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WEDDING

Wilder Park & Westin Chicago Northwest Wedding Day in Itasca, Illinois | Natalie & Colin

Natalie & Colin's wedding day at Wilder Park and Westin Chicago Northwest in Itasca with Chicagoland photographer Kara Evans Photographer.

August 9, 2022

Hey, I’m Kara!
A Chicagoland wedding photographer for joyful newlyweds-to-be! My couples call me their wedding cheerleader! After photographing 200+ weddings, my favorite part of my job will forever be the sweet couples that come into my life.
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Oh, happy day! I am beyond excited to share Natalie and Colin’s wedding day at the Westin Chicago Northwest on the blog!

Natalie and Colin shared a July wedding day at Wilder Park in Elmhurst and The Westin Chicago Northwest in Itasca… It was a dreamy day especially because these two are so easy to celebrate!

From The Couple

Colin and I have been dating since we were in high school! The summer of 2013 before my junior year (Colin’s senior year) our friendship started changing as we developed feelings for each other. By the end of the summer while we were at Lollapalooza, Colin asked me to be his girlfriend while my favorite band, Vampire Weekend, played.

We dated for the entire next year and had planned to break up before Colin went to college. As that date drew nearer, we changed our minds and decided to try and make it work. While it wasn’t easy we are both so grateful that we made long-distance work for us. Colin went to Mizzou and a year later I went to UW – Madison. Through long-distance, we learned how to respect each other, communicate kindly, and cheer each other on through our different endeavors.

I cannot talk about Colin and I without mentioning our favorite place in the world, Palisades. Right near South Haven Michigan is a small, relatively hidden little area called Palisades Park. Last April, I thought we were going up to get the cottage ready for the summer. It turned out that Colin had other plans. In front of Gam’s cottage, Colin proposed. Afterward we headed towards his parents’ cottage. When I went inside his whole family and my family were waiting to surprise us. It was one of the best days of my life and Colin planned it out absolutely perfectly.

Over the years our favorite date spots have become the Art Institute and seeing any and every movie – Colin is a huge movie buff and even majored in film! This past year we got our puppy Avett (named after our favorite band The Avett Brothers).

Advice for Engaged Couples

It always helps me to remember we are on the same team, and we are partners. Throughout a long-distance relationship for so many years, I also think we developed a deep sense of respect for each other that has allowed our relationship to be so strong.

The Wedding Day

After Natalie and Colin’s engagement photos, I knew their wedding day would be a blast – definitely was spot on on that one!

The day started with Natalie and Colin both getting ready at their parents’ homes in Elmhurst. I loved starting the day on this note and in such special places to this couple. Once they were ready, we made our way to Wilder Park for the first look and a few quiet moments for the couple to spend together before walkign down the aisle. I loved capturing their joy and emotions throughout the first look and as they read personalized vows to one another.

Then it was ceremony time! We made our way around the corner to the church to get these two married. They shared a sweet Catholic ceremony, and Colin even tried to sneak a kiss as soon as Natalie took his hand after walking down the aisle… I love it!

After the ceremony, we had so much fun back at Wilder Park with Natalie, Colin, and their wedding party taking photos. The location was perfect to make Natalie and Colin’s summer garden wedding with touches of gold, sage green, white, and soft pinks come to life.

Once we made our way to the reception in Itasca, I loved capturing all the little, well-thought-out details the couple brought together for their day. The reception took place at The Westin Chicago Northwest. We always love wedding & reception photos at The Westin Chicago Northwest! It was a joy to see Natalie & Colin celebrate with family, friends, and loved ones all in one place!

And you know we love a sweet summer sunset around here… So you won’t be surprised that we snuck out to capture some sunset moments after dinner and before everyone danced the night away! I’m still oohing and aahing over these dreamy photos.

Between this amazing couple, gorgeous summer day, and their wonderful wedding planner… This wedding day that was 9 years in the making was one for the books!!

Natalie & Colin – As I look back through photos and footage from your special day, I can’t help but smile because your joy is absolutely contagious. Celebrating your love is so easy!! ⁠Cheers to many happy married years ahead!

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Creative credit goes to…

Natalie’s Attire: Here Comes The Bride Bridal Boutique – Glendale Heights, IL | Colin’s Attire: Men’s WearhouseWedding Party Attire: Azazie + Men’s Wearhouse | Hair: Sandy Laino | Makeup: Dawn Bliss Beauty – Chicago, IL | Jeweler: Dimend SCAASI -Chicago, IL | Ceremony: Immaculate Conception Catholic Church – Elmhurst, IL | Wedding Officiant: Father James | Reception Venue: The Westin – Itasca, IL | Guest Accommodations: The Westin – Itasca, IL | Wedding Planner: Kylee Minor with Sarah Kathleen Events – Montgomery, IL | Florist: Carousel Flowers – Elmhurst, IL | DJ: Geoff Rafferty with Sounds Abound – Naperville, IL | Transportation: Second City Trolley – Chicago, IL | Reception Rentals: The Westin – Itasca, IL | Photo Booth: Magic Moment Photo Booth – Chicago, IL | Photographer & Videographer: Kara Evans Photographer – Kankakee, IL | Catering: The Westin Chicago Northwest – Itasca, IL | Cake: Lovin Oven Cakery – Round Lake, IL | Stationery + Calligrapher: Minted

P.S. – Wanna read more love stories and get wedding inspiration? I love sharing more wedding days here!

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Chicagoland wedding photographer based in Kankakee, Illinois

@karaevansphotog