Now officially declared, the 2014-15 debutante season showcased two recent revels: “Let’s Get this Season Started,” a mom-daughter (with some grandmotherly representation) afternoon party given by Mrs. James Harris Jackson in honor of daughter Isabel Nott Jackson in The Attic at Lucy’s, and that evening’s “La Nuit Etoilee” at the New Orleans Country Club honoring a deb quintet.

A Sidereal Salute

With a thematic nod to the acclaimed painting done in France in 1889 by Vincent Van Gogh (and titled in Dutch, “De sterrennacht”), the deb stars were launched. Known in the English-speaking world as “The Starry Night,” but used under its French name, “La Nuit Etoilee” for the bash, decorative delights were abundant. Bliss lighting in the Country Club’s ballroom, the hallway leading into the band room, and in the tents recreated stars. State-of-the art accent lighting, table overlays with swirl motifs from the painting, and flowers in the colors of blue, gold and yellow used by Van Gogh intrigued the party eye. Among the floral attractions were those in the ballroom, on various mantels, in the formal dining room and on the tables. Thanks tapped Mitch’s Flowers.

Beaming as honorees were Margaret Magee Brown, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Michael James BrownSuzanne and Michael; Margaret Coco Ellis, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Conner Ellis IIIKelly and Bill; Rebecca Buckley Lapeyre, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Charles LapeyreAmy and Chuck; Nicole Elizabeth Weinmann, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert St. George Tucker WeinmannCindy and Robert; and Catherine Turner Worley, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bruce Worley Jr.Cassie and Rob. The debutantes’ names — Margaret, Coco, Becca, Nicole and Catherine — graced the moms’-designed invitation that was letter-pressed by Margaret Jones of Scriptura. The lining featured the Van Gogh painting.

With five honorees, who have extensive families and friends, the party throng was quite full, and parking became a challenge. Pedicabs came to the fore bringing guests from their parked cars to the clubhouse.

Within the Brown brigade were deb grandmothers Mmes. A.J. Schmitt Jr. and John Reid Brown, Betty and Margaret, as well as deb sister Mary Nolan Brown. They were joined by Laura and Daryl Byrd, Lisa and Karl Hoefer, Sara and Tim Scandurro, Virginia and Rob Nelson, Pat Kerr, Connie and Jeff Parker, Dianne and Joe Lowenthal, Linda and Michael Gray, Katie and Gray Stream, Margie and Crichton Brown, Julie and Scott Folse, and Miles and Mary Pollard.

Coco’s three grandparents, Pat and Conner Ellis and Nancy Cowan, and sister Emily Dickson Ellis caught up on the latest of out-of-town friends David Jonathan Howe Jr., Mrs. James Grady and Rebecca Grady, Jack Thompson, Wyn Ponder, Maggie Andrea, Bentley Boldt, Lee Ellen Bryan, Hays Cochran, Emily Flippo, Virginia Lindley, Pauline Marting, Myers McGarry, Meg Pascale, and Jean Turlington.

Enjoying the levity with the Lapeyres were Becca’s Tennessee granddad, Chuck Miller; her siblings, Kathryn and Charles; and kith and kin (some from away) in Suzie Miller Howick, Michael and Hope Shelton, Chas and Meg Torrence, Sara Michal Howick, and, all Lapeyres, Robert and Patti, Philip and Lisa, Andrew and Crickett, and Robert. Also, Jane Bland, Laura and Neel Elliott, Greyson and Tommy Brown, Tom Cowan, and a McCleskey foursome in Bob and Monique, Lizzy, and Jack.

Another attraction for the “Starry” set was the food, particularly the chargrilled oysters, crabmeat imperial bouchees, late-night passed sliders and grilled cheese sandwiches, and desserts. “Merci” for the suite of sweets went to Zoe’s for French pastries and to Lolli’s Chocolates.

Relishing all this excitement were Nicole’s four grandparents, Claire and Bob Howson and Jack and Virginia Weinmann; siblings Bobby and Emily Weinmann; and family and friends. Noted were Jenny and David Willem, Liz and John Burcham, CiCi and Giffen Weinmann, Mary Virginia Weinmann Coffman, Tres and Mills Buchek, Jeff and Sarah Meckstroth, Conrad and Carol Appel, Lisa and John Jeremiah, Jeanne and Gerry Barousse, Wendy and Dane Ciolino, Christopher and Allie Willem, Liz and Terry Creel, Paul Masinter, and Cindy and Eddie Davis.

The Worleys’ social whirl included grandparents Linda and Bruce Worley, deb sister Nancy Worley, and Bill and Mary Hines, the John Crawford Stecks, Knight Worley, Jackie Clarkson, John and Courtney Churchill Crane, Rob and Katherine Saer, Bruce and Libby Hoefer, Paul and Lanier Pursley, Marguerite and Jimmy Kock and daughter Anne, Marion Bright, Gordy Bright, John and Mary Lou Ochsner, and Lock Ochsner.

Adding to all the refulgent revelry was the music. A combo of the Atlanta-based band, Simply Irresistible, performed early on, and then the full ensemble jumped into songful action, letting the dancing crowd show Impressionistic moves. All the while, the honored constellation of Margaret, Coco, Becca, Nicole and Catherine shone bright.

The Season’s ‘Start’

Said Isabel Jackson’s mom, hostess Kitty, “We wanted the debs and their mothers to meet each other at a daytime event before all the festivities began.” She added that they planned to do something different from an afternoon tea party. And so Lucy’s location filled the bill. Provided the food, too, with guacamole as a hit. Joan Farrell cookies, Sweet NOLA cupcakes and Jan Ciolino chocolate bark were further favorites.

The party was encased in a hot pink and orange color scheme with decorations and flowers by the in-attendance Jennifer St. Paul. Pink daisies, orange lilies, white tulips and greens made The Attic into a happy garden. The musical treats came from violinist Harry Hardin and guitarist Scott Perro.

Spotted within the “Start” set were Isabel’s family and friends, and deb-mom duos. There were deb grandmother Isabel Nott McCay, Penny Schwing, Ellie Schwing, Mary Schwing, Mary Ross Berridge, Patsy Mitchell, Mignon Parker, Virginia Legeai, Elizabeth Schwing, Lisa Sinders, Susan Jaubert, Rayne Lykes, the above Wendy Ciolino, Mimi Dossett, Laine Harper, and Mimi Kahle.

Partying as mothers and daughters were Wendy and Scout Beron (and Scout’s grandmother, Winx McCarthy), Paige and Winnie McCarthy, Cindy Weinmann and Nicole, Bev Rafferty with Charlotte and Bebe, Anne Harper and Ellie, Lucy Thomas and Olivia, Wendy Geary and Courtney, Sallye Irvine and Isabel, Kelly Ellis and Coco, and Amy White with mother-in-law Anne White and daughter Summers White. Chatter was ever so lively and kick-the-season-off smiles abounded, especially from Kitty and honoree Isabel Jackson.

Follow this link to see the photos.