Brandie here. It’s been a while, but it feels beyond wonderful to be back at home here on Hunt and Gather to share the details of my wedding planning experience. The event decor and details will be a reflection of mine and Megan’s design sensibilities as she will have a hand in planning the big day, so we felt it was only right to document the journey here.
James (my sweet fiance’) and I share a love for renovation. As the founder/owner of a widely successful remodeling business, our conversations are often filled with talk of how to make what is old new again. After he proposed on New Year’s Eve and we began discussing where to have our wedding, it really only took a few minutes to decide on New Orleans, which quintessentially represents all that we are. We both share a lifelong love for the New Orleans Saints, King Cake, Jazz, good food, and good times. Most of all, I think The Big Easy gives us a sense of home because of the unique historic architecture, the colorful sounds and faces, and the idea that life, to be most beautiful and full, should be lived not so seriously, but instead always with a cup of chicory coffee in hand and the sounds of a lonely saxophone and streetcar in the background.
Picking the city was easy. Picking the venue took a bit more thought. After looking at (no exaggeration) about forty places, I narrowed it down to two, which happened also to be the two Megan suggested to me in the first place (she knows me too well, y’all): The Latter Library and The Columns Hotel. The thought of getting married to the man of my dreams in an old library, surrounded by a plethora of books, made me swoon. However, after some inquiry, I learned that the branch is currently undergoing massive renovation. That left one choice-The Columns. The photos left me smitten and their events coordinator, Adam, was the most helpful and warm of any I spoke with. We made a weekend trip down to see it in person and, much like with James, it didn’t take long before I knew this was the one. The grandiose old residence turned hotel boasts exquisite Victorian detail inside and out. All around are massive, ancient oak trees, behind is a magnificent Garden District residential neighborhood, and out front is perhaps the most iconic of all New Orleans’ symbols: the St. Charles streetcar line. Everywhere you turn, it’s so VERY, so FABULOUSLY New Orleans.
We will be married in their back courtyard in a small ceremony of our closest family and friends. The reception will be housed inside in the Ballroom. Megan and I are excitedly working out the design details, using many of the things I already have in my home. Be looking for posts on this, as well as our oh-so-fabulous Jazz band, the food, the photographer, the party favors and so much more! Next week’s post will veer a bit from these specifics, as I will be talking about invitations and the struggle of choosing the right design and some advice for brides forced to choose guests when faced with a small count.
If you’d like to see for yourself the wonder that is The Columns, visit them at http://www.thecolumns.com for photos and a virtual tour or, better yet, in person. The Uptown location offers a more low-key approach to The Crescent City, the rooms are perfectly historic and quaint, the streetcar makes travel around the city beyond convenient, and the food is top-notch.
It will be the catalyst that drives the details of our day to be completely and absolutely perfect.