Winter Wedding at The Rookery in Chicago
Blair and Dan celebrated their winter wedding Friday, January 6, 2018 by hosting their ceremony and reception at The Rookery in Chicago.
Why did you choose The Rookery for your wedding?
“As we were having an interfaith wedding, we wanted a venue for our ceremony that wasn’t in a church or synagogue but still had the feeling of a sanctuary. The vaulted ceiling of the Rookery’s Light Court provides just that. We also fell in love with it for its history. My dad was an architect, and he originally moved to Chicago for its beautiful architecture. The Rookery Building is unique but you don’t have to be an architecture buff to appreciate how beautiful it is,” said Blair.
Designed by Daniel Burnham and John Root, then later revitalized by Frank Lloyd Wright, the Rookery is an architectural masterpiece which is credited as being the world’s first skyscraper. Built in 1888 and set in the heart of Chicago’s LaSalle Street corridor financial district, The Rookery remains one of the most elegant landmarks in Chicago and hosts limited weddings per season inside its dramatic Light Court. Marble, polished white incised and gilded granite, and glass all contribute to the openness and opulence of the building’s interior which is accented in ornate art deco detail and ornamental ironwork. Perhaps the most visually stunning features of the Rookery for wedding photos is the twelve story tall Oriel Staircase where Dan and Blair shared their intimate First Look.
What was your favorite moment from your wedding?
“I was absolutely floored by parents and my dad’s speech in particular. My parents are divorced and hadn’t seen each other for years before the wedding. My mom and step-mother had never met before the rehearsal dinner. Leading up to the wedding, I was a little nervous that there would be some tension, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. My dad included a special toast to my mom in his speech, and they both had a lot of fun on the wedding night catching up with each other and various family members that they hadn’t seen since the divorce. It became a true reunion, not something that was forced.
My dad ended his speech with what I thought was a particularly beautiful toast:
“And now, please join me in a toast to my daughter and to my son — Walt Whitman wrote that “the strongest and sweetest songs yet remain to be sung.” May God lead your hearts to pen your own sweet verses, and may He bless you with voices to sing them strongly. L’chaim!”
The couple practiced their First Dance in the lobby of the Rookery before wowing guests on the dance floor and ending their song in laughter. But it wasn’t the couple’s first dance that had Blair a bit anxious. “I was so nervous that I was going to get dropped during the hora, but Dan kept reassuring me that wouldn’t happen. So the hora starts and who falls out of their chair? Dan. Thankfully he wasn’t hurt!”
Any advice to couples planning a wedding?
The best piece of advice Blair received prior to her wedding was from her friend, Alex. “After her (Alex’s) wedding, she and her husband, James, made a voice memo of them talking about the night. Dan and I did the same the night of our wedding, and we’re so glad we did. We ended up staying up until 5 am talking about every detail. The recording captured an intimate moment that we will have forever. Unlike our photos and video, which we plan on sharing with people, the voice memo is something truly just for us.”
From a photographers perspective, there is no place in Chicago I’d rather photograph a wedding than The Rookery. I can say however that every time I photograph a wedding at The Rookery I always manage to get quite a workout. During Blair and Dan’s wedding day I walked 15,764 steps – over 7 miles – while climbing a whopping 179 flights of stairs during 386 minutes of continuous activity! By the end of the evening I had burned an incredible 6,232 calories. To put that in perspective, an athlete burns approximately 7,000 calories participating in a long-distance Ironman triathlon while swimming 2.4 miles, bicycling 112 miles and running 26.22 miles. And though I could hardly move the next day, it was absolutely worth every stair I climbed to capture and deliver these incredible photos.
It is with great honor that I have the privilege to share these photos. Blair and Dan, you have been incredible to work with and your wedding will go down in my book as one of my absolute favorites to ever photograph. Thank you for trusting my team and I to capture your day and provide you, your family and friends with these wonderful memories to look back on and enjoy for the rest of your lives together.
Remember you can also visit the entire gallery of Blair & Dan’s wedding photos where you can purchase professional quality prints, products and digital files. Click the BUY PRINTS button in the upper navigation menu or CLICK HERE to visit their full gallery.
Don’t forget to sign the Guest Book below to congratulate the couple so they may remember your well-wishes as they revisit their wedding photos throughout the years.