Nebraska couple, Jasmyn and Jacob, simply weren’t interested in planning a big traditional wedding. Instead, they grabbed a pair of last-minute Megabus tickets to Chicago and spent three days touring the city and checking out the coffee scene – Jacob is a coffee roaster by profession – before getting hitched in a quick hassle-free civil ceremony at the Cook County Courthouse.
Friend and photographer, Andrey Mikityuk, tagged along with the fun-loving newlyweds to capture all the wonderful memories of their romantic and unconventional wedding trip, and was kind enough to share the photos with us today!
Jasmyn, 20 & Jacob, 19
Wedding Date: Tuesday, October 1st, 2013 – It was so fun getting married on a Tuesday because the city was calmer than it would have been on a weekend.
Number of Guests: 1 (Our Photographer, Andrey. He was a regular at Délice European Bakery, where I was the manager. We had formed a pretty great friendship based on conversations of adventure, travel, coffee and photography. When he found out Jacob and I were traveling to Chicago for our unconventional small wedding, he immediately offered to come photograph the big day for us, free of charge! We were overjoyed and filled with gratitude. It was the most generous gift. We paid for his travel and hotel. He told us that given the choice, he would rather spend a few days in another city with good friends than stay at home.)
Wedding Cost: About $1,100 – $20 for our travel; $470 for Andrey’s travel and hotel; $65 for our AirBnB hotel the first night; $300 for our expensive-ass room at the Hyatt for our honeymoon; $25 for public transportation 3-day passes; $100 spent on various acts of eating, drinking, and boat touring; $70 getting our license; $10 to actually get legally married.
Wedding Ceremony Location: Cook County Courthouse
Wedding Reception Location: We actually planned four showers to celebrate with all the people in our lives! These smaller gatherings allowed for more intimate celebrations. At these showers, we would eat and open presents and share a cute video of all the photos from the big day.
Why did you have an intimate wedding?
We had a few reasons for getting married the way we did. For one, I had never really dreamed of having a huge wedding. I didn’t like the idea of spending a lot of money on a dramatic public event that I felt was really meant for us to privately commit ourselves to one another and enjoy each other’s company. I just wanted to go on a super romantic trip with my significant other and become husband and wife without all the hassle. Our entire family knew about our plans, so I would call it a small, non-traditional wedding rather than an elopement, even though we did travel!
What are some of the challenges that you faced planning an intimate wedding?
It was all spontaneously planned, really. There weren’t many issues.
Was it difficult to pare down the guest list?
If we had planned a wedding with actual guests, this would have been an issue, for sure. That’s why we didn’t invite anyone!
Did you have any ‘issues’ with the small guest list from friends and family? If so, how did you address them?
Yes. Our parents were all hurt that they weren’t invited. At the time, I wasn’t sure if my parents supported us, and I told them I didn’t want to feel uncomfortable on my wedding day. I wanted it to be a day of celebration. Fortunately, they eventually understood and they threw us a party, so we were still able to celebrate with them!
What were the highlights of the ceremony?
It was ten bucks! And it took place in a small room with weird lighting in the basement of the Cook County Courthouse. It lasted like five minutes and then we got to go play some more. We actually were having so much fun wandering around the city that day, we almost didn’t make it to the courthouse on time.
What were the highlights of the reception?
Our showers were relaxed and there was no pressure. We literally just spent time celebrating with our family, which is, hands down, the greatest gift.
What was the best thing about having an intimate wedding?
It was inexpensive and, in our opinion, more memorable than it could have been otherwise.
What advice do you have for couples who are considering an intimate wedding?
Do what will make you happy! There is nothing wrong with having a wedding that is big, small, conventional, or unconventional, but don’t do it for other people. Do it for yourself and your significant other.
Also, Bed and Breakfast or Airbnb all the way! Don’t check-in to a fancy hotel. It’s not worth it. The best memories are made when you don’t know all the details ahead of time.
Photography: Andrey Mikityuk