Freedom & Independence in Design

With Independence Day approaching, we should all take time to reflect on the many freedoms that we enjoy, both old and new. As event professionals involved in the joyous occasions of others, we’re regularly reminded how wonderful it is to simply have the freedom to celebrate and enjoy our lives.
Red white and blue decor
As a team of designers, artists and craftspeople, we also appreciate the opportunity to exercise creative freedom. It’s important to remember that with design and decor, we can–and absolutely should–take liberties. Perhaps that’s why nothing makes our design team happier than being trusted to help create celebrations unique to each individual client.

Fireworks cap off a wonderful wedding with Birch Design Studio. Photo by Kent Drake Photography for HMR.

So, in honor of the Fourth of July, our design team shares some independently alluring celebrations born out of creative freedom.

For John Hensel, the freedom to be discerning and exercise his keen eye for elements is one that he never takes for granted. When clients are able to trust him, he’s able to work with the utmost confidence, and make the best possible choices.

Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.

For this gorgeous outdoor birthday celebration, the only thing more perfect than the weather was the superb quality of the echeveria and the way all of the elements fit together so well under a cloudless summer sky.

The great outdoors indeed. Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.
Simple elements coming together beautifully under a blue sky. Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.
Echeveria galore for this outdoor celebration. Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.
Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.
Photo courtesy of HMR Designs.

Special thanks to BBJ Linens, Halls Rentals, and Twin Orchards County Club.


When it comes to color, everyone has a comfort zone, but Jessica Griffin-Pfluegl likes to encourage her clients to keep an open mind. That’s why she loves when they are open to suggestions for their color palette, much like this lush wedding where the lovely bride was just that.

Deep marsala and rich pinks and peaches reigned at this summer wedding. Photo by Emilia Jane Photography

While neutrals can be timelessly elegant, color can be oh so fun. During a time where blush and ivory were all the rage, Jessica exercised the right to introduce more vibrant, rich colors….with great success!

Tabletop floral consisted of rich greenery while most of the blooms was suspended above. Photo by Emilia Jane Photography.
Look up. Photo by Emilia Jane Photography.
Pretty, please. Photo by Emilia Jane Photography.
Deep burgundy and soft oranges and pinks. Photos by Emilia Jane Photography.


Special thanks to Emilia Jane Photography and Public Landing Restaurant.


For Bill Heffernan, this luxe corporate anniversary celebration ranks among his favorites for creative freedom. A massive project that spanned three cities and encompassed everything in the event world, the myriad contributors followed the master design, which held up over 8 month planning process and led to a remarkable end result.

A captivating room beckons guests. Photo by Fandl Photography for HMR.

Opportunities like this one come along only so often in someone’s career, and Bill certainly didn’t let this one go to waste. Not only did Bill follow his original vision, he articulated it clearly to everyone involved so they could all work toward the same marvelous result.

Where to look first?! An impressive room shot of the celebration at Cinespace Studios. Photo by Fandl Photography for HMR.
Every element of the celebration contained remarkable visuals. Photo by Fandl Photography for HMR.
Lighting to entice. Fandl Photography for HMR.
Unique lounges, strategically placed to take it all in. Photo by Fandl Photography for HMR.


Special thanks to Frost Chicago, Greg Jenkins at Jewell Events Catering, Tracey Boward and Cinespace.

Rishi Patel may be no stranger to dramatic design, but this romantically rouge and completely colossal wedding still takes his breath away every time.

Has Navy Pier ever been more hypnotizingly beautiful? Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.

The freedom to utilize every inch of a venue–let alone one with as many possibilities as Navy Pier–doesn’t happen every day. Couple that with literally thousands of rich red roses, and the results are sure to leave a mark on your memory forever. Visions like this might regularly be running through Rishi’s mind, but to be able to bring them to life is a feeling like no other.

Wow. Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.
Roses, no bounds. Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.
Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.
Room enough for two. Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.
Romance abounds. Photo by Tim Walters Photography for HMR.


Suspended candlelight centerpieces. Photo by Tim Walters for HMR.


Special thanks to our Creative Partners: Coordination by Hope Weis | Lighting by Frost Chicago.

On behalf of all of us at HMR Designs, remember to celebrate independence in all forms all year long. We wish you a wonderful, safe and bright Fourth of July Weekend!

Photo by Kent Drake Photography for HMR.