Lauren and Matthew’s NYC Wedding
photography by Heather Waraksa
Lauren grew up in the St. Louis area and Matthew grew up in Omaha. They both attended college on the east coast and eventually moved to Manhattan and fell in love with the New York city. “One of the most special aspects of our wedding weekend was the privilege of sharing our little version of New York City with our friends and family from out of town,” explains the bride. With the help Classic Events NYC they hosted a weekend of NYC fun that culminated with a rooftop wedding in Tribeca. Photographer Heather Waraksa captures all the beautiful custom details—and a vibrant emerald palette—in these lovely images.
What made the wedding special and unique?
I grew up in the St. Louis area and my husband, Matthew, grew up in Omaha. We both attended college on the east coast and eventually moved to Manhattan, where we fell in love with the city. One of the most special aspects of our wedding weekend was the privilege of sharing our little version of New York City with our friends and family from out of town. We hosted both our Welcome Party and Wedding on different rooftops of NYC (the NoMad Hotel and Tribeca Rooftop), which both offered a bird’s eye view of our city. The whole weekend felt like we had just met our nearest and dearest at a great restaurant for a fun night out.
Tell us about the gown and where/how you found it!
Choosing my wedding gown was the toughest selection in the process. I went to over 20 bridal salon appointments and just could not seem to pull the trigger. My family jokes that I must have tried on every gown in all of New York City. In large part, many of the gowns felt very sweet or costume-y to me, nothing really seemed to reflect “me.” After an exhausting search, a girlfriend of mine offered to make an appointment for me with the bridal consultant she had worked with at Oscar de la Renta. As soon as I walked into the store, I immediately felt more at ease with the focused selection and an aesthetic and designer that I already knew I loved. As soon as I put on the silk faille “Hayden” dress, the pieces really came together for me –not just for the gown, but for the whole event. The Hayden was highly tailored yet feminine, with a bit of a surprise in the back of the dress. The gown honesty felt very similar to the type of neckline and style I would wear in my normal life, which made me feel more authentic on the big day.
What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?
We held our rehearsal dinner and welcome party on the roof of the NoMad Hotel. The hotel is one of our favorite spots to grab drinks and it also happens to have a gorgeous, tented event space on the rooftop. As our wedding was held at Tribeca Rooftop, we loved having a consistent rooftop theme throughout the weekend. At the Welcome Party, we distributed a special wedding weekend goodie as a takeaway for our wedding guests. Everyone close to me knows that I drink a lot of coffee and that I love New York City, so we created a custom coffee mug with our wedding logo, which was a sketch of the city building where our wedding would take place, and filled them with a little bag of chocolate covered espresso beans and a welcome note from us. It was a special way to gift a takeaway that felt meaningful and personal, but also useful, for our guests who had traveled to spend the weekend with us (it also fit easily into their carry-ons!).
My father and I are very close and, unfortunately, I never got the chance to meet either of his parents; they both passed away before I was born. To honor them and my dad, my mom wore the dress that my dad’s mother wore to their wedding to our rehearsal dinner/welcome party. The dress happened to be a shade of green, which was a theme throughout our whole wedding weekend. It was incredibly special for my whole family to have her carry a piece of my father’s heritage into our wedding weekend.
I have been so fortunate to have a wonderful and loving family and a true support system my whole life, I really wanted our wedding to reflect those close bonds. To achieve this, our wedding was officiated by my father’s best friend since childhood. It was a very special moment for me and Matthew, but also for my whole family.
What was the most memorable part of the day?
Even though Matthew and I did a first look and had already seen each other before the ceremony, I think the most memorable part for both of us was finally coming together on that rooftop. All of the stress of planning, the anxiety of anticipation, the nerves…it all melted away when we finally saw each other on that rooftop.
Tell us how you met.
How we met is a bit of a funny story. We both attended the George Washington University and both lived in an area called “Townhouse Row,” which was a row of townhouses that housed members of the Greek life system. The summer before my senior year, I was interning at a magazine and working a part time job at a restaurant at night, which left the mid-afternoon as my only real time in our room. I shared my room with a close friend, who was attending classes that summer and had a few friends in the fraternity whose townhouse was next to ours. One afternoon, I went to take a shower before my afternoon shift while my roommate was studying. I came out of the shower with a towel wrapped around my wet hair and wearing nothing but an oversized Tshirt to find a stranger sitting in my room. Alarmed, I squealed and asked who he was and what on earth he was doing there. Embarrassed, he explained that he had come over to hang out with my roommate, who had gone across the street to grab lunch. The stranger was Matt. We all had a big laugh and the rest was history!
Planner: Classic Events NYC // Photographer: Heather Waraksa of The Wedding Artists Co. // Florals: Designs by Ahn // Stationery: 1440 // Wedding Venue: Tribeca Rooftop // Rehearsal Dinner Venue: The NoMad Rooftop // Gown: Oscar de la Renta // Cake: Nine Cakes // Lighting: AV workshop // Video: NST // Rentals: Party Rental // Ceremony Musicians: Julliard // Band: Hank Lane // Beauty: Face Time Concierge