Lively Derbes Mansion Wedding

The most memorable weddings and heartfelt photos reflect the one-of-a-kind personalities of the people getting married. Stephanie and Matt are lively, creative people. Their relationship is full of the perfect mix of joyful and tender moments. For their Derbes Mansion wedding, they made sure that the details they chose helped their guests have the most fun possible. Their unforgettable wedding day included creative portraits and a dance party people will talk about for years to come.

A bride and groom sit on the steps of Derbes Mansion wearing sunglasses and making funny faces.

Derbes Mansion

Derbes Mansion, formerly called Benachi House, recently reopened under new management. It’s an ideal place to host a wedding, especially if you have guests from out of town. The large, historic property has several guest rooms and a beautiful outdoor space. Tall windows let in bright natural light in the getting ready spaces. The balcony and porch, with their elegant pillars and iron railings, are great for portraits as well as ceremonies.

A bride's mother fastens her dress.
A man leans around his friend to look in the mirror.
A man puts on a white jacket in an upper room of Derbes Mansion.
A man in a white jacket walks down a tiled staircase.
A bride walks down the exterior stairs at Derbes Mansion on the way to a first look.

Matt and Stephanie had personal reasons for choosing Derbes Mansion as their wedding venue too. Matt is an artist and the owner of Matthew Holdren Design. He makes custom wood pieces with reclaimed wood from Louisiana and around the Mississippi River. You can see his work in chic New Orleans venues including Hotel Peter and Paul and the Elysian Bar, Treehouse, French Toast NOLA, and Derbes Mansion to name a few! His incredible work includes two custom bars that he built for Derbes Mansion. If you get married there, you’ll see Matt’s work at your reception!

A man stands in front of a house sipping a drink.
A man and woman stand side by side on a balcony at Derbes Mansion.
A woman jumps into a man's arms for a kiss.
A man and woman sit on the porch of Derbes Mansion with their dog.
A cat sits under the window.

Speaking of future weddings at Derbes Mansion, I recently learned they plan on putting in a pool. Can you imagine staying for your wedding weekend with your favorite guests and having a pool on site? This wedding venue is going to be next level!

A bride leads a groom up the stairs.
A man and woman pose beside a window in a cream-colored room.
A bride and groom pose on the balcony and front steps of Derbes Mansion.
Two people sit on steps in wedding clothes.

A Loving and Energetic Wedding Day

Together, Matt and Stephanie are pure energy. Matt is so genuine, and his love for Stephanie was palpable throughout the entire day. It was so clear that these two couldn’t wait to be married to each other. Originally from California and New Jersey respectively, Stephanie and Matt (and their aptly named dog Ruffins) call New Orleans home. They’ve spent a lot of time figuring out who they are and what they want, and it made their wedding day all the more amazing.

A bide and her parents walk through an iron gate.
The bride and groom see each other across the aisle.
The groom cries at the altar.
The groom watches the bride walk up the aisle.
A couple smiles as their wedding ceremony starts.

Because there is such a variety of spaces in Derbes Mansion, I was able to create images with interesting compositions. The lighting is great throughout this wedding venue, so I was able to take some creative risks, including portraits in direct light. These can come across as harsh if done wrong, but they turned out beautifully in this case. During the ceremony, the sun hit the front of the house directly. I love the photos from that part of the day with the shadows dancing in the background while Matt and Stephanie are so well lit. The direct light fit Stephanie and Matt’s bold, energetic vibe perfectly.

A man kisses a woman's hand.
A bride throws her head back in laughter during a Derbes Mansion wedding.
The wedding ceremony ends with a first kiss.
A couple embraces after their wedding ceremony ends.
Matt and Stephanie embrace as they smile in the sunlight.

A Fun-filled Reception

When you plan a wedding, ideally your choices reflect what matters most to you. For Matt and Stephanie, what mattered most was being together with their friends and family having a kickass party. All the details of their reception came together for an unforgettable night of drinks and dancing.

Matt and Stephanie stand in front of a blue and yellow house.
A groom jumps in excitement.
The couple kisses as they lift glasses of wine for a toast.
A bride wears a flower crown and drinks a cocktail at Derbes Mansion.
Pink cups sit on a custom wood bar beside ferns.

One of the coolest features of the decor was a projection onto the tent ceiling. It created a tropical party atmosphere on the dance floor. Guests danced throughout the night until the Young Fellaz Brass Band arrived. They led the guests in a second line out to the buses that took everyone to the after party.

A bride laughs while a groom eats cake.
Matt and Stephanie kiss on the dance floor.
Matt and Stephanie lean forward smiling.
Stephanie puts her arm around Matt's shoulder.
Stephanie raises her arm on the dance floor.

Matt and Stephanie’s Derbes Mansion wedding was so perfect because it was so them. Everything about it reflected their personalities and their relationship. I loved documenting all the loving moments, enthusiastic dance moves, and genuine laughter.

A machine projects monstera leaves on the tent ceiling.
Stephanie dances with a friend.
Stephanie and Matt laugh on the dance floor.
Matt sings along to a song.
Matt kisses Stephanie's cheek on the dance floor.

Would you like me to photograph your wedding at Derbes Mansion? Let’s connect! I can’t wait to hear about the celebration you’re dreaming up. 

Thank you to all the vendors who made Matt and Stephanie’s wedding day possible:

Hair and makeup artist: Flawless Bride LLC

DJ: DJ Kerem

Bars: Matthew Holdren Design 

Catering: Elysian Events Catering 

Coordinator: Blue Swan Events 

Venue: Derbes Mansion

Second Line: Young Fellaz Brass Band

Rentals: YUR Event Rentals 

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