Are you ready for a sweet Washington DC wedding engagement session? As an American University alum, this couple holds a special place in my heart! Fellow AU alums Ellie and Colin spent a romantic afternoon in Georgetown with Jennifer Ling Photography who, lucky for us, captured all the sweet moments that will melt your heart this morning! Their day ended at the Lincoln Memroial where these college sweethearts spent many date nights—and where Colin proposed!
You know that we love celebrating the Washington DC area when it comes to fun wedding ideas—especially when there are free printables involved. Today we’re putting a local spin on a creative guest book that we’re all familiar with. Thumbprint wedding guest books are super fun and can double as a work of art in your new love nest. The fingerprint “balloons” in the sky will help the city fly! You can even customize our free printable Washington DC skyline guest book and free printable Baltimore skyline guest book with your names and wedding date. I can’t get over how cute these turned out. It’s all in the details, folks!
Our printable city skyline wedding guest books are 11” x 17.” Open the document and personalize it with your names and wedding date using the Adobe Acrobat form. Print it! I uploaded the file to Staples and picked it up the next day for just a little over a $1. You have the options of submitting the document online directly, or saving it on a flash drive and bringing it into the store.
Display your guest book at your reception (or other wedding related event!) with colorful ink pads for guests to use. Have them sign their names on their “balloon,” or just leave it as is. You can also display our printable fingerprint guest book instructions (sized to fit a 5” x7” picture frame!) to give guests a better idea of how to “sign” your book!
There’s nothing I love more than timeless wedding details, and a monogram is a one of them! It’s an easy way to personalize your wedding that will stand the test of time with a touch of preppy perfection. From the day-of stationery to the bride’s attire, here are some of our favorite wedding ideas to use your monogram or initials on your big day!
A wedding out-of-town bag is a fun and hospitable way to welcome guests to your wedding weekend festivities. They can be as simple as a bag with a homemade cookie and bottled water, or jam-packed and filled to the brim with your favorite goodies! (Don’t miss our past posts on what to include in a Washington DC wedding welcome bag, a Maryland wedding welcome bag, and a Virginia wedding welcome bag!) But, of course, there’s a little more to just throwing together some items—and we’ve got a little advice to share! Today, Meg, owner of Welcome To My Wedding, a wedding welcome bag packing service company here in the DC area, is here share some do’s and don’t for creating welcome bags! On that note, take it away, Meg…
Welcome bags can be a fun pre-wedding project to welcome your out-of-town guests; however, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with creating bags right before your big day and to end up with bags that aren’t exactly what you wanted. Here are some of my do’s and don’ts to make the process fun and easy!
DO include substantial snacks with protein instead of just sugary treats. Guests will always appreciate having something extra to eat whether it’s after a long day of travel or the day of the wedding itself.
DON’T forget water! Water is always a scarce commodity in hotel rooms and something that everyone appreciates so I recommend two bottles in every bag. If you want to make it fun, you can get personalized bottles with your names and wedding colors.
DO think about how you arrange items in the bag itself. It’s easy for smaller items to get lost if they aren’t attached to something else. For example, attach two packs of Advil to a water bottle with double-sided tape.
DON’T use cheap bags or other containers. Cheaper paper bags will rip and break easily once you add the weight of snacks and water. Nicer bags cost more but also ensure that the bag isn’t falling apart when your guest receives it and gives them the added bonus of having something to carry extra items in the day of the wedding. Check out Bag and Bows online for bags and tissue.
DO plan ahead about when you will make the bags and enlist the help of friends and family to make it fun and go more quickly. To make the process more efficient, try using an assembly line method!
DON’T forget to let the hotel know that you will be leaving welcome bags to be given out to your guests. Contact hotels ahead of time so they know they will need to store bags especially if there are several guests staying at one hotel. Also bring a list with each guest’s name who has booked a hotel room along with how many bags they get, especially if you want to give an extra bag to a room with a family or if a guest has booked more than one room. This will make it easier for hotels to hand out the bags correctly as your guests arrive.
DO have fun and unleash your creativity! Welcome bags can be fun to create but only when you are excited about them. If making the bags is just going to overwhelm you then skip them entirely or only make bags for guests staying at hotels where you have room blocks and don’t worry about dropping off single bags around the city. Welcome bags are a great extra but not an essential!
A big, big thank you to Meg for sharing all this great advice! If you need help in creating and putting together welcome bags for your DC-area wedding, be sure to check out Welcome To My Wedding.
You know what I love? A couple who can craft up pretty DIY wedding details, all with the help of their nearest and dearest, of course! Meagan and Chris’s wedding in Washington DC turned up the country charm for their reception, planned by AmandaLynn Events, with DIY, rustic-inspired décor and details at the stunning St. Francis Hall. (Be sure to check out their traditional wedding ceremony first!) Mischa Bolton Photography was on hand to capture their day that’s chock-full of sweet moments!
From Meagan: My vision was country chic, but more modern than vintage. I wanted to include lots of burlap, wooden crates, mason jars, lace, chalkboards, and blush pink!
St. Francis Hall is an amazing venue! The gardens are stunning for pictures. It is truly a hidden gem of DC!
I was a very DIY bride with help from my parents, maids, and wedding planner! All of the wooden crate centerpieces were made by my father. The mason jars, chalkboard signs, favors, dessert table signs, bar signs, etc. were decorated and designed by me.
Meagan’s wedding planning advice for other DC-area couples:
Hire a wedding planner, especially if your wedding is heavy on the DIY details. All of our accent decor and dessert table items were brought from home, and without Amanda, my vision and detail oriented plans would have fallen through!
Thank you so much Meagan and Chris for sharing your wedding reception with us! The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:
I’m totally head over heels in love with today’s wedding in Maryland. This country chic masterpiece is everything my pink blush-loving heart desires with an extra dose of rustic charm! Throw in some stunning images from Mischa Bolton Photography and a wedding all perfectly planned by AmandaLynn Events, and you’re left with a traditional wedding that will have you smiling all morning long. Be sure to join us later this morning to see their wedding reception filled to the brim with rustic DIY details!
Thank you so much Meagan and Chris for sharing your wedding ceremony with us! Be sure to come back later this morning to see their reception. The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:
From Leslie: The vibe of Kirkland Manor set the tone for the other wedding details, both big and small. We focused on simple yet elegant. Our colors were ivory and cranberry, which coordinated well with the fall colors.
I made table number holders out of wine corks, and decorated over 100 mason jars with lace and burlap for the centerpieces.
Everything came together just as we had imagined, and it was an awesome night! The band definitely made it a fun night for everyone though!
Leslie’s wedding planning advice for other DC-area couples:
I would just suggest, from the beginning stages of planning, identifying those things that are most important to you as a couple and individually, so you can work from there and are on the same page.
Thank you so much Leslie and Adam for sharing your wedding reception with us! The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:
Fall may still officially be a few weeks away, but that doesn’t mean we can’t spend all morning soaking in my favorite season with a stunning wedding in St. Michael’s, Maryland. Classic meets elegance in Leslie and Adam’s autumn affair, beautifully captured by Rebekah J. Murray Photography. The rich autumn hues, the breathtaking waterfront scenery—fall can’t come soon enough. And can we discuss how amazing the back of Leslie’s dress is? I can’t get enough. Don’t forget to come back later this morning to see their tented reception on the water!
From Leslie: We wanted something simple and elegant – or, more accurately I did and Adam went along with it! – but we both envisioned having a big party.
Kirkland Manor was the first venue we looked at, and we fell in love with it right away. It’s a beautiful, elegant setting, but we could also imagine all of our family and friends casually hanging out there for pre- and post- wedding festivities. Some of our family and close friends who were in our wedding party were able to stay with us at the Manor, which made it even more special.
Thank you so much Leslie and Adam for sharing your wedding ceremony with us! Be sure to come back later this morning to see their reception. The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:
Good morning DC area wedding lovers! Are you ready to spend another Sunday morning with one of our awesome sponsors? Timmester Photography is a full service wedding photography company. Owner Tracy Timmester loves happy, colorful and creative wedding photography. Timmester Photography wants your wedding pictures to reflect who you are and what your wedding day was all about, and they accomplish that with a friendly and unobtrusive approach. Timmester Photography likes to disappear into the background and anticipate your meaningful moments. They pride themselves on having a connection with their clients and providing them with wedding day pictures that they absolutely love looking at after their big day. For more from Timmester Photography, be sure to check out their website or check out all of their past features on United With Love.
We hope that you’ll check out Timmester Photography as a wedding photographer in the Washington DC area. Join us again next weekend for Sunday brunch with another fantastic supporter of United With Love! We’ll see you back here bright and early Monday morning! If you are interested in joining us for brunch on United With Love, please send us an email.