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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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Want to see more? Visit my portfolio page to check out some recent couples and families I've had the privilege to work with.
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