Happy Lundi Gras!
I'm so thrilled to share this post today! While I've been off traveling it's carnival season back home in New Orleans. I'd been having a teeeeny bit of that FOMO feeling seeing my friends and family celebrating back home, so as any good New Orleanian does, I decided to create my own Mardi Gras celebration just in time for this past weekend's parades.
Today, over on Reese Witherspoon's Draper James blog, I've shared my 'Mardi Gras, Party Gras' party just in time for Lundi Gras! You can take the girl out of New Orleans, but never ever can you take the carnival spirit out of the girl. I hosted this little Mardi Gras brunch for a few of my out of town friends and truly it was glitter filled perfection.
Plus: I relived so many of my favorite New Orleans moments in a series of posts I contributed to with several fabulous New Orleans locals for the DJ blog. If you've never been to New Orleans, trust me, this list will have you booking a flight immediately. See the series here and here!
Read the full Lundi Gras Party post here!
Here's an excerpt from the feature:
Happy Lundi Gras! As in, the Monday before Fat Tuesday—the closing day of the Mardi Gras season. And who better to show us how to make the most of it than Andi Eaton, whose Mardi Gras party ideas guarantee you’ll close Carnival out on a high note?
We first met Andi when we were searching for experts for our Draper James New Orleans Guide (see the guide here and here). Andi’s enviably hip day job is writing and blogging about her many travels, as well as bringing her self-described “modern bohemian” style to fashion brands as a creative director. While her blog and Insta have her everywhere from Nashville to Cali, Andi makes her home in New Orleans, where her colorful and freewheeling (and totally chic) look fits right in.
To close out Mardi Gras, she hosted a low-key “Mardi Gras Party Gras!”
Draper James: For folks outside of NOLA who want to get a little Mardi Gras on while there’s still a little bit of time, what’s a fun and easy way to whip up a celebration at home?
Andi: I’ve been traveling so much this year, so I’m well-versed in having a New Orleans celebration wherever you are. It’s easy! Create a New Orleans inspired playlist—mine has Dr. John, The Meters, and lots of Allen Toussaint songs. Have a king cake shipped in and whip up your best New Orleans cocktail. My must-have king cake is from pastry Chef Lisa White. Lisa’s presently at the Marsh House in Nashville. She created the infamous Salted Caramel & Banana King Cake served at Domenica in New Orleans; it’s completed with a gold leaf decoration that truly makes it fit for royalty! She also created the pastry program at NOLA favorite Willa Jean.
DJ: We love the way you styled your Draper James!
A: I’m a vintage lover and this top and shorts together remind me of something a Southern girl would wear to a sixties-style afternoon lawn party. The whole look is so fun and flirty—what girl doesn’t love pink?
DJ: What’s your personal favorite MG tradition?
A: Waking up with the sun, fueling up with a café au lait, hopping on my bike covered in feathers and glitter, and heading out to catch a coconut at the Zulu parade.
I chatted with Lisa, btw about the cake and her love of Mardi Gras and here's what she had to say!
A: Tell me about this cake?! All the details please!
Lisa White: The king cake ...I had heard about this King Cake competition in NOLA... I think 2009 or 2010 and entered. I of course then went on a tasting spree of all the king cakes at that time! I decided the inspiration would be what would I give to the king of Mardi Gras!
I kind of think of it as all things New Orleans flair: bananas, pecans, rum, brown sugar, caramel, cheese because why not, praline glaze, and gold!
A: What are you doing presently? Obviously we love Willa Jean and the Besh restaurants and everything you do, where are you at the moment?
LW: I am up in Nashville loving life and creating breads & sweets in the The Marsh House Restaurant in the Gulch - I came from New Orleans in December literally right before Christmas.
I have worked for John Besh & Alon Shaya since 2009 and opened Willa Jean with John Besh in 2015.
A: What do you love most about MG?
LW: I personally LOVE Mardi Gras ...a lot! I love the costuming, parading, brass bands, the fantastical use of glitter! My friends would say my favorite is probably wigs ..I have a pretty great wig collections. I truly love the passion and joy of it all!
Thanks for stopping by today you guys. This post was so much fun for me. Hope you all have a beautiful week! Kisses to my friend Keiko for snapping these photos!
p.s. All the decor was provided by Fox Fete! They've got the best in indulgently luxe party supplies. Tell them I sent you!