Our wedding happened just shy of 3 weeks ago and I am still on cloud nine. This is normal, right? It still feels like a dream and I’m going to wake up soon. But, the reality is, YES this really happened. Yes, 265 people traveled from all over the country to share our special day. In fact, dont laugh, but I counted the states of guest attendance and we had representation from 16 U.S. states. Not one single person that came actually lives in New Orleans. Everyone traveled for us and for that we are forever grateful. I would do anything to get to relive those few days just as it was, again and again. However, I will relive them by blogging about it, sharing pictures and I will cherish the memories made forever and forever! Many people have been asking about the details of the wedding and I would love to share all that I can, especially some tips for the bride-to-be’s out there!
As for the deets, Will and I married Saturday September 8th, 2018 in The French Quarter of New Orleans, LA. Will and I arrived in New Orleans on Wednesday to get settled in. I strongly suggest giving yourself a few days to get settled in. On Thursday night, Will and I enjoyed an early 6:00 private dinner with our parents at GW Fins. By Thursday night we had filled our hotel lobby bar with 60 guests for a special kick off toast. More guests arrived Friday. By Saturday night, it was a full house! Let’s start with details of the fabulous vendors.
Our ceremony and reception took place at the The Riverview Room on Decatur Street. Our ceremony took place on a beautiful outside rooftop terrace overlooking the city skyline.
Our reception took place inside at the same venue with a large room overlooking the Mississippi River. I loved putting a soft seating set up next to the moon window that faces the MS River!
P.S. All food and drinks/catering was done through the Riverview Room.
In between our ceremony and reception we took on a very fun New Orleans tradition. We did the second line parade! The second line parade at a wedding signifies the start of a new beginning of life for the bride and groom. So how exactly did this parade operate?
First, during the planning phase you have to get a permit from the city for a street route and police escorts to block the streets. As far as wedding day, you decide when you want it to take place. We chose to do this after the ceremony so after saying “I do” everyone exited the builiding and a Brass band lead the bridal party plus the wedding guests through 6 blocks of the French Quarter. The first line was our band plus Will and I with the help of my flower girl and junior bridesmaids so sweetly carrying my train that we could not seem to get bustled. The second line is everyone else attending the wedding. All wedding guests waived personalized “Will and Macie” handkerchiefs while Will and I danced around with “Mr. and Mrs.” umbrellas! If you are getting married in New Orleans I strongly suggest looking into this parade. The guests absolutely loved it and it is a very exhilarating feeling with thousands of people watching from the sidewalks. We definitely made it onto many random snapchats and Instagram stories. The cost to do the parade is roughly around $1,500.
Flowers, AKA, your pop of color was done by Beth’s Flowers in Metairie, LA. I chose blush pink, lavendar and white roses with a little greenery. They love what they do and work super hard! They also do wedding planning and I had them coordinate my rehearsal, make my programs, and be there the day of to make sure everything went smoothly. They catered to me as a bride like I was a real princess. They bustled my dress, fixed me drinks, helped me change shoes a million times (post coming soon to explain this shoe process 🙂 )and let me know each move of what needed to happen next. You name it, they did it.
Our band, wow. D-Play was a favorite at our wedding. Everyone has raved about them. And when they had tv’s with Mariah Carey music videos from the 90’s with our hashtag on the screen, I about fell out from excitement. If you don’t know , Mariah Carey 90’s hits is my JAM. I sing along to these hits in the car, the shower, you name it. I mentioned this to D-Play on my questionairre and they DELIVERED! I only mentioned loving her songs, the tv’s were all on them! They were very involved with the crowd. They have several band members and they also were our second line parade band.
I only came for the cake. Well, if you did, you picked a good one to come to. We picked La Louisiane Bakery for the wedding cake and The Sweet Life Bakery for our groom’s cake. Both of these vendors are out of New Orleans.
Tip: Do not get enough cake for every single person to have a piece. I had enough for every person and took home TONS! I have enough cake for a few months at the very least not counting the top tier Will and I will eat on our one year anniversary.
Our wedding cake had 5 tiers consisting of red velvet (2 tiers), white almond cake filled with white chocolate mousseline (2 tiers), and white almond cake filled with pecan praline mousseline (1 tier). The outside of the bottom tier was covered in gray marble fondant, and the other 4 tiers were covered with smooth white buttercream with silver and gold leaf accents.
It is very popular to have floral decor on your cake, however, I only wanted loose rose petals and bridesmaid bouquets in order to not take away from the leaf accents.
Our groom’s cake consisted of chocolate fudge peanut butter and represented Mississippi State. HAIL STATE!
Our decor, LUMINOUS EVENTS!! They did all of our chandeliers, crystal beading table top decor, our wedding arch with an attached chandelier, our bars, and CHAMPAGNE WALLS! I don’t have a picture of the champagne walls unfortunately, but I can tell you each wall held 48 glasses in place and the wall was white and gold.
Our photographer, I am not just saying this, I truly think is Nola’s BEST! Stacy Marks photography was a joy to work with for bridal portraits and wedding day. Stacy is super professional, easy to work with and knows how to blend in at the reception yet capturing the most magnificent photos! He had photos back to me in 2 in a half weeks for wedding pictures and just a matter of days for bridal portraits. Here are a few faves!
We had a live painter come capture our day in a super colorful, canvas painting that now hangs on our wall. Nicole Britt Art out of Petal, MS was super sweet and talented! Our wedding guests thought this was a unique and classy touch to a reception.
We used Heritage Film and Video out of Hattiesburg, MS for videography. We have not received our video just yet as this takes more time, but when I get it I will be sure to share with you guys!
Our ceremony music was played on a violin by Hannah Yim from Harlequin Chamber Music. She was so sweet in assisting me along the way on where to put certain songs and which would sound best.
How did I go about planning?
First things first, decide the city in which you want to get married in and create an acccount on theknot.com !
Set a budget. Trust me, this has to happen in the beginning before booking any vendors! Once a city and budget are set, start your research! Search vendors on theknot.com
And READ REVIEWS! Be mindful when you read reviews that some people will always have something to complain about BUT read several reviews of the vendor and you will be able to piece together a decision based on many opinions. Not only are reviews important but shop the pricing as well. Remember one thing… When the word “wedding” is attached to anything the price immediately goes up, however, some like to work this philosophy more than others. Yes, wedding anything is going to be expensive but be sure your getting a fair price based on competition! Compare those prices! Start inquiring to several vendors and pay attention to how well they communicate with you. Communication is huge throughout planning a wedding so make sure they are answering thoroughly, warmly and in a timely manner!
I do suggest hiring a wedding planner at some point, but not immediately. Do most of the brainstorming yourself and maybe even some booking yourself , then bring one in to take the stress off you those last few months!
If you have any questions email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.