Friday, June 19, 2009

Memorial Day Wedding at The Mellon

No, no. Don't adjust your screens or wonder if you've accidentally landed on a biker bride blog. The gentleman in the less-than-formal attire next to the bride is NOT the groom. "Bones" was one of the many bikers on the Mall over the Memorial Day weekend when my amazingly fun couple, Sarah and Danny, got married at The Mellon Auditorium. Some brides would have been thrown by the thousands of bikers creating traffic gridlock near her wedding but Sarah took it all in stride and decided to have fun with it.

After getting ready at The Willard Hotel (Giselle worked her magic with hair and Leah McKay with makeup artistry), the bridal party hopped in a shuttle bus and zipped off to the National Mall to take some fun shots with the crowds. Sarah was even the (un)lucky recipient of a very wet kiss from Bones!

The ceremony had lighthearted moments, as well, despite the gorgeously formal setting, dramatic lighting and beautiful chocolate brown taffeta from A Vista that hung from floor to ceiling between the columnns. Capital Decor created the stunning floral chuppah in the bride's palette of bright pinks, oranges and yellows while John Farr Lighting set the mood with uplighting. All Stage and Sound managed to tuck hidden microphones throughout the chuppah so we didn't have any unsightly mics on stands--love the incognito technology. A brass quintet from Entertainment Exchange added the just the right element of pageantry and made for an amazing processional!

After cocktails in the Green Rooms, guests returned to find the main hall of the Mellon transformed with stunning, vibrant flowers and a collection of round, square, rectangular and hollow tables with huge palm trees coming out of the center. Susan Gage Caterers served a flawless dinner that ended with a decadant dessert buffet while Free Spirit kept guests on the dance floor (with the crowd even chanting "one more song" at the end of the night until the band obliged).

The one word that could define this wedding was FUN. The bride and groom were fun, the families were fun, the decor was fun. Even the little bags of warm donuts for guests to take away at the end of the evening were fun, fun, fun!

As I know you're getting sick of hearing, I have amazing couples. Sarah and Danny truly enjoyed each other and laughed throughout the entire day. They were so easy-going throughout the planning process and their wedding day was no different. Sarah and Danny were truly a wedding planner's dream!

Weddings at The Mellon are always a production because of the logistics involved with working at a government building, and I couldn't have pulled off this amazing event without the hard work of everyone involved behind the scenes. Nicole from The Mellon was there every step of the way, making set-up go smoothly and even making the break down fun! Atlantic Valet provided the shuttles and sedans while Marc Parc Valet handled the parking seamlessly. I have to give a special shout-out to the team from John Farr Lighting who, at 4:30 a.m., ran out to the scene of a horrible car accident a block away and pulled a person from a burning car. Seriously. I'm not kidding when I say weddings are never dull!

My Official Wedding Day Favorites:

Favorite wedding moment: The bride getting cheered by the rowdiest, roughest bikers you can imagine!

Favorite behind-the-scenes moment: Carrying the bouquets from the Mellon to the Willard with my assistants Alison and Christine. The bouquets were all in vases full of water (read: heavy) and we were all wearing black in the middle of the day (read: really hot) and the faster we walked, the more the water sloshed on us. We ended up making three round trips (it would have been silly to keep driving two blocks and reparking), but only one with flowers. I'm lucky to have great assistants who can appreciate the humor in life.

Favorite detail: The bags of mini-donuts-to-go with pink and orange"Sweet Dreams" stickers on them. I ask you, what is better at midnight than hot donuts?

Special thanks to photographer Matt Mendelsohn for sharing his amazing images with us and to videographer Jenny Lehman who has some great footage of our "biker bride" on her blog! Until next time . . .