Lauren + Gene

Modern and minimal

Modern and minimal event with all of the comforts of the South

With a desire to have a small wedding that felt comfortable to the couple and their guests Lauren and Gene searched for over 2 years to find the right venue. We were ecstatic to welcome an old friend back to the property. As a longtime friend of the owners, Lauren saw the Decklan House before its transformation. “We had been looking at venues for almost two years scouting everything from the statue of liberty and central park to Italy and Hawaii before we finally decided on Up the Creek. My husband is from Texas and we thought the venue perfectly encompassed both of our hometowns in a way that felt like us.”

Tell us about the details.

We had some idea of the colors and flowers we wanted but gave the Up The Creek team freedom to creatively spread their wings. It made it a much easier and fun process. I work in the fashion industry, giving me access to any and all of the best bridal designers. But in reality, I wanted to be myself and I wanted to be comfortable. I took a very simple plain high neck dress from one of Amsale’s Spring ’19 runways and had them make it for me ahead of the season. It wasn’t the most traditional dress but it was classic enough for me to not regret wearing it in 20 years. Gene, of course, wore black cowboy boots with his suit, a staple for any Texan. I borrowed a simple gold bracelet from my mother and wore plain sapphire stud earrings. My engagement ring band was custom made using melted down gold from my grandmother, my mother, Gene’s mother and his stepmother. All the most important women in our lives.

Was there any significant moments during the ceremony you can share with us?

We didn’t have bridesmaids or groomsmen so we wanted to incorporate both our friends and families as much as possible. My aunt did a reading from the bible and Gene’s cousin did a reading from Les Miserables. My 1-year-old nephew Landon (code name Meatball) was our ring bearer and our good friend Carl was our flower girl. While most flower girls aren’t 35 years old, we decided to toss out a lot of the traditional aspects of wedding protocol to make it feel more like us. 

The hours before the ceremony were some of the calmest I experienced throughout the entire wedding process. Getting ready in the Decklan house and relaxing there all day in a robe felt like being at a private spa, with just my sister in law, my mother in law, my mom and myself. We ate Chik-fila, listened to music and it made the ceremony all the more enjoyable for me as a nervous, anxiously shy bride. 

Modern and minimal

At cocktail hour did you have any unique experiences for your guests?

Classern quartet did an amazing job serenading our guests during the ceremony. They continued playing cover songs and hits we knew our guests would have fun recognizing. My sister-in-law’s brother, Matt, makes amazing beer as a hobby and provided his homemade beer for guests. We also had a cigar and bourbon bar outside following the cocktail hour which turned out to be one of the biggest hits of the night. We wanted to make it feel special for the non-dancers, the shy guys and the people who just wanted to come out for fresh air, a glass of scotch or have a light. Turned out a LOT of people like cigars!

Tell us about the special moments from the reception.

My father and I chose Radiohead for our dance. It had a hilarious mix of reactions from the crowd but was extremely meaningful to us (although not traditional). My aunt did a wonderful blessing before dinner, a tradition in my Italian family. We decided to do family style sides so that people could eat as much or as little as they wanted aside from their entree’s. Dinner even ended with an ice cream bar!

We commissioned Up The Creek to help us make a custom neon sign, which is now hanging in our house. It said “It’s Now or Never” which was the Elvis song we danced to and also a clear indication of how long it took us to get married. We wanted it to be the one wacky focal point of the reception, the one off-beat surprise that made it feel like us.

What advice would you give to future Up the Creek Couples?

1. No matter how much you obsessively plan every detail of your day, just know that SHIT WILL HAPPEN the week of your wedding.

2. Make sure the comfort and happiness of your guests doesn’t fall by the wayside.

3. Relax, because the people in charge of throwing your wedding know what they’re doing.

4. Have fun and remember it’s your day but only one day in a long string of days you’ll now be spending together forever.

Thank you to all of the vendors who made this day possible:

Photography by Chandler + Olivia || Florals and Design by Up the Creek Farms||Entertainment – Classern Quartet – DJ Blast Company || Catering by Arthur’s || Cake Krush || Wedding Planning by Up the Creek Farms || Wedding Dress – Amsale || Hair + Makeup by Mirth Salon ||