Ugly Sweaters Led to Beautiful Nuptials for Lauren Reed and Trey McDonald

Lauren Reed and Trey McDonald met at an ugly Christmas sweater-themed charity event. “I noticed Lauren immediately,” Trey says. The couple happened to be wearing the same type of sweater, and he took this opportunity to approach her and sparked up a conversation. The couple ran into each other several times over the rest of the holiday season but didn’t hit it off until they both happened to be at the Alabama–Clemson championship watch party. Lauren approached Trey, and they chatted the night away. The rest was history.

For their one-year anniversary, the couple spent the evening at their favorite restaurant. As they walked through the garden, Lauren opened what she thought was an anniversary gift. It was a book of stories inspired by Hemingway’s short stories. The book included a story for each month that the couple had been together along with custom illustrations. When she got to the last page of the book, Trey got on one knee as she read the words “Lauren, will you marry me,” with a blank for her response to complete the six-word story.

The couple’s first stop was to the beauty aisle of CVS because while the ring was perfect, her nails were not. “I hope other women will listen to their friends when they urge them to come to the nail salon with them,” Lauren laughs. They spent the rest of the weekend with their friends and families coming together for the first time, making it the perfect ending to a fairy-tale weekend.

Lauren’s “Say Yes to the Dress” moment didn’t happen until she went dress shopping on her own. After being unimpressed with the first gown she chose with just a month left until the wedding, she ran around town looking for “the one.” Lauren fell in love with a flattering corset gown from Vivienne Atelier. After a review from her family “board of directors,” she knew the dress was perfect for the occasion.

The couple wed on March 30, 2018, at the Grand Ivory, a venue chosen for its French country accents and antique elements. The wedding decor was kept minimal with neutrals, as to not outshine the simple elegance that the couple hoped to show through the venue.

Their ceremony was most memorable as the couple took their time with their vows. Lauren was blown away by Trey’s ability to perfectly exclaim his love and loyalty to her. “He’s a lawyer by day and the most romantic poet by night,” Lauren says. Trey was inspired by classic presidential weddings, and their photographer Charla was able to capture the couple’s vision of a timeless, editorial-style look.


  • Ceremony/Reception Site

    The Grand Ivory

  • Photographer

    Charla Storey

  • Bridal Gown Designer/Retailer

    Vivienne Atelier

  • Hair & Makeup

    SASA Hair & Makeup

  • Groom’s Attire


  • Bridesmaids’ Dress Retailer

    Tulle & Chantilly

  • Bridesmaids’ Dress Retailer

    The Black Tux

  • Flowers

    Zephyr Floral

  • Stationery


  • Cake

    Sugar Bee Sweets

  • Catering

    Low Country Quisine

  • Music

    DJ Mr. Rogers

  • Lighting

    LeForce Entertainment

  • Videographer

    Company N Films

  • Transportation

    Blue Diamond Limousines of Texas

  • Wedding Rentals

    BBJ Linen; MirMir

  • Wedding Planner/Designer

    Anna Taylor, Taylor & Hov

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