A true COVID love story indeed! Brian and Jaclyn met in 2020 when Jaclyn was home in Mississippi during the pandemic. They fell in love during this time and planned a magical wedding for May 2022. Baz Luhrman’s Romeo and Juliet inspired their unique wedding which also included a Degas fairytale color palette, elements of Love Actually, and the literary history of the South! Somehow with all these totally different aspects, it all came together perfectly.
The wedding was planned by the bride (and filmmaker) Jaclyn and wedding planners Girls in Black. Guests celebrated the couple at the magical venue of Hotel Peter and Paul in New Orleans. The ceremony was programmed like a Shakespeare play, with a prologue read from a scroll, four readings from Williams, Shelley, Shakespeare, and with a musical prelude by Dalal Bruchmann and an orchestra. This day was truly magical and we can’t wait for you all to get a glimpse of it! Let’s have a look at the beautiful photos by Ashleigh Coleman…
All the Dainty Details
We are just a TINY bit obsessed with her pink wedding dress!
We asked Jaclyn to tell us more about this gorgeous gown she wore for her big day!
“Growing up, my mother and I always loved to have lunch and window shop at Bergdorf Goodman. That store feels like old New York to me – full of elegance and legends. I lived in New York for many years, and that feeling of magic when passing the Bridal salon never passed.
When I got engaged, I knew that I wanted to make an appointment there. I believe it was my second appointment, I tried on a few dresses but nothing quite fit what I wanted. When they asked me what I had in mind, I explained something I was sure didn’t exist. They brought out a specific dress, a Vera Wang couture piece – corseted with a long train bathed in blush, pink, lavender, and green tulle. It was unreal. They were actually about to send it back because no one had ordered it! But it was so unique, it was waiting there for me. For the next ten months, I did several fittings and it was customized just for me. I don’t think I will ever have an experience again like that in my life!“
The groom looks dapper in his suit from Tuxes Too!
The sweetest first look between the bride and groom!
Root Floral created all these stunning bouquets as well as all the floral arrangements you’re about to see!
And how gorgeous do these bridesmaids look in their blue dresses from Marchesa Notte with short flutter sleeves and shiny sequin details?! Major love – and we’d definitely wear these gowns again!
The Perfect Canvas for Love
The day was inspired by the many artistic expressions of love. The beautiful venue, Hotel Peter and Paul in New Orleans was a beautiful pink canvas, soaked in the colors of a Degas painting. It was the perfect place to design a neon pastel Chapel of Love. Jaclyn stumbled upon it when it first opened and even had dinner there with Brian on Valentine’s Day in 2021.
From Jaclyn, “I really knew from that first moment I stepped into the space – if I ever got married, I wanted it to be there.”
These adorable flower girls had the most whimsical floral angel wings and helped the bride carry her veil down the aisle.
Processional: Bridesmaid and Flower Girl/Ring Bearer to "House of Woodcock" by Jonny Greenwood, performed by a small orchestra. Bride to "Kissing You" by Des'ree sung live.
Recessional: A pop-up, surprise performance of "All You Need is Love" a la Love Actually performed by a gospel choir that entered from the back of the Church, and musicians/instrumentalists that were planted within the guest seating.
First Dance: "Tupelo Honey" by Van Morrison, performed by Nola Dukes - it was one of the first songs we listened to when we started dating. Brian made a playlist of songs called “Jupiter Moons” that reminded him of me, he often calls me his moon because of my translucent skin. That song was one of our favourites.
I think when I was holding my dad's arm, and the doors opened to the space for my entrance. It was the first time I saw what the space looked like and I saw Brian beaming at the end of the aisle, the marker of the beginning of the rest of my life. Brian talks about that moment, too. It was just magic. There were custom neon hearts lining the aisle, and our friends and family flooded the mirror-lined aisle. A thing of beauty we will always remember.
Of course, they had to invite their furry friend to be a part of the big day!! So cute!!
Shakespeare, specifically Baz Luhrman’s take on Romeo and Juliet, was a big inspiration for the wedding day. The program for the wedding was in the format of a Shakespeare play, with a Prologue, Epilogue, and four acts. This was brought full circle by the bride’s friends (matron of honor) Greta Bellamacina and her husband Robert Montgomery, reading a special poem they wrote at the top of the Reception. Bride Jaclyn shares:
“I wrote poems to Brian when I first met him, and to me, poetry is one of the most romantic expressions of love. We were also inspired by Southern literature – Tennessee Williams and Harper Lee, to name a few. Some of these authors were even on our wedding stamps and their names were custom embroidered on my veil and worked into the readings.”
Does this look familiar to anyone?? Just LOVE IT!!
At the end of the ceremony, a surprise choir entered singing “All You Need is Love” and instruments popped up in the Congregation. How surreal!!
This is what dreams are made of! Look at her happy smile!
Fun fact!! The bride wore a custom veil embroidered with names of Southern authors – Harper Lee, Tennessee Williams, William Faulkner, and Eudora Welty!
Off to the Ceremony!
J + B’s wedding reflected them as a couple because it celebrated the universality of love – but also the uniqueness and beauty of the South. Jaclyn has lived in many places, but Brian brought her back home to Mississippi where they found in each other, their home.
Following a cocktail hour with a floral installation car, the couple and their guests descended to the reception where they were treated to Jazz music from Nola Dukes and a Prince impersonator.
Wow oh WOW! If this isn’t the classiest reception we’ve seen!
All design elements were customized by the bride and the work of her many artist friends. Each table had a different quote from an author to really set the tone!
The many custom cakes were on hand, and the flower girls/bridesmaids pulled cake charms.
Guests enjoyed getting their tarot cards read during the reception.
We don’t know what is more beautiful… the ceremony decor… or the wedding cake itself!!
The bride wore a custom Markarian dress for the reception with tiny heart and rhinestone studs dotted throughout. All of Jaclyn’s wedding wardrobe was custom-made by female designers in New York, including her Marie Antoinette-inspired robe by Zepherina and the Brigitte Bardot-inspired top and skirt for the rehearsal dinner by Lauren Wells. The bride worked closely with them to capture her vision for each piece and loves supporting rising female artists.
The night ended with an after-party in a Star Wars-themed room at Dat Dog. The entire weekend encompassed many events including Bridesmaids Luncheon (where each table was named and decorated for a different female filmmaker), Rehearsal Dinner, and a morning after Ice Cream Social! How fun!
I think your wedding can be anything you want it to be - big, small or just you and your partner. In any circumstance, weddings can be stressful, so just remember that at the end of the day it is about you two.
We’re so inspired by the beautifully meaningful day and sending all our love and congratulations to Jaclyn + Brian!
photography: Ashleigh Coleman // venue name: Hotel Peter and Paul, New Orleans, Louisiana, United States // event design: Girls in Black / Royal Events // planning: Girls in Black // florals: Root Floral // wedding dress: Vera Wang Custom & Markarian Custom (after party) // wedding dress boutique: Bergdorf Goodman Bridal Salon // hairpiece: Miu Miu + custom veil by Ashford Couture // bride's shoes: Manolo Blahnik // bride's ring: Catbird + Erstwhile // bridesmaid dresses: Marchesa Avola & Lucca // getting ready robes: Custom Zepherina // hair stylist: Kristina Myers // makeup artist: Same as above // groom attire: Tuxes Too // groom's shoes: Tuxes Too // groom's ring: Catbird // videography: Andrew Benton // paper goods: Leslie Baskin // catering: Bacchanal // cake: Coco Bean Bakery // officiant: Jeff Good