Lauren and Jeph thought it would be appropriate to allude to Jeph’s profession – he’s a Greensboro firefighter – in the romantic wedding theme, which was “Fireproof.” Subtle references to the theme appeared throughout, including wedding-favor candles that incorporated a Nicholas Sparks quote, “The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.”
Bride’s father holding the bride’s niece, Annistyn Kate; Lauren and Jeph during their “blind first look,” exchanging gifts; florals by Brenda McLamb; wedding cake in ivory and gold by Easy Peasy
Maid of honor was Taylor Smith, Lauren’s sister; best man was groom’s twin, John Rogers
Bride’s David Tutera gown was purchased at Elegant Bridal in Burlington, NC; she also wore a bracelet that her sister had worn at her wedding several years ago.
WHAT MADE IT SO SPECIAL
Family is very important to Lauren and Jeph, and they wanted the wedding to be small and intimate. The couple described the simple, elegant wedding, with just 50 family and friend guests, as “perfect.” Lauren raved about the experience, saying, “… every aspect and detail was done perfectly, so it took all the stress off of me. Our guests complimented the hotel and staff for such an amazing evening in such a beautiful venue with amazing food … wish we could do it all over again!”
Gold chiavari chairs and gold and ivory table coverings were accented with ivory and peach florals; Quaintance-Weaver’s florist-in-residence created a special rustic wooden cross ornamented with peach and ivory garden roses, majolica spray roses, eucalyptus, and trailing greenery.
THE COLOR PALETTE: GOLD AND PEACH
Everything was golden on the wedding day in August – from the decor to the natural light – an especially auspicious beginning to Lauren and Jeph’s marriage. Shimmering gold hues provided visual warmth in the wedding reception decor in the O.Henry Hotel’s Pavilion: gold Chiavari chairs, gold and ivory tablecloths, and even a tailored gold-accented wedding cake created by Easy Peasy. Gold was prominent in the attire, too, as Lauren’s sister Taylor, the Maid of Honor (and Lauren’s only attendant), wore a sophisticated fitted gold-sequined gown with a dramatic draped back.
Florals of peach and ivory wrapped with gold lame ribbon added beautiful, natural accents to the surroundings. Bridal and Maid of Honor bouquets included peach Juliet garden roses, buttery white patience garden roses, white majolica spray roses, eucalyptus, and trailing greenery. The O.Henry Hotel’s Cloister Garden was adorned for the ceremony with a large, rustic wooden cross, draped with the same flowers. Centerpieces for the reception in the Pavilion were made of lush white hydrangeas, white majolica spray roses, eucalyptus, and garden roses, presented in matte gold vases.
Bride and groom sharing love and laughter during the wedding reception, held in O.Henry Hotel’s Pavilion.
Passed hors d’oeuvres included a Caprese Crostini of mozzarella, roasted tomato and pesto; Shrimp Cocktail Shooters with cocktail sauce; and Seasoned Chicken Skewers with a lemony chermoula sauce.
Guests then were treated to dinner by Green Valley Grill in the Pavilion, beginning with a salad of mixed baby field greens with an array of julienne garden vegetables, and continuing with entrees including:
- Parmesan-Crusted Chicken with herbed goat cheese, lemon garlic sauce and crispy capers over mashed potatoes and green beans.
- Wood-Fired Grilled Salmon with vintage sherry-honey glaze and thyme butter over roasted potatoes and green beans.
- Oak-Fired Angus Filet with black peppercorn sauce served medium with mashed potatoes and green beans
The bride and groom’s wedding cake was a three-layer vanilla-marble-strawberry confection by Easy Peasy.
HOW THEY MET
Friends introduced Lauren and Jeph to one another one night after a Wednesday night church service that they both attended.
On December 21 after church, Jeph, Lauren, and her family drove to Charlotte to see Christmas lights at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens. As the couple walked around enjoying the sights, Jeph surprised Lauren by proposing. Lauren says, “I had no clue that he was going to get down on one knee, but he did! It was pretty special that we got engaged in December because my parents also were engaged then.”