New Orleans Destination Wedding
I wish I could properly describe New Orleans for those of you that have never been but think of multiple cultures all coming together, jazz music playing on every street corner, drinks flowing, unmatched food, and people of all walks of life coming together for one thing and one thing only – celebration! Yep, I feel like that’s the best description I can give you to being Olivia & Mile’s destination New Orleans wedding day!
This city seems larger when you’re looking at just a map, or when you’re stuck driving around after a Saint’s game. I personally found it to be much smaller than I originally thought and loved it because so much was more easily accessible! Heck, New Orleans can oftentimes feel like three cities in one but once you’re walking around, this place has some of the most unique views that make any wedding day so much fun to photograph!
I began the day with Miles, walking in to find him telling me how ready he was to see Olivia. Those few short hours he had to wait were killing him with anticipation. Luckily, he made it through thanks to the help of his friends and family as they had a drink, helped him put on his finishing touches like those custom cufflinks, and cheered at The Saints game on the TV.
It was once I left Miles with my second shooter, Steve, who would take photos of Miles and his guys with one of the oldest running streetcars in the US thanks to connections that Events by Arionne had, that I enjoyed the short walk over to Olivia at Windsor Court Hotel. Walking in, this suite had so much natural light coming through as Olivia, who was glammed up by Faces of Virtue Beauty Studio, did a few last-minute things before getting dressed.
THIS moment was a big one. Olivia’s dress from Ashley & Alexandria’s Bridal Atelier fit her like a glove and her mother helped her get dressed with all of the accessories like a pearl necklace heirloom, a cathedral veil that made my jaw drop, and sparkly flats.
We were able to take just a moment for the ladies to soak it all up but everything hit the happy tears button once Olivia shared a First Look with her father, Randy. I’m not sure there was a dry eye in the room as they embraced in a hug and Olivia’s ‘happy tears’ handkerchief did exactly what it was intended for; hold those tears and not ruin any of her makeup!
It was then time to brave the traffic after a Saint’s game on a Sunday in New Orleans and I give major props to Randy because he drives like I do on a wedding day. Not crazy or anything but we do get to where we need to be as quickly as possible!
And with that little tidbit, I’m going to do what I did in my last wedding blog where I break things up because I wrote too much. Stay tuned for the next part of writing while I begin to share photos!!!!!
Then, it was the moment that Olivia and Miles (and myself) were most looking forward to, their First Look. We chose the Louisiana County Clerk steps right across the street from the iconic Brennan’s restaurant. While we didn’t stop in to see the show of a banana’s foster being made, most of the traffic stopped and watched this moment.
Miles cried, Olivia cried, I cried… let’s just say, my favorite part of any wedding day is watching two souls in love finally see one other on of the best days of their lives!!!
From there, it was all about being congratulated by everyone who passed because they had all stopped to watch the glorious occasion of Miles seeing Olivia for the first time. We also had to get portraits before heading to Riverview Room for family portraits!
We were able to get all family portraits done as guests began gathering in the small atrium area outside of the elevators and then the couple hid away while guests were greeted with a glass of champagne and the breathtaking views of downtown New Orleans on a perfectly sunny, warm day while florals from Kim Starr Wise Floral Designer gave an asymmetrical design to the very spot Olivia and Miles would say “I Do” in just a few moments!
Then, just as the sun began to set, it was everything everyone had been waiting for, Olivia was escorted down the aisle by her dad, and Miles could not contain his love. I am a sucker for this. This is why I love being a wedding photographer, THIS is what it’s all about!
Olivia’s mother, Carol, led the ceremony gracefully and in a way that really let Olivia and Miles shine as individuals and as a couple. They had a knot-tying ceremony, Olivia snuck in a kiss, and Miles may or may not have admitted that Olivia can sometimes run late to things. Overall, it was truly the essence of perfection.
After the ceremony, guests were greeted with the sweet smells of good southern food which included Gumbo and Jambalaya!!! Two of my favorite dishes since I’ve been in this city! Before enjoying that wonderful food themselves, we captured what could be one of my favorite veil toss photos of all time!!!! These few moments outside before the sun truly set were well worth the extra 5 minutes!
After those quick photos, and with food and drink stations ready plus a cigar bar, I could also tell that everyone was gearing up to get the celebration really started and that this was going to be an awesome dance floor with Its GMB leading the way!
In fact, the dance floor kept going until the Kinfolk Band & Music Group LLC joined in to end the night with a street parade! I was so excited to photograph this part of the wedding day…what I didn’t realize was that everyone would go down the escalators The Jax Brewery with the brass band leading the way and Olivia and Miles right behind! This was SO COOL and I can only hope that my photos do it justice.
Congratulations again Olivia and Miles, I LOVED photographing your big day!!!!
Venue | Riverview Room
Main Photographer | Stephanie Parshall Photography, LLC
Florals | Kim Starr Wise Floral Designer
Hotel | Windsor Court Hotel
DJ | Its GMB
Suit | Ashley & Alexandria’s Bridal Atelier Tailored by Ferlon Webster
Barber | Mase The Barber
Brass Band | Kinfolk Band & Music Group LLC
2nd Photographer | Stephen White Photography
Planner | Events by Arionne
Wedding Day Yoga | Bride Vibe Yoga
Welcome Party Venue | Barcadia