Dustin and Megan aren’t very traditional and they wanted that to come through in their wedding. The couple got married in Chicago with just under 80 guests, with their day being captured by photographer Alisha Tova.
Dustin is the executive chef at Soho House Chicago and Megan the senior designer at a boutique design agency and together they own a candle company. "Food and aesthetics mean a lot to us. We both appreciate a Michelin star meal, but also love to order a big pizza and watch trash tv on the couch. (we had Jet’s pizza for a late night snack at the wedding)."
The couple have both always shared the love of food, so they knew that was going to play a huge role in their choice of venue. They wanted to challenge the notion that nobody remembers food at a wedding.
They also wanted to have an intimate setting where guests felt like they were at a party, not just a wedding.
"Elske (which means “Love” in Danish) is a Michelin star restaurant and the owners are a husband and wife team who are the kindest people in the city, with the best taste." Everything from the interior of the space, to the food and hospitality felt perfect for Megan and Dustin. "And it was. Our wedding felt like we had hosted our loved ones in our beautiful Scandinavian home for a magical night of fine fare, libations and dancing."
Megan's aesthetic is very minimal, so she didn’t want any embellishments or traditional bridal accessories. Flowers by Bottle & Branch were textural and minimal and accessories were paired back. "I wore a modern take on a classic pearl drop earring to give a bit of timelessness to the outfit." Megan wore a long-sleeved gown with an open back by Sarah Seven. Dustin wore a black suit with a crisp white shirt, and nothing but a white pocket square. They both wore leather boots - "because it felt most like us and the most comfortable for dancing the night away."
"The most important thing throughout the entire planning process was staying true to who we are. We wanted the evening to feel very “us,” not feel forced or contrived to fit within the typical bridal world. Both our families lean on more of the traditional side and were sceptical of our choices, until they were at the wedding and everything made sense! Everyone kept commenting on how appropriate the night felt for us."
Instead of having a ceremony at city hall, Dustin and Megan opted for a private ceremony with family, so they were able to experience their love. They also felt that the private garden space they held the ceremony at was too beautiful not to use.
"We also practiced the Jewish tradition of breaking the glass at the ceremony to nod to my Jewish upbringing, even though Dustin and I are not practicing."
And their advice for couples getting married? "Be true to yourself!!! If you don’t want to do something at your wedding or you don’t want to wear something, don’t! Weddings are all about celebrating love and commitment to each other, not about buying into the wedding industry."
Ceremony and Reception location: Elske (Chicago, IL)
Photographer: Alisha Tova
Celebrant : Jose Juarez
Entertainment : Jesus Corral
Styling and Planning : done by the bride
Flora : Bottle & Branch
Guitarist (Ceremony) : Vincent Gehlfuss
Bride's Dress : Sarah Seven
Bride's Shoes : Marc Fisher
Makeup : Shannon O’Brien
Hair : Suzanne Hamad