Lauren Hector and Justin Simon (keeping my maiden name)


12 May 2018


We both knew we always wanted to get married outside, so weather and location were KEY. We also loved the idea of getting married at a vineyard because wE both love wine! With me being from Los Angeles and Justin being from New York and us both living in Brooklyn, we would always spend roughly 2 weeks at my house in LA over the Christmas holidays. We don’t make it to LA too often, so it’s a good time for us to catch up with family. One year we decided to go wine tasting in Malibu, and it was one of the best days we ever had. WE knew we should definitely do Malibu as our WEDDING destination. When it came to looking at venues, we only looked at 3. We just knew that Cielo Farms, a small vineyard tucked away in the Malibu hills, was perfect for us. The entire ceremony was outside including dinner. There was a rustic, Italian looking barn where the dance floor was held and the entire venue had scenic views of the Malibu hills and vineyards surrounding us. It was breathtakingly beautiful.


125. The perfect size!
 Wanderlust Creatives. Oddly enough, Justin and I had booked another photographer early on in our engagement. I think it was just the excitement factor and because the venue recommended her. She was definitely great, but the more I perused Instagram and gained inspiration from bridal blogs, I was definitely leaning more toward edgier photography rather than what you may typically see for wedding photography. The original photographer was so understanding and gave us our non-refundable deposit back! I immediately found Wanderlust and was obsessed with the drama in their photos and edgy style. I like to be a little different in how I approach things, so I loved that our wedding photos would feel very unique compared to anyone else. They were the perfect match for us! They captured every moment so beautifully from our day and really captured mine and Justin’s personalities throughout every photo.


 I chose the Manhattan gown by Bo and Luca! I knew I wanted long sleeveS, as it would best fit my silhouette. I only went to two bridal salons and maybe tried on 9 dresses IN total, and immediately knew it was THE dress. The dress has hand beaded / sewn detail all over with a sheer high neck in the front and an open back. It’s long sleeve with a slim line on the bottom half, so it didn’t feel too “poufy”.  To me it was the perfect mix of understated sexy. In fact, a lot of people asked me if it was vintage, which I thought was so cool because I think it means the dress is truly timeless. If I have a daughter one day, I’d love to keep it around as an option for her to wear. That would be so epic!


We chose a Fame and Partners long, flowy, long-sleeved wrap dress in a dusty rose colour. The wrap style allowed for a little peek of the leg, which was perfect understated sexy. We had a lot of different heights and body types and not to mention coloUr palettes between hair and skin tone, and this dress literally accommodated everyone beautifully. My hope was that they truly felt they could wear the dress again one day!
Justin and I had been dating for about 4 years when he proposed. We had been living together for 2-3 years at that point and pretty much felt like we were married in all sense of the word. We had talked about getting married, and I knew we would one day, but I certainly wasn’t expecting the proposal when he did it! My mom had come to NY from Los Angeles numerous times and had in those times met Justin’s parents. Somehow in 4 years of dating, my dad and stepmom had never met his parents! We figured it was good to schedule a time for them to come out and for everyone to meet! We had a great dinner on Friday night, and AT no time did I think a proposal would be coming. Especially if my mom wasn’t there! The next morning we were planning to meet for brunch, and Justin was taking forever to get ready. Little did I know he was planning and scheming behind my back. While I sat on the couch waiting (slightly annoyed) AS we were late for brunch, he was making sure my entire family (mom, sister, cousins, dad, stepmom), his family and some of our closest friends were waiting on the roof for us. Finally before we left for brunch, he asked if I would take our dog for a quick walk before we left. I huffed and said fine (I had been waiting 20 min after all!). I walked to our key rack where we hang our dog leash and low and behold THERE was a ring on one of the key rack hooks. My initial reaction was “are you serious!?”. It felt almost UNreal! I still didn’t know about everyone on the roof, so Justin suggested we go up to the roof where we have beautiful views of the NY skyline to take a photo and send to our families before we head to brunch. Then…BAM. I got hit with another surprise of everyone on the roof!! We drank champagne and all went to a brunch Justin had planned. After brunch, we went to a bar he rented out where even more of our friends were waiting. It was one of the most epic days, to say the least. Plus he is a great planner!!!


If I had to give a theme to our wedding day, I would say “simple, eclectic elegance”. If that’s a thing? I truly didn’t have a “theme” in mind, but pieces came together to make a really epic overall vision. We knew first and foremost the venue was so beautiful that we wanted it to speak for itself. I still wanted to do epic florals but in understated and muted colours. I was very much inspired by all things Pampas grass, but it wasn’t in season for our wedding! My biggest thing was having a really cool and unique arch. For me, I felt like it frames the wedding and a lot of photos would be taken underneath IT. Our florist built the most amazing arch for us and it was better than I ever could HAVE imagined!


Justin 100% designed my ring on his own with my friend Amanda Thomas who owns Luv AJ and Après Jewelry. It’s rose gold with a white rose cut diamond and two white baguettes on the side. Again, a lot of people asked if it was vintage! I love how I didn’t have to give any input and he just knew me so well. I get so many compliments on it daily. For our bands, we went with another friend of ours, Ali Nelson, who owns Everett NYC. I didn’t want anything to overshadow my engagement ring, so my band is a mix of different coloured small pink sapphires that perfectly sit along the edge of my diamond. The mix together is so beautiful! Because we were on this rose gold train, I thought it would be cool if Justin got a rose gold band as well! He chose a brushed rose gold which I absolutely love because our rings are in sync! Plus his ring feels very different than the usual yellow gold or silver rings most guys wear.
Because we got married in a vineyard and love wine, each of our guests received a GIFT WRAPPED bottle of wine when they checked into their hotel!


The initial inspiration was pampas grass and from there really just wanted muted tones. I didn’t want much to take away from the beautiful dresses and scenery!


We actually decided to forego a cake and did fun dessert bites SO that everyone cOULD try one of each! WEDDING SONGS //
Our first dance was to Averett Brothers “No Hard Feelings”. They are one of our favoUrite artists and the lyrics to the song are absolutely beautiful. I cry almost every time I listen to it! For dance floor music, we decided with our DJ on a mix of oldies and recent pop hits, so everyone could enjoy! During cocktail hour, we had a live 3 piece folk band play music. That way we had a mix of live music and A DJ.


We did a buffet style to keep it a little more casual. We are big foodies, so the caterer was almost the first choice for Justin before the venue! We had fish, chicken, salads, veggies and a mushroom ravioli that people talked to us about for weeks after, it was so good! Wine and drinks were served via waitstaff, but the buffet allowed for everyone to get seconds if they wanted and to take a little of everything! We haven’t been to a wedding where they’ve done that before, so I like that we did something a little different.


We still haven’t done our honeymoon yet, but have just booked to go over the Christmas holiday! We will be starting in Barcelona then going to San Sebastian. From there WE plan to hit up a few places in southern France like Bordeaux and Provence and then we will end in Paris for NYE and fly home. We can’t wait!
Justin and I rented a vintage 1964 light blue Ford Thunderbird to arrive to our wedding venue in. It was great for pictures and our wedding video! The car was seriously so cool. However, it was pretty low to the ground and as we were being filmed to get into the car and drive to our venue for the day, Justin rippED his pants….right along the crotch! We all just paused and didn’t know what to do. My bridesmaid’s mom was able to sew them up, but she told him “no sudden movements”. It was so funny watching him get into the car the second time….he barely moved his body! And funnily enough, the pants stayed TOGETHER all night! We brought a backup pair and sneakers just in case. I told everyone if he were to change, it would be one of the few weddings in history where the groom does an outfit change and the bride doesn’t.


Make sure your fiancé helps in the planning process! Justin was so involved and it was so amazing to have his help and not feel like everything was on my shoulders.


We did have a registry! All our gifts were absolutely so wonderful. One that stands out is from Justin’s grandma who he hasn’t seen much in his life and couldn’t make it to our wedding. He doesn’t have a particularly close relationship and she sent us a very generous check to which we both cried. He gave her a call to thank her and she was so happy to help us start ouR new life. Just goes to show that time and distance don’t necessarily negate how close family is!

Photography: Wanderlust Creatives
Video: Klassey Productions
Florist: Best Day Ever Floral Design
Dress: LOHO Bride (Bo and Luca stockist)
Venue: Cielo Farms
Bridesmaid Dresses: Fame and Partners
Hair and Makeup: Absolutely Beautiful
Hotel (Where wedding party stayed and 1st look): Native Hotel
Vintage Car: Drive Vinty
DJ: David Newton
Cocktail hour band: PROFESSIONAL Folk
Day of coordinator: Dianne Valladares