Lauren & Patrick: Autumn Bliss at New York Botanical Garden
Lauren and Patrick met for their first date in October 2017. They met the classic way you meet anyone in NYC…on Bumble. “We were both nervous, so things got off to a rocky start,” Lauren says. “But after I mentioned that I grew up listening to Billy Joel – who Patrick also listened to with his best friends growing up in Cold Spring Harbor – we instantly clicked. The night continued with margaritas and many laughs, exchanging stories about growing up in New York, and a failed attempt to go to karaoke – it was Tuesday and they closed at 10 pm.” On their second date, Patrick told Lauren that he was likely moving to Malaysia in six months for work. “I initially shrugged it off. But that following week, Patrick got a call that he was to transfer in four weeks,” she says. After making the most of the time they had left together, the couple decided to commit to a long-distance relationship. “The next two years were filled with so much travel and adventure…so lots of time in an airport!” Lauren remembers.
On March 12, 2020, Lauren, who was still living in New York City, boarded a plane to visit Patrick, who was now in San Diego. Little did they know that the country would go under lockdown the next day because of a global pandemic. After three months, Lauren traveled back to New York to see her parents. Working from home with the COVID situation showing no signs of improving, she decided to head back to the West Coast and stay with Patrick. Their routine of reuniting with a hug and a kiss was going to be much different this time around. “When I landed, Patrick was holding a sign at baggage claim reading, ‘Will you marry me?’ He proposed at the San Diego International Airport – a place that was very special to us given all of our travels over the last three years,” Lauren says looking back.
The couple immediately started planning their wedding. Knowing that they wanted to get married in New York but were stuck in California due to COVID travel restrictions, Lauren’s parents helped scout out venues for them. “After seeing a few spaces, my parents visited the New York Botanical Garden. The gardens are a very beautiful and nostalgic place to us. My mom would take me to the Orchid Show growing up, and she used to go there to visit with family when she was a young girl. Being such a historical, quintessential New York City spot, it ticked off a lot of the boxes regarding what Patrick and I were looking for.”
Lauren’s process of deciding on what to wear began when her best friend from college, Maggie, texted her a photo with the message, “This is your wedding dress.” After a failed attempt to find something similar at a small boutique, she headed to a second appointment at Kleinfeld. “I was really just looking forward to having a fun experience with my mom and sister. But the staff at Kleinfeld exceeded my expectations and made the process so seamless. After showing them photos of the dress that Maggie sent me, they pulled out the Ren by Sareh Nouri. I tried the dress on and that was it,” Lauren says. Persian-American designer Sareh Nouri is known for her luxury bridal wear that blends fine fabrics and exquisite tailoring with feminine accents. Lauren’s dress was made of ivory Mikado silk with a slim flare silhouette and square neckline. Classic with a modern twist, it featured a low back that ended with a statement bow and elegant pleated detailing. When asked to describe her style, Lauren answers, “Living in Manhattan for so long, I gravitate towards looks that are simple, clean, yet timeless. I wanted to feel like myself on my wedding day… but more elevated for the occasion.”
Lauren accessorized with a gold bracelet (a birthday gift from Patrick), glistening floral chandelier earrings, and burgundy velvet shoes by Gianvito Rossi. “My shoes were a present to myself, and I am completely obsessed with them,” she exclaims. Lauren finished her big day look with a gardenesque bouquet of various types of roses, ranunculuses, and dahlias in shades of blush, pale peach, burgundy, ivory, and white complemented by dusty miller and silver dollar eucalyptus. Patrick looked sharp in a black tuxedo with a velvet paisley pattern jacket from Ascot Shop located in La Jolla, CA, and burgundy ranunculus boutonniere.
“Patrick and I decided to do our first look at my parent’s house before the ceremony,” Lauren says. Helping to calm any jitters they were feeling, Patrick recited a personalized set of vows that he had written the night before on his phone. “Patrick’s really creative and came up with his own rendition of ‘Uptown Girl’ by Billy Joel, changing the lyrics to ‘Upstate Girl.’ It’s a running joke between us that I live Upstate – though if you talk to anyone from Westchester County, we definitely are not from Upstate,” she says with a laugh.
Lauren and Patrick were married on October 8, 2021 in a traditional Catholic ceremony at St. Gregory’s Church in Harrison, New York. Clean, bright floral arrangements decorated the pews and alter, accentuating the church’s majestic interior. “We both come from huge, extended families. To see all our friends and family members together under one roof after nearly two years of separation was really special,” Lauren says.
Guests gathered on the church steps to congratulate the newlyweds as they made their way out. Then everyone headed to the reception at The Garden Terrace Room at New York Botanical Garden. “Because we were getting married in October, I knew I wanted light colors mixed with dark hues of red,” Lauren says about her décor. She continues, “My mom had a big part in choosing my flowers – she has such a creative eye for these things so I leaned on her a lot. Living on the West Coast, I couldn’t meet with Bride & Blossom to preview the florals before the wedding. So, she and her friend Margaret went to the studio to see and finalize the samples. I’m immensely grateful to them – everything turned out perfect.” Long tables were decorated with lush greenery garland embellished with roses, ranunculuses, and stock in white, burgundy, and light peach. Round tables were topped with low centerpieces featuring dahlias, mums, and a variety of roses in crimson, ivory, pale pink, peach, burgundy, and white. “We included a lot of candles to warm up the room and make it feel cozy,” Lauren adds.
When asked if she had any favorite moments from her wedding, Lauren looks back and says, “We incorporated elements and personal details that made the day feel true to us.” Instead of a guestbook, the couple had everyone fill out post cards from places around the world in homage to the international start of their long-distance relationship. “We loved that our guests could walk the gardens and enjoy the fall scenery before dinner, and then our band was incredible – everyone was on the dance floor!” She finishes, “Honestly, it felt like the best party that we could have ever thrown – an epic reunion with everyone we care about most.”
Couple’s Vendor List
Venue: New York Botanical Garden
Photographer: Theory Photographie
Bride’s Dress: Sareh Nouri
Bride’s Shoes: Gianvito Rossi
Groom’s Tux: Ascot Shop
Makeup: Beauty By Amy Elizabeth
Hair: Hair Hause
Lighting: C&C Special Events
Music: Dane Wright Band for Hank Lane Music
Favors: Boiano Bakery