Southern Weddings

Tag: Louisiana wedding

My favorite thing about Theresa and James’ wedding is that they look like they’re having so much FUN in every single picture! When I read their interview, it quickly became evident how these two were able to relax and enjoy their day so much–they prioritized the details that meant the most to them, and then left everything in the very capable hands of our Blue Ribbon Vendor, Sapphire Events, to pull it all off. I love Theresa’s advice for brides, because it certainly seems like they took it to heart themselves, and created so many special moments because of it: “Don’t immediately dismiss every seemingly silly/goofy/embarrassing idea you come up with. A lot of the time, the goofy idea that you propose as a joke is the one that best expresses you and your partner…a few silly details can become almost inside jokes between you and your significant other, remind you why this other weird person is your match, help you relax during a sometimes formal event, and become the things you will remember most years down the line.”

Many thanks to Marissa Lambert for sharing this fun day with us!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I had quite a few “old” items, including a sixpence in my shoe, passed down through the family, an “add-a-pearl” bracelet that my grandmother had amassed growing up, and my engagement ring, which had been passed down from my great-great-grandmother. My earrings were both old and borrowed–I borrowed my mother’s diamond stud earrings, one of which was made from the original diamond from her engagement ring. I also borrowed my veil from a friend. My dress and shoes were new, and my toenails were blue.

I never had the “feeling” or the “moment” when dress shopping–but I also didn’t really expect to. I found my dress in the third store on the first day I went looking. Both my mom and future mother-in-law had flown in to shop with me, and they both had “the moment” when I put the dress on. It took me a few more shops and a few more visits to finally commit, but–in the end–I felt beautiful on my wedding day, which is what matters.

Describe your wedding flowers. James and I wanted to focus on greenery and herbs as much as (or more than) flowers. We were hoping for a lush, natural feel, possibly incorporating the sense of smell with the herbs, and we tried to emphasize that to the florist more than getting into particulars about types of flowers and plants. All flowers are pretty, and I trusted her to use what was in season. The actual bouquets ended up being some of the most aromatic, enticing things I have ever smelled! As for colors, I asked for whites, creams, and hints of blush for the ceremony florals, to keep the palette crisp, and then for bright berry tones to be mixed in for the reception florals. The various tones of greens we used throughout acted as a neutral.

We did a first look, largely based on the recommendation of our amazing friend/wedding planner, and partly because we didn’t want to waste precious celebration time after the ceremony. Instead of the typical first look, where the bride sneaks up behind the groom and taps him on the shoulder, we made sure James and I first saw each other from a few yards apart. That way, we each got to take in the full picture and were able to savor the expressions and anticipation as I made the walk to meet him. I think it drove our photographer a little crazy, since she couldn’t capture both of us at once at the exact “reveal” moment, but this way, we were able to feel as though we were first seeing one another from either end of the aisle, while still getting all of the formal photos done before the ceremony.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We used traditional vows, but we were lucky enough to have had a mutual friend, who knew us both individually before, as well as after we became a couple, act as our officiant. He was able to work in lots of personal details that made the ceremony feel tailored to us a couple.

As a nod to our Midwestern, Great Plains roots, we requested that the musicians play “Hoedown” from “Rodeo” by Aaron Copeland (the “beef–it’s what’s for dinner” song) as we walked back up the aisle. I’m not sure how many people caught it, but it was a detail that made us smile. Our first dance was to “Wonderful Tonight” by Eric Clapton. James really pushed to pick something else, since “Wonderful Tonight” is such a popular choice, but he made the mistake of making it our song by singing it in my ear as we danced at the very first wedding I took him to.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We chose to do our first look and photos at the Latter Branch Library in New Orleans, which is was where we went on our first date. We did the ceremony and reception at a brand new venue in New Orleans, which came highly recommended by our planner. One of the things she knew we would love was that the venue has a library/lounge area. While we loved this detail in and of itself, we found out months later during one of the planning walk-throughs that all of the books used in the library had come from the Latter Branch Library!

James and I are not big cake people, so this was not a big focal point for us. We just wanted something that looked nice and tasted good for our guests. I had told him ahead of time that I was going to smash the cake in his face, but James didn’t believe me until it happened. We got into a full-out cake war–I’m pretty sure we have some photos with cake shoved up my nose! Laughing, goofing around, and going crazy with the cake is another of my favorite memories from the day.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. In true New Orleans fashion, James and I met a few times through mutual friends before finally being stuck together waiting out a hurricane. A group of us decided to get together to weather the storm (and to eat everything in our refrigerators!), and during those couple of days, we decided we kinda, sorta liked one another.
Tell us all about the proposal! James picked me up from work on a mundane Tuesday night and took me around town on a progressive date under the guise of scouting out potential party locations for my birthday at the end of the month. I suspected nothing, even when he mentioned that one of the restaurants would be a great rehearsal dinner venue! When we finally got home that night, our house was completely filled with flowers. He dropped to his knee in our living room, just the two of us, surrounded by blooms.
When did y’all get married? September 19, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? Around 175
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: James had organized a group of friends to compete in a charity barbecue competition called Hogs for the Cause. The year after we started dating and I joined the team, the team won the cocktail category of the competition with a drink called a Bourbon Missile Crisis. We decided to serve the Bourbon Missile Crisis to guests prior to our ceremony and during cocktail hour, and we set out the team’s trophy to hold paper straws. Because guests had drinks for the ceremony, our programs were printed on cocktail napkins. We also had personalized wayfarer sunglasses available to wear during the outdoor ceremony, and to take home as favors. For the reception, we had flower crown headbands for the guests. A group of close, generous, crafty friends all gathered at our house a month or so before the wedding to help me hand-make nearly 100 flower crowns. We saw a few of those flower crown favors resurface again for Mardi Gras!
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our wedding took place in New Orleans, Louisiana, where James and I met and are making our life together. We included a courtyard ceremony, a jazz band, and a brass band.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? Along the way, someone advised us to make a list of our most valued aspects of the wedding, and to prioritize only those items. Nobody is going to remember every tiny detail, so splurge on one or two important things, and then make it work with the less important items.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t immediately dismiss every seemingly silly/goofy/embarrassing idea you come up with. A lot of the time, the goofy idea that you propose as a joke is the one that best expresses you and your partner. While you don’t want the entire wedding to feel unorganized, a few silly details can become almost inside jokes between you and your significant other, remind you why this other weird person is your match, help you relax during a sometimes formal event, and become the things you will remember most years down the line.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We’re looking forward to our blowout 50th anniversary vow renewal–and everything before and after!

Photographer: Marissa Lambert Photography | Planner and Rentals: Sapphire Events | Venue and Rentals: Il Mercato | Florist: Meade Wenzel | Cake Baker: Haydel’s Bakery | Caterer: Joel’s Catering | Lighting: Southern Hospitality Event Rentals | Bands: Harry Hardin, Joe Simon’s Jazz, and Paulin Brothers | DJ: DJ Mike Swift | Paper Products: Presse Dufour | Bride’s Gown: “Style 5911” by Stella York | Hair and Makeup: Kiss and Makeup Beauty Services | Bride’s Shoes: Valentino | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Jenny Yoo, J. Crew, Donna Morgan, Amsale, and BHLDN | Groom’s Tuxedo: Luca Falcone | Busses: American Luxury | Save the Dates, Napkins, and Programs: Rudman’s

lisa Written with love by Lisa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Nicole reply

    Oooh I love how dreamy this is! And her dress is phenomenal!

  2. avatar Adrienna reply

    What a gorgeous wedding! Sapphire Events always put on such gorgeous affairs, with so much detail.

  3. avatar Meredith reply

    What a breathtaking day! Well captured, too!

  4. avatar Sarah Drake reply

    Is there any way for me to get in touch with this bride? I am IN LOVE with that light blue bridesmaid dress with the one shoulder flowers. I can’t find it in the links provided. Please help! :)

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When a wedding planner and a chef tie the knot, you might expect beautiful styling, gorgeous details, and delicious food. And in the case of Elyse and Jack, you’d be right! Their wedding day at Stella Plantation had all of those things and more. Mixing together sweet details from their love story (yummy mini pizzas) with romantic decor (tons of dreamy candles, plus 13 different crystal chandeliers!), they created a celebration that was just as lovely as it was meaningful. I also love the way they weaved Elyse’s signature “xoxo” throughout their day, and right on into their newlywed home!

P.S. If you’re thinking the only way these photos could be prettier is if they were printed on glossy paper and surrounded by other wedding goodness, you’re in luck! We’re so glad Greer Gattuso was on hand to capture this beautiful wedding, and we were proud to feature it in Southern Weddings V8. If you don’t have your copy yet, look for it on news stands across the Southeast, or order it before we sell out here!

Since I’ve signed all of my letters to Jack with “xoxo” for years, we fell in love with the idea of having “xoxo” accents throughout the design! As guests were first introduced to the wedding through the save the dates, they noticed my handwritten “xoxo” at the top. We then commissioned one of the best local calligraphers to design our “xoxo” logo, which we used as a dance floor vinyl, had laser cut for our wedding cake topper, gold foiled on our napkins, printed on our koozies, and more! We even used “elysexoxojack” as our wedding hashtag! The “xoxo” has since carried over into our home decor, which continues to make me smile and think of our wedding.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Having shopped through New Orleans with my clients, I knew I’d have to travel to find my dress, so my mother, bridesmaids, and aunts joined me in Houston for a long weekend. Ironically, the bridal attendant had to force me to try my dress on! After removing the one-shoulder strap and some floral appliqués, it was exactly what I had envisioned myself wearing.

As the guests arrived for our wedding ceremony, they were greeted by my six honorary bridesmaids at our confetti bar! They were instructed to make their own mix of navy and metallic confetti to toss at us as we walked back up the aisle as husband and wife. Our immediate family members were given wedding bells to ring after our kiss, and my sorority sisters were each handed a Killarney rose–my sorority’s signature flower.

Tell us a bit about the wedding ceremony. My dad walked me down a long, tree-lined aisle as a cello and violin played. Once the celebrant greeted the guests, my aunt delivered an original ode to love. This was followed by the reading of the poem “Love” by Roy Croft, a poem read during recruitment in Delta Zeta Sorority, by my maid of honor, and a contemporary version of Elvis’ “Can’t Help Falling in Love With You” sung by a dear friend. Thank goodness I had gifted Jack a “Mr.” hanky because I needed it a few times myself!
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We wrote an original set of vows for both of us to repeat during the ceremony. These vows were a little more traditional, but still so meaningful to us.

Did you have a cocktail hour? If so, what was it like? The cocktail party started outside of the tent at our champagne table, where we had rows of pre-poured champagne, each glass adorned with either a gold pom, a rock candy stick, or a rim of edible gold sugar. Our family and friends enjoyed cocktails around highboys with floral ties by the glow of our three 10-foot walls of candles.

New Orleans thrives on a buffet-style reception–they keep people moving, mingling, and dancing! Food was really important to Jack, as he’s a chef, but I am a picky eater, so we wanted to have food that could could represent us both. We offered elegant food like oysters bordelaise, turtle soup, red snapper filet with crawfish ravigot, cajun duck breast, and marsala mushroom-topped tenderloin to suit Jack’s sophisticated palate. Then, to represent my favorite foods, we served miniature Margherita pizzas and had a french fry and mac and cheese bar that guests could top with their favorite accoutrements!

Did you try anything new or nontraditional? Our guest book was a nod to the hopeless romantic in each of us! Like the Parisian love lock bridge, we asked guests to sign and add their well wishes for our relationship to a padlock, then lock in their love by attaching it to a trellis, which we continue to enjoy in the landscaping in our backyard!

What was your reception like? As cocktail hour came to an end, the drapes of the tent were pulled back to reveal the reception inside. A golden-draped tent with 13 different crystal chandeliers added the backdrop and lighting for our perfect night! Our tables were a mix of round and square tables, the chairs were a mix of gold chiavari, gold estate, and ghost chairs, and our three different specialty table linens added various navy textures to the room. The whole room twinkled!

Our cakes added some wow factor! The wedding cake was a four-tiered fondant cake accented with gold leafing and topped with our xoxo wooden cake topper! It sat on a gold bar cart–a gift from my aunts for my bridal shower–adorned with candles on the bottom shelf and on the floor around the base. The backdrop was a custom painted and gold-leafed wall that our florist created. After we cut our cake, we asked the ladies of the bridal party to join us for a cake pulls–a Southern tradition where each girl pulls a charm out of the cake that is said to predict their fate. The groom’s cake was four stacked king cakes, a New Orleans speciality, with a fleur de lis topper and purple, green, and gold Mardi Gras beads scattered on the table!

Don’t miss Elyse and Jack’s wedding film by our Blue Ribbon Vendor Bride Film below!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. In eighth grade, my parents moved to a new city right outside of New Orleans, where I made many new friends! One afternoon, I had joined my new girlfriends at the ballpark to watch their friends play baseball. After a foul ball was hit towards the stands, I scooped it up and chucked it back to the boys. Let’s just say that I didn’t throw like a girl! Impressed by my athleticism, Jack came to chat with me after the game. We spent many afternoons together at the ballpark after that, and the rest is history!
Tell us about a date you’ll always remember. For our one-year dating anniversary (keep in mind that we were 16 years old), Jack told me that he was going to cook pizza, my favorite meal, from scratch. He surprised me by writing “I <3 U” in pepperonis! He had already discovered his love for cooking (he's now a chef) and had gotten pretty good at it, so the fact that he simplified his dinner plans to cook this simple dish showed that he really understood and loved me. I’ve always told him just how special that meal made me feel! Describe the proposal: After the weather forced Jack to change his plans of proposing in the park in front of a photographer, the ring must have been burning a hole in his pocket. The very next day, he surprised me with another hand-tossed pizza, this one reading “Marry Me?” in pepperonis– a nod to our one-year anniversary date! Needless to say, we were too excited to eat the proposal pizza!
Three adjectives that describe the day are: Elegant, custom, lively
How many guests attended your wedding? 200
What did the groom and groomsmen wear? Jack had purchased a light navy suit months before the wedding, but three weeks before the big day, an editorial arrived in the mail with a velvet, navy tux blazer that he had to have! It arrived just in time! He also wore my late grandfather’s Rolex watch that my father asked him to wear. During my dad’s rehearsal dinner speech, he said, “Jack, I would like you to wear this watch this weekend so that Elyse’s grandfather can be a part of his granddaughter’s wedding. Keep it on your wrist so he can feel your pulse quicken as you watch Elyse walk up the aisle in her beautiful wedding dress.” It meant so much to me to have my Dide there in spirit! The groomsmen all wore matching black suits with navy skinny ties. We also gifted them polka dot socks for a fun touch.
Tell us about your wedding flowers. I really wanted my bouquet to have a hand-picked, natural feel, so we used lush blooms in whites, ivories, and blush mixed with loose, cascading foliage to give it lots of movement. We applied gold leafing to a few leaves for a gilded touch! We used Frou Frou Chic hand-dyed ribbon to tie it all together. As a finishing touch, I had “Mrs. Jennings” in my handwriting turned into a gold bracelet, which we wrapped around the stems. Just as the bridesmaids’ dresses were different, I wanted their bouquets to be different as well. Each had the same filler flowers and foliage, but a unique focal flower! I also made each of the ladies a handwritten gold bracelet with their names to wrap around their bouquets.
Tell us a bit about your first dance. We danced to “Amazed” by Lonestar, which has been “our song” since we first started dating in 2003–the year the song became most popular. We sang every word of the song to each other while we danced! So romantic and nostalgic!
Tell us about your grand exit. In true dramatic fashion, we ended our reception with fireworks over the Mississippi River to celebrate not only our love, but all of the love that surrounds us each and every day! It was a truly magical ending to the most incredible weekend of our lives, and the perfect start to our forever!

Planning and Design: Elyse Jennings Weddings | Venue: Stella Plantation | Photographer: Greer Gattuso Photography | Videographer: Bride Film | Candles and Lighting: Luminous Events | Florist: Bee’s Wedding and Event Designs | Rentals: Perrier Rentals | Vintage Rentals: Distressed Rentals | Hair Stylist: Ginger Dickey | Makeup Artist: Ashley Sievert | Band: Groovy 7 | Catering: New Orleans Catering | Ceremony Musicians: New Orleans Finest Musicians | Officiant: Rev. Johnny Adams | Transportation: Bonomolo and Hotard | Save the Dates and Invitations: Tupelo Honey | Invitation and Envelope Calligraphy and Signage: Ebb and Flow | Cake Baker: Royal Cakery | Champagne Flutes: Anthropologie | Bride’s Gown: Ines Di Santo | Bridal Salon: Ivory Bridal Atelier | Bride’s Veil: Wedding Belles | Bride’s Earrings: Kendra Scott | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bride’s Robe: Flora Nikrooz | Menswear: Express | Bridesmaid Dresses: Adrianna Papell and Badgley Mischka | Tinsel Stirrers: Em for Marvelous | XOXO Cake Topper: My Girl Josephine | Bouquet Ribbon: Frou Frou Chic | Name Bracelets: Yvonne Boutique | XOXO Floor Decal: Off the Wall Expression | Confetti: Inside My Nest | Frosted Go Cups and Napkins: For Your Party | Koozies: Discount Mugs

Greer Gattuso, Bride Film, and Stella Plantation are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
7 Comments
  1. avatar Brittany reply

    By far one of my favorite weddings. It is the perfect mix of elegant and fun. I might be using some of these ideas :-)

  2. avatar Champagne bar with tinsel stirrers – Em for Marvelous – reply

    […] of my very favorite weddings from the latest issue of Southern Weddings is on their blog today! Elyse and Jack, who began dating when they were 16, blew me away with all of the thoughtful and […]

  3. avatar Elyse reply

    Our wedding was the very best day of my life and it’s made me smile from ear to ear to relive it through the magazine and the blog! You ladies are just the sweetest! XOXO

  4. avatar Sybil reply

    Beautiful wedding! I love alll the detail and how special it seems for the couple.

  5. avatar Nicole reply

    Beautiful…so this is what a wedding looks like when a super talented wedding planner makes the dream of her wedding day come to life. Details, Details, Details, Love, Love, Love!!!

  6. avatar Brooke reply

    This was one of my favorite weddings from the new magazine! Seeing even more pictures on the blog is just so exciting! I absolutely love the confetti bar and the mini chicken and waffles!

  7. avatar 5 Southern Wedding Traditions Any Couple Can Incorporate reply

    […] See the full wedding here! […]

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It’s true, wedding planning can be stressful, y’all. But, that said, it can also be a time to really grow as a couple–you can learn what is deeply important to your future spouse, and how to compromise. For Lindsay and Josh, their wedding planning served as just that: a way for them to become better partners in life through becoming partners in creating a day that truly reflected their love story. Our Blue Ribbon Vendor Kim Starr Wise even helped them add personal details into their florals by including peaches and oranges, a nod to their home states of Georgia and Florida. Another sweet detail I love? The vintage lights that are now hanging in Lindsay and Josh’s dining room as a daily reminder of the day they became husband and wife!

Big hugs to Kaylynn Marie for sharing this beautiful day with us!

P.S. Extra congratulations to Lindsay and Josh! They’re expecting their first child in December!

Our florist was incredible and spent a ton of time learning about us. At our first meeting, she and Josh were talking about where we are from (Florida and Georgia), and the idea of including peaches and oranges into the wedding was born. Additional inspiration came from our bridesmaid dresses (dark blue) and our love of burlap and lace. I knew that I wanted each table to look different, and our florist took it from there. The chuppah that we were married under was also her creation, and we loved it!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Hands down, weather was our biggest challenge. When we picked our wedding weekend, we knew we were smack dab in the middle of hurricane season and the day after the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. We always had to be aware that canceling was a real possibility, and had to ask each and every vendor what their hurricane policy was. As it turned out, our venue had the best policy, and several of our other vendors changed their policies to match the venue’s, so we knew we would be okay in the event we had to cancel. Double planning for everything was a pain, but I’m so glad that we did. The morning of our wedding, it poured! It was so bad that the weather here was making news elsewhere. As soon as we boarded the bus to our backup portrait location, the rain slowed down and we ended up taking almost all of our pictures at a carousel inside City Park. Had it not rained, that part of the park would have been open to the public, but since the rain came, we had the carousel to ourselves and took SO many pictures there. Definitely a blessing in disguise!

Josh and I are super outdoors-y people, so we knew we wanted the venue to speak to that side of us. Finding a venue in New Orleans can be tricky because many, many venues are not big enough for a 200-person wedding, and that narrowed down our options quickly. Additionally, Josh had been to many NOLA weddings and wanted a venue he had never been to before to make our wedding special and different from all the others. We had heard that City Park had several great venues, and two specifically could accommodate our numbers. Both were pretty spectacular, but we ended up choosing Popp Fountain and the Arbor Room for the blank slates that they were. They were also right next to each other so our guests wouldn’t have to change locations after the ceremony–a rarity here. It all ended up being the perfect backdrop for our personalities.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows. We had a traditional Jewish ceremony and recited the traditional Jewish vows.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We chose “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri for me to walk down the aisle to because of our long history. We waited so long for one other, and we’d both wait 1,000 more years if we knew we’d still end up together.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: We put so much effort into the branding of the weekend. The person who designed our stationery also designed every other personalized detail that went along with it, from the cocktail napkins, to the program, to the cake topper, to the go-cups and second line hankies (both NOLA standards). We knew what details we were willing to spend extra money on (the J&L vintage lights, our ketubah, the personalized cornhole set), and what meant less to us. I love that the lights now hang in our dining room and are an awesome accent that people always comment on. Our ketubah (marriage license) that hangs in our bedroom is a paper-cut, one-of-a-kind piece that is both a nod to our love of the outdoors and our first meeting at a camp. The trees are even arched to mimic the oak trees that line many New Orleans streets.

Knowing we had to feed a lot of people, we ended up with a four-tiered almond cake with strawberry filling. Our cake topper came from a suggestion by the woman who designed our invitations. We were chatting one day about cake toppers and she said she had someone who could laser cut wood. It sounded awesome and we said yes. I love having that topper in our home, mixed with some dried flowers from our wedding day.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. The story of “us” begins in the summer of 2002 at summer camp. Josh was a CIT at his summertime home, Camp Coleman in North Georgia, where I had signed on to be a counselor. While neither of us remember actually meeting, I know for a fact that our paths first crossed during color-war when we were placed on the same team. From there, a pretty fabulous friendship was formed, and over the next year, Josh and I grew closer while catching up at youth group events in Atlanta. Our paths didn’t cross very often after that year, as Josh headed off to New Orleans to spend four years at Tulane “studying” and I began my career in youth engagement in Atlanta, then Boston. All the while, we remained in touch and often caught up on the phone during long road trips. In late spring of 2007, Josh decided it was time to visit me and anticipated a fun weekend that would allow us to catch up in person. My roommates quickly fell in love with Josh (they were the smart ones here), and were so excited that I had a friend who could easily be “the one.” I, however, had to make things difficult and decided that a friendship was all I had in mind. After an awkward weekend in New England, Josh headed back to New Orleans, confused and heartbroken. From there, our friendship took a backseat and we lost touch for several years. We reconnected again via Facebook in September 2012, just a few days after my birthday. We picked up right where we left off, and a few months later, we decided it was time to see each other again and put the past in the past. I headed to New Orleans for a long weekend and it was clear very quickly that love was in the air. After a weekend laughing, exploring the town, and meeting many of Josh’s friends, we were a couple. In April 2013, me and my dog, Riley, moved to New Orleans to begin a new chapter in a new city with an old friend.
Tell us all about the proposal! For his birthday dinner, Josh made a reservation for two at his favorite restaurant (also the place we had our first official date). He parked way too far from the restaurant, and after walking over six blocks blocks in heels, I was less than pleased. Dinner and drinks were quickly ordered and I snuck over to tell the host that it was Josh’s birthday. After dinner and a little surprise birthday cheesecake, the bill paid (thanks to Josh’s Aunt Laurie), and a very generous tip left, it was time to trek back to the car. Josh casually mentioned walking along the river, when I felt the need to ask “Why, so you can propose?” Josh recovered nicely, and off to the riverfront we went. Within moments, I noticed a creepy dude following us with a camera, but Josh played it off as a tourist. A random bench appeared with unlit candles around it (it was windy, so the candles didn’t stay lit), and I assumed it was set up for something else, until Josh steered me to the bench, sat me down, and got down on one knee. As a teary-eyed Josh tried to fumble through a pre-planned proposal, I sat there asking ridiculous questions (“Is this for real? Are you sure you know what you’re doing? Is this really happening?”). When the ring appeared from Josh’s sock (because he was afraid I would pat him down!), I knew it was the real deal. The question was asked and I said “Yes!” After a few congratulations from onlookers and a quick hello to the two guys photographing the whole thing, it was time to make calls to our parents before heading to Josh’s “birthday party.” Of course, this was no real birthday party, but a surprise engagement party!
When did y’all get married? August 30, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 180
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Becoming partners in wedding planning truly made us better partners in life. We learned when the other felt something was deeply important and non-negotiable. We learned how to compromise so we both felt connected to a decision. We learned how to navigate our family’s wishes and concerns and weave them into our plans. Ultimately, we learned that effective communication is the key to a solid beginning. We’ve had to rely on each other a lot in the last year and I truly feel that having planned our wedding together helped us take on many of the challenges we faced during our first year of marriage.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We’re pregnant! Josh and I are expecting our first child in early December and we cannot wait to be a family. In addition, we’re moving into our forever home in just a few weeks and look forward to settling down and making our family’s memories under one roof.

Photographer: Kaylynn Marie Photography / Planner: Lara Mintz / Venue and Caterer: Popp Fountain and Arbor Room at New Orleans City Park / Florist: Kim Starr Wise / Cake Baker: Swiss Confectionery / DJ and Lighting: LA Music Source / Special Details: Plum Street Snoballs / Paper Products: Lionheart Prints / Bride’s Gown: Modern Trousseau / Bridal Salon: Wedding Belles / Hair Accessory: “Kayla” by Courtney Lee Collection / Jewelry: Hiller Jewelry / Hair and Makeup: Blush and Bashful / / Bride’s Shoes: Abeline Boots / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Kylie” and “Nadia” in Dark Cove by J.Crew / Groom’s Attire: Macy’s

Kim Starr Wise is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Lauren Ashley reply

    Oh my!! Kaylynn, what a fun wedding!!! I am obsessed with the stationary and paper products!!

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