Though Lara has traveled around the world, the South will always be home. She wears many different (cowboy) hats in her current roles of Editor in Chief and Publisher of Southern Weddings, consultant to top wedding professionals through Lara Casey Reps and Making Brands Happen and she is the founder of the Making Things Happen movement. Lara just had her first baby, Grace Austin!
Hometown: I lived in DC till I was 10, but home to me is Gulf Breeze, Florida. My parents still live there. That will always be home.
Alma Matter: Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA.
Major: BFA in Music, Theatre and Dance. I still sing… in my car, in the shower and in church. I also trained at Yale in Graphic Design.
Birthday: December 27th.
How I got into weddings: Too long a story for this tiny space. Ask me over coffee sometime. How I started the magazine is a little easier to condense… I always wanted a place to showcase what fired me up. This all started when we launched the Southern Weddings daily blog in 2007. It was a place for me to share what I loved in weddings, what was inspiring me and to show Southern brides that there was more to telling their unique love story than tulle and stuffed chicken. The blog caught on like wildfire, and people got so excited about a modern look at weddings in the South. The print magazine was born out of the incredible feedback from the blog. I am so grateful for the work we do because our job is to tell these authentic love stories. I love my “work.” We’re not corporate or owned by some big publishing house. We do the layout, write the editorial, organize the advertising – and everything else – ourselves. We are self-published, which is a rarity nowadays. We’re really, really small. We never want to grow to the point where we can’t give personal attention to what matters most. We are really grateful for that.
The best decision I made when I first started: Never settling for something I’m not excited about. Our office rule is: If you’re not excited about it, no one will be. You have to love what you do and everything you put out to the world has to reflect the authentic you. If it doesn’t, just stop. Another best decision was hiring the lovely ladies I work with. Best business decision ever. They make me strive to be a better, happier, more whole person every day.
Favorite food: anything my mom cooks.
Favorite color: aqua blue. Or any blue in the ocean.
Favorite non-wedding blog or site: Cannelle et Vanille. Aran Goya is a brilliant food stylist and photographer.
Favorite part about working at SW: I could write a novel of favorites, but I always love laughing with the SW ladies, working with inspiring creative people and getting to look at great photography!
You would be surprised to know: I love long walks on the beach and quiet nights in front of a fireplace. No, really I do. My not-so-secret dream career is to be a pro-skier. At 31, I think I’m probably too old to start. But, who knows! Sylvia Weinstock started making cakes at age 50!
I am committed to: God, my family, the women I work with and you, dear readers. I wish I could have you all over for pecan pie and sweet tea.
I love: singing. Sunday mornings at church are my favorite.
I know: My Redeemer lives. That’s one of my favorite songs, too.
My motto: God is good. All the time. Also, our office motto is “If you’re not excited about it, no one will be.”
In a nutshell:
Big wedding or small wedding? Small
Band or DJ? Both.
Camping or glamping? Paws-Up. Glamping.
Cake or pie? Ice cream.
Breakfast or dinner? Dinner. Although, I am a breakfast lover, too. OK, I am not good at this whole “In a Nutshell” thing.
City or country? Country. I want to live on a farm.
Mountains or ocean? I love the ocean. It’s my heart. And I love skiing more than anything else. Both.
Seersucker or gingham? Seersucker!
Boots or sneakers? Sneakers. Asics.
Night owl or early bird? Early bird.
French fries or milkshake? Milk shake! Classic vanilla.
OK, Ari and I already renewed our vows once in Vegas. Just the two of us. It was perfect. We got married in Vegas over 5 years ago. Read the whole story here. I wouldn’t change a thing, but there are times I fantasize about doing it again.
_____ would shoot my wedding. I cannot answer this. My answer changes every day. It’s no secret I love photography. I’d want about 8 photographers there. Excessive? Yes. Awesome? Double yes.
Shaun White, The Flying Tomato, would be a VIP guest!
We would hold the ceremony on the beach at Watercolor and the reception at my favorite restaurant – Avalon in Vail. Yes, a large plane to transport guests would be required. This is my fantasy wedding, right?
I’d leave my bouquet up to my mom and Grandma Bunny. They could make it out of weeds and I’d love it. It would be fun to make it a surprise.
We would eat: it’s a toss-up between my mom’s authentic Mexican food, Thanksgiving dinner, and a formal seven course meal from Daniel Bouloud. We love great food.
My cake would be filled with Pinkberry, TCBY, Breyers vanilla, Tasti-d-Lite, Baskin Robin’s rainbow sherbet for my dad, pralines and crème for my mom and McDonald’s soft serve. Seven layers of ice cream heaven. Yes, please!
Our first dance song would be anything by Pearl Jam. Ari and I share a love for Eddie Vedder.
Guests would then enjoy a jazz band. And I’d sing to Ari and to my family. I’ve always wanted to do that. After, we’d have a killer DJ. I love great music and I love to dance my face off!
We would honeymoon with my family. Yes, you heard me. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with everyone I love. I don’t care where we go!
Where to find me every day…