Ashley Martinez and Jeffrey Stewart | December 8, 2018
Written by Marielle Songy and Jessica Burke
Photography by Trent Spann, Images by Robert T
Ashley and Jeffrey’s romance started the way many modern romances start – with a little help from a mutual friend. Jeff’s coworker, who was also Ashley’s high school friend, decided the two would be a perfect match and introduced them via Facebook. Apparently, she was right, because after four nights of hours-long phone conversations, the two made plans for dinner and have been inseparable ever since.
When it came time to propose, Jeff made arrangements to visit the Biltmore in North Carolina with the hopes of making Ashley’s dream of picnicking in a field of flowers come true. Sometimes the best laid plans don’t work out; they weren’t able to picnic that day. Ashley was nonetheless thrilled to see all the beautiful fields of blooms at the estate. As Ashley was admiring the tulips, Jeff suggested they ask a couple at the garden to take their photo. Once they were positioned perfectly for the photo, Jeff got down on one knee and asked Ashley to marry him. Ashley began crying and laughing and of course said, “Yes!”
For their wedding day, the couple knew that they wanted to include traditions from Jeff’s Scottish ancestry and Ashley’s Isleños and Filipino roots. This New Orleans wedding included a bagpiper in Jackson Square in full regalia who serenaded guests as they arrived and played “Highland Cathedral” as he led the procession down the aisle.
Ashley felt like royalty as she and her father rode to St. Louis Cathedral in a horse-drawn carriage. As a nod to the bride’s family’s Filipino tradition, the couple exchanged arras (13 blessed coins) during the mass and fortunately, the weather cleared just in time after the ceremony for a traditional Second Line to the reception at The Presbytère Museum.
Jeff is an avid duck hunter who is learning to carve decoys and Ashley’s uncle is famous for his hand carved Isleños-style decoys. Although he no longer practices decoy carving, they were able to find a decoy that Ashley’s uncle had carved through a collector. The couple was thrilled to be able to add this special touch to the groom’s cake.
Bound by love and tradition, Ashley and Jeff created a wedding experience that reflected who they are as a couple and created memories that will last a lifetime.
PHOTOGRAPHY: Images by Robert T | GETTING READY LOCATIONS: Omni Royal Orleans & Place D’Armes Hotel | CEREMONY LOCATION: St. Louis Cathedral | OFFICIANT: Father Mark Lomax | RECEPTION LOCATION: The Presbytère Museum | REHEARSAL DINNER LOCATION: Tiki Tolteca | BRIDAL GOWN: LaRaine’s Boutique in Atlanta, Georgia | BRIDESMAIDS’ GOWNS: Custom gowns by Yubin Couture designed by the bride | GROOM/GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: Custom Brooks Brothers Suit for the Groom from Shops at Canal and Tuxedos to Geaux for the groomsmen | VIDEOGRAPHER: Chris Castillo Films | FLORIST: Ever After Nola | BAKERY: La Louisiane Bakery | CEREMONY MUSIC: Bagpipes by Anthony Pate, Trumpeter Stephen Orejudos | RECEPTION ENTERTAINMENT: DJ Donovan Calfee of Calfee Productions | TRANSPORTATION: Mid-City Carriages; Riculfy Livery | HAIR & MAKEUP: VIP Hair Salon in Lake Charles; Aliesha Bree Makeup Artistry |
WEDDING PLANNER/DESIGNER: Elizabeth Burkhardt Events | DECOR RENTALS: Southern Hospitality Event Rentals | CATERER: Brown Sugar BBQ & Catering | JEWELER: Wade’s Jewelers of North Carolina, Boudreaux’s Jewelers | FAVORS: Crown Stationery Co.