Krisette and Bruce’s Travel Themed Tropical Wedding in Chicago by Gene Yoon + Films 

Today I am taking you to Chicago for this gorgeous travel themed wedding. Krisette and Bruce love all things tropical so decided on this as the second part of their wedding theme choosing the Chicago Botanic Gardens as their reception venue. They filled it with delightful tropical accents from the stationery to the flowers and decoration. To reflect their love of traveling, they used props to add a global feel. The whole day is modern, stylish and super sweet. I just love Krisette’s Grace Loves Lace gown and the lovely images from Gene Yoon + Films . 

Our wedding day was such a memorable and adventurous day celebrated with our beautiful family and friends. We both always loved the simple tropical bohemian type of vibe, at home we have a lot of tropical green plants and we always wanted to incorporate the “greens” in our wedding. We both also love to travel so we wanted to incorporate a lot of our travels in our wedding.

Krisette and Bruce were married on 27th July 2019 at Chicago Botanic Gardens. ‘We loved that we had our wedding at the Chicago Botanic Gardens with all the bloomed florals in the summer. Bruce has a green thumb so it was easy to make the decision of choosing our venue. We had about 180 guests. We had a year to plan the wedding, so we were lucky enough to spread out wedding planning. The last 5-6 months we would say were the busiest with wedding planning.’

How they met 
Bruce and I actually met years before we started dating. We met on a random night at Mercer 113 (closed now) one of Chicago’s clubs. Me and my friends actually met Bruce’s friends first. Bruce actually came out of nowhere and challenged me in a dance battle…which I won! We never really talked or saw each other after that night until he messaged me years later and the rest is history.

Tell me about the proposal
I noticed Krisette started spending more time at Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool after her long runs on lake shore drive. She always talked about how peaceful and quaint it was. Surrounded by greenery, a pond and not many people, I knew this would be the most memorable spot to propose.
I picked out the perfect ring and puppy, convinced Krisette we were going to see a play, and made sure our families were ready right after. Of course, knowing Krisette, she Googled the play but since I was prepared, I had made a fake Eventbrite event and she fell for it!
It was a perfect summer afternoon on July 28, 2018, as I had our Uber take a detour and drop us off at Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool. I walked Krisette over to the middle of pond, got on one knee and popped the question.
She said YES! Little did she know a second surprise was waiting for her at home. While the proposal was happening at the Lily Pool, our families were busy decorating the house for a surprise engagement party with the new puppy. Our families hid in the second bedroom as Krisette walked into the house. With the feelings of awe and amazement, she looked at all the beautiful decorations not noticing what was placed in the chest on the floor.
I pointed to the chest and said, “Hey, what’s that”. She looked down, saw the puppy and at the same time both families came out of the room yelling, “Congratulations!” The feelings sank in as I saw Krisette tear up and say, “This is the best day ever”.

How did you allocate your budget?
There were so many details we wanted to incorporate in our wedding. But it all came down to the details we really wanted the most. We wanted great music, amazing pictures/videos, delicious food and “boho” decorations that would bring our theme to life! We allocated most of our budget on our top details and did the best we can to either DIY or spend less on the other details.

Where did you splurge and where did you save?
We were back and forth about what to put our money most towards and what to cut costs on. In the end we decided to save costs on table decorations, centerpieces/florals and our wedding cake. We put more of our money towards the photographer/videographer, the DJ/ String Quartet, Catering and our furniture rental to bring the “Boho” theme to life.

How did you choose your photographer?
We were looking for a unique photographer. Someone who could naturally capture our wedding day without it feeling fake and processed. We found Gene while searching on Instagram for wedding photographers in Chicago and his photos were amazing. They were all distinct but felt exciting and free-flowing.

The dress
My wedding dress was by Grace Loves Lace. The shoes are Sophia Webster. My accessories which was a bracelet and earrings were a present from my mother.

The suit and bridesmaids
The Men’s suits were Indochino and the bridesmaid dresses were Watters

Theme or colour scheme
We wanted everything to be very green and lush with pops of pinks and tans

We had lots of tropical greenery, so palms and monstera

We had so many ideas for our wedding that we ended up incorporating a lot of DIY details. We had a green placement card wall where we set up tables based on the countries we visited together instead of table numbers, we made little package boxes filled with chocolate kisses for our table giveaways, we sanded/stained wood slices for our centerpieces to be placed on, we designed some green floral cylinder vases that were placed in both venues, we designed our bar signs/welcome sign/sparkler container/bubbles container and we also designed our t-shirt logo for our giveaways.

The ice cream truck at the end for sure was one of our favorites!

Wedding cake
We had a semi-naked cake with white and blush sugar flowers

A DJ, Swiiss Kid Legacy

Who supplied the stationery?
Our stationery was from Lava Stationery. She is based from Australia but was so easy to work with. She really brought our vision to life!

Where did you go on your honeymoon?
For the first part of our honeymoon we flew to the Philippines. We island hopped between Manila, Siargao, Cebu and Bohol. For the second part of our honeymoon we flew to Australia. We visited Sydney first to catch the New Year’s Eve fireworks then we ended our honeymoon in Melbourne.

Special moments 
Years ago Bruce and I met during a battle dance at one of Chicago’s clubs. So we decided instead of introducing our wedding entourage side by side to enter the reception, to do a dance battle instead to commemorate the day we first met. The hype our wedding entourage set for our reception was by far one of our favorite wedding day memories. Another favorite memory was stepping back and just watching all the people we love in one room enjoying, laughing, dancing and celebrating together as one family!

Advice for other couples
Coming from families with strong styles and opinions, it was easy to get caught up and stressed trying to satisfy both sides that often we forgot that as much as it is about family it is also about us (the couple). It is very important to step back and talk about your vision as a couple and compromise on incorporating important details both families want.



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