Classy black & white wedding at New Orleans Museum of Fine Art has timeless décor, all white floral arrangements, and a romantic outdoor ceremony.
James knew Jara was “the one” when they first met while waiting for an elevator at a teen conference. Their spontaneous meeting sparked an undeniable connection; however, their love story didn’t quite start there. College and new jobs soon took them to different states and places around the globe. They left lines of communication open, messaging each other sporadically over the years, but they never seemed to be in the same place at the same time.
Then, one day, fate intervened. Jara realized she’d be working in DC for a month at Howard University Hospital and she let James know she’d be in the area. Of course, he was thrilled to possibly see Jara again! In the fall of 2016, they finally reconnected – and the rest is history!
As they celebrate their love today, James speaks lovingly of his wife, saying: “A life partner is exactly what you want because marriage is a partnership and you want your teammate to be the perfect match; one you can love, respect, and build with. Jara is exactly that, “My Queen”.
Keep reading below for more details from their classy black and white wedding! (Featured in our Fall/Winter 2021 Magazine).
- Couple: Mr. James Willie Poindexter III & Dr. Jara Alexa Crear Poindexter
- Location of Wedding: New Orleans Museum of Art
- Wedding Date: May 30, 2021
- Wedding flowers: We had beautiful all white very lush flowers. Our wedding arch overlooked the water and was by far a show stopping piece. The indoor hanging florals flanked our bridal party table was a great addition to provide a grand feel.
- Favorite item on menu: Corn and crab bisque
- Bridesmaids/groomsmen gifts:
- Bridesmaids Gift: The bridesmaids received all their glam from the mother of the bride including their jewelry, shoes, robes, bags, and a black second look gown for the reception portion of the ceremony. The bridesmaids wore pink dresses for the ceremony and changed into the black gown to pose for the reception
- Groomsmen Gift: Fashionable Cane (thoughts behind the gift idea, men always want to have a cool side and be a ladies man; the fashionable cane is a symbol of a guys coolness but a real man when he finds his true love has to know when to put his cane down and let go of being “a ladies man” because his true love is all the woman he’ll ever need).
- First dance song: “Love Ballad” by L.T.D. ft. Jeffrey Osborne – Bridal Party Flash Mob Dance – “Suavemente” by Elvis Crespo – Parent Dance – “If This World Were Mine” by Cheryl Lynn ft. Luther Vandross
- Advice for brides: One of my patients told me about the week before my wedding that many things may not go as planned, but nothing can go wrong. Wedding planning, especially during covid, can be incredibly stressful and full of unexpected challenges. Try to have patience with those on your team and try to be flexible when possible. You may fall in love with one design plan and then find you must change venues, or photographers, or even your wedding date. In the end, each change is part of a greater plan and every stressful moment pales in comparison to the joy of the day you say, “I do.”
How they met…
Jara and James first met at the end of their senior year of high school at a Jack & Jill teen conference while waiting for the elevator. In that moment, James was star-struck. He thought she was the prettiest woman he had ever see and quickly introduced himself. Though their love story didn’t start there, that moment was the beginning of their story.
After high school, Jara went on to attend Brown University while James attended Howard University. During their time in college James would always reach out to Jara and invite her to parties he was hosting. While she never attended these, she always replied to him, leaving lines of communication open.
Once they both graduated and began their professional careers, Jara let James know she would be in DC for a month working at the Howard University Hospital as she was preparing to graduate from med school and gearing up for residency training in the field of Ophthalmology. Of course, James was excited to potentially see Jara again!
FInally, in the fall of 2016, the pair reconnected at a party (and it was magical!). James looked at Jara the same way he looked at her the first time they met when he was 17. They were like magnets and fell in love instantly.
Their proposal story…
James decided to propose to Jara on her 30th birthday on November 27, 2019. James planned a surprise birthday party for Jara. He was able to pull together her close family and friends from preschool to medical school, along with his own friends and family for the special occasion.
Early in 2019 James knew he wanted to propose to Jara, and he asked both of Jara’s parents for their blessing on Juneteenth 2019 and they both said yes. James knew Jara’s actual birthday was the day before Thanksgiving, a Wednesday, so he planned accordingly and got friends and family involved.
The proposal started like a regular surprise birthday party, but little did Jara know that she would be surprised twice. The room was filled with love, all Jara’s family & friends surprised her by smiling and announcing ‘Happy Birthday’ upon her arrival. Later in the night James’ second surprise for Jara started flawlessly with 29 different friends & family members reading a statement that was specially placed on 29 different bottles of champagne. Each bottle of champagne had a different quote expressing James’s love for Jara. After 29 statements were read, James held the 30th bottle and expressed his love for and happiness with Jara and asked her to marry him! She said yes with tears of elation!
How they knew they found “the one”…
James knew Jara was the one when he first met her back in High School.
“The way she looked and carried herself was like an angel. When we reconnected in our adult ages around 26, Jara’s spirit captivated me, and I knew I was in love based on the way we both worked well together. A life partner is exactly what you want because marriage is a partnership and you want your teammate to be the perfect match; one you can love, respect, and build with. Jara is exactly that, “My Queen”.”
Jaraknew James was “the one” after watching him deal with adversity.
“James is a mini-cooper fan and owned a prized green mini convertible when we first began to date. He jokes that his mini cooper is what won my interest in the first place. During my fourth year of medical school while visiting James one weekend we got into a motor vehicle accident on the interstate and totaled his car. Mortified, James instantly offered to buy me an Uber to the airport so that I would not miss my flight to Michigan for a residency interview. He planned to then sit on the side of the interstate by himself awaiting a tow truck. I quickly looked up the flight schedule for the remainder of the day and saw that I was able to book an evening flight leaving at 8:00pm. Instead of leaving him we spent the morning waiting for the tow truck and then had a late lunch at Lauriol Plaza, which is now one of my favorite restaurants.”
The couple incorporated a Traditional Money Dance into their wedding.
Jara explains, “James is a member of Knight’s Fraternity Inc. with several brothers from countries across the African continent. It is traditional to spray money on the newlywed couple at the wedding, to symbolize the wealth and prosperity that awaits the new couple.”
They also had a 2nd Line celebration at the end of the night to represent Jara’s New Orleans roots and culture.
Their overall wedding style was Black and white formal.
Set at the historic New Orleans Museum of Fine art, their “goal was to create a timeless look and feel for the wedding celebration which would last a lifetime with memories and moments to match.”
The museum was “…the perfect backdrop for the fresh all white florals, the beautiful greenery of [their] outdoor ceremony, and coupled with [a] grand staircase.”
Wedding dress & favorite wedding accessory…
Jara’s wedding dress was a custom made Marleigh dress of the Galia Lahav Couture collection.
Special features included “…a detachable train which was removed following the wedding ceremony to allow dancing during the reception.”
She complimented the details of her gown with a “custom-made Swarovski headpiece… designed by Bridal Styles Boutique.”
Best wedding day memory…
For James, his best wedding day memory was seeing Jara smiling all night.
Jara’s favorite memory was “enjoying watching the photographers capture chocolate pom Graham’s attention for wedding photographs which came out amazing.”
Reception space & décor…
Advice for other engaged couples…
Jara and James would advice other couples to find a wedding planner that “understands both of you all, one who understands the budget, and knows how to get the best out of your constraints and goals for the wedding.”
Together, they admit: “It is a process to design an amazing wedding, but it is nothing to be afraid of if you have a wedding planner who is prepared to meet the challenge and is there to ensure you all have the best day possible.”
Looking for more classy black & white wedding inspiration?
- Photography: Shagari Gerard, Shagari Gerard Photography
- Event Planner & Designer: Delia King, Lavishly Chic Designs Events + Weddings
- Bride’s Dress: Galia Lahav
- Bridal Salon: Roma Sposa
- Bride’s Headpiece And/Or Veil: Bridal Styles Boutique
- Bride’s Shoes: Gianni Bini
- Bridesmaids Dresses: Stallion Asoebi
- Cakes/Desserts: The Royal Cakery
- Catering: Sel Catering
- Ceremony Venue: New Orleans Museum Of Art Sculpture Garden
- Entertainment: Dj Tay Powers, Dj Young Streetz, Jae Murphy,
- Brass Band: Young Fellaz Brass Band
- Florals: Nola Flora
- Groom’s Attire: Garcon Couture
- Groom’s Stylist: Ijay Sanchez
- Groomsmen Attire: Tailor Made Tate
- Groomsmen Stylist: Bushelers Baltimore
- Hair: Christi Pallagao
- Lighting: Crystal Floral & Decor
- Linens: Element
- Makeup: Arjia Thomas & Navish Hill
- Reception Venue: New Orleans Museum Of Art
- Rentals: Crystal Floral & Décor & Element
- Stationery: Krishna Handmade
- Videography: Kewe Ukpolo & Christian Foster, Timeless Weddings Nola
- Prep Location: International House Hotel
- Photobooth: 24k Photobooth
- Floral Wall: The Modern Debutante
- Transportation: Celebrity Limousines
- Officiant: Kevin Peterman