Thursday Trends–Should You Have A “First Look” or “First Touch” Photo?

Seeing each other before the ceremony…such a controversial subject!

Even though this wedding tradition is seeping with superstition, many still follow it.

If you’re ready to shirk this superstitious tradition, then a “first look” moment may be just the thing. We adore the expressions on Andrew and Amanda’s faces as they see each other! LOVE!

Perfect Day<br />
Wedding Planners First Look Photos Amanda and Andrew

Perfect Day<br />
Wedding Planners First Look Photos Bride Admires

There are actually several benefits to seeing one another before the ceremony. When you’re away from the tension of the ceremony and details, you can experience this unique and personal moment more freely. You can both let your emotions flow without fear of being on display. Some couples have said that it even took their nervousness away and they were more relaxed during the ceremony than they thought they would be.

Perfect Day<br />
Wedding Planners First Look Photos Groom Admires

According to one wedding photographer, there are several circumstances that could call for a “first look”:

  • You have an evening ceremony and you want to use natural light to capture your important photos.
  • You have a tight wedding schedule and you need to do all of your group/family photos before the ceremony.
  • You want to have plenty of time to venture out for your bride/groom photos.
  • You don’t mind trying out this new tradition.

Only you can decide if this is the right choice for you & your groom!

Not ready to dive in head first with breaking this tradition? Then maybe a “first touch” is a better choice.

Perfect Day Wedding Planners First Touch Photo<br />
with Door

Perfect Day Wedding Planners First Touch Photo<br />
with Tears

It’s still a moment dripping with emotion and anticipation. Many have also opted to read each other a special note at this time! What a sweet memory!

Both of these options definitely make for some great photo opportunities. Discuss these ideas with your Chicago Area Wedding Planners. They might be just the solution to some photography timing issues or your wedding day nerves!

Why not take a look through our Pinterest board for some “first touch” or “first look” inspiration?

What do you think of this wedding trend?



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REAL WEDDING: Melanie & Jerry-Fabulous and Fun!

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet bridal coupleWhat a FUN Wedding!  Melanie and Jerry were a couple we assisted in a full service capacity with six months of planning details.  When we first spoke with them, it was evident that two things were very important to them:  the celebration of the two of them as a couple and to have a FUN factor at their wedding and reception.  To us, it seemed this was done beautifully!!!

Melanie and Jerome (Jerry) first met when Jerry was Best Man at Melanie’s sisters wedding in 2008.    They continued to have their paths meet and…VOILA, first date occurred in 2009!  So, remember, those weddings we attend just might have our future spouse in the crowd! Here we are, celebrating their wedding!

From day 1, they were so sweet, so appreciative, and just a wonderful couple to help along the way!  (not to mention very fun and easy to chat with over coffee) Every wedding can certainly have glitches along with way, but we do our best to help each couple achieve THEIR Perfect Day in THEIR way!  Melanie and Jerry’s wedding was a joy to be a part of!



They opted for Harrah’s Joliet Hotel.  The couple had spent a lot of time there and to them, this venue made perfect sense, as well as a perfect fit for them!  What a wonderful venue!  As Chicago area’s wedding planners & designers, Perfect Day Wedding Plannersare in constant contact with the venue for our couples and from day 1 they were absolutely fabulous!  On wedding day, we kept hearing from guests how fabulous the food was!  From our experience, they very much wanted to be sure that Melanie and Jerry were happy and had a great experience!  Harrah’s certainly came through-and gave this couple a lot of the FUN factor!

The HAIR and MAKEUP for the Bride and Bridesmaids
The bride and her bridesmaids had their hair and makeup done for the wedding day. 

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet bridesmaids

HAIR was done beautifully by Michelle Monday, who is located at Lisa Thomas SalonShe did a fabulous job, while also accenting Melanie’s beautiful hair piece as part of her outfit.

AIRBRUSH MAKEUP was done by Outer Beauty Airbrush makeup...we found the girls makeup to be absolutely beautiful and Dominica is just so very sweet to work with!

The photography was done by Milestone Digital Photo & Video – from the very first snapshot of the bride getting ready, they captured the day beautifully!  The bride and groom wanted to have a FUN wedding, and the wedding photos truly captured the essence of FUN for this couple!

Some of the details………….

THE GROOMSMEN…all set to go!

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet groomsmen

The couple choose the colors of Gem and Magenta/Fuschia for their wedding colors, bringing in elements accented with chair sashes, linens and fun accent pieces.

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet indoor ceremonySigns for the ring bearers and flower girl were done by Invitations by Design …such a fun way for the kids to have something to hold and, because the ring bearers were young, it helped to get them down the aisle and focus on something fun!  We loved this addition!


Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry flower girl sign


A water unity ceremony was done, each pouring a different color and when it was mixed, it created their wedding color of gem.  I know it took the couple many trials to get just the right color!  This was a couple who liked to carry through every little detail right alongside us… perfect!

6682_10152864151260389_843821800_nOfficiant-Reverend Ryan Hough-as a close friend who officiated the ceremony, and also his first wedding he officiated, the couple presented him a special sash, with colors in jade (yes, accent colors of the wedding, too!).  Melanie and Jerry helped to bring some very sweet and sentimental touches through in this wedding, and this special gift to the officiant was so wonderful!


When we met with the florist we shared how important the special details were to the couple. A little bit of bling, and a whole lot of FUN!  A few touches we noticed came through beautifully including the bride’s bouquet (notice the gems shining through); a special personalized wrap for each bridesmaid bouquet, with a message embroidered on them from the bride to each bridesmaid-this was so sweet and personal!




IMG_6883The reception centerpieces included some fabulous fuschia colored flowers with glow bracelets surrounding the vases so they lit up when the lights were down low-what fun!

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Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet cocktail table centerpiecesSome fun light effects as well included lumiton glow sticks at every place setting and glow bracelets in the bride’s gown, to get the party going!

We want to thank Town and Country Gardens for such wonderful touches and we love seeing their beautiful work, as well as the look on the couple’s face when they see it all come together!


Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Joliet reception room setup

971406_10152864155505389_2071102007_nTHE CAKE
Toni Patisserie
provided the beautiful sweets for the couple’s wedding day!


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IMG_6817 - CopyMelanie and Jerry opted for a very fitting cupcake tower for this modern wedding, along with a traditional cake for the top tier.   A very fun celebration we had as well, included a birthday cake for the bride.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY Melanie.  What fun it is to sing Happy Birthday to the bride with 250 friends and family surrounding you!

The reception-fun for all!

Cocktail Reception Music by the groom’s nephew-John Allen Terry (The-Better-Daze-Band)

DJ -music and announcements-Laser Sounds

There is nothing to show the excellence of a DJ more than a crowded, excited dance floor.  This was a FUN crowd and Laser Sounds did an excellent job getting the crowd going.  (the DJ was also a wedding gift for the bride and groom-what a nice touch!)


Perfect Day Wedding Planners DJ light stand

6945_10152864158600389_507997161_nEven the young crowd was on the dance floor!

7759_10152864156880389_1778548654_nThe bride and her father steppin’ it up on the dance floor….this was fun!


970253_10152864156915389_1744737771_nFirst Dance970711_10152864156175389_1260344568_n

PHOTO BOOTH-Chicago Style Photo Booth

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Melanie and Jerry Harrahs Jolietphoto booth pictureHUGE hit of the night-guests had a blast with this it seemed!

Perfect Day Wedding Planners photo booth 2You see  photo booths at weddings a lot these days and it is a fabulous way to bring a whole lot of fun!  This wedding was no exception at all and the photo booth was a huge hit!  Chicago Style Photo Booth was wonderful, and they had a fun variety of props to share as well for fun photos!



Of course, we are happy to help!
Plan it! Design it! Implement it!
Perfect Day Wedding Planners and Designers

Click here to get your “10 Wedding Insider Secrets” today!

New –> Weekly Blog Posts with Tips & Trends!

perfect day wedding planners bob and arielle couple and bridal bouquetWith summer approaching, the wedding season really kicks into high gear. It seems more weddings occur in the summer and fall than any other season. I guess the warmth and desire for outdoor weddings is probably the reason. We’re not complaining about the busyness because WE LOVE WEDDINGS!

We wanted to tell you about a new feature we’ll be having on the blog each week. In addition to giving you a glimpse into the weddings we help to coordinate, each Tuesday and Thursday will have some special features. Tuesday will be focused on tips — anything that will give you an “aha” moment about your wedding. Maybe it’ll be a small thing that makes everything come together. Maybe it’s a big thing that spurs you to change something from your original plans. Maybe it’ll be both! Come back each week for “Tuesday Tips”.

Every Thursday will be focused on the trends we see emerging. Weddings are kinda like clothing styles — they ebb and flow with the times and the what’s going on in the world. Look back at weddings from the 80’s and you’ll see lots of brown, muted yellow and peach. Wedding dresses in the 70’s seemed to have lots of lace and high necklines. See where we’re going here? Each decade — and even year to year — brings different styles that seem to spread. Join us every week for “Thursday Trends” and see what will strike your fancy.

Have a great Monday, and come back tomorrow!

Real Wedding — Vintage Touch in Yellow and Grey

Amanda and Andrew

This was a beautiful wedding! A little vintage in the color theme of yellow and grey…just loved it! We knew Amanda through the her mother, Jill, in association with the children’s theater program that our daughters are in. (Word of mouth is such a blessing!) Jill asked us to step in and assist as the DAY OF planners, giving her more time to spend with her family. What a wonderful blessing! She was helping Amanda with the details of the wedding while Amanda was a teacher in another state. So…the journey began about two months before the wedding. As the date approached, I quickly saw Amanda’s creativity and organizational skills come to life in the form of a beautiful day! I hope it was all Amanda was hoping for!

Perfect Day Wedding Planners Amanda and Andrew bride and groom real wedding


Both the ceremony and reception were held at Danada House in Wheaton, Illinois. The ceremony was held outdoors under stately and mature oak trees, with friends Jordan (on guitar) and Alixx singing with a voice like an angel. One of the most touching aspects to the ceremony was the ‘Foot Washing’… so moving! What a wonderful depiction of serving each other! This is a great option for couples looking at a unity ceremony for a Christian wedding.

The reception was in the indoor banquet room, which has large windows to see outside. The bride and groom arranged outdoor games for the guests while the wedding party had photos behind the beautiful oak trees! One of the wonderful aspects that Danada House offers is a rolling landscape, nestled behind a 23-stall Kentucky style stable.

Perfect Day Wedding Planners outdoor games for reception


The bride and groom’s story included great food at Chipotle so they incorporated a self serve buffet of burritos, beans and rice catered by Qdoba Mexican Grill. From what we saw, this was a huge hit! Each table had their own chips and salsa while waiting for dinner, and delicious lemonade was served in mason jars.

The color theme was yellow and grey. What a beautiful start for a June wedding. The floral bouquets for the wedding party were made by the groom’s mother…just beautiful! The colors absolutely popped in so many elements of the day, and looked amazing! The linens for the head table and cake table were grey with yellow napkins. The highboys held linens in yellow with a grey sash wrapped around the legs. Everything tied together so nicely.

Perfect Day Wedding Planners bride and groom photos with placecardsPerfect Day Wedding Planners placecard holder

Perfect Day Wedding Planners, vintage books, reception centerpieces, lemonsPerfect Day Wedding Planners menu cards napkinsPerfect Day Wedding Planners reception highboy linens

One wonderful touch we enjoyed was the sweets and candy buffet table in the wedding colors, mixed in with homemade treats from the family. The bride’s mother made the wedding cake…a labor of love and simple elegance at it’s best! The beverage station held mason jars in ice with yellow striped straws that we recommend so often. The bride used some great dispensers to hold the lemonade beverages and added lemon slices as a beautiful garnish. This created a ‘romantic themed summer wedding’ so wonderfully — from the bride’s dress, the outdoor ceremony and the special reception touches, this day was pulled together so wonderfully!

Perfect Day Wedding Planners head table

During the reception, the bride and groom played a wonderful video of the two of them before and after they met. It was a sentimental touch for everyone in attendance to share in their special love.

Perfect Day Wedding Planners vintage suitcase for cards

DJ Entertainment was done by a friend, Alixx, who was also the soloist for the wedding ceremony.  She did a wonderful job at helping me keep everything on schedule so they could have their special ‘traditions’ done in enough time, while still having some time to ‘get it on’ on the dance floor!

323295_10151877924045475_1499349418_o AandA_ 4047

Final send off for the bride and groom as “Mr. and Mrs.” was down a long glass hallway with light sticks and lanterns…such a wonderful touch to end the night! 


Photography was done by Greg Napoli —   

Lastly, I want to thank the bride’s mother, Jill, for allowing me to help her enjoy being the ‘mother of the bride’ on the wedding day, to Amanda for trusting me to assist so her day was just as she envisioned, and to Andrew for being so wonderfully patient through the entire process. The two of you have a wonderful life ‘as one’ to look forward to. Congratulations!


CLICK HERE to contact us for a free consultation about Wedding “Day Of” Coordination options!

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