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From Kaplan to Balson: Wedding 2011

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S: From Kaplan to Balson: Wedding 2011

BC: Wishing you love and laughter And happily ever after - Alexandra Valinsky

FC: From Kaplan to Balson

1: Indie Wed

2: The first bridal shop: Alice Padrul 1360 W. Randolph St | The first dress

3: The second bridal shop: Dimitra's Bridal 66 East Oak St

4: So many choices...

5: Every dress looked more beautiful than the last. | It was so hard to choose!

6: The third bridal shop: Caroline Devillo 1616 North Damen Ave

7: A fantastic selection | It was so much fun picking things to try on!

8: When we saw what would become 'The Dress' for the first time, we all cried tears of joy. | Spectacular! | The 'One'

9: Lenore tried a few other dresses and again, everything looked stunning. | Everything was so beautiful!

10: ...we took a very necessary ice cream break during our dress search. | And we all had fun trying on bridal doo-dads! | Although it was freezing outside...

11: Lenore had found some great contenders. It was time to bring in the Moms. | The fourth bridal shop: House of Brides 730 North Franklin St

12: The second Lenore came out, everyone was crying because she was so stunning. It was perfect. | Then, Kathy and Noelle came to see the dress. | First, we had a delicious brunch at Feast, per tradition.

14: Of course, everyone loved the dress, especially the girl wearing it. | The Dress

15: Once it was decided that this dress was the perfect one, out came the veils and flowers and all sorts of accessories.

16: The search for bridesmaids' dresses was a blast. We found dresses the same color as Lenore's Christian Louboutins! (And we got Jamba Juice!)

17: Jenny Yoo 300 W Superior St Bella Bridesmaid 8 E Chestnut St Macy's 835 N Michigan Ave Bloomingdale's 900 N Michigan Ave | A perfect match!

19: And of course, amongst the wedding planning, there was much fun to be had.

20: From Dillo Day to Stache Bash to random nights with friends, the time leading to the wedding was amazing.

21: Keeping it classy. | The cutest couple ever.

22: The Bridal Shower May 15, 2011 Uncommon Ground 3800 North Clark St

23: MENU Korean chili-spiced fried calamari Black & white sesame seeds Organic spinach salad Strawberries, caramelized onions, capriole goat cheese, balsamic vinaigrette, whole wheat croutons Housemade ricotta cavatelli Asparagus, caramelized onions, organic spinach, asparagus cream, wisconsin parmesan Crispy gunthorp farm chicken breast herb roasted new potatoes, grilled asparagus, sundried tomato hollandaise Bittersweet bakery banana cake Creme brulée custard filling, dark chocolate glaze

24: It was such a lovely party, full of friends, family, delicious food and lots of gifts.

25: Even if she was a bit embarrassed, Lenore was smiling all day.

26: The first dress fitting at Carolina DeVillo June 4, 2011 | The queen of shoes

27: The dress looked even better than the first two times Lenore tried it on.

28: Lenore selected a veil to match the lace on her dress.

29: Pure joy! It was a winner. | The dress could not be more perfect.

30: The second dress fitting June 25, 2011

31: Somehow, the dress looked even better each time | Everyone was happy to see Lenore so ecstatic.

32: The third and final dress fitting July 16, 2011 | Ravishing! | The Last Fitting

33: Everything was perfect, down to the last pearl. | Absolutely exquisite.

34: The bride-to-be had everything set for the big day.

35: Lenore was positively glowing at her final fitting. It was clear she was elated.

36: With a surprise arrival, Lenore had all her bridesmaids there, plus one!

37: We learned how to bustle! | The final touches were put on.

38: The evening began with drinks at Cedar Hotel, followed by dinner at Big Bowl. | The Bachelorette Party July 16, 2011

40: After dinner, we went to Funk for drinks and a show. | Bachelorette

41: Cedar Hotel Big Bowl Funk 1278 North Milwaukee Ave Standard Bar

42: Near the end of the night, Lenore came back to some hilarious surprises and fantastic gifts.

43: Everyone had a wonderful night. The party was a smashing success.

44: The Day Before July 22, 2011 Spa @ the Wit 201 North State St

45: Wit Signature Massage Bread and Butter Manicure and Pedicure Mimosa Body Polish | Spa Day

46: Wedding Rehearsal the Wit: Wilde III

47: Everyone looked ravishing and was unbelievably excited to be a part of the wedding.

48: After the rehearsal, there was a bus to the Elysian

49: The Rehearsal Dinner The Elysian 11 East Walton St

50: Rehearsal Dinner

51: The menu offered delicious lamb and halibut. Lenore and P.A. were given two entrées each to taste them both!

52: Everyone stepped out to smoke cigars

53: Even Noelle had a celebratory smoke!

54: The rehearsal dinner was so phenomenal, it was dubbed 'Wedding .9' | 1989 Port | Perfect Together

55: All of the speeches were just lovely

56: Lenore was dancing around and skipping through the suite, eager to walk down the aisle | Lenore gave all of the bridesmaids gorgeous necklaces and earrings to wear on the big day | Minn, Shen, Alex & Ivy stayed with Lenore in the bridal suite at the Wit

57: Getting ready was a delightful time filled with singing, laughing and dancing | First was brunch at State & Lake, then it was time to start primping and prepping for the wedding!

58: All of Lenore's wedding wares were laid out beautifully, accompanied by flowers and champagne! | The Big Day July 23, 2011 The Wit

60: Wedding Prep

61: Hair and cosmetic artists came to the suite to get the ladies gussied up

63: When Pierre-André saw Lenore in her wedding dress, his face showed indescribable happiness. He was absolutely ecstatic to see his blushing bride. | Lenore's Reveal

65: It was time to take pictures! Into the street we went.

66: After the photo shoot, we had a bit of down time before the Ketubah signing.

67: Getting ready to walk down the aisle

68: Walking down the aisle David & Annette Aaron & Kathy Pierre-André, Patrick & Noelle Michael & Shen John & Ivy Aaron & Ann David & Alex Matt & Minn Harley & Lenore

69: The rabbi recited the prayers in Hebrew, English & French | The Ceremony

70: After the ceremony, the guests went to the Roof for cocktail hour. P.A. and Lenore mingled for the first time as a married couple.

71: We enjoyed passed appetizers, drinks and champagne before the reception.

72: Cocktail Hour

73: The Reception Third floor of the Wit

74: The wedding party was introduced, then the couple shared their first dance

75: They were introduced for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Balson | First dance: "Somersault" by Zero 7

76: Father-Daughter Dance: "You've Got A Friend" by James Taylor

77: Mother-Son Dance: "Plus Bleu Que Le Bleu De Tes Yeux" by Edith Piaf and Charles Aznavour | Flawless and elegant

78: After the first dances, Ann & Aaron blessed the challah, Harley & the bridal party made speeches, Lenore & P.A. cut the cake and dinner was served | And the dancing commenced... | Dancing the night away

79: Wedding guests dressed up in top hats and feather boas to take hilarious pictures | The Photobooth was a hit!

80: Lenore threw the bouquet and Alex caught it! | P.A. removed Lenore's garter and Sean caught it! | Kat showed everyone her newfound talent

81: There were many toasts and cheers | Everyone was dancing all night long!

82: We did the Horah and lifted the new couple in the air. It was a fantastic sight.

84: Cibo Matto 201 North State St July 24, 2011 | Brunch

85: It was also Annette's birthday, so we had another chance to enjoy cake!

86: Sunday night, the weekend concluded with a barbeque at the Kaplans' house in Lake Forest. We enjoyed dinner and drinks, then sent the happy couple off on their Hawai'ian honeymoon.

87: It was the most wonderful wedding weekend we could have hoped for. | The BBQ 1310 Fiore Drive

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  • By: Alexandra V.
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  • Title: From Kaplan to Balson: Wedding 2011
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