Between the gorgeous Victorian homes, the rich history of the French Quarter and the super artsy culture, New Orleans is the epitome of vintage elegance. The Crescent City is the perfect place to celebrate your upcoming nuptials if you’re looking for a destination wedding. After one look at these Big Easy ideas for your big day, you’ll see why. With a festive second line parade, delicious Paloma wedding cocktails and sweet deep-fried beignets (they are Louisiana’s official donuts, after all!), you’ll be ohhing and ahhing over every chic and modern detail from these 14 whimsical NOLA wedding ideas.
1. Secret Garden Venue: There’s something very special about a lush, overgrown reception venue like this stunning secret garden. And when it’s all taking place in New Orleans, everything about the wedding feels that much more special. Add some greens to the guest chairs for an even more whimsical touch. (via Once Wed)
2. Chic Ceremony Program Fans: Because you know that it can get reallllly hot during the summer months in the South, ceremony program fans are a total must. Best part? You can definitely DIY these and give them to your guests as wedding favors to keep them cool all weekend long. (via Greer Gattuso Photography / Mod Weddings)
3. Fun and Festive Parade: It’s not a party without some dancing. Include a second line parade for a post-ceremony celebration where you walk through the streets accompanied by a lively brass band and all your fabulous guests. Now tell us that doesn’t sound amazing. (via Austin Gros / Once Wed)
4. Signature New Orleans Cocktail: We can’t think of anything more refreshing and delicious than a signature wedding cocktail inspired by this enchanting city. Choose from a cooling mint julep, a well-known Sazerac or add your own personalized twist to other New Orleans favorites like this smoked paloma cocktail. (via Tasha Rae Photography / 100 Layer Cake)
5. NOLA-filled Bridal Photos: No field of wildflowers or ocean backdrops? No problem! New Orleans is known for its ridiculously beautiful architecture. Take advantage of all the pretty homes by having your bridal party photos in the middle of the street. You will love the look and the memories. (via Jennifer Nichols Photography / Style Me Pretty)
6. French Quarter Beignets: These delicious French pastries are light as air and would make a perfect late-night snack at a wedding – especially paired with hot cocoa or cafe au lait. For an extra fun twist, ask your caterer to cut the dough into heart shapes. Your guests will thank you later! (via Oh Goodie Designs)
7. Jazz Music Sheet Centerpieces: Pull inspiration from the band and go with unique jazz music sheet centerpieces. It’ll add a charming vintage and extremely romantic feel to your tables. Take it one step further and choose specific music sheets, like your favorite song or a famous NOLA piece. (via Paper Heart Photography / Happy Wedd)
8. Charming Southern Carriages: Carriages (or buggies, as some Southerners call them) and rickshaws are a great way for guests to get around on those fabulously bumpy cobblestone streets of the French Quarter. We’re especially crushing hard on this fringe-covered buggy – so trendy! (via 509 Photo / Southern Weddings)
9. Soft and Romantic Wedding Palette: The soft, airy colors and the romantic styles of these bridesmaids’ dresses have us dreaming of the South. We love bold red flowers as accent pieces against the neutral hues. And the floor-length gowns will not only add a boho look, but also keep those mosquitos away! (via Nicole Berrett Photography / Style Me Pretty)
10. Stamped Wedding Welcome Bag: After traveling far and wide, loved ones will definitely be in need of a little TLC. Stuff muslin bags with all sorts of locally inspired treats like mini pralines and chocolate alligators. They’re super cute and easy to put together last-minute too. (via Greer Gattuso Photography / Elizabeth Anne Designs)
11. Beau Coup Antiqued Lace Parasol ($13+): This antiqued lace parasol is the perfect finishing touch for your Crescent City wedding. Whether you carry it with you down the aisle or incorporate it as you dance the night away on the second line parade, the simple and delicate pattern can be used for casual or formal affairs.
12. Elegant Masquerade Decor: Add a Mardi Gras twist to your nuptials by offering stunning masks for your guests. Even though Mardi Gras masks are traditionally purple, green and gold, feel free to decorate them to fit with your wedding — think: feathers, gold accents and lots of glitter. Plus, they will be great accessories for photo ops. (via Nicole Berrett Photography / Style Me Pretty)
13. Vintage Botanical Print: Forget paper menus. Take inspiration from vintage botanical prints for a uniquely memorable and absolutely stunning dinner menu. This wooden block will definitely add a whimsical touch to your wedding decor. Finish it off with draped garlands of emerald greenery for an even more magical southern feel. (via onelove Photography / Hey Wedding Lady)
14. Fleur-De-Lis Cake: Fondant and sugary textures are a classic addition to any wedding cake, but add a fleur-de-lis symbol to it and you’ve got one eye-catching dessert that’ll totally charm your guests. And besides, it wouldn’t be NOLA wedding without the official symbol of the state of Louisiana. (via Bonnie Sen Photography / Style Me Pretty)
Are you ready to plan your own New Orleans wedding? Head over to our Pinterest page for more bridal inspo.