Something about today’s wedding just makes me happy. It is a true celebration of love, evident by the beautiful photos from Love Life Images.
Sandra and Javier were married last March at St. Matthews, one of the most breathtaking and historical cathedrals in D.C. They followed their nuptials with a fun-filled reception at the Washington Plaza Hotel. The bride focused on a few key details, including the purple and white flowers by Janet Flowers, the varying shades of Bill Levkoff bridesmaid dresses, a gorgeous cake by Fluffy Thoughts, and playful lighting by Da’Vinci’s Florist, to create her dream wedding.
From the bride…
Javier and I have Latin roots so our families and friends love a serious party yet a traditional wedding. Javier is a Puerto Rican local musician so for him the reception was very important, he was involved in all the details and the music playlist. While planning the wedding I became obsessed with Pinterest (what bride to be isn’t) and came across a ton of photos of bridesmaids in different dress colors, styles, etc. I loved the look, and my bridesmaids are from many different cultural backgrounds so we decided to go with the purple/plum ombre look for our wedding as it would complement everyone.
After five years of dating Javier and I were engaged on New Year’s Day 2011 on the beach in Puerto Rico and while we were in the early stages of planning our wedding for the fall of 2011, we received some surprising news. We were expecting a baby boy for October 2011!! So that obviously changed the timing and date of our wedding. We decided to take our time to adjust to life as new parents and not rush the wedding, and selected March 2013 as both of our birthdays are in March. For the rest of our lives it would be a whole month of celebrating!
Growing up in DC, it was always a dream of mine to get married in one of the city’s grand Catholic cathedrals, we selected St. Matthews as that is where we baptized our son and I also had my confirmation. We selected Washington Plaza Hotel because it was in a central location, near the ceremony and nightlife with ample parking. It also didn’t hurt that they gave us a great deal since our wedding was before prime wedding season in DC.
We also loved the pool area at the hotel and wanted to do cocktail hour around the pool. Unfortunately it was a 70% chance of rain on the day of the wedding so we nixed the idea a few days before, thank god it didn’t rain until the reception started! The ballroom was pretty simple, I can’t emphasize enough how important lighting is to the ambiance and decor! We used the lighted patterns on the walls to add some flair to the walls. I also really wanted long tables all around but due to the number of guests and the space we only had two long tables. I loved working with Heather at Janet Flowers she was able to get beautiful custom runners made for the long tables! They were so pretty!
The various shades of purple were highlighted by silver and white. I didn’t want to go overboard so we focused on the varying purples of the bridesmaid dresses, the seating cards, flowers, lighting and the cake. After putting it all together in my head, I was worried that it would be over doing it but thank god it turned out great.
I have always loved Vera Wang gowns and her organza or tulle laser cut skirts, unfortunately a Vera gown was out of my budget but thanks to Curvaceous Couture in Columbia, MD I was able to find a beautiful sample gown that was similar to a Vera by the late Manuel Mota for Pronovias. I was sooo lucky to find it at such a great price!
The day was amazing, full of love, laughter and happy tears. There is nothing like your wedding day, when all of the your most favorite and loved people in the world are all in one room to celebrate your love. Its so overwhelming and awesome! We laughed and cried all day!
Over the past several months, you all have gotten to know Kimberly’s thoughtful personality and fabulous sense of style…So, it should be no surprise that Kimberly has found a way to let each of her ‘maids shine in their own way on October 16th…
Now that I’ve found the dress of my dreams, it’s time to outfit my partners in crime – AKA, my bridesmaids. These three ladies have been with me in various stages of my life, and my wedding wouldn’t be the same without them. Gretchen, Inga, and Tammy are some of the most intelligent and unique women I know. Each one has a distinct personality and taste in clothing, so I really wanted to make sure that they were able to showcase their individual style.
Once upon a time it was believed that “evil spirits” would attend weddings to harm a bride and groom, so, their closest friends would stand next to them and dress the same to confuse spirits. To this day, bridesmaids usually wear the same dresses at a wedding. Having been a bridesmaid, I know about wearing the exact same dress…it’s normally not flattering for all involved. As the bride, I’ve decided to change “tradition” and encouraged them to select a dress in whatever style they feel most comfortable in.
Now that the collective gasp from DW readers has subsided, let me explain my rationale. My bridesmaids mean the world to me. One has known me since I was 13, another since I was 17 and the other since I was in my mid 30’s. All of these women are my friends, and friends don’t let friends wear unflattering dresses in skunky colors with no possibility of wearing them again.
Here’s how this works – I gave them a color palette that goes with my wedding colors (light to deep purple), and asked that the gown be floor length, that’s it. I asked them to coordinate among themselves, and decide on a designer of their choosing from which to select a dress from.
The ladies agreed on designers they most liked were housed at Hannelore’s in Old Town. On the first Saturday in May, my friends gathered together to show me the dresses they had selected:
When I saw Alexis and Mark’s wedding details, I knew I had to share them with you! Their wedding had so many customized touches – most found on one of our favorite sites, Etsy.
Married at Lansdowne Resort this past June, Mark and Alexis were absolutely glowing on the big day.
The paper was all created by Cami’s Paperie. Cami designed the fabulous save the dates, invites, table numbers, place cards, menu cards, programs and the little signs at the wedding. She even created a map for out of town guests. Quite the suite!
And, how good looking is this wedding party? The bridesmaids are so stylish, the groomsmen so handsome! The beautiful bridesmaids dresses are by Jenny Yoo, one of our fav designers.
At the reception, for the little ones, Alexis made crayon favor bags by melting crayons into silicon alphabet molds. Each child had little bags set out for them at the reception that had crayons spelling their names. So fun!
The cake topper was by Ann Wood Handmade – I think it is my favorite detail…okay, well one of my many favorites!
Thank you so much to Alexis and Mark for sharing their big day with us – it truly was so special – such an inspiration!
With so many amazing things happening in the world of D.C. weddings, there is always something new to see, something fabulous to share, something exciting to attend. I don’t spend a lot of time talking about my own wedding, but when I find something especially useful (like Molly at Bloomingdale’s), or something particularly beautiful (like today’s feature), I just have to tell you about it.
I couldn’t be more excited to introduce you to Erin Cole bridal accessories. One part vintage, one part chic, Erin’s pieces are timeless, yet filled with modern style. Each piece is made with such care, such love. I want to find a way to walk down the aisle wearing them all!
Aren’t they stunning? These beautiful earrings are available online at Perfect Details. Erin Cole accessories are also available locally at Hitched Salon (Georgetown neighborhood of D.C.) and Hannelore’s (Alexandria, Virginia).
I fell in love with a pair of Erin Cole earrings at Hitched. Since each piece is custom ordered, I won’t have them in my hands for a few weeks, but… I know when I get them, I’ll likely be wearing them around my house every day until the wedding.
If you’re in the market for bridal accessories (or if you’re a sucker for beautiful jewelry), check out Erin’s website, shop on-line at Perfect Details, or head over to Hitched or Hannelore’s. Trust me, you’ll want to leave with everything!