Ellen and Bryan’s summer woodland wedding featured handmade touches and breathtaking florals. All photos by Holly Donovan Photo.
“Bryan and I are high school sweethearts! We started dating when I was a senior and Bryan was a freshman at NIU. We’re so very blessed to have such a long history together.”

“We spent a few years apart when I was in graduate school in Ohio. When we were able to rekindle our relationship, I think we both knew it was for the long haul. We were in love for many years and coming together again felt like coming home. We are very lucky!”

“After primping and preparations, I took my jumble of nerves to meet Bryan at the park. I really wanted to do a first look and am so glad that we did. It was surreal seeing one another in a wedding dress and suit!”

“Bryan got a little teary but we both held it together, shared some laughs and love with one another, and took photographs in the park. We were so happy that the sun was shining!”

“Most of our ceremony decorations were very simple to showcase the beauty of the park. I made the fabric bunting between the trees which now hangs above our bed at home. I wanted to have a hand in some of those special touches that we could keep as mementos of the wedding day.”

“Once I was walking alone to my groom, the magic of the day really caught up to both of us! We were total, absolute cry babies and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. My mom read “Union” by Robert Fulgrum and our officiant did an outstanding job making the ceremony feel very personal.”

“My favorite part was the ceremony, for sure. I felt so present in those moments and so truly, truly happy to marry the love of my life. Bryan’s favorite part was the first look. Although all of the wedding preparations turned out beautiful and were a fun part of the wedding, the most special, important part to us was sharing that love for one another with our family and friends. It was magic.”

“The reception was the perfect party to celebrate the love shared at our ceremony.  I was over the moon about our bright, colorful flowers that added the perfect touch to the Park Place Reception Hall. We picked some peonies from a friends’ yard, too– I’m flower crazy!”

“We rented the majority of our decor from Forever Birdy (Courtney Seyller), who went to our high school and has outstanding, classic vintage pieces.”

“Bryan and I walked in to Bruno Mars, ate lots, and enjoyed cake from our favorite hometown bakery, Swiss Maid in Harvard. Our D.J., Rico Mangram, was the life of the party! We are very thankful to have had such a wonderful wedding!”


Holly Donovan Photo (photography), Larsen Park (ceremony), Park Place ( reception), Reverend Barbara Chandler (officiant), Mayfield Flowers (floral), Forever Birdy (vintage rentals), David’s Bridal (bride’s gown), DSW (bride’s shoes), Francesca’s (bride’s earrings), Kate Spade (bangle), Men’s Wearhouse (formalwear), Studio 2015 (wedding bands), Vistaprint (invites), Sunn Flower Gourmet & Catering (catering), Special Occasion Events (entertainment), Swiss Maid Bakery (wedding cake)