For my last two posts of the year, it is truth time. You know that I always promise to keep it real when it comes to planning a wedding in Washington DC. My mission is to show you what is practical and what is possible when it comes to Washington DC area weddings. What is it really like to plan a wedding in DC, Maryland and northern Virginia?? I have a two-part wedding inspiration series today and tomorrow that will knock your wedding planning socks off!


I love my wedding blogger friends, but the truth is that much of the wedding inspiration that you see on other wedding blogs is just not possible here in the DMV. Either the wedding was on a non-humid, perfectly sunny, 80 degree day in the California desert in the middle of winter, which you know is most certainly not the Washington DC area at all. Or, even more common in the wedding blog world, is that the ideas and decor is so amazingly gorgeous, but to replicate that gorgeousness over 12 wedding reception tables at a wedding in the real world is financially impossible. When you see wedding inspiration and styled wedding photos, remember that most times you are only seeing one table or one dessert. To re-create that inspiration for your wedding would be so cost prohibitive that you’ll wish you never would have seen the inspiration in the first place!


I get the frustration that many engaged couples in the Washington DC area feel when trying to plan a wedding. The wedding inspiration floating around Pinterest and wedding blog land is just unhelpful for so many different reasons! I’ve been dreaming about this two part wedding inspiration feature for quite some time. Today, I’m featuring an over-the-top wedding inspiration at a Washington DC wedding venue and then tomorrow I’ll show you how to take this same wedding inspiration and replicate it for a real moderately priced wedding in DC. I went to a team of incredible Washington DC area wedding professionals who know all about how to take inspiration and turn it into reality. This wedding inspiration is industrial, because we have a lot of this around the DMV, and you won’t find much of the big city, urban wedding inspiration on wedding blogs. This wedding inspiration is set inside at a real wedding location, as most DC area wedding venues are inside due to the unpredictable weather around here. And, most importantly, this wedding inspiration is possible in the DMV.


Today, we are featuring got an luxe wedding inspiration photographed by the talented Michelle Lindsay Photography, and designed and executed by Sarah and Whitney at Bella Notte. They came together with incredible floral design from Petal’s Edge to create a romantic industrial chic wedding ideas to inspire you to dream big for your big day! (Don’t forget that we’ve got a paired down version to share with you tomorrow too, so you can create this look on a more reasonable wedding budget!) This wedding inspiration took place at the modern Washington DC wedding venueDock 5 at Union Market, complete with a ballgown-clad bride with picture-perfect hair down and off to the side. Her lush, overgrown organic bridal bouquet with pops of purple is stunning and looks so dramatic with her dress! There’s even a gold and purple wedding cake to match! The details in this wedding inspiration are as grand as they are gorgeous if you want to go all out in your wedding day decor!

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From Whitney of Bella Notte: The raw industrial space in Dock 5 in Union Market DC lends itself equally well to a sleek and clean aesthetic for a wedding, but it inspired us to play with the idea of bringing the feel of a garden wedding indoors and juxtaposing lush botanicals and glam details against this modern backdrop. We wanted to offset the concrete floors and exposed ceilings with a romantic wedding reception table, featuring a garland runner studded with flowers, whimsical linens, accents of gold and modern touches of contemporary calligraphy and ghost chairs. Our wedding color palette featured pops of amethyst and orchid against a backdrop of cream and blush tones, navy and natural greenery with modern gold accents.

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When it came time to create a dream wedding tablescape, the team setup a long, wide grey farmtable for a luxurious feel completing it with a mix of contemporary ghost chairs and velvet upholstered Louis XVI chairs.

From Sara and Whitney: For one wedding reception table, we layered an organza La Tavola King’s Drape linen over a parchment colored base layer for an ethereal feel that mimicked the beautiful Hayley Paige wedding dress the bride wore. Design tip: When using wide, rectangular tables, look for extra wide wide rectangular linens to ensure you get full coverage on all sides of your tables.

Petal’s Edge provided a luxurious runner of greenery, woven with a variety of amethyst, orchid and purple flowers that cascaded down the side of the table to the floor. At each place setting, gold chargers were topped with polka dot dinner plates and accented with gold flatware while place cards with cheerful purple script from Meant to Be Calligraphy added the finishing touch. To complete the table, Petal’s Edge created a focal point above the table by suspending a gold picture frame and vintage gold cups filled with blooms. The wedding day decor look is rich, romantic and even a bit modern. The abundance of florals makes this one fabulously wedding to dream about!

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Thanks, Bella Notte, for your beautiful industrial chic wedding inspirations. Be sure to visit her at Bella Notte and consider them for wedding planning and design in the Washington DC area.

The following Washington DC area wedding vendors contributed to this inspiration:

Photography: Michelle Lindsay Photography
Flowers: Petal’s Edge Floral Design
Location: Dock 5 at Union Market
Planning/Design: Bella Notte
Stationery & Calligraphy: Meant to Be
Cake: Julia Bozzolo’s Distinct Cakes
Rentals: DC Rental
Furniture rentals: AFR Furniture Rental
Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental
Dress: Hayley Paige
Bridal Salon: Lovely Bride DC
Hair & Make up: Alison Harper & Company

Don’t forget to visit our vendor guide for more amazing Washington DC area wedding professionals and our real wedding gallery for tons of stunning Washington DC area weddings!

Photo Credit: Michelle Lindsay Photography

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