Written By: Jessica Burke | Photos: Michelle Preau
“Julius and I have been together since freshman year at Hahnville High School,” shares Kaylin. The highschool sweethearts have been able to experience every milestone together “from graduating high school, going to LSU together, buying our first house and starting our careers. Julius and I grew up together for the past eleven years. He’s my best friend and now I get to call him my husband!” says Kaylin.
Julius proposed at Cafe Amelie just before Christmas in 2018. He planned for a photographer to document the moment and then continued the surprise by inviting their family and friends to celebrate their engagement at their home afterwards.
“I was thrilled to get started planning our dream wedding,” says Kaylin. “I never imagined planning a wedding during a global pandemic. We watched cautiously as events unfolded, and while we wanted our dream wedding, our priority was the health and safety of our family and friends.”
The guest list started with over 300 people and adjusted along with state restrictions, at one point reaching just 25 people. “After many conversations and the constant support from my parents, Julius and I decided to move forward with our date even with a decreased number of attendees,” says Kaylin. “Luckily, the state increased the number of wedding attendees about a month before our wedding and we were able to have approximately 100 people with us celebrating our marriage. We both have big families, so we were surrounded by our family and close friends.”
The couple said their vows at Mater Dolorosa Church. Kaylin had known for years that she’d get married in this church after discovering it while her brother was playing in a baseball tournament at Carrollton ballpark. “Getting see Julius at the end of the aisle was the best feeling,” says Kaylin. “The vows and homily were so perfect and personal.”
Kaylin wore a timeless Justin Alexander gown with a custom bow added by seamstress Rose Champagne. “She made the bow exactly what I wanted: dramatic and elegant,” says Kaylin. “She even made dramatic tails for the bow that detached when I bustled my gown for the reception.”
Julius and Kaylin didn’t tour many reception venues. When they saw the Arbor Room early on, they knew it was right for them. “It had everything we wanted, big open space and a beautiful outdoor area. The Popp Fountain is gorgeous in day and at night. We also knew the food was great at City Park which was very important to us,” says Kaylin. “Our wedding was perfect with the help of our vendors, especially City Park. Following all COVID-19 prevention measures, our guests felt safe and had the best time.”
After the wedding, the couple went on a 10 day honeymoon to Riviera Maya, Mexico. Their travel consultant Shannon Cunningham with Paradise Vacation Escapes visits many resorts first hand so she can better advise her clients and suggested one of her favorites, Unico 20 87, for the couple. “This place offers excellent food, impeccable service, a great beach, and one of the most instagrammable decor and grounds,” says Cunningham. “After consulting with Kaylin and Julius, I knew this was a good fit for them.”
“It was amazing and she arranged everything,” says Kaylin about Cunningham. “She kept us updated on anything we needed to know with COVID restrictions and even met with us about two weeks before the wedding to make sure we were all set.” Cunningham also reached out to the resort prior to the couple arriving to let them know her VIP couple was on their way and ready to celebrate their honeymoon! “We felt so spoiled on our honeymoon,” shares Kaylin.
Kaylin advises other couples planning their weddings to “Enjoy every minute of it! The wedding and reception goes by so quick,” she comments. “We cannot wait to get our video in to relive that day over and over again. At the end of the day, everything comes together perfect, so enjoy every moment.”
FEATURING KAYLIN + JULIUS’ WEDDING::
NOW FEATURED VENDOR:
TRAVEL CONSULTANT: Paradise Vacation Escapes
ADDITIONAL CREDITS: GETTING READY LOCATION: NOPSI Hotel | CEREMONY LOCATION: Mater Dolorosa Church | OFFICIANT: Fr. Stephen Dardis | RECEPTION: Arbor Room at New Orleans City Park | BRIDE’S GOWN: Justin Alexander, MaeMe The Bridal Boutique | BRIDESMAIDS’ GOWNS: Revelry | GROOM + GROOMSMENS’ ATTIRE: Tuxedos to Geaux | PHOTOGRAPHY: Michelle Preau | VIDEO: Film Thread Productions | FLOWERS: Something Borrowed Blooms | BAKERY: Haydel’s Bakery | CEREMONY MUSIC: Linden Uter | RECEPTION ENTERTAINMENT + LIGHTING: X-Pert Productions | TRANSPORTATION: Audubon Limousine | HAIR + MAKEUP: Jaci Duhe | CATERER: New Orleans City Park Catering | JEWELER: Ramsey’s | INVITATIONS: Minted