Lauren Nicole Greenberg and Devin John Wakeman first dated while they were students at Isidore Newman School. But when she graduated in 1999 and he in 2000, they went their separate ways. She went to the University of Texas in Austin, and he attended the University of Richmond. Coincidently, the two independently decided to return home to New Orleans in the summer of 2005. Following Hurricane Katrina, they began dating again in November.
After being together for just over two years, Devin knew he wanted Lauren to be his wife. As she arrived home one day after work to meet Devin for dinner, she found on her front porch a large felt heart with the words “Some things are worth waiting for …,” laying on her welcome mat. The heart was a gift Lauren had made for Devin on their first Valentine’s Day together. Attached to the heart was a ribbon that led under the door, through her house. She immediately dropped everything she was carrying and opened the door. There, Devin had created a pathway with the ribbon and candles leading her to the back of the house (a shotgun) where he was waiting, down on one knee. Lauren says she was shaking so much, Devin had to help her open the ring box!
Following the proposal, Devin told Lauren to pack a bag and whisked her off to a room at the Ritz-Carlton. He also reserved a table at Antoine’s for dinner that night. On their way back, he insisted they stop and have a drink at The Lobby Bar upstairs at the Ritz-Carlton. When she walked in, she was greeted by their friends and family, including Lauren’s two brothers and their wives, who flew in from Austin.
Lauren and her mom then began planning the entire wedding. They both knew they wanted a formal, traditional white-tie affair with that special New Orleans flair. They began with classic engraved invitations done in calligraphy by hand, adorned with a large gold cipher using the G and W of the couple’s names. As their color scheme for every detail, they chose navy, gold and ivory.
When the wedding weekend arrived, a fun party at Mulate’s kicked off the celebrations, followed by an elegant rehearsal dinner at Antoine’s on the Friday before the wedding.
The ceremony took place on October 25, 2008 at Temple Sinai on St. Charles Avenue. The Jewish ceremony reflected what Lauren wanted: the traditional, timeless and classic feel of a New Orleans wedding. The pews were decorated with rings of flowers around gorgeous, tall traditional silver candelabras by Glenn Vesh of Perfect Presentations. For the chuppah, Lauren wanted to use flowers with an airy feel. “Glenn just did a gorgeous job,” the bride says. To continue with their traditions, the couple placed on a small table under the chuppah, the Bible and handkerchief Lauren’s mother and maternal grandmother carried, as well as the gold wedding bands of Lauren’s grandfathers and Devin’s maternal grandfather.
Lauren wore a classic, custom-made gown by Suzanne Perron. It was a strapless, double-faced silk satin and re-embroidered alençon lace gown. “I wanted to feel like a princess, and Suzanne Perron did it for me. She is amazing,” Lauren says. Her veil was cathedral length made of appliquéd lace with organza ribbon trim. Her bridesmaids wore long, strapless navy satin gowns from Town & Country and carried white bouquets with hints of pink. The bride carried a larger, all-white bouquet of orchids and roses, also designed by Vesh.
The reception was held in the Grand Ballroom of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel on Canal Street. Guests were greeted with waiters holding silver trays of New Orleans-inspired cocktails, personally selected by the couple, including not only champagne, but also Old Fashioneds, Milk Punches, Sazeracs and Bloody Marys.
Lauren and Devin entered the ballroom waving black and white umbrellas leading a second line of their parents and bridal party. A seated dinner followed with a menu created by Melange Executive Chef Matt Murphy, highlighted with a panko-crusted beef tenderloin sitting atop spinach fondue. The chiffon wedding cake, created by Ritz-Carlton Executive Pastry Chef Simone Fleming, was decorated with white roses and had a draped icing ribbon coming down the multiple tiers. The groom’s cake was a grand crawfish pot, complete with potatoes and corn on the cob sitting on newspaper, also created by Chef Fleming.
The guests danced into the morning to the sounds of the Tip Tops. As the evening concluded, the couple gave their departing guests one last taste of New Orleans: sticks of Roman Candy, adorned with navy silk ribbon holding a tag with a watercolor illustration of the Roman Candy cart, designed by Lauren’s artist sister-in-law, Diana Presley Greenberg.
The newlyweds honeymooned in Punta Mita, Mexico for a week. They currently reside Uptown where Lauren is the marketing manager at Riverwalk Marketplace and Devin is an investment counselor at Waters, Parkerson and Company, LLC.