by heather parker boston chicagogreenhouse loft wedding ceremony photo by heather parker boston chicagogreenhouse loft wedding ceremony photos by heather parker boston chicagogreenhouse loft wedding reception photos by heather parker boston chicago

Modern wedding with lots of laughter | Kristen & Mike by Chicago and Boston wedding photographer Heather Parker Photography

University Club of Chicago | Christina and Scott

When you meet Christina and Scott, they immediately strike you as incredibly connected, head-over-heels in love, and extremely kind. They are a fashionable couple with a love for exploring the local restaurant scene. I had the chance to work with Christina and Scott this spring for their engagement session. Christina has been one of my number one followers for the Heather Parker Photography Facebook page and blog so I couldn’t wait to photograph their wedding. Take the beauty of the Annunciation Greek Cathedral and classic luxury of the University Club of Chicago, add a room full of friends and family enthusiastically ready to celebrate, and you’ve got a fantastic wedding! I’m wrapping up edits on September and October weddings and will share the rest of this wedding shortly!

Greek wedding ChicagoAunnunciation greek church chicagouniversity club wedding photosWedding University Club of Chicago with Hello Darling floristUniversity Club of Chicago wedding reception with liven it up events

Ceremony: Annunciation Cathedral, 1017 N. LaSalle Dr., Chicago, IL
Reception: University Club of Chicago, 76 E. Monroe St., Chicago, IL
Wedding Photographer: Heather Parker Photography
Florist:  Hello Darling
Gown: Rivini
Bridesmaid dresses:  Amsale
Bridal boutique: Belle Vie Bridal Couture
Hairstylst: Jessica Rieger, Charles Ifergan Salon
Makeup Artist: Luxe Makeup by Rachael Perrin
Veil: Toni Federici
DJ: Gus Moros, DS3 Entertainment
Lighting Design:  DS3 Entertainment
Wedding Coordinator/DOC: Jean True of Liven It Up Events

Modern Wing wedding at the Art Institute

The Modern Wing at the Art Institute provided an ultra-modern setting for Matt and Katelyn’s recent wedding ceremony and reception. The lovely couple has associations with both the Boston area and Chicago, just like so many of my clients. Residing in the Cambridge, they visited Chicago in between hiring me and having me photograph their wedding. I even had the opportunity to photograph the choir Katelyn worked with, when I photographed for a Cambridge church. I also was able to meet with them over the winter for a shoot. This selection of photos are just a few favorites from the first half of their unforgettable day. More photos will be posted soon starting from getting ready at the new Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago, as well as the stunningly gorgeous Modern Wing wedding reception at the Art Institute of Chicago’s Terzo Piano with flowers by Scarlet Petal and entertainment by Indigo band of Arlen Music. I’m pretty excited to post some shots of the orange, grey, and yellow color theme soon! Thanks so much for your patience during peak wedding season!

courtyard at the Modern Wing wedding at the Art InstituteModern Wing wedding at the Art Institute Modern Wing wedding at the Art Institute bridal party portraitsart institute of chicago wedding ceremony venue

Modern Wing wedding at the Art Institute