Down to the smallest detail, Lauren and Coleman can’t imagine their wedding day turning out any better.
According to Lauren Kleppetsch and Anthony Coleman, every detail at their September 2020 wedding at Chicago’s elegant Mid-America Club was deeply meaningful. It started with the vendors: Coleman, who did a majority of the early planning and vendor selection, prioritized working with women-owned and minority-owned businesses. From there, the personalization extended down to even the smallest details. For example, instead of a traditional guestbook, Lauren and Coleman opted for a custom puzzle, and each guest was asked to sign a puzzle piece.
As a wedding favor, each adult guest went home with a custom cocktail, made with Lauren and Coleman’s favorite jalapeño-infused tequila. For his own footwear, Coleman designed custom Nikes that he has nicknamed the “Air Matrimonials.” (He set an alarm at 5 a.m. on multiple mornings to ensure he secured the specific fabric and materials he wanted for them.) The meaningful details even continued to the ceremony and the celebration itself.
After bonding with the staff at the Mid-America Club during the planning phase, the chef surprised Lauren Coleman with a gift during the reception: a Chicago-style hot dog, Coleman’s first.
Even their wedding cake topper was personalized – it featured the silhouette of a groom pitching a ball to a bride who is about to hit a home run, a nod to how Lauren and Coleman originally met. When Lauren first moved to the city from her hometown in the suburbs, she signed up for a softball league at Chicago’s Lincoln Park South. That’s how she met Coleman, who had signed up to volunteer as an umpire for Lauren’s league. The two hit it off and eventually ended up playing on the same team… and falling in love.
Lauren and Coleman dated for 7 years. In October of 2019, they got engaged and started planning their wedding for the following autumn. Although city restrictions on gatherings related to the ongoing global health crisis would ultimately limit their guest list to 48 people, they originally planned to invite friends and family from all over the country, so they wanted to host a true “Chicago” wedding that would showcase all that the Windy City has to offer. After touring several sites in and around downtown, they were blown away by the Mid-America Club thanks to the staff’s attention to detail, level of event-planning knowledge and the Club’s exceptional location just north of Millennium Park. “The views you can get there are just incredible,” Lauren explains.
The ceremony offered stunning views of Lake Michigan, the Field Museum and Grant Park’s Buckingham Fountain, all receding into the city’s southern skyline. But most guests’ gazes were focused on the bride walking down the aisle. Lauren’s wedding dress featured a V-neck, sleeveless lace bodice over cascading layers of tulle — it was paired with a matching, lace-edged tulle veil. Coleman opted for a dove gray suit to match the custom Nikes he designed just for the big day. The bridal party wore dresses in jade green, one of Lauren’s favorite colors, and the groomsmen wore matching, jade-green ties to offset their sharp gray suits. A circular floral arch by Kehoe Designs provided a stunning, minimalist backdrop for the vows.
The overall effect of the wedding was elegant and traditional, but also uniquely Lauren and Coleman, which is exactly what they hoped for when they started planning it. “Whatever the challenges, I would definitely recommend that everyone consider having their wedding, big or small,” Coleman says. Lauren concurs. “It was all just really, really, special.”
Number of Guests: 48
Venue: The Mid-America Club
Photography: Grace Rios Photography
Event Coordinator: Samantha Michaeloff of the Mid-America Club
Bride’s Gown: Essence of Australia via Here Comes The Bride
Bride’s Shoes: Nina
Hair: Cameo Salon
Makeup: Dawn Bliss Beauty
Earrings: CollettandCo via Etsy
Groom’s Formalwear: Men’s Wearhouse
Groom’s Shoes: Nike.com – “Air Matrimony” Custom Designed by Groom
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: David’s Bridal
Groomsmen’s Formalwear: Men’s Wearhouse
Map & Stationery: Shutterfly
Floral & Decor: Kehoe Designs
Catering: The Mid-America Club
Entertainment: DJ — Marjorie Alford from Toast & Jam; Violinist — Stephanie Young from Fretless Music