Laura Campbell and Nathan Scott were just friends for years. The Brookline residents met while interviewing for medical school at Columbia University, bumping into each other again after being accepted at Harvard Medical School. As their Harvard education started in 2010, so, too, did their camaraderie. A few years in, a pal from out of town chastised Nathan for not asking out his beautiful friend. The concept took the two by surprise — they had even been experimenting with setting each other up with other people — but a seamless transition from friendship to romance unfurled.
“We had been together through so much,’’ explains Laura, who took her husband’s surname. “We had done our medicine rotation together, which is a really hard rotation during medical school, where you’re thrown into the war zone and dealing with actual life-or-death situations. It’s a lot of stress — and having him there constantly as a wealth of support and someone to talk to about the things we were struggling with and what we wanted out of our careers — through all that time he was becoming the perfect person for me. So when we finally got together, everything was already perfect.’’
Nathan proposed on New Year’s Eve 2012, and the couple welcomed their daughter, Olivia, in September 2013. With hospital rotations and a new baby added to their agendas, a do-it-yourself wedding may have seemed impossible, but after attending her sister’s quinceanera in her hometown of Springfield last April, Laura was confident the couple could pull it off.
The duo (he’s 29, she’s 26) originally planned for a farm wedding in Connecticut, but the mounting price tag began to include contractors, portapotties, homeowner’s insurance, and other unexpected expenses that cut into the advantages of going DIY. The couple decided to shift to the city, contacting one of their favorite restaurants, The Sinclair in Harvard Square, on a whim, just a month before their planned date of August 23, 2014.
The restaurant, which also puts on music performances, had never hosted a wedding but had plenty of experience with private functions. The ceremony would happen on the roof-deck patio. A family-style dinner would take place in the upstairs dining room, with dancing in the bar downstairs.
Laura traded her bohemian bridal gown, purchased to suit the original rustic theme, for a sleeker, city-chic option by Galina Signature for David’s Bridal. Her bridesmaids wore Versa gowns in gray. Pollen Floral Design founder Krissy Price of Roslindale added a touch of color and greenery to the party, creating bouquets and accents with cafe-au-lait dahlias, Keira, Juliet, and Darcey garden roses, silver-dollar eucalyptus, love-in-a-puff vine, and castor-bean foliage. Her lush touches served as a backdrop for the happy couple during the ceremony and lined the tables for dinner. “It’s already such a beautiful space,” says Laura, “but having lots of florals transformed the space from being Sinclair the restaurant to being a wedding at The Sinclair.”
The kitchen prepared three main courses: braised chicken thighs with apple and tomato, skirt steak with chimichurri and cauliflower mash, and arctic char with honey-sesame-kale salad. The cake came from Party Favors in Brookline and was paired with the Sinclair’s mini doughnuts, which Laura describes as “little bites of clouds.”
In lieu of hired entertainment, the couple created a Spotify playlist that was piped through the Sinclair’s sound system. The couple’s first dance was to John Legend’s “You & I (Nobody in the World).” The Temptations’ “My Girl” played while Laura danced with her dad. The bride says she was prepared to shed a tear but held it together while the men in her life “bawled their eyes out.”
Would she have done anything differently? “Had money not been a concern, I think having a wedding planner would have been nice, because so much goes into the event design and setting up,’’ says Laura, who, like her husband, is four months from graduating. “But it’s not something I regret, because at the end of the day, when you’re walking down the aisle, none of the planning portion matters.’’