Like many modern-day couples, Glenton Davis and Jeffrey Bulanda met on a dating website. While they argued about politics on their first date, their chemistry was undeniable. “We both left thinking the other was wildly intelligent, maybe even a bit nerdy, and sufficiently fascinating that we had to go out again,” Glenton remembers. In lieu of a surprise proposal, the couple agreed on an engagement and Glenton purchased a custom ring. “Once Glenton put the ring on to see if it fit, he more or less decided to keep it on [and] we went out for drinks to celebrate,” Jeffrey tells.

In order to choose their desired vendors and venue, the couple began organizing their nuptials 30 months before the big day, which marked the fourth anniversary of their first date. “[We wanted] to customize any vendor offerings to suit our tastes as well as delight our guests with something unique,” Glenton says. While they legally wed the day prior, they exchanged their personalized vows at a popular Chicago library. “Jeff is a PhD and [I] went to law school,” he shares, “so we decided to get married in a library and to plan the look of the wedding around our favorite childhood classics: Alice in Wonderland, The Secret Garden, and Beauty and the Beast.” Carasco Photography beautifully captured the fairy tale-inspired décor, which featured a plethora of candlelight, greenery, and white blooms. “We chose a classic color palette of crisp whites, navy, cream, and lush greens to give the space both a clean and timeless look,” Glenton explains. “We also had two, twelve-foot tall nickel-coated peacocks with faux-floral trains flanking the stage.”

The celebration continued with delectable food stations and desserts, a caricature artist, life-size Jenga and Connect Four games, and place cards honoring the couple’s travel stories. “We named our tables after countries we had visited with a short description of why that country mattered to us,” he shares. “We even arranged the countries ‘chronologically’ so guests could walk from table to table to learn about how our lives progressed from childhood, through the lens of world travel.” The evening was complete with a crowd-pleasing live band.

The grooms conclude by sharing some wisdom for all engaged couples: “No matter how long or meticulous the planning for your special day, something will inevitably go wrong,” they admit. “Try not to sweat it and enjoy the beauty of being with your new spouse, your family, and your friends celebrating such a momentous occasion!”