Denise and Nathan's Onion Pub Lake Barrington Wedding

Have you ever met new friends and during that initial face-to-face, just think to yourself, “these are actually genuinely amazing people?” Denise and Nathan give me those vibes, and honestly, their friends would say the same. The respected pair reside in Chicago, and we initially had their gorgeous engagement session at the Lincoln Park Nature Boardwalk. Denise’s quiet confidence, and Nathan’s outgoing goofy side made for excellent photos that truly showed their love. Flash forward 9 moths: it was time for the pair to tie the knot! Denise was so thoughtful leading up to the date; from running the Air BnB by me, to sending me thoughtful messages when I was sick. When it came time for their wedding day, the two felt like old friends, and everything was naturally going as smooth as silk. After the two shared first glances, we headed over to the Onion Pub in Lake Barrington for the wedding ceremony and reception. From Denise walking down the aisle, to Nathan tearing up, my heart was filled with awe at the beauty of it all. Now, I have been known to cry behind the camera during ceremonies, and this was no exception. I even busted a move on the dance floor later in the night with their guests! From start to finish, the entire group made me feel welcome and like family. The bride and groom even ballroom danced, and it truly was a momentous occasion! I am looking forward to hearing all about their honeymoon in Hawaii :) I can’t wait to see what unfolds next for Denise and Nathan!

  • Flowers: Little Shop on the Prairie

  • Hair and makeup: I Do Plus Two

  • Video: Nando Pics Productions

  • DJ: Something2Dance2

  • Photography: Mandelette Photography

  • Tailor: Ette the Tailor

Diane and Bruce's Downtown Chicago Wedding

Diane and Bruce Nesbitt are the sweetest couple around. The two have dated for 17 years, and finally tied the knot this winter in their 48th floor apartment. The pair adorned their walls with original Chuck Close paintings, as well as a waterfall of flowers above their sun room’s skylit fireplace. Only the closest of friends and family were invited to this heartfelt affair. As the pair read in their vows, their love is based off of respect, friendship, passion, and not sweating the small things in life. They enforced the sentiment of never going to bed angry, and sharing in life’s grand adventure together. From the moment I left their wedding to the present day, the two made me feel like family. I have gone over to their downtown Chicago apartment a few times to catch up and order prints, which I absolutely love! It really is a reciprocal, symbiotic relationship. The other day, the pair sent my partner, Cole, and I the sweetest, personalized valentine after our most recent meeting where I showed her the love of my life’s picture, as well as a video of our new home. I can’t wait to learn what’s in store next for these two love birds. They are truly a special pair!

Kelsey and Dain's Astor Street District, Chicago Engagement

December was a rainy month, filled with Holiday joy and chilly nights, paired best with hot cocoa. Kelsey and Dain did not let a gloomy day with little natural light deter them from brightening the mood of their engagement session. The pair got together on this lovely day, and joked with me the entire time. We chatted, and discovered that my sister teaches in Kelsey’s hometown, and the rest of the shoot was filled with giggles and joy. Dain was a perfect gentleman, offering to hold my extra gear, and ensuring Kelsey was covered by the protection of his umbrella. I can’t wait for their Adler Planetarium wedding next year! These two made my job so rewarding, just by the pure joy of being in their company. Cheers to a wonderful year with #mandelettebrides and grooms ahead!

Mary and Patrick’s Garfield Park Conservatory, Chicago Illinois Engagement  

Mary and Patrick are the cutest pair! The two were planning their wedding in Michigan when they asked me to photograph their love a year prior to the event. Of course, I was over the moon to meet this giddy, playful pair! Mary came to the session wearing this yellow dress that I may end up stealing from her, and Patrick was dressed to the nines for their rainy day indoor session. Take a look at the photos below to see how we created a sunny environment in the cold and rainy Chicago weather. We were all laughs the entire time 😊

Janet + Trent’s Museum Campus Chicago Engagement Shoot

Janet and Trent are the definition of #couplegoals. The two met in College, and stayed together through the years and trials of dating long distance. From Champaign onward, the two dated and eventually moved in together. Trent popped the question while Janet was teaching in Chicago, and the love between these two was cascading into their photos during their Museum Campus engagement session. As we braved the first bitter cold day of the year, along with raging Chicago winds, the pair were cheery and kind every step of the way. Check out their gorgeous engagement photos below!

Stephanie and Jason’s Ignite Glass Studio Chicago Wedding

Stephanie and Jason are the cutest pair! The two met on a blind date 5 years ago and tied the knot on a blustery autumn Saturday in September. Their wedding was the thing of dreams: the sparkly shoes, the Tiffany & Co. rings, the gowns, and the adorable robes that the bride tribe wore. All of these details paired well with the happy gathering of guests at their Korean wedding. See below for images from their big day!

Jamie and Dan's Dreamy White Pines Golf Club Wedding

Jamie and Dan have a love story for the ages. The couple met years ago, and their connection has blossomed ever since. I met Jamie during my freshman year of college at the University of Illinois, as we lived in the same dorm, just across the hall from each other! I was thrilled when she asked me to photograph her special day. Jamie has always been a lover. From freshman year, to the moment I showed up at her doorstep during the hair and makeup moments, I was welcomed with open arms. Dan is no exception from this role in their loved ones’ lives. From my initial meeting with Jamie and Dan to the moment I left their reception, I felt at ease and carefree with this genuinely happy pair. Take a look below for the couple’s gorgeous flowers, details to die for, and love filled ceremony/reception!

Flowers: Gratitude Heart Garden

Hair and makeup: Fearless and Bella

Dress: BHLDN

Venue: White pines golf club, Bensenville, IL

DJ: Essence Entertainment

Lighting: MDM Entertainment

Mary and Rohn Schmidt's Mad Hatter Wedding

I was thrilled to be asked to capture a talented cinematographer and photographer's wedding. What an honor! Rohn proposed to Mary atop a glorious mountain in China, and the two are the cutest pair! The love between them radiates through to each person they meet. Their intimate Mad Hatter themed wedding took place in a forest with details curated by Mary Louise herself. I was beside myself with the kind guests, the gorgeous planning, and the sweet and simple mood of the wedding. Nothing was planned, and everything was ideal! Check out their GORGEOUS affair below! (Second shooter: Stephanie Alvarez)