Lauren + AJ
How did you meet?
AJ and I have known each other since we were kids growing up in Toronto, Canada but we hadn’t seen each other in many years. I had been living abroad for a long time and made a trip back to Toronto when my nephew was born. During that visit my friend asked me to go to a concert with her. Little did I know that her husband would bring his best friend AJ to join us. The rest was history.
When did you know they were the one?
I don’t know that there was any one moment where I knew that AJ was the one. I think it was the combination of many moments. How kind he was to my grandmother. How he became so close with my sisters. How my friends said they loved him before I knew that I was in love with him. AJ is the very best person, it was a no-brainer.
What are your three favourite attributes of your partner?
AJ is the most hilarious, kind, and headstrong man I’ve ever met. He keeps me on my toes and challenges me to be my best self.
Who proposed and how?
AJ proposed to me. I had moved in a month prior and right before the move AJ broke his ankle. On the night of the proposal I came home from work and AJ called me over to help him with something. As I walked over he tried to get up onto his crutches and somehow missed and fell right into my arms. I was so worried that he had hurt himself, not realizing that the fall wasn’t real. The next thing I knew, he was on one knee. It was private, intimate, and hilarious. The perfect proposal for us.
Where did you fall in love with your dress and why?
I guess you can call me “that girl” but about a year into dating AJ I started casually browsing wedding dresses on social media. I came across a Made With Love post and I immediately knew that this designer was my vibe. When I went to try on dresses years later it was clear the moment I put Archie on that she was the dress for me. I’ll never forget when my father looked at me and said, “it is too often that the dress wears the bride rather than the bride wearing the dress. Lauren, you’re wearing this dress, I can see you.”
What was the best moment for you at your wedding?
For months prior to our wedding AJ had been asking me to sing at our wedding. I used to sing but hadn’t performed in a long time so I kept telling AJ no. About a week before the wedding I reached out to the band leader and told him that I wanted to surprise AJ with a song. Only the band and the wedding planners knew. In the middle of dancing during the wedding I snuck up on stage and sang I love Rock ‘n’ Roll by Joan Jett & the Blackhearts. The look of surprise on AJ’s face was incredible.
What were your favourite details?
My sister designed the dance floor, menus and place cards – she hand drew calla lilies on them to match my bouquet.
My mother is a baker and made an amazing “floating” four tier cake that was a showstopper.
AJ surprised everyone late night on the dance floor with my favorite pizza in custom made boxes with our dog drawn on them.
The chuppah of my dreams, a dazzling orchid covered masterpiece, was such a vision during the ceremony and reception. Truly breathtaking.
What advice would you tell other brides?
At the very beginning of wedding planning have a discussion with your partner about what you’re wanting for your wedding. Decide what’s important to you and stick with that. There’s a lot of noise, a lot of choices, and a lot opinions floating around in the wedding planning world. It can be overwhelming. Having that initial discussion of what you’re looking for helps you stay grounded.
When it comes to dresses, stay true to who you are but don’t be scared to try on things that you wouldn’t normally try on. There are so many beautiful dresses out there but you’ll know when a dress feels right on your body. Look in the mirror, really look, and picture yourself walking down the aisle. If you can’t picture it in that dress, move on to the next. Oh and get a really good alterations specialist.
Any standout vendors?
Aja and Alexa with Duet Events were our wedding planners. They were amazing during the planning process and were my life savers on the day of the wedding. They made sure everything was perfect. I didn’t have to worry about a thing.
Lori Waltenbury was our amazing photographer. She made us feel comfortable and took the most epic, timeless, and creative photos that are beyond beautiful.
Jason Applebaum (DJ Applescratch) and The Yorkville Essentials were our DJ and band. They were epically amazing and kept everyone dancing until 2am.
Frank Rea Event Designs did our florals and event design. I have known Frank since I was 12 years old. He went above and beyond for my wedding.
Olena my MUA and Bruna Mata my hairstylist were the very best glam squad.