Neon Nuptials inside Chicago’s Industrial Ravenswood Event Center
Meg and Kyle live life large. The two have incredible personalities that shine like stars on a clear summer night. Kyle is the fearless leader and big cheese at Baker Prints – a graphic design, illustration and screen printing studio that caters to gig posters for concerts and music festivals. Kyle has created and printed incredible work for bands such as Dead & Company, Jack White, Umphrey’s McGee, Avett Brothers, Todd Snider, Little Feat, North Coast Music Festival, Suwanee Hulaween Music Festival along with non profit organizations such as Conscious Alliance which supports communities in crisis through hunger relief and youth empowerment.
Meg’s roommate (and bridesmaid) Lena introduced the couple. Kyle explains, “Lena and I became friends a year or so prior through another mutual friend. Lena and Meg were besties in high school and living together a few blocks from me. The second or third time I met Meg was when she and Lena picked me up with another friend to hang at the Happy Village where I used to be in a ping pong league (I was captain of the Honeybears). I asked her out that night. Our first date was the following evening at Alhambra Palace on Randolph where we started a longstanding tradition of accidentally leaving our leftovers behind.”
Kyle popped the question while the couple was on vacation with Meg’s family in Scottsdale. “Her whole family helped conspire in the surprise and her brothers and sister-in-law were hiding in the bushes to take photos” confesses Kyle. “We’d gone out for a really nice steak dinner which was Meg’s idea to begin with so it teed me up for a good surprise. I asked her as we were walking along the river watching the sunset.”
The two chose the Ravenswood Event Center as the location for their wedding ceremony and reception. The original building was the headquarters for the Manz Printing and Engraving Company which was constructed in 1920 covering 250,000 square feet. The Atrium, where the couple held their ceremony, was an early 20th century workshop for large advertising billboards and photography. The magnificent atrium has a 43 foot tall ceiling and a wall containing 842 pieces of glass windows. “We loved the variety the venue offered on each floor, they were each perfect for the three phases of the wedding. It was particularly great to have the reception on the first floor surrounded by the vintage cars and billboard — it gives the space a distinctive character and makes it very memorable” said Kyle. It was in the atrium that the couple shared their First Look which was the one thing the couple looked forward to the most. When Meg tapped Kyle on the back and he turned around to see her for the first time he exclaimed “Holy Shit!” at the sight of Meg in her stunning wedding gown.
The couple’s officiant, Pat Hecker, was Meg’s twin brother and was named MVP of the day. “He conducted a wonderful ceremony that felt so personal and unique to us.”
What was the most surprising part of your wedding?
“We knew it was going to go by fast (it’s the most common thing people tell you) but it was still startling how quickly it went once the band got going and the party started. Up until then we were really able to soak it in but the night really accelerated when the dance floor filled up. We also were surprised by how easy things went — no drama, just amazing memories made. We truly are so lucky.”
Is there any advice you would share with couples planning their wedding?
Be easy. Be decisive. Don’t over-complicate things. Pipe up when you have really strong feelings but be deferential when you don’t, especially if you’re not on-point for whatever piece of the puzzle is in question. Most importantly – have fun and be wildly in love with each other and those around you that day. You won’t feel it again and it is truly an amazing thing!