This couple opted for a spring bloom-themed celebration with a chapel ceremony, followed by an artsy, al fresco reception with unique wildflower arrangements.
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brides standing at wedding altar

Photographers Margot, right, and Carla, left, met through a mutual friend in Los Angeles over a decade ago, in June 2011. Margot admits that she felt intimidated by Carla at first; the two became acquaintances that would see each other occasionally at parties. But when Margot moved to Silverlake in 2015, she decided to reach out to Carla for a drink. The pair quickly bonded over photography and their dating lives at the time—and a few years later, in 2018, they came out to each other. "Three months later, I knew I wanted to marry her," Margot says. In December 2020, Margot proposed in a cozy cabin in Big Bear, California, as the couple enjoyed sake by the fireplace.

Margot and Carla knew they wanted to tie the knot in Margot's hometown of New Orleans, even if that meant planning the celebration from afar in Los Angeles. "We both love New Orleans' architecture and history," the couple says.

They invited 140 guests to Hotel Peter and Paul for their chapel ceremony and The Columns for the reception. "The Columns felt grand, yet somehow very cozy," they say. "We wanted our wedding reception to feel like a big house party—one we would want to be invited to." The couple worked with Elyse Jennings Weddings to design and execute their joyful Easter-bloom-themed event, complete with a saturated palette of spring shades—and added personal touches, like signature cocktails, their go-to scents, and New Orleans-inspired welcome bags, to make their big day their own.

illustrated wedding invitation suite

Whimsical Invitation Suite

Margot and Carla hired Laura of Jolly Edition to design their invitation suite, which was predicated on their wedding flower colors—apricot, pink, lavender, and muted blue. The result? A set with a floral border and loose, handwritten watercolor lettering. Laura even incorporated the moon, one of Margot and Carla's lucky symbols, and created a map of all the locations related to the wedding, including the group's hotels, welcome party spot, and ceremony and reception venues.

Their save-the-dates included a custom crest featuring a crawfish and a mini trumpet. Laura added a vellum overlay, which featured an illustration of The Columns—and, in memory of Margot's mother, used a wax seal featuring her favorite flower, the hydrangea.

bride wearing jumpsuit with added skirt

A Two-Piece for Margot

Margot didn't want to wear a wedding dress—but she didn't feel drawn to a tuxedo, either. When she tried on a Toni Maticevski two-piece, she knew she'd found the right balance. "It was the fastest decision made during the entire wedding-planning experience," Margot says. "I was in and out of the bridal shop in 20 minutes."

The one-shoulder top's highlights were its gathered petal details and asymmetric train, complete with ruffles; her tailored crepe slim-line pants featured inverted pockets, a front pleat, and a cropped ankle.

wedding accessories with pearl necklace and earrings with wedding bands

Margot's Accessories

Margot wore her mother's heirloom pearl earrings (which she wore during her own wedding), along with her pear-shaped diamond ring. She chose Badgley Mischka shoes for the ceremony and Philosykos by Diptyque for her wedding-day fragrance.

bride in gown and veil with pearls sew into the tulle

Pearl Central

When Carla thought she might have found her wedding dress, a friend told her that the gown didn't match or speak to Margot's big-day ensemble. "I didn't want to keep shopping and wondering whether or not our looks would match, so we decided to show each other our outfits," Carla says. After the big reveal, the couple returned to Loho Bride together and chose Carla's pleated, corseted number by Alex Perry. "It ended up being a fun process and took all the stress out of choosing a gown," she says. "In the end, I loved how our silhouettes looked balanced together."

Carla accessorized with a pearl-embellished, fingertip-length veil from BHLDN, a lucky bracelet her grandmother gave her mother on her wedding day, freshwater pearl Chan Luu earrings, and a vintage ring from Fox and Bond, which was a wedding-day present from Margot. She finished her look with Bella Belle kitten heels with tiny pearl embellishments. "I leaned very heavy into the pearl theme!" Carla says. "Even my perfume bottle had a pearl hanging from it."

brides holding pink floral bouquets in dresses

Loose Bouquets

Margot held a small bouquet of pink sweet peas and jasmine that was meant to be a simpler iteration of Carla's arrangement—which was filled with garden flowers like jasmine, sweet peas, and lush roses. Carla fastened her grandmother Julia's heart jade pendant to her bouquet to keep her close as she walked down the aisle.

brides first look on balcony

A First Look on the Balcony

Margot and Carla shared their first look on the upper balcony of their hotel. The pair spent the day getting ready together, but they separated ahead of getting dressed. "Before, during, and after the first look, we felt so relaxed, relieved, and so happy," they say. "We wanted to savor every minute."

brides toasting with family at cocktail hour

A Toast

Before jetting off to the ceremony, the soon-to-be newlyweds raised a glass of Champagne with their families.

wedding ceremony set up with floor floral arch with chairs arranged around it

Heading to the Chapel

The service took place inside the chapel at Hotel Peter and Paul, where guests were seated along the aisle—as well as behind the altar—in a semicircle.

wedding ceremony greenery and flowers

Wildflower Circle

Lush wildflower arrangements (featuring blue-and-white hydrangeas as another nod to Margot's mother) lined the aisle and looped around the altar's focal point; the installation was executed by their pair's floral designer, Pistil and Stamen. "We were surrounded by a gorgeous lush circle of waist-high spring flowers and we could see our friends' and family's faces all around us,'' the couple says. "It felt like a big, warm hug."

A string quartet played "Moon River" as Margot made her way down the aisle with her father, Bill, and Carla walked down the aisle with both of her parents, Liliana and Antonio.

watering of plant wedding ritual

A Unity Tree Ceremony

Margot and Carla held a unity tree ceremony; they combined soil from all the homes throughout their lives in a potted olive tree. "The olive tree symbolizes friendship, which seemed perfect for us since we started out as friends—and are still each other's best friends," they say. The couple's family and friends collected the Earth from eight different places, including areas of California, Georgia, Texas, and Lima, Peru. "We saw this unity ceremony performed during one of our favorite weddings that we photographed together and it always stuck with us," the couple says.

brides kissing at the altar surrounded by guests

Meaningful Moments

The brides' spiritual ceremony included a special reading of an extract from Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres, performed by Margot's brother, Barrett; their close friend, Elena, officiated the nuptials.

brides exiting the ceremony venue as guests toss flower petals

A Joyful Recessional

The string quartet played Mendelssohn's "Wedding March" as Margot and Carla exited the ceremony. Their loved ones tossed petals as they walked down the chapel steps.

guests outside on patio for cocktail hour with appetizers and drinks

Cocktail Hour, New Orleans Style

The couple's DJ played a mix of tunes as guests mingled during the cocktail hour, where they enjoyed a raw bar and passed appetizers of fried oysters, shrimp cocktail, and tuna crudo.

wedding cocktail hour poet with typewriter

Poems on the Fly

Margot and Carla hired Cubs the Poet to freestyle poems for their guests throughout the evening; they also doubled as favors. The creative interviewed each guest before he got to work, prompting them for a memorable experience they shared with the couple of the hour. "By the end of the evening, he created a beautiful book with the original poems," the couple says. "It was a pretty amazing experience for both us and them!"

reception cocktail menu with specialty drinks

The Signature Cocktails

Guests were offered three signature cocktails: Margot's choice was an herb-filled twist on the French 75; Carla chose a strawberry pinã colada; and the couple's puppy, Roux, was represented via a sip called, "Roux's Sazerac."

brides in wedding venue with colorful wall art paintings

A Quiet Moment

During the interlude, Margot and Carla stepped back inside the hotel to enjoy five minutes to themselves. "That memory will always stand out," they say. "Taking a beat and allowing the moment to sync in—it was peaceful and we were just so happy." They enjoyed a cocktail and some light bites on the hotel's balcony and watched as guests started to segue to the reception. "It was fun to wave to our friends and family when they spotted us," they say.

outdoor wedding reception table with pink and orange flowers and ow candles

Bright and Bold Blooms

The couple's reception took place on the Columns patio, where a brighter color palette of florals set a vibrant, joyful tone.

wedding reception pink floral centerpiece with tall white candles

So Unique

"Each arrangement was artful in its own right—and no two were alike," the couple says. Tables were topped in pale blue linens and placed underneath strings of bistro lights.

During dinner, guests enjoyed shrimp and grits, roast chicken, seasonal vegetables, chicken gumbo, crab rice, green salad, French fries, and biscuits.

wedding reception mantle with flowers, candles, and citrus fruits

Mantel Display

The unique floral work continued inside the venue, where Pistil and Stamen arranged Ikebana-style arrangements alongside cut citrus and grapes on the mantel.

candles in glass candle holders lighting up poems

Scentscaping

"We're big into scent, so we took our time picking out scented candles for the reception," the couple says. "We landed on Diptyque's "Figuier" and "Tuberose," which we burned alongside each other."

bride father daughter dance

The Father-Daughter Dance

Margot and Carla took the floor to dance with their fathers to "What a Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong.

first dance as married couple on the dance floor

Thank You

The couple chose Bonnie Raitt's "Thank You" for their first married spin. "We are both huge fans of Bonnie Raitt," they say. "This song was frequently playing in the background during our relationship's early days."

For their dance debut, Margot changed into a Kaviar Gauche blazer, which she paired with Toni Maticevski pants, and a Cortana top. Carla's second look was a cream Watters gown from BHLDN. "I had the train shortened so that I could easily dance in it," she says. "It had a low, open back—which was very important considering the 90-something degree heat."

two-tiered wedding cake on table with fruit

Simple Cake, Dramatic Table

The pair's simple, gluten-free strawberry wedding cake was iced with white frosting—and drastically punched up by a dynamic fruit and flower display, arranged to create an ombré effect.

wedding cake pulls with brides and guests

Pull!

The newlyweds added New Orleans-themed cake pulls to the bottom layer. This local tradition involves the couple inviting up a few (typically single) loved ones to pull ribbons out of the cake—doing so reveals their fortune in the form of a charm.

brides walking down the street in parade with musicians

Dancing in the Streets

As the celebration drew to a close, Kinfolk Brass Band guided the group through the streets and filled the night with music. "We danced up and down St. Charles Avenue," say Carla and Margot. "Neighbors all came to their balconies and danced along with us. It was so New Orleans!"

To couples currently planning their own big days, they recommend hiring a top-notch photographer. "It's probably the only time all those guests from both sides of your families will be together in one place. Having photos of everyone together will be priceless later on," they say. "We feel so lucky that Laura Murray was there to photograph ours. These are photos that we will cherish forever."

brides holding hands in their dresses

Sources

Photography, Laura Murray Photography
Ceremony Venue, Hotel Peter and Paul
Reception Venue and Catering, The Columns
Event Coordination and Design, Elyse Jennings Weddings
Flowers, Pistil and Stamen
Invitations and Paper Products, Jolly Edition
Margot's Ceremony Attire, Toni Maticevski from Loho Bride
Margot's Reception Attire, Kaviar Gauche; Cortana; Toni Maticevski
Margot's Shoes, Badgley Mischka
Carla's Ceremony Attire, Alex Perry; Loho Bride
Carla's Reception Attire, Watters; BHLDN
Carla's Shoes, Bella Belle
Carla's Accessories, Chan Luu; Fox and Bond
Hair, Faces of Virtue Beauty Studio
Guest Book, Octavia Books
Music, New Orleans Classical & Jazz; Que Fancy Music; Kinfolk Brass Band
Poet, Cubs the Poet
Parade Permit, Nola Booking
Cake, Bittersweet Confections
Rentals, Element; BBJ La Tavola Linens
Transportation, Louisiana Motor Coach
Lighting, Element

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