Inspiration and Ideas: Patriotic

posted by Ally Lopez

Today we’re celebrating the good ol’ US of A—wedding style, of course! Whether you’re planning a summer wedding, an all-American inspired fête or a military celebration, we gathered some of our favorite red, white and blue wedding ideas to show you how fun (and easy!) it is to add a patriotic touch to your wedding. So, get out your sparklers and salute to this fine country!

Patriotic-Engagement-Session

Photo Credit: Hannah Colclazier Photography from All-American Wedding Engagement Session

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  • For Allison and Dave's DC wedding, each table was named for a former commander-in-chief and featured a framed portrait along with autobiographies! It doesn't get any more patriotic than that, folks. Photo Credit: Jessica Schmitt Photography

    via Presidential Wedding Ideas

  • No set of American-inspired wedding ideas would be complete without red and white stripes! Wrap your bouquet in a pretty ribbon! Photo Credit: Jenna Bechtholt Photography.

    via The Wedding Chicks

  • This Memorial Day weekend weekend took a chic spin on the classic red, white and blue palette and instead, used steel blue! How pretty are those bridesmaids' dresses? Photo Credit: Andrew Reilly

    via Memorial Day Wedding Ceremony

  • The ladies from Atrendy Wedding shared a red, white and blue wedding dessert bar featuring Coke bottles with sparklers and a flag cake! Photo Credit: Nessa K. Photography.

    via Patriotic Wedding Dessert Table

  • This red, white and (navy) blue wedding lounge furniture and design really caught my eye! Photo Credit: Spence Photographics

    via Red, White and Blue Wedding Reception

  • This simple red, white and blue stars wedding garter is the perfect "something blue!"

    via The Garter Girl

  • For their military and patriotic wedding, Abigail and Matt turned to Kristy at Momental Designs to create these hand-painted watercolor escort cards. Photo Credit: Kurstin Roe Photography

    via Haind Painted Washington DC Wedding Invitations

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.

What Our Real Couples Wish They Knew Before Planning Their Wedding

posted by Kate Oczypok

Has planning your wedding in the Washington DC area got you down? Are you worried you won’t please everyone? We’ve given our advice on what to do if you hate wedding planning, but now it is time for some advice from the trenches. This time, we asked the real couples of the weddings in DC, MD or VA that we have featured on the blog. We have some great words of wisdom from couples who’ve been there; couples just like you who have gone through the arduous task of planning a wedding in the DMV. We asked them: ”Now that you are married, is there one thing that you wish you knew before you started your wedding planning process?” So, sit back, take a deep breath, relax and enjoy hearing from local couples who’ve totally been there!

real-weddings-ginly-and-rob-lisa-boggs-photography

Photo Credit:  Lisa Boggs Photography from Ginly and Rob’s summer wedding in Virginia

Vendors + Details

Ginly + Rob: Do your research and then give yourself a limit on how many vendors from each category you will meet with. We ended up cake-tasting at eight different places and ended up with the first bakery we tried. Even though it was awesome tasting all the delicious cakes, I think it took some of the fun away. (See more of their Virginia wedding here!)

Tricia + David: I wish I had started earlier on some of the details. I had no idea how hectic things would be in the weeks leading up to the wedding. I was traveling a lot for work and we also decided to move into our new house a week before the wedding. I would have started finalizing details sooner so I could have enjoyed the days leading up to the wedding!

Melinda + Kevin: I wished that I had found my planners earlier. (see more of their Baltimore wedding here!)

Jessica + Ian: I wish I had known how much of my brain would be filled with all the details. We had a 15 month engagement and I know there were times when I was too distracted about the wedding to really enjoy being engaged. I allowed myself to get overwhelmed a time or two.

Kerrie + Mike: When it comes to vendors, trust your gut instinct. E-mail communication can definitely be reflective of how a vendor will work with you over the course of your planning and on the day of. The day really does go by so fast. Best piece of advice ever: someone told me to take a moment, stand at the door to your reception, and just take it all in. (See more of their wedding in Baltimore here!)

Annabel + Blake: How hard it is! It’s like a full time job. If you have the money in the budget for a planner, I highly recommend using one. In the end it was all worth it because we did everything so it was the way we wanted it!

Washington-DC-Wedding-Reception-First-Dance1-550x366

Photo Credit: The Observatory from Layla and Mike’s wedding in DC

Finances

Erin + Devinder: All of the hidden costs! There are truly a lot of extra expenses that come up when planning a wedding. We definitely did not realize this at first!

Keeping the Peace

Meg + Matt: There’s no pleasing everyone! I drove myself crazy trying to keep everyone happy and it’s just impossible. At some point, you just have to do tune everyone else out and follow your instincts. The expression “to each his own” should be everyone’s wedding mantra.

Laura + Aaron: We loved our wedding, but it is only one day. While the temptation can be to keep up with the “Joneses,” do only as much you, as a couple, deem important. (See more of their wedding in Virginia here!)

Mona + Chris: Make the wedding meaningful to you both and you can’t go wrong. (See more of their wedding in DC here!)

Layla + Mike: One thing that I wish that I knew earlier is that you cannot make everyone happy, Elizabeth had to keep reminding me about that as we went along in the planning process. (See more of their wedding in DC here!)

Orialys + Cristal: Wedding blues, someone should have warned us! After such a long time of planning and being focused on the wedding. Then an amazing weekend filled with love and such great memories with friends, going back home was hard and the wedding blues certainly kicked in. We were unprepared for that. (See more of their wedding in DC here!)

***************

That’s about all the advice we can handle in one day! Don’t worry though, you can see it all right here in the real DC, MD and VA wedding gallery. And, who knows, we might just have to do a round two and pull even more advice together. Best of luck and happy planning!

Inspiration and Ideas: Summer Wedding Dresses

posted by Ally Lopez

Are you feeling the summer heat, or what!? We’ve got summer wedding inspiration on the mind, so if you’re getting married in the Washington DC area next summer, you’re in luck. (Here are some of our favorite summer weddings in the DC area!) Today we’re talking warm weather friendly bridal fashion—think flowy fabrics, simple silhouettes and short styles. Here are some of our favorite sophisticated summer bridal fashion looks. Which one is your favorite?

Virginia-Bride-Getting-Ready

Photo Credit: Marcella Treybig Photography from Outdoor Virginia Wedding

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  • This lightweight, sheath Maggie Sottero bridal gown comes with plenty of sparkle to glam up the summer night. The collection is available at Serendipity Bridal and Events in Maryland.

    via Maggie Sottero

  • Are you going short or long for your wedding day? This elegant short bridal gown from Ann Taylor can be something you change into, or wear all day long!

    via Ann Taylor

  • For her Virginia farm wedding, Stephanie wore this stunning strapless gown that was simple + sweet! The collection is available at Soliloquy Bridal Couture.

    via Virginia Farm Wedding

  • I'm loving this ethereal bridal gown that would be lovely at a garden wedding, don't you think? Lucky for us, Anthropologie's wedding line, BHLDN, recently opened up in Georgetown.

    via BHLDN

  • Summer weddings in the DC-area definitely call for some strapless action in the fashion department! The collection is available at Fabulous Frocks of Alexandria.

    via Metallic Wedding Ideas

  • You can never go wrong with a timeless silhouette! The collection is available at Blush Bridal Boutique in Virginia.

    via Birnbaum and Bullock

  • How romantic is this Anne Barge bridal gown? I'm loving the full skirt paired with a satin cummerbund.

    via Nordstrom

  • This lightweight silk chiffon dress would be perfect for anytime summertime wedding celebrations like a rehearsal dinner!

    via J. Crew

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.

Virginia Bluebells Wedding Ideas

posted by Kate Oczypok

Some of the loveliest flowers in the garden are none other than the Virginia bluebells! The Washington DC area is in full bloom right now and the sun never seems to stop shining. Simplicity Events by Johanna, along with Lelia Marie Photography, were absolutely in love with Virginia’s signature bluebell flowers that cover the ground and used it as inspiration for a round up of stunning Virginia wedding beauty! Talk about a perfect “something blue”! To compliment the blue, they used a pop of yellow with gorgeous daffodils. While it may be difficult to get your whole wedding party to a field of bluebells, your wedding engagement or bridal session just may work!.

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells 

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells  View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells 

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells 

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

View More: http://leliamarie.pass.us/uwl-bluebells

The following Washington DC area wedding vendors put this wedding inspiration shoot together:

Venue: Private property
Planning: Simplicity Events by Johanna 
Florist: Buttercups Floral Design
Hair/Makeup: Enlightened Styles 
Dress: Blush Bridal 
Jewelry: Hunt Country Jewelers 
Photography: Lelia Marie Photography 

Don’t forget to visit our Washington DC wedding vendor guide for more fabulous wedding professionals. And, if you are looking for more inspiration and ideas? Be sure to check out our DC wedding idea galleries.

Photo Credit: Lelia Marie Photography

Intimate and Rustic Wedding Reception in Virginia: Laura + Aaron

posted by Ally Lopez

When you have a breathtaking wedding location like the Historic Rosemont Manor to work with, beautiful things can happen. Need proof? Laura and Aaron’s intimate Virginia wedding reception combines rustic elegance and romantic fall hues in the most beautiful of ways! (But first, did you see their intimate wedding ceremony from this morning!?) With Drew Bird Photography on hand to capture it all, their fall-inspired celebration is the definition of pretty.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

From Laura: In addition to being a beautiful setting, we choose The Historic Rosemont Manor because of my initial conversation with the head caterer, David. He was completely flexible and willing to follow my lead to create an original menu. We are mostly vegetarian, so we had fun in creating dishes such as blackberry soup shooters, butternut squash bread pudding, and Israeli couscous curry salad.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Aaron and I also had a lot of fun designing and printing the menus, for which we used a country-modern theme with silver embossing.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

As party favors, we found someone on Etsy to make some delicious fall inspired jams with custom labels.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

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

We loved our wedding, but it is only one day. While the temptation can be to keep up with the “Jones,” do only as much you, as a couple, deem important.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Thank you so much Laura and Aaron for sharing your wedding ceremony with us! The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:

Venue: Historic Rosemont Manor
Photography: Drew Bird Photography
Stationery and Calligraphy: DIY
Bridal Attire: Ann Taylor
Groom Attire: Indochino
Groom Shoes: Banana Republic
Ceremony Music: The Bellevue Rhythmaires
Catering: Celebrations Catering
Dessert: Local Pies

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

Photo Credit: Drew Bird Photography

Intimate and Rustic Wedding Ceremony in Virginia: Laura + Aaron

posted by Ally Lopez

I may not be the most “outdoorsy” of gals, but when I see an amazing outdoor wedding like this one, I can’t help but swoon! Especially when they are as charming as this intimate ceremony beautifully captured by Drew Bird Photography, a day rich in autumn hues and incredible DIY wedding stationery (by the groom!). You may even remember Laura and Aaron from their colorful garden wedding engagement! Don’t forget to come back later this morning and see their brunch wedding reception.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

From Lauren: We wanted a relaxed, outdoor, fall wedding. We decided on brunch in order have more outdoor time with our guests. In terms of the color palette, we selected two, based mostly on some of the autumnal foods we wanted featured: persimmon and pomegranate, with a light modern grey for balance.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Our ceremony was by no means traditional. We had a family friend as our officiant, we had our best friends offer a blessing, other good friends sang, and Aaron and I processed and recessed to the Beatles with both of our parents on our arms. We wrote our own vows and it was lovely to see that there weren’t too many dry eyes in the audience.

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Laura and Aaron Wedding by Drew Bird Photography

Thank you so much Laura and Aaron 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:

Venue: Historic Rosemont Manor
Photography: Drew Bird Photography
Stationery and Calligraphy: DIY
Bridal Attire: Ann Taylor
Groom Attire: Indochino
Groom Shoes: Banana Republic
Ceremony Music: The Bellevue Rhythmaires
Catering: Celebrations Catering
Dessert: Local Pies

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

Photo Credit: Drew Bird Photography

Sophisticated & Contemporary Wedding Reception in Washington DC: Courtney + Jonathan

posted by Ally Lopez

Courtney and Jonathan planned a romantic, modern Washington DC wedding reception with A. Dominick Events. (And make sure to check out their outdoor, traditional Jewish wedding ceremony first!) Splashed against the modern elegance of the Ronald Ronald Reagan Building with purple and silver accents, this my dear readers, is what a purple wedding done right looks like. Moshe Zusman Photography Studio was on hand to capture every stunning detail, including those grand floral centerpieces!

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple and Silver Decor (2) Washington DC Wedding Reception Tall Purple Centerpieces (1)

From Courtney: Our big splurges were for the band and photographer and videographer. We knew we wanted to have a great party and we wanted to capture the best moments of that party to have forever!

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple Escort Cards

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple Escort Card Table

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple Table Numbers

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple and Silver Place Setting

Washington DC Wedding Reception Ronald Reagan Building (2)

Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple Floral Wedding Cake Washington DC Wedding Reception Purple and Silver Decor (1)

Washington DC Wedding Reception Ronald Reagan Building (1)

Washington DC Wedding Elegant Reception (1)

Washington DC Wedding Elegant Reception (2)

Washington DC Wedding Reception Tall Purple Centerpieces (2) Washington DC Wedding Reception First Dance (2)

I remember looking around the dance floor and realizing that everyone who loved us from every stage of our lives was there to celebrate with us! It was quite overwhelming to realize that there is no other reason for all these people to be in one place together.

Washington DC Wedding Reception First Dance (1)

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

Don’t get bogged down in the details, make a plan and stick to it. When your wedding day comes around, just go with the flow – you’re marrying the man or woman of your dreams and nothing else matters.

Washington DC Wedding Reception Cake Cutting

Thank you so much Courtney and Jonathan for sharing your wedding ceremony with us! The following Washington DC area wedding professionals contributed to their wedding:

Venue: Ronald Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
Photography and Videography: Moshe Zusman Photography Studio
Wedding Planner: A. Dominick Events
Floral Design: Blue Vanda Designs
Bridal Attire: Kenneth Pool
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Hair and Makeup: Modern Bridal Studio
Bridesmaids’ Attire: Monique Lhuillier from The Wedding Library
Ceremony Music: Cherry Blossom String Quartet
Reception Music: SoundConnection
Cake: Kendall’s Cakes
Jewelry: Tisha Vaidya

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

Photo Credit: Moshe Zusman Photography Studio

Sophisticated & Contemporary Wedding Ceremony in Washington DC: Courtney + Jonathan

posted by Ally Lopez

Filled to the brim with pretty and overflowing with inspiration for your Monday morning, this gorgeous Washington DC wedding day captured by Moshe Zusman Photography Studio might just be the best way to start your day! Modern with the prettiest pops of purple, Courtney and Jonathan’s chic fête planned by A. Dominick Events is inspiring to say the very least. Make sure to scroll all the way to the bottom to see their sweet wedding video trailer, too! We’ll see you back here later this morning for their grand wedding reception with purple and silver galore!

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Bridal Makeup Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Kenneth Pool Bridal Dress

From Courtney: I was going for a classic, contemporary theme.

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Wedding Rings

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Groom Getting Ready

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Bridal Portrait

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony White Bridal Bouquet

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony First Look (2)

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony First Look (1) Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Portrait

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Ronald Reagan Building

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Purple Bridesmaids

Washington DC Wedding Ketubah

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Ketubah Signing

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Purple Decor

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Ketubah Washington DC Wedding Ceremony

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Moshe Zusman Photography Studio

Washington DC Wedding Jewish Ceremony  (2) Washington DC Wedding Jewish Ceremony  (1)

Our chuppah was hand made. It was a “tree of life” design and each leaf had the name of a family member who had passed away – we wanted our relatives to be with us in spirit. My aunt and uncle, who are rabbis married to each other, performed the ceremony.

Washington DC Wedding Outdoor Ceremony

And here is their video trailer from Moshe Zusman Photography Studio

Thank you so much Courtney and Jonathan 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:

Venue: Ronald Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
Photography and Videography: Moshe Zusman Photography Studio
Wedding Planner: A. Dominick Events
Floral Design: Blue Vanda Designs
Bridal Attire: Kenneth Pool
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Hair and Makeup: Modern Bridal Studio
Bridesmaids’ Attire: Monique Lhuillier from The Wedding Library
Ceremony Music: Cherry Blossom String Quartet
Reception Music: SoundConnection
Cake: Kendall’s Cakes
Jewelry: Tisha Vaidya

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

Photo and Video Credit: Moshe Zusman Photography Studio

Happy Weekend!

posted by Ally Lopez

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 beautiful weather we’ll be having this weekend! Whatever you do, I hope that you and yours have an awesome weekend! We’ll see you back here on Monday for more wedding goodness!

Washington DC Wedding Ceremony Bridal Portrait (2)

Some links for your weekend…

…and what you missed right here!

Photo Credit: Procopio Photography