Happy Monday, darlings! Today, we have Sarah and Mike’s beautiful backyard Virginia wedding from Sanderson Images. This at-home wedding is as sweet as they come! Intimate and meaningful, every detail dreamt up by this adorable duo is completely personalized. (The bride, Sarah, is a photographer herself as the owner of Blink Photography here in the DC area!) Bella Notte was there to make sure every minute of this intimate and casual affair went off without a hitch! We’ll let the groom tell you more about the inspiration behind their big day…

Virginia Wedding Ceremony Bride Getting Ready

From Mike: As a wedding photographer, Sarah knows the value of high quality images. She is always reminding her clients that the images are the one part of the day that lasts. The food gets eaten, the invitations get recycled, and the dress ends up in the back of the closet. But the photographers capture the day as it was, freezing moments in time that you will never be able to access as sharply again without the images.

Virginia Wedding Ceremony Groom Getting Ready

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In addition, few people think about the fact that you spend more time on your wedding day with your photographer than with anybody else! They are there when you are getting ready, they spend time alone with you during your portraits—they are always there! So choosing a wedding photographer you love is important not just for the quality of the images they capture, but also for the quality of the experience they provide. A photographer who makes you feel comfortable is invaluable.

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Virginia Wedding Ceremony Declaration of Intent

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The first thing we wanted to do was exchange gifts with each other. To get our guests involved in the celebration, we invited people to hold our gifts for us while we explained the meaning behind them. We also each asked two loved ones who had made important contributions to us at different points in our lives to tell a story or give a blessing. By calling on a few of our friends to contribute their words, we managed to pull all of our guests deeper into the ceremony with us.

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We spent a lot of time shaping the part of the ceremony during which we were on the porch together, leading up to our officiant—also a good friend—declaring us married. There was no question that we wanted to speak to each other with our own words, so we decided to give declarations to each other. We also wrote five of our own vows, focused on recognizing the things we loved about partnership and committing to keeping those things alive as well as finding new ways to appreciate and love each other. We decided to exchange the vows during a handfasting ceremony, with a woven cord wrapped around our wrists after each vow until our hands were fasted together.

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Thank you so much Sarah and Mike for sharing your wedding ceremony with us! Come back later this morning to see their reception. The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:

Reception Venue: EatBar
Photography: Sanderson Images
Wedding Planner: Bella Notte
Floral Design: DIY
Bridal Attire: J. Crew
Headpiece: Etsy
Make Up: Platinum Case Makeup
Groom Attire: J. Crew
Catering: Lebanese Taverna
Dessert + Favors: Penny Chocolates

Visit our vendor guide for more fabulous Washington, DC area wedding professionals, our real wedding gallery for more beautiful Washington, DC area weddings!

Photo Credits: Sanderson Images

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