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Princess Dreams Come True

Prom is an extra special time in a teenagers life.  I suspect in most cases it is the most important thing to happen to a kid up to that point.  Because there are so  many young girls out there that cannot afford to purchase a prom dress, some of these kids will not be able to attend the prom.

I received an email from a good friend of mine who was contacted by her local school district (Plainfield).  This is what the school sent out:

“The economy will make it very difficult for some high school girls to be able to afford prom dresses and take part in this special high school event. To that end, the Plainfield South High School Student Council will be collecting gently used promor bridesmaids  dresses in the school commons from 3:30-6 p.m. on February 26 and March 5, 2009. Check out your kids’ closets – or your own – and make a donation. The dresses will be given to the Prom n’ Aide program. Kudos to the PSHS Student Council for supporting this initiative.”

We will be collecting dresses at our office if you would like to donate anything to this fantastic cause.  The deadline for the Plainfield  donation is March 5th but you can donate to the following organizations throughout the year.

You may also consider a donation to one of these two fantastic organizations that provide the same type of service. 

The Glass Slipper Project is another local Chicago organization.  They are not only looking for dress donations but volunteers for the Prom Boutique where the girls “shop” for their dresses.  This is an excellent opportunity to get involved and give back!

The Princess Project is a website that has combined resources to help you find an organization close to you!

Bling for the Big Day…

I am not sure about you, but nothing makes me feel more beautiful than a really fantastic piece of jewelry.  After all Diamonds are a girls best friend! Well, there is no reason you should not feel like a celebrity (or a princess) on your wedding day!  There are some really wonderful options for wedding day bobbles.

Here are two trunk shows sure to knock your socks off …

The Left Bank


A Haute Bride Trunk Show

February 20th  | 11 AM – 8 PM

February 21st & 22nd | 11 AM – 5 PM

The Left Bank | 1155 West Webster

Haute Bride creates custom couture wedding jewelry and hair accessories

I personally think the best part is the Champagne and Chocolate Bar they serve all weekend!

To schedule an appointment, please call
773.929.7422  or email at


And don’t miss this amazing show either … a chance to shine all night long!

Tejani JewelryCS Brides present the

 Tejani Bridal Collection

Tejani is bringing their NYC based couture Bridal Jewelry Collection to Chicago!

February 27th & 28th | 9 AM – 7 PM

March 1st | 9 AM – 4 PM

The Peninsula Hotel | 108 East Superior

Visit the Peninsula Hotel to view Tejani’s 250 piece bridal jewelry collection in person!  Try on your favorite bangles, earrings and necklaces while shipping champagne (again, my favorite part!) in the lap of luxury.

Purchase during the Chicago Trunk Show and receive a 15% discount off the entire order!

To schedule and appointment please visit Tejani on the web or email 


2009 Bride’s Choice Awards!!

We are very proud to have received WeddingWire’s 2009 Bride’s Choice Award.  Please see our press release below and thank you for everyone who helped us earn this fantastic accolade!  

WeddingWire, the nation’s leading wedding technology company, just announced that Greatest Expectations Special Events & Weddings, Inc. has won the 2009 Bride’s Choice Awards™! 

In its inaugural year, the Bride’s Choice Awards recognizes and honors vendors from the WeddingWire Network that demonstrate excellent quality of service, responsiveness, professionalism, value of cost and flexibility. This year’s recipients represent the top three percent of WeddingWire’s vendor community, which includes over 100,000 wedding vendors from across the US. That means Greatest Expectations Special Events & Weddings, Inc. is one of the very best event and wedding planners in Chicago. 

Unlike other awards in which winners are selected by the company, the Bride’s Choice Awards are determined exclusively by recent newlyweds through surveys and reviews. 

“We are excited to launch this annual award program to honor high-performing vendors based solely on the experiences of our WeddingWire community,” according to Timothy Chi, WeddingWire’s Chief Executive Officer. “This year’s recipients have set the bar high, exhibiting excellent service and expertise in the wedding industry.” 

Greatest Expectations Special Events & Weddings, Inc. would like to thank our past clients for speaking on our behalf and helping us win the 2009 Bride’s Choice Award!

2009 Bride's Choice Awards presented by WeddingWire | Wedding Cakes, Wedding Venues, Wedding Photographers & More

Is there anything more important than the Dress?

The people at Belle Vie Bridal Couture don’t think so (and they are probably right!).

Here’s your chance to see some beautiful new designs and even meet one of the designers!!

Meet & Greet

February 19 | 6 PM – 7PM

Enjoy a champagne reception while designer Anne Barge makes a personal appearance

Anne Barge & Elizabeth Fillmore Trunk Shows


Anne Barge Trunk Show

February 20 | 11 AM – 6 PM

February 21 | 10 AM – 5 PM

Elizabeth Fillmore Trunk Show

February 27 | 11 AM – 6 PM

February 28 | 10 AM – 5 PM


Preview Anne Barge and Elizabeth Fillmore’s Fall 2009 collections and receive selected discounts on gowns and accessories when purchased together.

By Appointment Only



I think I’m in Love.

I know, it seems a little strange given the fact I have been married for six years and I have two (really, truly) adorable children … But I think I have fallen in love again!

Let me introduce you to Laura Hooper’s Calligraphy

Yes, I know what you are thinking.  In love with a Calligraphy company?  But trust me when I tell you this is so much more than a calligraphy company! Laura designs the most innovative and creative save-the-date cards, customized wedding maps, and customized invitation sets I have ever seen. She also makes really cool tote bags with your logo or customized map printed on them. Of course she also does some outstanding calligraphy work as well.

As if all that that was not cool enough, all of Laura’s stuff is completely green and eco-friendly!! Everything is printed on 100% cotton rag paper made of reclaimed fibers and printed with soy ink.  She even ships in recycled packaging (and everything arrives beautifully wrapped) … My adoration grows, forgive me!

Even though Laura is located in Northridge California, she works with clients all over the country (and even does some international work).  Distance makes the heart grow fonder I tell you.

Because I simply cannot help myself here are some examples of her work … I cannot wait to use these for one of my events!!


Yes my friends, this is a map of Chicago.  

Imagine it personalized for your specific wedding details!!


Here is a sample seating chart.  

This is so much fun and your guests will really enjoy finding their table more than ever!!

Sail away on a free wedding!


Sights, Camera, Action … Look into the 1st Annual Exclusive Wedding Giveaway!!!

Envision a picturesque, romantic event on a majestic tall ship with the backdrop of the Chicgo Skyline …

Here’s your chance to win wedding memories that will last a lifetime.

This is the LAST WEEK TO ENTER!!

The Appease Corporation and Windy of Chicago are giving away a romantic dream wedding to a lucky Chicago couple!

One lucky couple will enjoy a remarkable wedding with a royal touch.  Grand prize includes:
Rejuvenating beauty treatments to pamper yourself before the ceremony by Appease.
Picture perfect moments with wedding and yacht photographer, Jeffrey Suddeth
Wedding Shoes From The Left Bank Jewelry
The Tall Ship WINDY as your chic 148 ft ship for the evening for 100 guests.

The wedding will take place in June 2009 on beautiful Lake Michigan aboard the Tall Ship WINDY provided by Windy of Chicago, LTD.  Engaged couples must submit their photo and an essay (up to 500 words) on why they should win this amazing wedding.  Top couples will then be interviewed.

Entries can be emailed to: by January 31, 2009 and the winners announced on  February 14th, 2009.

Melt away the winter blues and set sail for an enchanting wedding on Lake Michigan.

For additional information:

The Tall Ship Windy is great for wedding rehearsals too!

While Sipping a Glass of Champagne With …



Christine Byers Vansaghi, former client and friend!

Thanks for chatting with us Christine!! Lets jump right in …

How are you enjoying married life? Is it what you expected?

Married life for us is somewhat not too different than single life. My husband and I were together for nearly 10 years before we got married. But it definitely feels like we truly are a unit now. Everything is shared and we make decisions with the words “we” and “us” instead of “I” and “we.” It’s great to have a partner like that.

What is your favorite thing about being married?

think my favorite thing about being married is living with my best friend. 

I know your wedding was over a year ago but do you remember what your favorite part of the day was?

My wedding truly was the best day of our lives and a day I must say I probably think of it way more than I should. But in the tough times, especially during the trying economic times, I find myself returning to that day and the happiness I felt. My favorite part of the day was walking up to my husband and seeing him turn around to see me for the first time. We decided to do pictures before the ceremony, so we had to see each other before the big moment. You arranged for us to see each other in such a beautiful setting at Olive Park.  We wanted our wedding party to be there as well. Everyone broke out in spontaneous applause when my husband and I embraced. It meant so much that you walked me up to meet Tony!

What was your favorite “detail” about the wedding?

My favorite detail about the wedding was my flowers. I absolutely loved working with Kelly at Fleur, thank you for introducing us to her. The colors I selected for my wedding were kind of difficult to match, and the florist found these orchids that were absolutely amazing and beautiful. They are now my favorite flower and every time I see one I get a smile on my face.

Were there any surprises?

My parents surprised us with a carriage ride from the reception back to our hotel. It was a perfect ending to a seemingly perfect day. It gave my husband and I a chance to be alone and reflect on all that had just transpired. We truly felt like we were living in a dream.

Did you enjoy working with all of your vendors?

I did enjoy working with most of my vendors. My minister was very pushy, but you were right there to address the problem. I also wish my photographer would have adhered to our time line better (you created such a great, detailed timeline) and selected a better place to shoot our formal family portraits. But the photographer was not a vendor you recommended and neither was the minister. So, it figures they would be the ones that would turn out to have some issues.

What was your favorite place to shop for wedding items?

We did a lot of Internet shopping and there really wasn’t one place in particular that stood out. My favorite shopping experience was at Wedding Belles in Barrington. It’s a consignment shop where I found my wedding dress. 

What was your favorite part of the planning process?

My favorite part of the planning process was selecting the flowers as well as the catering tastings. Fleur was extremely helpful and creative and Blue Plate was as well. Those companies were willing to do whatever it took to make sure I was satisfied and to get my business. I believe your input in both situations played a big role in their commitment to making sure I was comfortable and happy with everything.

If you could have changed anything what would it be?

I would have hired Greatest Expectations sooner and had you in on every decision I made about my vendors. 

Any regrets?

My husband and I decided not to give a speech before the reception began thanking everyone for their contributions to making our special day everything that it was. We regret not doing that. We can’t even remember why we didn’t get up and say something, other than we were running a tad late and had toasts to get through. 

When you look back, how was your actual wedding different than you had envisioned it being?

We thought it was better than we envisioned it to be. We couldn’t believe everything turned out the way we wanted it to and we both owe it to you, Heather. We’re sure there were fires that had to be put out along the way, but we’ll never know about them because you dealt with them all. All we have is the memories of the best day of our lives.

Do you remember how you felt the day after your wedding?

We left for our honeymoon at 5 a.m. the next morning and all we could do for the first few days was talk about how amazing the wedding was. To be honest, I actually felt depressed because it was all over. I felt that way for several weeks and still do sometimes when I hear of one of my friends getting engaged or going to another wedding. Working with Greatest Expectations made the experience of planning the wedding and the event itself so wonderful that I wish I could do it all over again! And I feel bad for girls when I hear them say, “I can’t wait for it to be over.” But I think it’s easy to feel that way when you don’t have someone to help you through the stress of dealing with vendors and planning.

What five words best describe working with Greatest Expectations?

Comforting, Enlightening, Fun, Dependable, Easy (she made everything seem easy and was easy to work with)

Thank you Christine, for taking some time out of your very busy schedule to chat with us.  We truly enjoyed working with you and your wedding was amazing for all of us!  Your continued friendship and support means the world to us!

Here is our favorite picture of Christine and Tony from their extra special day!


Happy Feet, Happy Bride!

One of my favorite bridal shops is having a trunk show!  You don’t want to miss it and be sure to tell them Greatest Expectations sent you!!



Dance the night away in comfort

January 24 & 25

11 AM – 5 PM

The Left Bank Jewelry & Wedding Shoes
1155 West Webster Avenue

Introducing the launch of the ultra-comfortable wedding shoe designed for dancing the night away by professional choreographer, dancer and designer Angela Nuran, who will be in store doing personal fittings.



Please call 773.929.7422 to make an appointment












Who doesn’t love cake?

Cake … Who doesn’t love cake?  I am inspired tonight to show you just a few of the amazing cakes we have used over the years.  I hope you think they are as beautiful, fun and creative as I do.

Here’s to having sweet dreams!

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