New Orleans Wedding at Camp Abundance with Lovegood Wedding & Event Rentals featuring vintage furniture and decor. This Artist home was the perfect background for this December wedding in New Orleans with berry, velvet napkins, and mismatched bridesmaid dresses and an overall romantic aesthetic. Groom looked dapper in a white tux with black trim, and bride looked amazing in off white modern feel dress.
Lovegood Collection : Classic Farm Tables, Brown Mismatched Wooden Chairs, Glass Goblets, Charolette Sofa
Tell us all about the proposal!
Leif proposed in front of the first house we lived in together on Valence Street uptown. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I thought (no, KNEW, well...thought I knew) that he was going to propose the night before since he planned a romantic date to La Crepe Nanou. I bought a new dress, did my hair and make up for hours, and when he suggested we take some champagne and walk there I was like, okay, wow, this is so romantic and it's all happening!! Cut to me crying in the restaurant a few drinks in that I thought he was going to propose and boohooing all the way home. I am truly the worst :) I have no idea how he kept his cool as well as he did while I cried lololol and the next morning puffy eyed with wet hair and almost bra-less (I put a bra on literally at the last second) we went for breakfast at La Boulangerie when Leif suggested we park by our old house around the corner just to see what it looks like now (it looks the same- the ugliest color brown and covered in leaves). I said okay and after breakfast as we walked back we went up to the house and were looking at all the dilapidated siding and I was laughing about the wall that was falling down when we lived there and when I turned around he was on one knee saying a beautiful speech about how our life together really started there and... then I literally blacked out, y'all I don't remember when he said I started crying and saying yes yes yes and then I had a beautiful ring he and my mom had conspired together to make special for me on my finger and my sister was across the street taking pictures and holding a bottle of Veuve. He had an entire proposal planned for the following day and had thought a romantic night beforehand would be special too but he's married to a fire sign psycho so I don't know what he expected, honestly.
Describe your wedding flowers.
Wow, they were amazing. Antigua floral did such an fantastic job! I was absolutely obsessed with my bouquet. Orchids are my husband's favorite flower, he lovingly tends to a bunch of them at home so I felt like I wanted to carry his favorites alongside mine, the humble (but beautiful!) baby's breath. The other flowers were gorgeous roses and spanish moss and other amazing things that Sara put together with her team. I told them I was going for a haunted south vibe, like Interview with the Vampire but make it a wedding! My husband was very hesitant about that vision (he kept saying it sounded goth lol) but when all was said and done he was thrilled with how they turned out. I bring that up a lot now when he's unsure of my decorating choices in our new house.
When did y’all get married?
We got married December 5, 2020 (our original date!) at Camp Abundance. We hand planned a gigantic 250 person disco party wedding at a beach bar in Fort Lauderdale where we're from, which obviously couldn't happen. We downsized and had an intimate creole dinner party with our close family and streamed it live for everyone else. We'd love to throw a five year anniversary blowout disco if we can, but for now, we're happily newlyweds with no plans for a "do over" wedding post pandemic.
How did you two meet? Tell us your love story.
We met in high school in ethics class when we sat near each other and would pass silly notes back and forth with our other classmates. I thought Leif was really funny and the next year he asked me to prom. I remember he texted me that "we should probably hang out outside of school beforehand" and the rest is history. He kissed me on the beach on our first little date where I used my sister's ID to buy us beers and I know this sounds completely psychotic but y'all I swear in that moment I was like, "Oh, okay, I am in love with this dude." From then on it was always him, no one else ever compared. We've been through so much together and always come out on the other side stronger than we were before. He's the funniest, kindest, most loving and fun person I know and also I think he is the handsomest man on earth. Truly my best friend and the most nurturing man to dogs, plants, kids, and his very anxious and annoying wife :)
Tell us about your ceremony?
Everyone cried! My sister sang me down the aisle and my niece took her role as flower girl very, very seriously and took a super long time covering the aisle with rose petals for me. Some might say too long, but it was very cute! We loved Ranna with Let's Elope, she made it so magical. We wrote our own vows, mine were extremely long and Leif's were short and conveyed as much emotion in 2 minutes as mine did in five. A car alarm went off during our ceremony and we paused to laugh and wait for the offending party (legend has it it was my mom's car!) to stop it's beeping. Roosters were crowing, dogs were barking, a cat was making its way around the guests looking to be pet, people were arguing a few houses down, but we got through it with a good sense of humor as our friends and family watched live on youtube and zoom. It was all very New Orleans with the noise of the city and the seventh ward. When we recessed everyone threw dried flower petals that made for the best pictures and our wedding planner met us at the end of the aisle with champagne which was such a fun moment.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them.
Our would-have-been-DJ who is my pal Marissa Sardar (check her out if you're in Nashville, she's the best!) made us a really rad playlist on Spotify that we still listen to all the time. She was supposed to DJ our big disco wedding but we made it work as best we could.
I walked down the aisle to La Vie en Rose- I wanted a classic song with a New Orleans vibe. My sister learned it on guitar and sang me down the aisle.
My husband and I's first dance was to Loving You Baby by Charles Bradley. I let Leif choose the song because he's a career musician and one night he landed on the perfect choice. We both love Charles Bradley so much- his voice is just so filled with emotion and soul. We used a Charles Bradley record as our guest book which worked out so great for our tiny wedding.
I danced with my Dad to a slowed down version of Brown Eyed Girl- it's our Dad's song for my sister's and I, always has been. I tried to fake him out for literally two years and say I wanted to dance to When You Come Back Down by Nickel Creek (an excellent choice for anyone looking for a great father/daughter dance song!) to then surprise him with Brown Eyed Girl. When it started playing he told me he knew I was really going to choose "our song" all along. Another emotional moment, I will always remember hugging my Dad under the string lights in my wedding dress. I'm so grateful.
My husband and his mom danced to Child of Mine by Carole King, she danced to the same song with his brother at his wedding, so she's carried it on as a tradition.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell!
I did! I felt like it was bad luck if I didn't, is that a thing? But kept it simple! My something old was my engagement ring, it was my great grandmother's. My something new was my dress, something borrowed was a bracelet my mother in law wears everyday that was her mother's (my husband's Meme who was the matriarch of their family) that she so graciously lent me for the day and my something blue was my garter, a beautiful and delicate garter from Ireland with a little pearl. I wore it over my Spanx ;)
What advice do you have for couples currently planning a wedding?
If you're planning during Covid my advice is to let go and let things unfold as they will. It's super stressful and ever changing and things are weird and I totally feel your pain. If you're planning for after- same advice! Choose things that are meaningful to you, go your own way, make your own traditions and just try and have as much fun as possible along the way. Don't listen to everyone's opinions- pick a friend or a sibling who has a similar vibe and taste to you who will be honest with you and consult them. Not everyone needs to have an opinion on your favors, flowers, and the million other things you'll have to pick. Weddings aren't meant to be these high level high stress events, I don't think. It's about you and your partner making a commitment to love each other forever, everything else is secondary. Take time the week before to just hang out together with your family and friends and each other and make sure you hire a photographer and videographer you love (we did!) because when it's over (and it's truly over so fast) that's all you have to remember the day you pinterested, budgeted, stressed over, prepped for, and planned to within an inch of your life. I wish I had been able to slow down more the morning of and even with my wedding coordinator working overtime and every single vendor being the ultimate and absolute best things were still making me feel anxious. I was told I'm a very "guest centric" bride in that I'm very concerned with the happiness and comfort of others over myself, but I wish that I had at least tried to let that go and enjoy myself more! It truly wasn't until I was literally walking down the aisle that I chilled out.
Favorite detail of the wedding was:
Can I have two? Both with cinematic themes?
First, I planned a first look with my Dad that was Father of the Bride themed, one of the most beloved movies of my childhood that I still watch to this day all the time- my Dad and sisters and I even watched it together the Thursday before the wedding. I got him a signed Father of the Bride script as my gift to him to open before the first look and wrote him a note thanking him for being such an incredible Dad. Then, my sisters played the musical score and at the 30 second mark where there's a sweeping orchestral moment they opened the doors to reveal me in my wedding dress. My dad started crying so I started crying and then my sisters and mom and stepmom started crying and everyone was just crying happy tears together. It was a really special moment for us all and was the Annie Banks moment of my little girl dreams.
My little sister surprised me at the end of her wedding toast by singing "Grow Old With You" from The Wedding Singer. That was one of our favorite movies growing up, we owned it on VHS and then on DVD and must have watched it hundreds of times. We still quote it as adults and my sister and her husband actually danced to the soundtrack version at their wedding as their first dance. When I saw my Dad sitting with her guitar picking it lightly as she gave her speech I didn't think much of it since they both play guitar and she had played me down the aisle earlier. But then she took it from him and started singing and man, if I didn't burst into tears! That was such a special moment that she practiced for and thoughtfully planned to just make the night that much more special and beautiful. My mom got it on video and I still cry every time I watch it. My sisters are my built-in best friends and I just love them so much, so to have that childhood memory bring up all those nostalgic feelings of being little girls sitting next to my husband at our wedding- it was just the best.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day?
Honestly seeing my husband at the end of the aisle. We have known each other since high school (we went to prom together) and had dated on and off into college. We have lived together for eight years and know each other so well, oftentimes it felt like we were already married. We were engaged for over two years before finally getting married and he went through grad school in a different state while I went to nursing school here and then Covid happened and all the plans we made were canceled and changed and everything was crazy and I cried A LOT. Our wedding week was so stressful getting everyone tested for Covid and finalizing normal wedding details and I thought the morning of I would finally be able to relax but we ran into issue after issue. I was being consulted about speakers and WiFi and a bunch of other things I didn't anticipate PLUS we realized there were barely any mirrors where we were getting ready and I couldn't really see myself to adjust and make sure I liked my lewk! Stressful for any bride! I was trying to enjoy myself but I was so anxious and then everything started to run late and I just wanted to get married! When it was finally time to walk down the aisle I remember turning the corner and seeing Leif standing there looking so handsome. I didn't think I would *feel* that feeling people say you get when you see your husband-to-be for the first time but I just felt all my stress melt away and all that mattered was getting down there to marry him. I was just like, wow there he is, the love of my life. It was such a beautiful moment and made me realize everything we've been through over the last 12 years- it all had led me right there, to him, to that moment. I'll never forget it. I still think about it all the time. He was all that mattered. :')
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together?
We just bought a house in Gentilly right after our wedding so we are slowly decorating and adjusting to life as new homeowners. Covid canceled any plans for a Honeymoon so we are hoping for a Babymoon to Italy in the next couple of years :) Until then I'll just keep on nursin' in this dang pandemic while Leif continues writing his thesis for his masters in Music Therapy. We're just homebodies cooking each other dinner and raising two basset hounds.
Camp Abundance, Bee Farm & Artist Compound
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Black Pearl Catering