Sparks flew the instant Taylor Barr and Scott Lerner met – and the pair weren’t the only ones present who noticed. “A few hours after we met, my best friend pulled me aside to announce that Scott and I would someday get married,” beams the bride. “And she was right!” “Taylor and I connected instantly over our shared values and views on life, relationships, and family,” says Scott, so it was only fitting that the proposal took place at a large gathering of more than 40 of the bride’s nearest and dearest relatives. “It was so special because I had my entire family there to celebrate,” Taylor reveals. Once wedding planning was underway, the couple’s top goal was finding a venue large enough to host their many cherished loved ones, and that also offered kosher catering to accommodate the bride’s family.
The pair decided upon a distinguished five-star private club in the heart of downtown Chicago that satisfied their technical requirements as well as a sentimental one: “My father had his Bar Mitzvah at The Standard Club,” shares Taylor, “so the venue is filled with happy memories.” It was also an ideal space for bringing to life the bride’s vision of a traditional romantic wedding with a touch of modernity.
For the ceremony, the club’s handsome hardwood floors were topped with a snowy aisle runner lined with glass hurricanes filled with twinkling white candles. Pedestal tables were draped in ethereal eggshell fabric and topped with low vases containing alabaster blooms. Arrangements surrounded ghost candelabras and crystal globes, whose flickering candles provided a quixotic glow. “We wanted to make it very romantic and ethereal by using lots of candles, mirrors, and white flowers,” explains the bride. Crème brûlée fabric cloaked the walls of the space and translucent drapery was poised gracefully overhead. Lucite chairs with pearl cushions lined the aisle in a staggered sunbeam pattern.
Taylor was the epitome of sweet-chic in a strapless drop-waist ball gown of lush silk taffeta featuring ruffled embellishments of organza rosettes. The stems of her bouquet were wrapped in a monogrammed handkerchief that had been carried by her mother on her own wedding day. Attached to the fabric were four delicate pieces of jewelry: an heirloom charm, pin, or jewel from each of her grandparents. “All four of my grandparents symbolically held my hands as I walked down the aisle between my mother and father,” recalls the bride.
The groom was debonair in a custom ebony tuxedo, a sliver of white handkerchief peeking from the pocket. The boutonnière worn close to his heart was wrapped in a swatch from his grandmother’s wedding dress. He also wore his late grandfather’s cuff links. “While they weren’t there physically,” shares Scott of his loved ones, “their memories were felt throughout the ceremony.”
Before Taylor walked down the aisle to her beloved, she stole a moment to take it all in. “Standing in front of me was the man of my dreams,” says the bride. “That was perhaps the happiest moment of my life, and I didn’t want it to end.”Scott was equally wowed. “I was in complete awe of her stunning beauty,” recalls the groom. The couple exchanged vows beneath a chuppah intricately designed from the wedding gown and veil of the mother of the bride. Beneath the canopy, a small ceremonial table was adorned with a covering made from tablecloths that had belonged to Taylor’s grandmother. “It was a reminder of the loving memories shared around my grandparents’ dining table,” explains the bride.
Taylor’s dress served as delicate inspiration for the reception décor. Tables were cloaked in rosette-embellished linens, and three different floral centerpieces also channeled a look reminiscent of the bride’s gown. Arrangements consisted of lush snowy blossoms in varying heights with limited greenery. “We wanted a completely white and ethereal look,” notes the bride. Mirrors and candles were also utilized, as were crystal globes and ghost candelabras. Place settings with organic edges were topped with white menus enveloped in gossamer napkins, each one crowned with a tiny white blossom. Colorful lighting that ranged from cerulean to violet to pink was used to change the mood throughout the reception. “Because everyone knows that pink is my favorite color, they tended to focus on the rosy lighting most!” laughs the bride.
Following a seated dinner, the multi-tiered wedding cake was served. Modern and elegant, the textured confection was topped with white flowers that reflected the floral design used in the room. Highlighting the bride’s love of both candy and pink, a buffet table was filled with rosy sweets, pink heart-shaped cookies, and pretzel sticks iced in pink. Clear cellophane bags with personalized stickers allowed guests to leave with treats at the end of the night.
Another sweet surprise: Taylor serenaded Scott! “She brought me to tears and the whole crowd to their feet,” shares the groom. “It was simply amazing, and from what I’m told there wasn’t a dry eye in the room.”
Is there anything the bride and groom would change about their glorious day? “Not at all,” the couple chimes. “It was warm and loving, upbeat and dreamy,” says Taylor. “Not only did it reflect my love of all things girly,” she adds, “but having so many family and friends present who are so special to us is reflective of their importance in our lives.” Scott agrees. “It was magical,” he says, “from start to finish.”