Happy Wednesday everyone!  This week I’m up in New York attending the National Stationery Show, and while I’m in paper heaven the weather up here has been downright miserable!  Luckily we have this gorgeous wedding from Abby Jiu Photography to inject some sunshine into a wet and cloudy day.  Jennifer and Brandon were married last year at Woodlawn Farm in southern Maryland, with a sweet outdoor ceremony and reception that fuses southern charm with casual elegance.  So pretty!

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From Jennifer: Brandon and I knew we wanted to have an outdoor wedding by the water in a location that was small, so that our guests could really feel as though they were a part of something special.  We wanted to mix a classy and casual theme together, so Brandon and his groomsmen wore lighter colored suits.  Although we are city people at heart, we had some very romantic vacations together in Charleston, South Carolina and Woodlawn Farm gave us a feeling that was reminiscent of Charleston.

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My stepfather was the officiant for our wedding ceremony, which meant so much to the both of us.  He’s been an important part of my life since I was 9, and I was so happy he decided to officiate our marriage.  We also read The Yueh-Fu to each other (I want to be your friend for ever and ever, when the hills are flat and the rivers are all dry, when the trees blossom in winter and the snow falls in summer, when heaven and earth mix – not til then will I part from you).

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We used local vendors as much as possible to cut down on costs and discussed with each other from the beginning things that were important to us.  We were ok with saving money in some areas, like the invitations, so that allowed us to spend more towards food and other areas that we felt were more important.  Also, look for sample sales for wedding dresses!  I got my dress from a local vendor (It’s All About the Dress) during a sample sale and got it for half off!

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Food was very important to us!  Brandon and I are very particular about food and wanted our guests to enjoy everything.  We kept our rehearsal dinner low-key with some excellent southern barbeque, but went more formal with our wedding dinner, offering filet mignon and crabcakes as well as passed hors d’oeuvres. We wanted each guest to really enjoy everything.  We also offered a signature cocktail, which was sweet tea vodka with lemonade, a drink we discovered while vacationing in Charleston.  Another priority for us was the comfort of our guests.  We made sure transportation was provided, and that the DJ played music that our friends and grandparents could dance to!

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One of my favorite memories from the wedding is our first dance together as husband and wife. We danced to Come Rain or Come Shine by Ray Charles.

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The following Washington, DC area wedding vendors contributed to Jennifer and Brandon’s wedding:

Wedding Venue: Woodlawn Farm
Photography: Abby Jiu Photography
DJ: Shubrooks Entertainment
Rehearsal Dinner: Smokey Joe’s BBQ
Wedding Attire: Allure Bridals from It’s All About the Dress (202-546-7682)

Don’t forget to visit our vendor guide for more fabulous Washington, DC area wedding professionals or our real wedding gallery for more beautiful Washington, DC area weddings!

Photo Credits: Abby Jiu Photography

*  Abby Jiu Photography is one of our fabulous sponsors.  For information on our editorial policies, please click here.

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