Unique food presentations and incorporating the grooms Belgian roots into the wedding were top priorities when Amanda and Klaas planned their DAR ceremony and reception. The wedding was catered by their family friend and Top Chef contestant Bart Vanadele, so you know was a culinary dream! From the unique appetizers of seafood pushups and pumpkin soup to a colorful lobster salad complete with rose petals, guests never went hungry for a second. The delicious finale came in the form of a wedding dessert bar complete with tubes of creme brulee, chocolate mousse, and macarons surrounded a special cake and, of course, a belgian waffle bar to tie in Klaas’ family heritage. We loved how the couple infused a soft color story of peach, muted greens, and pops of burgundy to accent the beautiful architecture of DAR’s O’Byrne Gallery and a subtle nod to the upcoming fall weather approaching their wedding date. A special thank you to Alicia Lacey Photography for sharing this quintessential DC Real Wedding with us!

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From the Couple:Our main priority was to provide an intimate ceremony and reception that made our guests feel comfortable while building a truly celebratory atmosphere. For those reasons, we focused on finding venues flexible to both of these goals.

We chose DAR O’Byrne Gallery because of it’s cozy but elegant indoor setting and fun outdoor portico for dancing. We also wanted the wedding to reflect “us” and our background. We graduated at DAR, which is just blocks from where we met at Johns Hopkins SAIS. It was the perfect fit! Similarly, we held our ceremony at St. Matthews Cathedral in Dupont because we were parishioners there during graduate school.

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Bringing in Klaas’ Belgian roots was important to us, especially since several of his family members were flying across the Atlantic to attend! We incorporated Klaas’ Belgian background by having the wedding catered by a family friend and Belgian restaurant chef, Bart Vandaele. Appetizers included mini-mushroom waffles and croquettes, while the entree was a Belgian braised short rib and the desserts included creme brulee, chocolate mousse, and waffles- all Belgian specialties.

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Advice from the couple: Do your research, keep an open mind, and personally get to know your vendors. Doing so builds trust and makes for a smoother wedding day. For example, we were so blessed to find Alicia, our photographer, who became an integral part of our wedding planning process and who we now consider a friend. Try not to leave any to-do’s for the week of your wedding. This may be the only time of your lives where you have all of your friends and family together in one place, so try to spend every minute you can with them. You won’t regret it!

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We really placed a big importance on creating an intimate setting by having our friends and family get to know each other prior to the wedding day. We organized a few events on the week of our wedding for those that came into town early. We all went to a Capitals game, and Klaas’ sisters helped create a social and interactive atmosphere at the rehearsal dinner by mixing our very competitive families, and then playing an Amanda-Klaas trivia game.



Congratulations to Amanda and Klaas, and we wish them years of happiness and love!

The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:

Photography: Alicia Lacey Photography
Stationery: Bella Figura
Floral Designer: Free Spirit Floral
Hair & Makeup Stylist: Modern Bridal Studio
Wedding Dress: Jenny Yoo
Bridesmaid Dresses: Jenny Yoo
Bridal Shoes: Pink Paradox
Reception Venue: Daughters of the American Revolution
Ceremony Venue: Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle
Reception Music: Derek Romanoff
Rentals: Ridgewells
Caterer:Bart Vandaele

Signage: Marrygrams

For more wedding vendors, please visit our Washington DC area wedding vendor guide and for even more amazing local ideas, check out our wedding inspiration galleries and other Washington DC area real weddings.

Photo Credits: Alicia Lacey Photography

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