Elegant Indian Wedding Ceremony in Baltimore: Manisha + Narendra

posted by ally

Fall is definitely in the air this morning, so grab your cup of coffee and cozy up to this wedding in Maryland. Manisha and Narendra’s wedding is a cultural beauty rich in color and heavy on the pretty, all captured by Rob Garland Photographers. Think elephant topiaries, lush florals, and intricately beaded wedding attire (custom made in India!). It’s the epitome of multicultural wedding elegance that’s all right here in Baltimore. The happiness that seems to burst straight from your computer screen will leave you smiling all morning long. Make sure to join us later this morning to see more from their elegant wedding reception.

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From Manisha: We tried to maintain traditions from our Indian heritage, while adding our own personal flair and modern twists. It was important to us to have the ceremony and reception in downtown Baltimore, which held special meaning for us since it was the city where we met, and the Renaissance was just blocks from where we actually first met.

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We had a “love story” video that we created a few weeks before the wedding, which played prior to our entrance at the reception.

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Elephants are associated with Indian culture and weddings and are my favorite animal, so I was most excited about the elephant topiaries that sat atop pillars and greeted guests at the wedding (and reception!). This was a “splurge” item for us.

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The color palette for the wedding was a lilac purple, light peach and cream. We incorporated the lilac color into the custom made bridesmaids saris as well as the programs for the wedding ceremony. We were able to incorporate all 3 colors into the flower arrangements and fabric draping of the mandap (wedding canopy under which a Hindu wedding ceremony is performed).

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Instead of bouquets, the bridesmaids carried traditional Indian gold lanterns with candles, which was a nice way of combining traditional with modern. Also, in Hindu weddings, the bride is walked down the aisle by her maternal uncle(s), which we honored. 

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Thank you so much Manisha and Narendra 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:

Venue: Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel
Officiant: Padmanabha S. Joshi
Photography: Rob Garland Photographers
Videography: Villatoro Productions
Bridal Attire: Custom made in India
Hair: Pure Image Hair and Nail Studio
Makeup: Perfect Skin Care by Priti Parikh
Groom’s Attire: Custom made in India
Groom’s Tuexedo: Calvin Klein
Music: BassKick Productions
Catering: Deewan Banquet
Dessert: Kupcakes & Co.

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

Photo Credits: Rob Garland Photographers

Giveaway: Full Service Wedding Planning Package

posted by julianne

Hold onto your seats, DC area wedding lovers, because we have a special – and I mean special – treat for you today! You might remember that this morning Ginger from Gingerwood Creative helped us with some tips for planning a wedding in a short time frame, aka a wedding in 6 months or less. Now, she is back with a wedding planning giveaway for one lucky couple in the Washington DC area. She is giving away a full-service wedding planning package worth over $5,000!

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In keeping with today’s theme of speedy wedding planning, eligible couples must be getting married before January 31st, 2015 in the greater Washington DC area. To enter, simply follow this link and fill out the information.

Sound too good to be true!? I know it is kind of amazing! But, I assure you, it is all true! One lucky couple will be able to work with Gingerwood Creative and pull it all together quickly. If you are just getting started in your wedding planning, or you need help in the final push, this contest is for you! No matter where you are in the process, Gingerwood Creative will help to plan your wedding and guide you through the process.

But hurry, hurry! This contest ends on Friday, October 10, 2014 at noon EST. Remember, follow this link to fill out the information and enter to win a full-service wedding planning package from Gingerwood Creative.

While you are awaiting a winner, be sure to check out Gingerwood Creative’s tips on planning a wedding in a short time frame. You can also find loads of DC area wedding planning advice and lots of inspiration in these featured local, real DMV weddings.

This post is sponsored by Gingerwood Creative.

Tips for Planning a Wedding in a Short Time Frame

posted by julianne

So you want to get married in the Washington DC area, but don’t have a ton of time to plan? Today, we have a few quick wedding planning tips from DC area wedding planner, Ginger, at Gingerwood Creative. (Spoiler alert: Be sure to come back later this morning because we have an awesome giveaway from Ginger!) She has the basics for pulling it all together in short order! But, before we get started, what is considered a “short” wedding planning timeframe in the Washington DC area? When it comes to planning a wedding in DC, Maryland and Virginia most weddings are planned in eight to 12 months. This time frame tends to give couples a good stretch to plan and choose vendors without being too far in advance. Today, we are giving advice for planning a wedding in less than six months. With a short time frame in mind, let’s let Ginger take it away with her fast wedding planning advice…

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Photo Courtesy of Gingerwood Creative

It’s a wonderful luxury to have a few years to plan your wedding. But, what are you to do when you only have a few months – or a few weeks – to get it all done? Here is some advice to help you keep your cool and get to “I do” in record time.

Remember the Planning Basics

With all the excitement, it’s easy to charge ahead without a clear plan. But you’ll feel much more in control along the way if you remember some planning basics.

  • Budget: Start with a strong and realistic budget. It will help you avoid the costly perils of speed planning as the details multiply.

  • Venue: Book your venues right away so you can lock in the date and place and get that information to your other vendors and wedding guests.

  • Be Decisive: After venue, you’ll want to lock down other long-lead time vendors, such as catering. Don’t waffle on these items, as you could miss out on certain dates and waste time. Better to make decisions quickly and move onto the next thing on your to-do list.

  • Be Upfront: Be honest and clear with your vendors about your time frame. For example, it is common for a wedding dress to take 12 weeks to arrive and more for alterations. Be upfront with your suppliers so you don’t waste each other’s time reviewing unrealistic options. Make sure you know which items have time-requirements, like counseling with your officiant or extra processing time for your invitation, so you can start those moving early.

  • Get a Planner: Absolutely consider hiring a wedding planner at whatever level you can afford. He or she can help to guide you through the thicket, take part of the work-load, and help avoid major drama.

Here are a few other tips that can help you to plan your wedding on a shorter time frame:

Be On Trend
Personal style is important, but selecting a rare shade of mauve, for example, as your key color can be a real time-eater. Try sticking to common, easier to find colors. Before you become dead-set on certain colors and motifs, visit stores, talk with your caterer and ask your florist for feedback. They may have something fantastic they are dying to use for an open-minded couple. If you absolutely must incorporate a hard-to-find design element, weave it in through items that will be customized with ink and paint, such as invitations or signage.

Stay Classic
Ah, I love a good quirky detail and it’s so Instagram ready. But, if you feel like you’re forcing it, avoid making desperate choices you’ll regret just because you’re feeling overwhelmed. If you can’t find what you envisioned, go with the classic choice that fits the core of your wedding style. You’ll be happy you did.

Commit Less
Every layer of detail is another contract to sign or item to track down. Focus on two or three big moments or activities, rather than 20 little ones. Also, spending a few more dollars on a venue that is equipped with ‘extras’ that fit your tastes and needs can save you in the long run and do some serious slashing to your to-do list.

Limit the DIY
Here’s a time to get really honest with yourself. Does Etsy know you for your crafting or your credit card? Even seemingly small projects can take forever. So, keep the DIY simple or focused to areas where you know it’s most important to you.

Be Flexible
Many wedding professionals book out far, far in advance. If you’re adamant on certain vendors, consider avoiding the prime-time Saturday night; even a Saturday afternoon can make all the difference. If choice #1 is booked, ask if they can recommend some great, like-minded professionals, especially those newly independent who may be more available.

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Thank you so much, Ginger! This is such great advice on how to get all the wedding planning done in a flash! If you are looking for a wedding planner and/or event stylist in the DC area, be sure to check out Ginger at Gingerwood Creative. And, do NOT forget to come back later this morning for a very special giveaway from Gingerwood Creative. You won’t want to miss this!

Are you looking for more local wedding ideas and advice? Be sure to look through our DC area wedding idea galleries and find wedding advice from local DC area pros. If that isn’t enough, check out our collection of local DMV weddings from the real world and the best DC area wedding vendors who make it all happen.

Elegant and Rustic Wedding Reception in Baltimore: Brittany + Greg

posted by ally

Welcome back to Brittany and Greg’s rustic wedding in Baltimore that’s drenched in autumn wedding inspiration. (Before you go on, make sure you check out their traditional Catholic wedding ceremony first!) When I saw the floral décor of this wedding, my heart sped up the pace instantly. That oversized wreath above the dance floor is a dream come true. I dare you not to fall in love with these photos from Jennifer McMenamin Photography . And of course, I love their little touches of Baltimore throughout their day from the Natty Boh koozies to the sweet treats from a local bakery. Love, love, love!

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From Brittany: Our main priority was for everyone to have a fun! We wanted to make sure everyone was up and dancing so the band was something we spent a lot of time deciding on.

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A lot of our friends and family had never been to Baltimore, so we wanted to celebrate the city! We had Natty Boh themed save the dates and Old Bay favors. We even had an array of desserts from Hoehn’s Bakery in Highlandtown for everyone to enjoy.

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One of the best moments was seeing the ballroom for the first time. It was amazing to see how all of our planning had finally come together.

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Brittany’s wedding planning advice for other DC-area couples:

Being from out-of-town it was hard to not be as hands on as we would have like. Finding wedding professionals to work with who we trusted and were comfortable with was a necessity.

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Thank you so much Brittany and Greg for sharing your wedding reception with us! The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:

Ceremony Venue: Sacred Heart of Jesus
Officiant: Fr. Jerry Knapp
Reception Venue: Four Seasons Baltimore
Photographer: Jennifer McMenamin Photography
Wedding Planner: Stephanie Bradshaw
Floral Design: Fleur de Lis Florist
Bridal Attire: Nicole Miller from Lovely Bride
Veil: Francesca’s Bridal
Jewelry: Kramer Brps.
Hair and Makeup: Up Do’s for I Do’s
Bridesmaids’ Attire: Bill Levkoff
Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Men’s Wearhouse
Ceremony Music: String Trio
Reception Music: Jukeboxx
Cake: SugarBakers Cakes
Desserts: Hoehn’s Bakery
Cocktail Hour Music: New Legacy Jazz Trio

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

Photo Credits: Jennifer McMenamin Photography

Elegant and Rustic Wedding Ceremony in Baltimore: Brittany + Greg

posted by ally

This elegant rustic wedding in Baltimore? It’s everything that a Monday morning deserves. From the autumn color palette with pops of peach to the Baltimore-inspired details and modern stationery, this fête from Jennifer McMenamin Photography is at the top of my love list for fall weddings for sure! It’s impossible to scroll through this traditional ceremony without a grin from ear to ear! Make sure to check back later today to see their reception with the most stunning floral design.

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From Brittany: We wanted our wedding to be classic but not stuffy. Living in New York, we wanted a city wedding but with rustic touches and a laid-back feel!

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Thank you so much Brittany and Greg 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:

Ceremony Venue: Sacred Heart of Jesus
Officiant: Fr. Jerry Knapp
Reception Venue: Four Seasons Baltimore
Photographer: Jennifer McMenamin Photography
Wedding Planner: Stephanie Bradshaw
Floral Design: Fleur de Lis Florist
Bridal Attire: Nicole Miller from Lovely Bride
Veil: Francesca’s Bridal
Jewelry: Kramer Brps.
Hair and Makeup: Up Do’s for I Do’s
Bridesmaids’ Attire: Bill Levkoff
Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Men’s Wearhouse
Ceremony Music: String Trio
Reception Music: Jukeboxx
Cake: SugarBakers Cakes
Desserts: Hoehn’s Bakery
Cocktail Hour Music: New Legacy Jazz Trio

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

Photo Credits: Jennifer McMenamin Photography

Sunday Brunch: The Oatlands Historic Mansion

posted by kate

Good morning DC area wedding lovers! Are you ready to spend another Sunday morning with one of our awesome sponsors? The Oatlands, a historic mansion in Leesburg, VA, with gorgeous formal terraced gardens offers a beautiful venue for your special wedding day. Imagine your wedding party processing through a picturesque setting as musicians play in a garden teahouse. After you exchange your vows, guests can enjoy cocktails in the garden or visit the mansion. Dinner and dancing can take place under an elegant tent on the mansion’s front lawn. How fairy tale perfect does all that sound?! For more from The Oatlands, be sure to visit their website or check out all of their past features on United With Love.

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We hope that you’ll check out The Oatlands for as a wedding venue 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.

Happy Friday!

posted by ally

Did you have a good week? More importantly, do you have any fun weekend plans? I’m not quite sure what I’m going to be up to this weekend, but I am looking forward to the nice autumnn weather that is finally here! Whatever you do, I hope that you and yours have an awesome weekend! We’ll see you back here Sunday!

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Some links for your weekend…

…and what you missed right here!

Photo Credit: Daniel McGarrity Photography

Cherry Blossom Wedding Engagement Session: Jillian + Cory

posted by kate

If you’re not too thrilled about the cooler temperatures the upcoming months bring, then look no further than this engagement session in Washington DC. Though there’s always the inevitable crowds at during peak bloom of cherry blossom season, Jillian and Cory, along with photographer Olivia Jacob Photography, were able to find many a quiet and intimate spot to capture some beautiful moments with those iconic blooms. (If you are looking for more cherry blossom engagement session ideas or ways to incorporate the cherry blossoms into your wedding, check out these past posts.) After their sunrise shoot at the Tidal Basin, they headed to Dupont Circle, where the couple currently resides, for some home-turf street shot!

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Congratulations Jillian and Cory!

Looking for more on engagements? Check out other local DC-area engagement photography sessions, or find out what to wear for your engagement and how to do your make-up for your engagement session!

Photo Credits: Olivia Jacob Photography

Inspiration and Ideas: Bridesmaid Gifts

posted by ally

You’ve chosen the perfect bridesmaids and now it’s time to find them the perfect gift! These are your nearest and dearest standing by your side (other than your partner!) when you exchange your vows—what better way to show your love and appreciation for their support than with a creative and personal gift. We gathered a few ideas and inspiration that your girls are sure to love!

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Photo Credit: Kirsten Marie Photography from Modern Wedding in Washington DC

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  • Candy isn't just for the kiddos ya know! This quirky Baltimore wedding featured a Halloween candy bar + pumpkin stamped kraft favor bags! Photo Credit: Jennifer McMenamin Photography

    via Quirky Baltimore Wedding

  • Baltimore poet Edgar Allen Poe is the inspiration behind these Halloween inspired weddings ideas. Loving the gothic elegance of it all! Photo Credit: Love by Serena

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  • There are no rules when it comes to Halloween weddings. A great example are these elegant Halloween wedding ideas inspired by the movie "Hocus Pocus" that define spooky sophistication! Photo Credit: Meghan Savage Photography

    via Style Me Pretty

  • Meredith and Matt used everything from pumpkins to wheat in a chic way to give their wedding a rustic fall vibe, but also kept is very elegant and traditional. Photo Credit: Kelly Ewell Photography

    via Rustic Barn Wedding in Virginia

  • Jen and DJ had these custom skeleton wedding cake toppers inspired by Dia de los Muertos (or Day of the Dead!)! Photo Credit: tPoz Photography

    via Small Wedding in Canton

  • This masquerade themed styled shoot featured a black and orange wedding cake that lends itself as some lovely and elegant Halloween wedding inspiration! Photo Credit: Bradley James Photography

    via 100 Layer Cake

  • What's a Halloween inspired wedding without some pumpkins on hand? Kate and Sajid dressed up their fall wedding with custom pumpkin carvings with their monogram + wedding date! Photo Credit: Laura Ashbrook Photography

    via Indian Fusion Wedding in Maryland

  • One of my favorite examples of wedding branding! Brenda and Glenn used a personal wedding monogram throughout their special day. Can you spot the little heart in between their initials!? Photo Credit: Ethan Yang Photography

    via Modern Bright Pink Wedding in Washington DC

  • Brittany and Greg's laid-back, modern wedding in Baltimore featured a heart logo with their monogram that they used on all their stationery and day-of paper! Photo Credit: Jennifer McMenamin Photography

    via Modern Wedding in Baltimore

Are you looking for more local wedding ideas? Be sure to look through our DC area wedding idea galleries and find wedding advice from local DC area pros. If that isn’t enough, check out our collection of local DMV weddings from the real world and the best DC area wedding vendors who make it all happen.