I remember meeting Lauren at one of her fittings before her wedding and just loving her sweet smile and excitement. She had a unique situation that was something to celebrate but could be cause for some nervousness right before her wedding: She had lost 80 pounds since purchasing her wedding dress! In the end, her gown looked perfect and fit beautifully for her Mount Vernon wedding, as you can see in her gorgeous photos!
Lauren and Morgin met on OkCupid in the summer of 2014. She was heading to Iowa State in just a few months, but they hit it off right away, and Morgin made the two hour drive to visit her at school almost every weekend once she moved. After two years at Iowa State, Lauren decided to transfer to Cornell College in Mount Vernon. The couple got their first apartment together and just a few months later were engaged.
“We had kept a scrapbook during the first two years of our relationship, so Morgin had secretly added a new page to the book with the date, November 5, 2016, that said: The day we got engaged? Morgin had me grab our scrapbook and took me out to Palisades Kepler State Park, which is where we had one of our first dates and continued to return to during our relationship. We walked to the bench we had got to on our first date, where we had carved our initials into, and Morgin asked me to flip through the book until I got to the page, where he pulled out the ring and popped the question.”
The wedding planning began, and they set a date for June 16, 2018, when Lauren would be finished with school. Lauren describes their approach to the wedding as DIY. She enlisted the help of her mom, aunt, sister (maid of honor) and cousin (bridesmaid). Together, they planned, shopped, and put together decorations. The whole family helped decorate the country club the night before the wedding!
Lauren shopped at Hope’s for her Kitty Chen wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses about a year before the big day. She says, “I am so thankful for choosing Hope’s, as the staff was always super friendly and helpful and more than met my needs.” Lauren was very anxious about going back to try on her dress after losing over 80 pounds. And in fact, when she put it on, it wouldn’t even stay up!
“I had given Hope’s Bridal a huge job. They ended up taking in roughly 3 inches on each side of my dress, and they did it flawlessly! When I went back to try the dress on again for my second fitting, after they had taken in the sides of the dress, it not only fit perfectly but it looked like I had bought it that way; you could not tell they had taken the dress in at all and I was beyond happy that they were able to make things work for me.”
Lauren advises other brides in the midst of wedding planning to not stress. She remembers starting to feel extremely overwhelmed with all they needed to do the last month before her wedding. She says they did so much last-minute, they were even printing and putting together their wedding programs the morning of the wedding!
“However, despite feeling like there were a million and one things left to do the last week before my wedding, everything worked out perfectly. In fact, it was better than I could have ever imagined. And, looking back on the day, I do remember the little details, but they are not the things that I think about when I look back. What I do remember, is having the time of my life and marrying my best friend. The feelings you create are what you will cherish the most, or at least they are what I am cherishing.”
Lauren will never forget the moment during their ceremony when Morgin had to ask which finger to put her ring on. Her favorite memories are getting to spend time with the people they love most and marrying her best friend. It was also very special to her that they held their ceremony in the same location as her parents did 26 years ago!
After the wedding, the newlyweds took a few days off work to stay home. They opened gifts, went to purchase things off their wedding registry, and just enjoyed some time together. Lauren says life since the wedding has been great!
Their wedding officiant provided some advice during their ceremony that Lauren and Morgin try to remember every day: “He told us we weren’t getting married today, but today we were vowing to marry each other every day for the rest of our lives. He explained that when we vow to marry each other every day, we are promising to wake up each day and work at our marriage and relationship. I think this is important advice for all newlyweds.”
Lauren and Morgin, thank you for sharing your special day with us! It was such an honor to help you during this special time, Lauren, and you looked absolutely beautiful! Wishing you all the best in your life together!
Mount Vernon Wedding Vendors:
Ceremony Venue: Outside Allee Chapel on the campus of Cornell College
Reception Venue: Kernoustie Country Club, Mount Vernon
Photographer: Emily Pedersen, At The Pedersen Place
Wedding Cake & Cupcakes: Mount Vernon Road HyVee Bakery “Our wedding cake was a pink champagne cake with buttercream frosting. For guests, we did vanilla, chocolate, pink champagne, and lemon cupcakes with both buttercream and whipped frosting.”
Flowers: Mount Vernon Road HyVee Floral Department
Wedding Officiant: Rich Kirschling