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REAL WEDDING:: Gabrielle Ganci + Taylor Russolino {THE GIFT OF MARRIAGE}

bride and groom with neon wedding sign


Written by: Jessica Burke |  Photos: Brocato Photography Collective

 how they met

“We met at an annual locals event in the city of New Orleans, the Running of the Bulls in July of 2012, n event where many locals take to the streets of Bourbon wearing all white, beginning bright and early, and bouncing from bar to bar throughout the day” says Gabrielle. “The main task that day is trying to avoid the ruthless women on roller skates (taking the place of the Bulls) whose job it is to smack you with an oversized wiffle ball bat. Whether it was locking eyes from 30 feet away, or stumbling into one another at the bar, we’re both slightly unsure. What we do know is it was love at first sight that day. 

Our first real date was just a couple hours after we initially met. That afternoon we hopped aboard a New Orleans favorite, The Natchez, for a delightful ride up and down the Mississippi River. The rest is history! Boarding the Steamboat Natchez, they take a photo and give you a ticket to retrieve at a later time online. At the end of the night, Taylor said, “You’re gonna want to keep that, I promise.” Being the sentimental person I am who loves to keep pictures, festival bands, tickets etc, I kept it just in case! We didn’t end up dating until a year later but was thankful I did keep not only the photo ticket but the boat ticket as well.”

 the proposal

“Gabby and I both have a fond love for the Sunset, especially the ones out here in California,” shares Taylor. “Its arguably our favorite thing to do…so for me, it was a no brainer when this potential moment presented itself. In the Newport Harbor you often see an abundance of electric powered boats called “Duffys”. On Wednesday, August 14, 2019, I had rented two of these so called “Duffy boats”, one for Gabby and I, and the other for our photographer friend, some family, friends, and our favorite Golden Retriever, Sunny. About an hour before sunset we set out for our casual Wednesday evening Harbor cruise. Per usual, Gabby came perfectly prepared for our little Duffy boat cruise date. Creating this beautiful romantic setting with a cheese board plus sushi, flowers, while also spilling red wine all over her jeans, it was absolutely perfect setting for my proposal.

As we cruised the harbor, I was discreetly trying to stay in communication with those aboard the other boat so that when our coordinates matched, I knew to be ready! With the sun finally setting, we soon came around a bend in the harbor. At that point, I knew it was go time. I could see the other boat quickly approaching and knew it was about to go down! I was so ready! As both boats were approaching one another abruptly, I got down on one knee and asked the love of my life to be mine for forever! She said Yes! With so many emotions, boats colliding, a barking dog, and tears of joy, happiness, surprise, and love, it was absolutely perfect! It was a beautiful sunset with an even more beautiful moment!”

wedding rings

the wedding ceremony

For Taylor “watching Gabby walk down the aisle was easily my most favorite part of the day.” Gabby, too, loved the ceremony. “The anticipation of opening the church doors and awaiting Taylor’s face/emotions was amazing!” she shares. “I couldn’t keep myself together. The tears were instantly rolling down my face! To see Taylors huge smile and eyes filled with tears at the end of the aisle was incredible yet so warm all at the same time! We had waited so long for this moment and to look back at all the guests sitting in the pews there to witness, support and love us was just incredible!”

our lady of good counsel wedding ceremony

our lady of good counsel wedding ceremony
Our Lady of Good Counsel in New Orleans

our lady of good counsel wedding ceremony

our lady of good counsel wedding ceremony

the groom’s cake

“We were originally supposed to get married on Taylor’s birthday (05/23/2020) and we had chose to have his favorite cake as his grooms cake (layered Funfetti and cookie cake) which would also be his “birthday cake” since it was his birthday and he felt like I was giving him the best birthday present ever – the gift of marriage! I envisioned our original wedding as our epic birthday celebration/wedding! Although we had to postpone and ended up getting married a year later, we decided to keep his groom’s cake the same.”

Funfetti and Cookie Cake Groom's Cake

wedding champagne toast

wedding cake

a family tradition

In memory of Taylor’s Mimi (who owned her own dancing school) and to continue a family tradition, all the women at the reception lined up and did a kick dance to Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York.”

New York, New York dance

the most important things

“The best things in life are truly worth waiting for!” says Gabby. “One of my favorite scriptures from Corinthians, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy”, is so fitting to our journey. We were able to experience something together as a couple that most people will never experience in their life time! We survived a global pandemic together. Despite the career and life changes due to COVID-19, we also got through wedding planning and replanning multiple times together. It was a true testament to our love and to our marriage. Not only did we wait 7 years before being engaged but we also had to wait another year from our original wedding date 05/23/2020 to get married. As much as we wanted to be get married and have the big wedding celebration like all of our other friends had, we realized that wasn’t what was most important. We didn’t envy those other couples because we were patient and we trusted in God’s plan for US. It was one of the best feelings knowing no matter what happened or came our way we had each other’s unconditional love and support.”

confetti wedding exit





CATERER: Toulouse Gourmet Catering


GETTING READY LOCATION: Windsor Court Hotel | CEREMONY LOCATION: Our Lady of Good Counsel Church | OFFICIANT: Friar Mariano Veliz O.P. | BRIDE’S GOWN: Wtoo by Watters (Town & Country) | BRIDESMAIDS’ GOWNS: BHLDN, Anthropologie, FreePeople, Needle & Thread, Lipsy, ASOS, Monique Lhuillier | GROOM/GROOMSMENS’ ATTIRE: Rome’s Tuxedos | PHOTOGRAPHY: Brocato Photography Collective | VIDEO: Bride Film | FLORIST: Moonbeam Fleurs | BAKERY: Barbara The Cake Lady | CEREMONY MUSIC: Brian Morgan (organ), Kate Abreo (vocals) | RECEPTION ENTERTAINMENT: Peyton Falgoust Band | TRANSPORTATION: Riculfy Livery | HAIR: A NOLA Bride | MAKEUP: Melanie Make Up | TRAVEL AGENT: Jennifer Elliott | WEDDING PLANNER: InNola Events & Design | JEWELER: Greg Raymond | INVITATIONS: Minted



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