Chicago Wedding Videographer Tag

Dawes Park Evanston Wedding First Look

Mallory + John // Alice Millar Chapel + Navy Pier Crystal Gardens


Dawes Park Evanston Wedding First Look
Many people ask us if they should do a “first look”. If you’re not familiar, a first look is when the bride and groom see each other for the first time on their wedding day, but before the ceremony. It’s typically done in a location close to where the bridal party is getting ready or some spot of sentimental value.

In Mallory and John’s case, it was the place where John had proposed to Mallory. At the time of John’s proposal, he took Mallory to Dawes Park, which is near Northwestern University’s campus (the two attended the University together and met there). In a somewhat impromptu nature, John says he saw a small tree in the park and decided it would be the perfect place to propose to Mallory.

There was even a little bit of sentimental value in the spot. John’s idea was that they could come back to the park on occasion and watch the small tree grow into a large one…just like their relationship would grow over the years. Surrounded by their wedding party and family at the tree, Mallory and John saw each other for the first time on their wedding day. Needless to say, many surrounding the couple had tears in their eyes. Mallory and John, we wish you many years of happiness together!

Wedding Vendors
Bridal Party Accomodations: W Hotel Chicago Lakeshore Drive
Ceremony: Alice Millar Chapel at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL
Coordinator: Mandy Jezewski (
Catering: Phil Stefani Signature Events
Band: Entourage
Photography: Allusion Photography
Cinematography: Delack Media Group

After their wedding, we sat down with Mallory and John to talk about their experience of working with us and the importance of filming their wedding day. As an update, Mallory has since opened up her own wedding planning business, CHI Chic Weddings & Events and now refers her clients to us! Check out their story:

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Chicago Wedding Chinese Door Game

Xiaoxiao + Lee // Chicago Cultural Center


Xiaoxiao and Lee have a true story of love. They met in college. Xiaoxiao was a freshman and Lee was a senior. After her freshman year, Xiaoxiao transferred to USC in LA and Lee went on to attend medical school. They didn’t talk for three years, but as fate would have it, Lee was doing an internship in LA. They eventually reconnected on Labor Day of 2009. While visiting friends in Chicago, they decided to go on their first date at the Signature Lounge in Chicago that weekend. After a year of long-distance dating, they both moved to Chicago. Lee proposed to Xiaoxiao in New York while they were riding on a rickshaw and they got married at the Chicago Cultural Center on their 4th year anniversary!!
Chicago Wedding Chinese Door Game
In this trailer, you’ll see a Chinese wedding tradition called a “Door Game”. Before the wedding ceremony, the groom and his Heng Dais (groomsmen) are stopped at the bride’s front door by the Tze Muis (bridesmaids). The groom won’t be allowed to see his bride until his Heng Dais have passed all the tests that are created by the Tze Muis. These tests typically include all sorts of requests…from obscure to difficult. The bride is usually on the other side of the door listening in on the fun. The groom will also have Li Shi (Chinese-made red envelopes with money) in his pocket. He will give the envelopes to children for good luck and the rest is given to the Tze Muis.

After the tasks are completed, the groom is then permitted to open the door and see his beautiful bride. In this case, Lee and his groomsmen completed all their tasks. Lee was then permitted to open the door and expected to see Xiaoxiao. Instead, Xiaoxiao’s dad was on the other side with a veil on him. Needless to say, it brightened the whole mood of what became a wonderful day in Chicago. The reason behind the Chinese door games is to prove that the Tze Muis are not prepared to let their good friend go so easily and to see how much the groom really loves the bride.

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