"We surprised our family and friends by inviting them to our engagement party - it was a surprise wedding"

A couple surprised their family and friends by inviting them to an engagement party - and tying the knot there and then.

Olivia Sullivan, 30, wed her partner, Jordan Bailey, 31, an urban planner, in front of 80 unsuspecting guests at Whiner Brewery, Chicago, US, under the ruse of a party to celebrate their engagement.

The pair revealed their big secret to their guests - who believed they were going to elope - telling them: "We lied - we're getting married right here in 15 minutes."

Olivia told her dad, Bill Sullivan, 60, she'd like him to walk her down the aisle and her sister, Emma Cannon, 28, she was the maid of honour and Jordan asked his best friend, Mike Banaszak, 32, to be his best man.

Olivia was "nervous" when she spotted her parents in tears - but says they were "happy tears" when they realised they would be a part of the couple's big day.

The wedding party had 10 minutes to get ready for the ceremony and there wasn't a dry eye in the house as the pair exchanged vows on 28th May 2022.

Olivia, a lawyer, from Chicago, Illinois, US, said: "An hour into the party, we told our guests we had a quick announcement.

"At first we just said thank you for being here, we really appreciate your support since we are eloping.

"Then Jordan took the microphone, and he was like 'actually, we lied, we're getting married right here in 15 minutes.'

"After that, we told my dad he was walking me down the aisle and told my sister she was my maid of honour and told my husband's best friend he was going to be the best man.

"Then we all went into the back to get ready for the ceremony which started around 10 minutes later.

"The guests were all so excited. I was nervous at first because my parents were crying, I looked over and I was like 'oh no, this is either happy tears or maybe angry tears'.

"I rushed over to them, and they were both so excited, my dad cried quite a bit and he was just so happy that he was able to walk me down the aisle.

"I think that's one reason this surprise worked out so well - because my friends and family thought they weren't going to see us get married as they thought we were eloping.

"They were so happy they were going to be there and be involved in the ceremony - I think they were just excited.

"Everything about it was perfect, it was a day full of lots of happiness and joy."

Olivia met Jordan on Tinder in December 2015 and they hit it off.

They got engaged in February 2022 at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

She said: "We were at the museum, and he had planned it for quite a long time, we love going to museums together.

"On one of our first trips together, he took a picture of me looking at a painting.

"He does that at museums now and we have pictures he's taken of me at museums all over the world.

"When we were in San Francisco, he did the same thing, he took a picture but behind my head, he held up the ring.

"Then he asked me if I liked the photo and I saw that he was holding the ring behind me in it and then when I looked up from my phone, he was on one knee."

Olivia was the one who came up with the idea for a surprise wedding - leaving her husband in shock and initially thinking it was a terrible idea.

She said: "I couldn't get the idea out of my head, so I asked Jordan what he thought, and he said it was a terrible idea - he thought it was crazy.

"Later that day, he was like 'ok wait, tell me more about this idea, let's talk about it'.

"The more I sold him on the idea , the more into it he became and by the end of the day agreed that's what we should do."

Olivia and Jordan started planning their surprise wedding in August 2019 and soon realised that the best way to pull it off was to disguise the wedding as an engagement party.

Originally, the surprise wedding was planned for May 2020 but due to covid, they had to postpone it.

She said: "The appeal to me was planning just between the two of us.

"Planning a wedding can be very stressful and it still had its moments with just the two of us.

"But it was really nice not to have outside opinions and get to make the decisions that we wanted to make that we thought were best for us.

"It really took the pressure off the day itself. I didn't want the pressure of a big formal wedding, I really wanted the wedding to be a party with our friends and family.

"The day of the surprise wedding was really nice because nobody knew there was a ceremony happening - so there was none of that jitteriness or the buzz of a formal do or the pressure."

Olivia said the wedding planning wasn't "too stressful" adding that Jordan was great throughout the process and very hands-on.

She said: "Overall it was better as it was just the two of us, the only thing that was hard is that I do rely on my friends to support me through a lot of things

"It was very hard at some points not to get feedback from them about some idea I had for the wedding.

"I did not get close to telling anyone, we were really serious about keeping it a secret."

On the morning of the wedding on 28th May 2022, Olivia started the day with brunch at her house for her friends and family to hang out.

After that, Olivia left with her sister and a few of her friends to get their make-up done.

She said: "We knew because of the surprise, Jordan and I would have to get the photos ahead of time, so we had to do photos a little early and we did them at our apartment.

"We then went to the bar - Kasey's Tavern - where we had drinks on our first date and took pictures there.

"We then went to the venue - Whiner Brewery Chicago - took some more pictures and I got changed out of my wedding dress and into my party outfit and got ready for everyone to start arriving.

"I don't know if I have ever felt so much pure joy, from start to finish, getting to spend the morning with our friends and family and then the afternoon with our friends.

"One of my favourite memories was dancing at the after party with my husband, we were both just so happy and it just felt so great for us to be dancing together and also be surrounded by all of our friends."