Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Photographer Spotlight {Corey Hendrickson}

We love finding fabulous new (to us) vendors. Check out these fun engagement photos by talented photographer Corey Hendrickson.

Corey photographed Heather and Michael (and Wyatt) a few weeks back in Arlington VA.  They had perfect weather and plenty of people to work with at the Lincoln Memorial.  After that they walked around Georgetown.  Heather and Michael are getting married August 7th 2010 in California, which will be photographed by Corey.

Corey uses a quiet and artistic approach to create photographs that are elegant, natural and unique. He works in 35 mm digital and medium format film. Martha Stewart Weddings, VT Vows, and InStyle Weddings are among the publications that feature his photographs. His website, with more photographs and booking information, is

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Navy & Gold Wedding Inspiration

Clockwise from top left: shoes (Style Me Pretty), boutonniere (Style Me Pretty), cake (In Style Weddings), flowers (The Knot), M&M favors (The Knot), quilt banner (The Knot), parasol couple (Style Me Pretty), seed favors (The Knot), program (The Knot), bridesmaids (The Knot)

Continuing with our navy blue inspiration, we have the fabulous shade paired with a shade of gold between sunshine and mustard. Navy and yellow doesn't have to be just nautical!  The sophisticated shade of yellow really livens up dark blue dresses. We love the cake decorated with blueberries and topped with lemon peel.  So fresh and fun for summer!
Laura and Alison

Monday, June 28, 2010

True Blue Inspiration {Navy, Orange and Pink}

Photo credits clockwise from top left: table (, bridesmaids (Style Me Pretty), bride & groom (Mark Brooke Photography), cake (The Knot), clutch (The Knot), sea urchin tray (Style Me Pretty), invitations (The Knot), reception (Style Me Pretty)

Our team has several upcoming weddings using navy as a base color  so we thought we'd do some fun color combination inspiration this week. Love mixing orange and pink for that punch of color.  And you know we love those orange shoes! Enjoy!
Laura and Alison  

Friday, June 25, 2010

Memorial Weekend at The Mellon {Kristen and Eric}

I wouldn't normally recommend being anywhere near Rolling Thunder over Memorial weekend but being downtown in the middle of all the madness was definitely worth it for Kristen and Eric's amazing wedding.  While the bikers did create some logistical challenges for us (we had to load everyone into the Mellon super-early before all the streets were closed off and we had to reroute the shuttles around the parade), the day turned out to be fabulous!

The bride begin the wedding day getting ready at The Willard Hotel with a hair and makeup team from Gustavo Mottola. She was completely calm and happy (even though she'd only gotten a few hours of sleep the night before).

The bridesmaids donned mint green dresses and the bride slipped into her gorgeous gown before heading off for St. Matthew's Cathedral for the ceremony.  My favorite part of the traditional Catholic wedding mass was the rows of Kristen's kindergarten students waiting eagerly to see their teacher.  They were so excited they were bouncing up and down and nearly passed out when they saw her! Very sweet!

After the ceremony, Kristen and Eric hopped in a classic white Rolls and took a few photos down around the Capitol before joining their guests at the Mellon Auditorium.  Frank from Rock Creek Limo pulled together the many limos and shuttle buses (including the classic car) we used on the wedding day and was a pleasure to work with.

At the reception, guests enjoyed cocktails upstairs on the terrace before entering the spectacular ballroom. Karen Kallmyer did a lovely job with the natural look that Kristen wanted for the tables and escort card display, using lots of wheat grass, bark and moss to create the rustic yet sophisticated decor.

The tables were set with white linens and gold and white china for a crisp, clean look.  White and green menu cards were tucked into white hemstiched linen napkins.

Capitol Decor and Events provided the glossy white dance floor and lounge furniture while John Farr Lighting provided the lighting.

The bride and groom took a few photos at The Mellon with the fabulous team of photographers from Hamilton Photography.

After cocktails, guests entered the auditorium to the sounds of Party On The Moon, unquestionably one of the best bands I've ever worked with.

After an amazing dinner by Susan Gage Caterers, guests took to the dance floor and kept the floor packed for the rest of the night.

Party on the Moon was nothing short of amazing, inspiring guests to do back flips (literally)!

A huge thanks to all the vendors who put in lots of extra hours to be set up early and to the band who drove up from Atlanta and was so easy to work with. Everyone went above and beyond to pull off a wedding on what may be one of the toughest days to work in downtown D.C. (especially if you're working on the Rolling Thunder parade route like we were). A big hug to Jenna at The Mellon for giving us the extra time we needed to pull off the set-up, and kudos to my assistants Renee and Nicole. I couldn't have done it without you!

Thanks to Mark Hamilton for the stunning images and for being such a delight to work with. And a special thank you to Kristen and Eric for letting us share their gorgeous wedding!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Nicole Miller Trunk Show!

If you love the classic, sleek designs of Nicole Miller as much as we do, you'll want to check out their trunk show this weekend at Tysons Galleria in Virginia.  Enjoy!

Congratulations to Justine Ungaro!

We were so excited to open the latest edition of Martha Stewart Weddings and see our dear friend Justine Ungaro featured inside.  Her gorgeous wedding in Palm Springs has a fabulous two-page spread. Justine is one of our very favorite photographers and has shot some of our most spectacular weddings over the years (including the wedding of our very own Sara). So be sure to pick up a copy and check out the stunning images by Justine.  Congratulations, Justine!  We love you!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

How To Choose the Perfect Wedding Ring

Today we have a guest blog from with some helpful advice on selecting wedding bands. This is an area I rarely see any advice on so I love hearing these tips!

So you have set your wedding plans in motion and it's time to get your rings. This is one of the most intimate details of your wedding when you choose a symbol of love to wear on your finger the rest of your lives. However, though the moment might stimulate romantic notions and starry-eyed dreams, there needs to be a reality check before you hit the cash register. Wedding rings mean different things to different people and may be the pinnacle of your ceremony, just be sure that you use some cerebral flexing in between heartbeats. Your wedding rings are a visible sign to inspire and encourage your love, however practicality serves you well in the long run.

1. Choosing the style, thickness, material components and price range is the first hurdle to the alter. If you elect a traditional and simple gold band, you can be sure it's not all that simple. Each partner extends a uniquely crafted hand that will vary in size and shape from the other person, so therefore, your wedding band sets should be a comfortable fit for both of you. Persons with shorter fingers possess a smaller space between their knuckles and may find a thinner band to be the ticket. Conversely, he or she with the larger hand will fare better aesthetically with a wider band. No problem with the band width; you still have a match.

2. Some brides need a little sparkle and want to see a few rocks on their fingers. Wedding bands inlaid with diamonds are popular with both clusters and single stones and can be mixed with her favorite shades of sapphire, rubies, jade or topaz. The trend today is to follow your own way and cut your own path. Traditional rings never go out of style, however, the neo-bride may wish to design her own custom settings and clusters. If you elect to wed this route, be sure to leave yourself plenty of time to mull your ideas, experiment with design and find a jeweler that see's your vision. Six months should get you to the alter on time.

3. They say that love is blind, but lets hope you have 20/20 vision when setting the price limit on your rings. The amount you pay for the rings is not a mathematical equation for the depth of your love, but rather a matter of good business sense as to what you can afford. The true value of your wedding ring comes from the sweetheart who will slip it on your finger, and not how many zeros are on your receipt. Save money when you can and be happy with what you get. As the years roll by, your wedding ring will become more precious to you, so no need to spoil the ride with a mountain of debt.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

This One's for My Girl!

This blog is just as much for our FABULOUS resident cupcake expert Alison, as it is for all you sweets loving brides out there who want to do something a little unique to get your guests talking.  The other day I was at the gym reading through whatever months old magazine was lying around.  I almost tripped over my own two feet on the elliptical when I came across something I could blog about.

 The title read: Eat cupcakes, save calories.  Now, who among us doesn't want to know how to do that?  So, what am I talking about?  At 45 calories a piece, you can have as many "shots" of cupcake frosting you want!  Apparently, cake free cupcakes are showing up all over the country.  Specifically, Buttercream Cupcakes and Coffee in Miami will ship these wonderful frosting shots for only $.75 plus shipping!  And, there is no minimum!

PS- I hear from a trusted and favorite DC cupcake sources that the original "Georgetown Cupcake" started in LA called Sprinkles is on the move and coming to DC.  Make room for more cupcakes everyone!


Monday, June 21, 2010

A Spring Wedding at The Fairmont Hotel {Sarah + Jason}

My first wedding of every season always holds a special place in my heart.  This season’s first wedding was no different.  I had the pleasure of spending the first Saturday in May with my bride, Sarah, and her family at the beautiful Fairmont Hotel while they were primped and pampered by makeup artist Leah McKay, and Hairstylist, Diane, of Hair by Diane.  

Once the ladies were done getting ready, they were transported to beautiful 6th and I Historic synagogue where the bride stepped into her wedding dress and was given a special gift from her grandmother…her grandmother’s wedding band. 

After tears were shed, she and her bridal party were able to relax a little before the groom, Jason, and his groomsmen arrived for the Ketubah signing.  After the Ketubah signing was done, the bride and groom along with their bridal party and families had their formal photos taken by the talented Greg Gibson and his second shooter, Kurstin Roe. 

As guests began filing in, the Sage String Trio began to play music specifically chosen by the bride such as the theme song from Forrest Gump, "All You Need Is Love" and Coldplay's "Clocks", to name a few.  The ceremony was lead by a rabbi very close to the bride and groom, the groom’s brother.   

After the ceremony was concluded, the bride and groom along with their guests were transported back to the Fairmont Hotel for a night of good food, good drinks and good memories in the Courtyard and the lovely Colonnade Room. 

The Colonnade Room was decorated with simple yet beautiful centerpieces by Petal’s Edge who also designed the bride and bridal party’s bouquets.  The bride and groom worked with the amazing Bob Mikolitch at the Fairmont to design a menu that included lobster mac and cheese, mini monte cristos and mini pizzas for cocktail hour and vegetable wellington and free range chicken for dinner.  

Once dinner was done, guests were ready to dance the night away.  With the help of the talented band Prelude, that was accomplished.  At one point, I looked around and not one person was sitting (especially during the 10 minute long hora).  After a late night of dancing, the bride and groom left for an eight day trip to Hawaii.

Thank you to all of the vendors that help make this day possible and also to my wonderful assistant, Lauren.  Congratulations Sarah and Jason!


Sunday, June 20, 2010

My Awesome Outdoor Duo!

Ok, I haven't blogged yet about my amazing Memorial Day weekend couple.  Stay tuned for pictures.  But you can check out Cherie and Trop and their story at a special Washington Post section:

LOVE them!


Saturday, June 19, 2010

To All the Dads Out There

Nothing beats the moment of walking down the aisle on daddy's arm on your wedding day.   There are many years of memories and months of excitement leading up to the final steps towards your new marriage.  All along the way, Dad has been there for you with support, love and well, let's face it - in most cases, the financial backing to make this glorious day possible!  HUGE thank you to all the Dads out there this Father's Day for all you do for us!

A special shout out to MY awesome Dad for being a super great guy and the very best dad any girl could ask for!  Moments like these just don't happen every day!

Happy Planning!
Amy Lorraine

Friday, June 18, 2010

Two Engaging Affairs Weddings Featured in the New Washingtonian Bride & Groom!

We were so thrilled to open up the hot-off-the-presses issue of Washingtonian Bride & Groom magazine and see that two of our real weddings from the past year were featured!

My wedding of Melody Barnes and Marland Buckner from last summer was such a stunning affair (and they were both so lovely) that I loved reliving it by seeing it in the magazine.  And my New Year's Eve wedding of Eliza and Micah seems like it was just yesterday and was such a fun night.  I still have vivid memories of standing on the side of the crowd setting off huge confetti poppers so the air would be filled with color for the "money" shot of the bride and groom kissing. Another fabulous couple that I adored!

Be sure to pick up a copy of the magazine and check out all the gorgeous real weddings and the stunning photo essays.  Since I got excited and hoarded a big stack of them, I'll send a free copy of the new magazine to the first three readers who shoot me an email ( with their mailing address.  Thanks for reading!

 Cover photo courtesy of Washingtonian Bride & Groom and Carlos Andres Varela (and thanks to the ever-fabulous Vanessa for zipping it over to me).

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A D.C. Wedding Planner Takes New York

With both my April 2011 bride (Nadya) and her venue (the amazing Gotham Hall) being in NYC, we have limited face-to-face meetings and when we do have those face-to-face meetings, we have to try to get as much done as possible.  Our last meeting was no exception, I spent the earlier part of the morning on a train to NYC with my 2 forms of entertainment for the ride, Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine and Hello Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea (which is perfect light reading for a 3 hour train ride, not to mention, pretty funny). 

Upon arriving at Penn Station, I first began my search for the nearest Starbucks and then walked the 3 blocks to Gotham Hall.  I would have preferred a NY style pizza instead of the coffee but surprisingly  I found that there are no authentic NY style pizza shops or authentic NY delis within 5 blocks of Penn Station…bummer.  

Arriving at Gotham Hall around 12:15pm, I had some time to peek around a bit before my bride arrived.  Wow…is the best way to describe it!  Formerly the Greenwich Savings Bank headquarters and built in 1922, the only thing left over from the bank are the teller walls that are freestanding within the dome shaped main ballroom.  Everywhere you look you can see the characteristics of ancient amphitheatres (the Flavian amphitheatre – the Colosseum – is the prime Roman example).  A dome tops the ceiling and columns flank each wall.  The venue could not be more perfect for Nadya and Jordache’s wedding (more exciting wedding details to come). 

We began our whirlwind vendor meetings with a walk-through of the space by the special events manager, Cindy.  She showed us the mezzanine (where cocktail reception would take place and the where view of the ballroom is amazing) and the main ballroom area (where the ceremony and dinner/dancing would take place).  We then met with the in-house lighting, sound and draping companies where we went through all of the elaborate details of the wedding such as the tree lined aisle, color changes and designs throughout the night in the ballroom area as well as the dome, just to name a few. 

Finally emerging onto the streets of NYC a few hours later, we began our 25 block hike (we started off thinking we would just walk a few blocks but we got caught up in the energy of the city) to SoHo for our first NYC florist appointments.  Halfway through our floral meeting I realized I was losing my bride due to exhaustion so we took a much needed coffee break where we established that the next 1.5 hours we had free were going to be spent walking around town, “gathering ideas for the wedding” and, of course, shopping!  SoHo to Canal Street to Union Square to Broadway…

A few things I thought were interesting on our NYC walk…the notorious club Limelight has turned into a cute boutique market selling everything from chocolates to gourmet cheeses, the street in front of the world famous Macy’s store is now closed to vehicles and lined with tables and chairs where you can sit and people watch. 

Rounding off the day’s meeting with a final floral meeting, we then spent the last 45 minutes of our day trying to track down an authentic Italian hoagie that was requested by my boyfriend back home (thank you, Nadya!).  

50+ blocks walked, 15 hour day (travel time included), 6 vendor meetings and a walk-through later, we had everything we needed to make some much needed wedding planning decisions.  I can’t wait to fill you in on some of the really cool details of this wedding!


Our Bride Featured in ESSENCE!


The wedding I did for Lauren and Malik back on May 8th at the Hotel Monaco has created quite a bit of BUZZ.  First there was the amazing speech I just had to share from the Father of the Bride.  Then, the FABULOUS color pallette inspired a board created by our own Alison.  And I just found out the wedding has been featured on ESSENCE Magazine's web site

Go Lauren and Malik!


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Creative Escort Card Displays: Part II

As promised last week, here are some more escort card displays that made us sit up and take notice.

Speaking of sitting, we love this witty take on the traditional tent card. The alternating colors make the whole display even sharper.

The sandbox display was everywhere for a while-- even at weddings with nary a body of water in sight-- but these chaise lounges make the whole idea seem fresh and fun. (Although I don't envy the person in charge of setting up the display-- those tiny parasols are hard to keep standing, especially at an outdoor wedding!)

Photo Credit: The Knot

This DIY display is a little complicated, but very cool. A poster of the 1930s Chicago skyline was cut into rectangles with guests' names printed below each section. Beneath the display was an identical, intact poster, which the bride and groom hanged in their house after the wedding.

We aren't crazy about making guests count hearts to find their tables (not everybody wants to do math at a party), but we do love the artfulness of actual playing cards used in this display.

Photo credit: Fotobriceno

Admittedly, my favorite thing about this display is how low maintenance it is! But it gets extra points for dressing up a simple white board in an ornate frame with beautiful flowers. The mixture of elements really works, and gives off an effortlessly cool vibe. This is a wedding that'd be fun to attend, don't you think?