Sarah Fin­layson & An­thony Banasiak

Chicago Sun-Times - - EVER AFTER - STO­RIES BY CHIARA MILIOULIS

As chief cre­ative of­fi­cer of spe­cial events com­pany The Revel Group, Sarah Fin­layson knows the wed­ding cir­cuit well, but she never once imag­ined her own. So last Oc­to­ber, when her boyfriend, 41-year-old writer An­thony Banasiak, pro­posed in their Avon­dale apart­ment, one thing was cer­tain: The wed­ding would have to stay true to their un­con­ven­tional style. “At ev­ery turn, I asked, ‘What would a bride do?’ ” says Fin­layson, 38. “And I did the ex­act op­po­site.”

The cou­ple set the date — Feb. 13, al­most five years af­ter the day they met — for a black-tie af­fair at Revel Ful­ton Mar­ket (1215W. Ful­ton Mar­ket). The 115 guests, all decked out in black and white, en­tered the 30,000-square-foot venue, which was di­vided into dif­fer­ent stages, start­ing with the en­try, where the cou­ple’s en­gage­ment pho­tos were pro­jected onto the floor. “We kept look­ing for ways that we could re­veal the next part of the night so that it felt like a jour­ney,” Fin­layson says.

Af­ter the cer­e­mony, at­ten­dees signed the guest­book, a vin­tage dic­tio­nary Fin­layson found on Etsy. “We asked guests to find a word and write on the page why it re­minded them of us,” she says. Megan Tay­lor DJ’ed from be­hind a gold-tufted bar as ev­ery­one en­tered the lounge, and later, guests sat down for a seven-course din­ner un­der­neath a chan­de­lier crafted from 2,000 white roses.

The night con­cluded with an en­er­getic dance party, as guests threw white, black-lit con­fetti on the happy new­ly­weds.

PHO­TOS BY ERIKA DUFOUR

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