5 Reasons You Wont Want To Miss Indie Wed

Are you on the fence about whether you should attend Indie Wed? Are you thinking it is just another lame wedding show with pushy vendors? Are you wondering ‘What IS Indie Wed?’  Well fear not. Here are 5 reasons why this year’s Indie Wed event in Chicago is not to be missed.

1. The Coolest Vendors On The Planet

Okay so I may be a bit biased, but Indie Wed vendors tend to be some of the coolest folks around. With close to 100 vendors participating, you will have a huge variety of wedding pros in every category from cakes and catering to florals and fashion and beyond. Important to note is that these vendors (or ‘friendors’ as you will get to know them after working with them) have been thoughtfully curated from hundreds of applicants. The goals was to have a wide selection of styles and price ranges perfect for all tastes and budgets. The best part is that the vendors chosen represent the very best of small businesses in the area. By attending Indie Wed, you are helping to support a ton of amazing, independent business owners.

2. Live Music On All Three Floors

Yes, you read that right… THREE floors. So usually we have one stage on the first floor with a variety of performers throughout the day. Well that wasn’t good enough. This year we are multiplying that by 3. Each floor will have some sort of entertainment.

One the first floor, we will continue with our larger stage highlighting all our musicians. We have everything from loungey jazz & spanish guitars to brass bands and strings. In between acts, a DJ will be there to keep the party going.

The second floor will keep it a bit more intimate with our new ‘small acts’ area. During the day some of the smaller musical acts will play live for you. Again, a DJ will fill the down time with a variety of tunes.

On the third floor, our special themed lounge (see #5 below) will feature our favorite pop-twangers, Gussied playing sets on and off all day.

3. Swag Bags For Select Guests

The first 50 brides/grooms in line (one per household) will receive one of our coveted Swag Bags. The silkscreened canvas totes are perfect for carrying all your wedding prep to and from planning appointments. Plus they are super handy to have at Indie Wed when traveling from booth to booth, picking up info from our vendors. The best part is each tote comes with a super secret list of select vendors that will have special swag at their booths just for the holders of the totes! How awesome is that. But remember, you have to be one of the first 50 betrothed in line. Sorry in advance to bridesmaids, groomsmen, and the 51st person in line.

4. Amazing Food & Drinks

Now we don’t expect you to spend an entire day without food. Thankfully we will have 8 caterers on hand, with samples of food and drinks sure to make you swoon. Vegetarians and carnivores alike will be thrilled with the selection of treats to nibble and sip. Don’t think we forgot your sweet tooth. We also have some of the area’s best sweets in the house.

5. Camp Indie Wed

Okay, so that is a lot to see and do. Don’t worry… we have a place you can go and relax. Camp is in session at Indie Wed! Our third floor lounge has a group of exclusive vendors chosen to bring back your fondest summer camp memories including some hands-on activities. You can read more about the lounge here. It is the perfect place to have a seat, kick back and relax during an active day of wedding planning. While you are there you may even catch a peek of an awesome photo shoot we did recently for Camp Indie Wed. Here is a behind-the-scenes film of that photo shoot to get you in the mood.

Camp Indie Wed. A BTS Film by LEAP Weddings. from Hi. We are LEAP Weddings. on Vimeo.

As you can see, there is a lot of awesomeness happening at Indie Wed. Heck you don’t even have to be engaged to enjoy a day at Indie Wed. Just grab some of your friends and head on over. Indie Wed is on Saturday, February 6th from 10am – 4pm at the Ravenswood Event Center. More details can be found here.

Tickets are available online now through February 5th at noon for $15/single or $25/couple. Tickets will also be available at the door for $20/person, cash only.

Show Spotlight: Camp Indie Wed

Every year I hand off the 3rd floor lounge during our Chicago show to an area event stylist. In the past we’ve had a whiskey-inspired lounge, a vaudeville-themed soiree, and a Moroccan-meets-California hideaway. This year I am excited to share this year’s lounge: Camp Indie Wed. In order to get in the mood for the show, a select group of vendors went to camp where we worked on an amazing styled shoot (some of which you will see at Indie Wed. Here is a behind the scenes peek.

Camp Indie Wed. A BTS Film by LEAP Weddings. from Hi. We are LEAP Weddings. on Vimeo.

Camp is in session at this year’s Indie Wed! Make it a point to climb the stairs to the third floor of the show to meet our exclusive Indie Wed vendors who will bring you right back to your best summer camp memories. Boutique planning and styling company Anticipation Events has curated the chicest campground in the city. Follow the trail signs to meet all of the counselors you’ll need to plan your big day. Chow down in the mess hall with treats from Feast & Imbibe and Elysia Root Cakes and drink some grown up Bug Juice courtesy of Thalia Hall Chicago’s new offsite beverage catering team, The Juice Box. Circle round the campfire for a sing-a-long with Gussied Band and say hello to the team who will capture your best memories: Jeremy Lawson Photography andLEAP Weddings. Spend some time in Arts & Crafts and meet EVR PaperThe Foxglove Studio and relax while the team from Debra Petrielli Freelance Hair & Make-up Artists creates the perfect braid at our camp “Braid Bar.” Don’t miss a minute of #CampIndieWed at Ravenswood Event Center on February 6!

Artist Spotlight: Mineralogy

At Indie Wed, I am always excited to get in contact with people I’ve never met or businesses I’ve never heard of.  I think it is what keeps Indie Wed fresh and exciting.  Well today I got an email from a lovely gal Theresa, a Chicago based jeweler and I must say… I am totally obsessed with her company, Mineralogy!


These are some of the prettiest rings I have seen in a while and would make a perfect engagement ring for the most unique bride. The work feels very raw, like it was just plucked right from the quarry, with perfectly imperfect diamond alternatives incased in hammered metal.  Mineralogy makes rings, necklaces, earrings and even wall hangings, with subdued colors and just enough sparkle.  According to their blog, apparently they are also delving into the world of “fine jewelry, diamonds, and custom engagement rings”.


Can you believe that little crown ring? Isn’t it just the sweetest thing ever? Pieces start at $50 and can be purchased through their Etsy shop or directly through their website. Have a peek. Any one of her pieces would be perfect for the modern bride!  What is your favorite piece?

Moroccan Daydream Wedding Lounge

If you don’t already have enough reasons to attend the upcoming 6th Annual Winter Indie Wed, let me give you one more!  Similar to last year’s event we will be transforming the entire 3rd floor of the Ravenswood Event Center into a lounge for attendees to relax in between visits with vendors below.  I asked local event stylist (and Indie Wed alum) Katie Jayne from Jayne Weddings to plan this year’s lounge.  After some serious brainstorming, we are excited to introduce….


Interested?  Well let me tell you more!

Inspired by a 1970’s California-meets-Morocco vibe, Katie is bringing the warmth and radiance of the sun to Indie Wed! Experience a state of zen while sipping on bright libations in our mystically alluring Moroccan cabana. Treat yourself to our complementary manicures and massages. Nibble on global themed fair while listening to some relaxing melodies. Catch up with friends or capture the moment in our photo booth. Soak in the good vibes and plentiful inspiration provided by the unique wedding vendors. Yes this is a wedding show, but the 3rd floor will be the perfect oasis for you and your love to unwind from all that wedding planning.


To entice you just a bit more, here is a list of the amazing vendors who will be participating in the lounge.

Under the careful stylings of Jayne Weddings, Art of Imagination will magically transform the 3rd floor space with a beautifully draped cabana, lighting and over 900 feet of tissue paper swag crafted by Jayne Weddings.  Katie from Jayne will also have a boho tablescape as inspiration to help anchor the room.  Bowery & Bash, Chicago Farm Tables, Chicago Vintage Weddings and Re:Find Joy will be providing vintage rugs, gorgeous furniture and details for the space while Ultrapom will bring the sexy to the lounge with their sequin linens and gold poufs.  The Foxglove Studio will adorn the space with lush florals in vibrant colors along with making floral crowns you will see on the wandering models.  Paper Stories is designing all the signage and paper goods while Julia Franzosa captures some amazing photos throughout the day.  Elysia Root Cakes will have a sublime Moroccan inspired cake on display.  If you are hungry, The Publican/Publican Quality Meats will have a tasting menu that is sure to dazzle and will be providing the perfect libations for this fete.  Have a sweet tooth?  Blackdog Gelato can sweeten you up with their tasty gelato cookie sandwiches.  After noshing, head over to the Smilebooth photo booth to snap a few pictures or get inspired to move with the playlist provided by Cage and Aquarium.  And if all that doesn’t get your relaxed enough, Spa In Your Space will be providing free mini-manis and massages from 11-3.

So if that doesn’t get you in the mood even more, I don’t know what will.  This year’s show is going to be amazing and this will be just one more reason you will be glad you came.  Tickets are on sale now.  Visit here to get yours while they are still available.

Pop-Up Shop Preview: Accessories

Only a week to go until Indie Wed’s first-ever pop-up shop! So here’s our last roundup of vendor previews. All of these folks will have their lovely wares for sale or special order at the pop-up September 27 and 28. To purchase tickets, visit the event page for more info.

Your ring is probably one of those things that you spend as much time shopping for as your dress, right? So you need to consider Simply Wood Rings. They’re made of natural, beautiful, and responsibly sourced wood, plus whatever special materials you want to add: gemstones, shells, fossils, or (for one client) antique bagpipe keys.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Simply Wood Rings

For your head: Designer Nancy McAllister of Wildflower Couture hand-cuts and -dyes the silk flowers she uses in her headpieces and combs, and on her off days she studies with a master milliner. She’s also a wiz with sparkly things. AND she’s bringing a brand-new line of veils to this show.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Wildflower Couture

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Wildflower Couture

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop


Looking for garters? But something special, right? The level of detail in Previously‘s work speaks for itself; designer Elide’s vintage reproduction garters are inspired by the illustrations of George Barbier and 1920s ribbon work.

The right dress needs the right bag, whether it’s for you or a gift for your bridesmaids. Kristine Fachet of Sur Le Feu has you covered. Armed with a BFA in costume design, she makes heirloom-quality handbags one piece at a time in her Chicago studio, using a mix of new and vintage materials, and even pieces of vintage wedding dresses.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Sur Le Feu

Looking for garters? But something special, right? The level of detail in Previously's work speaks for itself; designer Elide's vintage reproduction garters are inspired by the illustrations of George Barbier and 1920s ribbon work.

Rock Candy by Helen

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Rock Candy by Helen

You might know Rock Candy by Helen for its pendants based on Jon Langford paintings and vintage stamps. But did you know Helen Tsatsos also creates one of a kind pieces from vintage jewelry remnants? Yup. Sparkly. And wedding-y.

Columbus, Ohio-based Peace Love Bling sources its products from women around the world following Fair Trade principles. The designs themselves? Sophisticated, fresh, and a great addition to a modern bride’s look.

See you at the pop-up!

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Peace Love Bling

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Peace Love Bling

More Pop-Up Vendor Previews!

By now you might have heard that Indie Wed is collaborating with Wed Altered to host its first-ever pop-up shop this September, bringing a variety of out-of-town independent bridal designers to Chicago for the first time. This is the third in our series of previews profiling our pop-up vendors.

Today: Rania Hatoum, Celia Grace, and Pure Magnolia. All three will have gowns available to try on and order at the pop-up September 27 and 28. Tickets are a mere $5 (to offset costs of dressing rooms and the venue) and include a complimentary drink. Purchase 3 or more tickets and they are only $4 a piece. To purchase tickets, visit the event page for more info.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

“Dora” by Rania Hatoum


Orlando-based Rania Hatoum‘s says her sophisticated designs are influenced by her cultural background (she’s half Chinese and half Egyptian) and her international point of view; she was raised in Hong Kong by parents who’ve worked in the apparel industry for more than 30 years. Rania’s tailored silhouettes and luxurious fabrics speak for themselves; her latest collection is focused on the use of luxurious laces sourced from Italy and France, Japanese pearls, and Swarovski crystals.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Rania Hatoum’s “Maria” dress

When Celia Grace founder Marcie Muehlke couldn’t find a wedding dress that matched her values of sustainability and human rights, she was inspired to travel the world to find ethical and highly skilled fabric and dress makers, and she ended up creating a line of wedding dresses made with eco silks under Fair Trade conditions. Her Massachusetts-based company works to promote its values by donating a water filter to a family in need in Cambodia with each dress sold.

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Celia Grace’s “Marie” dress

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

“Lucille” by Celia Grace


Pure Magnolia was started in 2009 by Vancouver designer Patty Nayel, who wanted to give local and international brides an eco option for their wedding dress. Navel’s collection is made up of customizable dresses made from European laces, Indian silks, organic cottons, and vintage and recycled fabrics.

Scroll down for more dress photos, and stay tuned for more pop-up previews!

Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Pure Magnolia’s ballerina gown



Indie Wed Pop-Up Shop

Pure Magnolia’s “winter lace” dress

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