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If you want to inquire about wedding photography, email me!
Welcome to the blog, home to Chicago's queer intimate wedding photographer for couples in love + their four-legged family.
(I'm here and queer!)
1. My first name is Mei Lin (she/her)
2. I'm part of the LGBTQ+ & BIPOC communities
3. I really love pugs!
4. I’m a huge musical theatre fan
5. I care deeply about animal welfare as well as social justice issues.
6. I incorporate sustainable practices throughout your wedding photography experience
Photo By Lena Mirisola Photography
Katy and Brian held a spectacular Jewish wedding at The Essex Resort and Spa in Essex Junction Vermont. Incorporating Katy’s religious and cultural practices was especially important to her and by extension her now-husband Brian. Ever the thoughtful and organized bride, Katy made guides for friends and family to describe the Jewish customs for those not in the know. They had a private ceremony with intimate family members and friends to sign the ketubah prior to the public ceremony where they stood under the chuppah as soon-to-be wife and husband. Once the reception was underway, the newly married couple and their guests had a grand time doing the hora.
Katy was such a thoughtful bride. She organized and planned everything beautifully. The bride’s mom joked that Katy’s friends knew more about her wedding plans than her own mother. That’s entirely due to the fact that Katy has has a wedding binder full of wedding day plans since she was eight years old. It’s safe to say that with over a decade of planning, it was an absolutely spectacular day. The couple incorporated personal elements throughout their day. From the maid of honor Annmarie doing the makeup for the bridal party, Katy’s uncle co-officiating the ceremony, bridesmaid and best man couple duo offering their vegan ice cream for dessert, to lots of family heirlooms to remember and honor loved ones, no one was forgotten. Even the couple’s four-legged family members were included through the signature cocktails and special cocktail napkins.
Their day could not have been more special and lovely. Congratulations to the new Mr. & Mrs. Oleson who are currently enjoying their amazing honeymoon in Greece!
Click here if you want to learn more about Katy & Brian’s engagement story.
Thank you thank you to Katy & Brian’s wonderful creative team!
Photography | Mei Lin Barral Photography
Venue, Caterer, Cake | The Essex Resort and Spa
Planner | Rebekah Woodin, The Essex Resort and Spa
Officiant | Rabbi Barbara Goldman Wartell & Michael McCarthy (bride’s uncle)
Cinematography | Mountain Hearts Photography
Florals | Bouqs Co
Floral Arrangements | The Couple Themselves!
Dessert | Offbeat Creemee (one of the bride’s bridesmaid’s business!)
Makeup Artist | Annmarie McClain, bridesmaid
Hair Stylist | Kaley Pinkham, Solos Salon Associates
Ketubah | HAPPYprojectSHOP
Engagement Ring | Hannoush Jewelers
Bride’s Wedding Band | Madberet Fine Jewelry
Groom’s Wedding Band | Hunter’s Fine Jewelry
Bride’s Ceremony Gown | Amber Sprott Boutique
Bride’s Reception Gown | David’s Bridal
Bride’s Ceremony Shoes | Birdies
Bride’s Jewelry | Pearl bracelet made of pearls from her aunt & uncle
Groom’s Suit | McNeil and Reedy
Groom’s Ceremony Shoes | Ralph Lauren (Asher Leather Cap Toe Shoe)
Bride & Groom’s Reception Shoes | Nike (White Air Force 1 w/Gum Bottom)
Bridesmaids’ Attire | Birdy Grey
Groomsmens’ Attire | McNeil and Reedy
DJ | Top Hat Entertainment
Family Heirlooms (Bride’s “Something Old”) | Gold brooch from maternal great-grandmother
Family Heirloom (Bride’s “Something Old”) | Handkerchief made from lace from her paternal grandmother’s wedding dress
Family Heirloom (Bride’s “Something Old”) | Pocket watch from the groom’s stepmother’s grandfather
Paper Goods Design (Guide to a Jewish Wedding, seating chart, menu) | The bride herself!
Monogram envelope seals | Twist Stationery
Vellum Belly Bands | Pink Orchid Invites
Guest Book Letters | Belvedere Designs
Sip & Solve Letters | Northwoodsman Designs
Newspaper Wedding Program | Creative Union Design
Laser Cut Wedding Place Cards | Z Creative Gifts Studio
Custom Illustrated Dog Cocktail Napkins | RubiandLib
Save the Dates | Zola
Dog Daycare | Wundrland Pet Lodge
Mei Lin (first name, pronounced "may-LYNN", she/her) is a queer pug-loving musical theatre enthusiast who's passionate about commemorating diverse couples in love and their four-legged family. Animal welfare, social justice, and sustainability are three things that are really important to her. Trans rights are human rights. Love is love. Stop AAPI Hate. Black Lives Matter.
about the author
Chicago intimate Wedding Photographer | LGBTQ+, BIPOC, & Woman-operated | for couples in love & their four-legged family