Amanda & Tim’s Wedding at Chicago’s Joffrey Ballet

* Amanda, Yoga Teacher & Tim, Client Service Manager at a Software Company * Photographer: Christy Tyler Photography * Soundtrack for reading: “All I Want Is You” by Barry Louis Polisar *

One sentence sum up of the wedding vibe: Our nearest and dearest came to witness our marriage, and stayed for the best party we’ll ever throw.

The Info—Photographer:  Christy Tyler PhotographyVenue: Joffrey Ballet Studios / Day-of Coordination: Crafty Broads / Amanda’s Dress: A score from Running of the Brides at Filene’s Basement / Dress Alterations: Crafty Broads / Tim’s Suit: Jos. A. BankBridesmaid Dresses: Amsale / Groomsmen’s Suits: Jos. A. Bank / Flowers: Flowers were ordered in bulk from Fifty Flowers and put together by Amanda, her mom, and bridal party members Stephanie, Lee, and Nasim—who took off an extra day from work and even flew in early to help!

Other cool stuff we should know about: Having a “traditional” wedding (with a band) was really important to Tim, but wasn’t my ideal. So, we found ways to have our more traditional wedding match our less traditional values. Having our wedding at the Joffrey studios allowed us to get married in downtown Chicago and give some money to an arts organization that we’re happy to support. We were married by my Dharma Teacher, Bopkyong, in Buddhist-based ceremony revolving around an exchange of flowers that symbolizes a promise to be one another’s spiritual companions for this life and future lives (I loved that instead of traditional titles we were introduced at the end of the ceremony as “equal partners in love and life”). It was important to me to have amazing food that was vegetarian—we went with mild Indian food and tried to make it really accessible to people who weren’t familiar, but we were nervous about how people would react. Turns out, people loved it! We served home brewed beer made by Tim and my brother, Clark. Add in our dog, Mr. Bear, as ring bearer, an amazing band, and a Groupon we got for a photo booth, and we had a great party that felt like a reflection of who we are.

Favorite thing about the wedding: Our first dance, when we bounced around to “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by the Proclaimers, was my favorite part of the party, but having a celebration with each other and so many friends and family was by far the best part of the entire wedding process.

Featured Sponsored Content

  • Claire

    A wedding dog! Squeee!

  • Jashshea

    OHEMGEE. Love both dresses. Smoking!

  • Corrie

    Gorgeous! And loved the song.

    Also, IS THAT A NEWFIE!? Swoon! <3

  • fermi

    Love the dress!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • YAY! So happy to see this up here! I love love looooved Tim & Amanda’s wonderfully unique wedding! There was so much pure JOY and LOVE that day & it was seriously the best party! (I was tempted to stay after we were done shooting and celebrate the rest of my birthday with them!) ;)

  • What a fabulous venue, and a truly gorgeous day! Love Amanda’s black-and-white reception dress (as well as the bridal gown — lovely!). Congrats!

  • Katherine

    “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” as your first dance? AWESOME! And dog as ringbearer??? Even MORE awesome. That is all :-) Congrats!!

    • fermi

      I know, I’m in love with everything about this wedding. Love that song!

      Amanda, who made the wedding dress, I know you got it at Filenes, but just wondering if you know the name?

      • Amanda

        The dress maker was called 2Be. It was a strapless gown, but it fit so I got it! I had a seamstress add the one shoulder strap, so it was more like what I had in mind for myself.

  • I would have LOVED to be a guest at this wedding. Looks like a ball of fun!

  • Cassy

    This wedding is beautiful! I like the idea of exchanging flowers during the ceremony. Does anyone know where this comes from, or did the couple come up with the idea for the ceremony?

    • Amanda

      Hi! I loved doing the flower exchange! The idea comes from Buddha Dharma. The exchange of flowers symbolizes a promise to be a spiritual companion to your partner. I go to public meditation at a Zen Temple where Bopkyong used to be the priest, which is how we came to have this awesome ceremony; but neither of us are formally Buddhist. The scripture story is called Shakyamuni’s Meeting With Dipankara. The story is long and very Buddhist (by that I mean that it deals with past lives, enlightenment, lotus flowers, and monks) Our wonderful officiant did a great job of telling the story in a way that was accessible for us and our guests.

      • The Family Jules

        So beautiful! I love how you were introduced as “equal partners in love and life.” Seems so much more fitting (in my mind anyways) than husband and wife.

  • Laura

    yaayyyyyy love it! just sent this post to my mom as an fyi.

    also, what are amanda’s shoes?????

  • Ellen

    I normally don’t get excited about things like this but I LOVE your chairs! It looks like a fantastic time was had by all.

  • Class of 1980

    Say YES to those dresses, baby!

  • Abilene

    Look at the frog and tiger cuddling! So cute. This looks like an amazing day. Congratulations!

  • Kelly

    This wedding is insanely beautiful!! Side note, we did not use “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” as our first dance but it was by far my favorite on the dance floor! Such a great choice for a first dance.

  • Really love the way you were introduced, so great.

  • How absolutely beautiful! There is so much joy in all your photos! (And I LOVE the two dresses.)


  • I love how you used the Joffrey as your venue, and you viewed it as a way to support an arts organization you cared about. Wonderful idea!

  • thanks a lot for the fine blog! I have been browsing for stuff like to this.

    i’ll be checking your rss feed so i won’t miss out the good things!
    once again, great webpage remember to keep it up! Please pardon me
    if my english is not good.