The past year has proven to be some of the most rewarding and tumultuous times of my life and career. My family and I suffered the devastating and unexpected loss of my father-in-law, Barny Lampp. He was a bright beam in my life and the loss of him is felt greatly. While processing this grief, we’ve also moved three times in three months. But then to have the joy of breaking personal wedding records (hello Martha Stewart), I say all this to help explain why it has been so long since my last blog post and the decision to bring a Creative Director to the team to help assist in articulating my thoughts and feelings about every wedding that has taken place.
Candice and Tyson picked one of the most fun, yet busiest times to get married in New Orleans. That’s right, Mardi Gras. New Orleans begins to celebrate Fat Tuesday weeks before the big day with parades and parties happening every weekend, all weekend. While it does provide one of the best backdrops for your wedding, it could also possibly come with its own set of potential issues. I knew from the beginning that every situation needed to have a plan A and B (and possibly C).
The ceremony took place at the historical St Peter Claver on a mid February day. The time before the ceremony means checking in on every vendor to make sure they are on schedule and meeting the couple’s expectations. Also, seeing where I can lend a hand or make any last minute changes that need to be made.
One thing I find that is essential prior to ceremony is to check in on the bride and groom. It is very special to have the opportunity to witness some of the closest people in one’s life surround them with love and support on this life changing day. When I peeked in on Candice, everyone was very relaxed and laughing. Her gown hung in the window to be photographed and I watched the flower girls giggle to themselves and stare in awe while they whispered, “I want my wedding dress to look like that.”
I was then honored to experience one of the loveliest sights; Candice’s bridesmaids prayed over her with joined hands while Candice held her mother Linda’s hand and Linda held Candice’s step mother Karen's hand. To see the joining of all the friends and families to support the couple on their special day will always make my heart swell.
The couple chose to see each other for the first time at the ceremony. The choice of first look versus no first look depends entirely on the couple, but Tyson wanted to see Candice on the aisle and was overcome with tears the moment the door opened.
During the ceremony I was informed that a parade for Mardi Gras had unexpectedly closed down Carondelet Street, one of the busiest streets in the Central Business District. Time for Plan B. Kinfolk Brass Band led a private Second Line inside the Federal Ballroom for the couple and wedding party and then marched them inside the reception. While a Second Line’s fun is to be out in the streets of New Orleans where people can join in and dance with you, it is just as great of an experience to make it more personal for your wedding party. It will also save the bottom of your dress from getting ridiculously dirty.
Candice wanted to see the reception décor immediately and with Tyson by her side (sweetly carrying her train) they took in all of their details together.
The Federal Ballroom provides the perfect ambiance for a glamorous wedding with the gorgeous chandeliers, high ceilings, traditional columns, and stuffing view of the city. All of the details screamed Candice and Tyson, from the decorated tables of candles and strung pearls to the black fondant cake with delicate white flowers.
The wedding party was best dressed of the night; the men in dapper suits and sporting their on site hand rolled cigars and the bridesmaids in their beautiful glitter dresses all unique to the individual. But, it was Candice that stole the show with her two dress and three shoe changes. Candice glowed as she talked to her friends and family and danced with Tyson. Her father kept looking at her in awe and reminding her how beautiful she is.
The couple kept their reception busy with dancing, toasts, cake cutting, and the traditional ‘Jumping the Broom’ to celebrate becoming Husband and Wife. After the reception, the couple and their wedding party continued to dance the night away in Downtown New Orleans where the party never ends.
Venue: Federal Ballroom
Photographer: Southern Amore
Floral: Fat Cat Flowers
Hair: Hair by Ramone
Makeup: Faces of Virtue
Cigar Roller: The Cigar Factory
Cake: Bittersweet Confections
Handkerchiefs: Exquisite Events Invitations
Dress: Maggie Sottero Designs
Brass Band: Kinfolk Brass Band
Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Transportation: Big Easy Limos
Hotel: Renaissance Pere Marquette