Colourful, fun and unique, Carrie Ann and Alex’s wedding was one big celebration in the middle of Mardi Gras. They said their vows in a ceremony in the centre of North Rampart Street in New Orleans, followed by a block party, setting up tables and chairs along the pavement for all their guests. Carrie Ann summed it up, “Our wedding was a homespun, insane Mardi Gras miracle!”
With a budget of $3000, there was plenty of opportunity for unique DIY to fit their theme, as Carrie Ann told us, “I made custom magnets and custom condoms as wedding favours. I made the wedding cake, charcuterie and salads and my wedding party helped make the decorations and bouquets. This wedding was a well-budgeted group effort to say the least! I’m a former cook, so cooking half of the wedding menu and baking the wedding cake myself saved so much money.”
“Instead of spending thousands on a dress, I spent $45 by thrifting and doing my own tailoring to create my own dress and veil. Instead of decorating with flowers, I spent $80 at Trader Joe’s and a friend volunteered to arrange bouquets for me and my four bridesmaids. We DIY’d and thrifted all decorations and party favours. Also, rather than spend more money on wedding bands that we might lose, we spent $200 and had them tattooed on our ring fingers instead.”
The day was one big party, with a surprise appearance from Guy Fieri – or at least, a cardboard version – and there were plenty of unique elements that Carrie Ann and Alex chose. They told us, “From the Twin Peaks theme to the Guy Fieri cardboard cut out, the guests in costumes, the Boyz II Men wedding march, reading Eileen Myles’ Peanut Butter as a wedding vow, tattooed wedding rings, boxed wine, high life beers, king cakes, and a whole lot of fried chicken… All in the middle of a parade on Mardi Gras. It was exhilarating and absolutely original.”
Costumes were a must, with the bride in a silver wig, officiant as Icarus and an assistant-officiant dog named Stella sitting in a decorated baby carriage as the star of the show! The wedding march was a bridesmaid dressed as Marie Antoinette singing Boyz II Men’s I’ll Make Love to You.
The couple hired a large downstairs studio and an upstairs apartment to provide a kitchen, bathroom, lodging and a home-base before, during and after the wedding for their guests. With almost half their budget spent on that, they had to forgo a DJ, band and extra catering, however Carrie Ann said, “It all worked out in the end. Getting closer to my friends by doing projects together was the best thing about planning the wedding, we made it fun and bonded over it. My advice for future couple would be that the little details don’t really matter, less will always be more. And hire a good photographer!”