A Glamorous, Big Easy–Themed Wedding in New Orleans, Louisiana

For Virginia Meltzer (30 and a commercial real estate broker) and Jeff Luther (32 and a regional sales manager), deciding the location of their weddin

For Virginia Meltzer (30 and a commercial real estate broker) and Jeff Luther (32 and a regional sales manager), deciding the location of their wedding was a no-brainer. It was New Orleans from the start. "It's a city that's so full of life," says Virginia, who was born and raised there. 

Since the majority of the couple's guests would be traveling in for the occasion, Virginia and Jeff decided to treat their day like a destination wedding and played up the Big Easy vibe. They booked Broussard's, a restaurant in the French Quarter, for the ceremony and reception, and worked with a planner to create an event with a focus on fun and a spotlight on New Orleans traditions. 

Virginia selected a bold palette of black-and-white stripes and accents of deep red and gold. Among the location-centric details: Food stations with Creole specialties such as jambalaya and crawfish; masks, tiaras and beads for guests to don while dancing; and a dessert spread of doughnuts, a nod to the city's famous beignets. Virginia and Jeff danced to "Our Love is Here to Stay" by Nola native Louis Armstrong. 

And the best part? After the courtyard ceremony—which Virginia wrote and Jeff's stepfather officiated—the newlyweds did a "second-line" parade through the French Quarter, accompanied by all their guests, a band and a police escort. "My husband and I love having parties, so I really wanted a vibrant and glamorous experience for everyone," says Virginia. Mission accomplished. —Michelle Thomas

Virginia's wedding dress, by designer Hayley Paige, paired an intricately beaded bodice and dramatic exposed back with a softly tiered chiffon skirt.
The couple chose to meet in New Orleans' historic Jackson Square for a romantic preceremony first look.
Virginia and Jeff wanted their wedding to be vibrant and exciting, so they hired a rollicking band and a live painter to make their reception rock.
Virginia's bridesmaids wore black-and-white cocktail dresses by Ralph Lauren.
The groom and his attendants matched the wedding's crisp black-and-white color palette in classic tuxedos.
For the courtyard ceremony, a clear tent was decorated with white chairs and strung with red chandeliers.
The bride penned the emotional ceremony, which included a chance for guests to "take in the moment" using selfie sticks.
Jeff's stepfather officiated the outdoor ceremony, which took place in Broussard's secluded courtyard beneath a clear tent.
Between the ceremony and the reception, the newlyweds paraded through the French Quarter with a band and all their guests—a New Orleans tradition.
In keeping with their Southern location, the couple chose Pimm's Cups as the night's signature cocktail. The drinks were served in custom cups with black-and-white-striped straws.
The reception decor: bold black-and-white stripes paired with deep red and a soft gold glow.
The wedding cake featured striped, gold and floral designs. Even the flavors matched the day's color palette—in chocolate, vanilla and red velvet.
The couple offered guests a selection of doughnuts—a fitting touch for a city famous for its beignets—in addition to a cake.
Gold-threaded tablecloths, black Chiavari chairs and tall floral centerpieces produced a modern, glamorous look.
The courtyard ceremony space included areas for dancing and lounging.
The reception venue, French Quarter restaurant Broussard's, hosted New Orleans–themed food stations that included jambalaya and crawfish.
The couple danced to "Our Love is Here to Stay" by New Orleans native Louis Armstrong.
Vintage-inspired LOVE marquee lights add a whimsical touch to the couple's courtyard reception.
Virginia wanted blooms that were bold but minimal, and this bridal bouquet delivers with a simple pairing of deep red peonies and black-and-white anemones.
After Virginia changed into a gold sequined cocktail dress, the couple departed their reception with striped balloons in hand.