Capitol Wedding: Terri & Jim’s Small-Budget, Handmade Maryland Wedding in Middle River

Happy Tuesday! A stunning inauguration yesterday and now we are back to regular blogging for the week! Today’s real wedding feature is a DIY extravaganza, as the couple handmade so many of the wedding details to help stay within their small budget. Terri & Jim met after Terri got in a car accident and had to deal with an insurance adjuster. Lucky for her, the insurance adjuster was a caring man by the name of Jim – and their conversations quickly turned from insurance to each other’s lives.

Their wedding had a small budget, but that didn’t stop them from executing their design goals perfectly, using old windows and doors for most of the ceremony & reception decor.

Thanks to Kathleen Hertel Photography [submitted via Two Bright Lights] for submitting this beautiful, handmade Maryland wedding.

Terri & Jim’s Handmade, Small Budget Maryland Wedding

 Their proposal story:

Terri is a music teacher and she was conducting her winter concert with her students. With the help of her students Jim put together an elaborate proposal with the students carrying out a sign in the middle of the concert asking Terri to marry him. Of course she said yes!

Click inside for the rest of this beautiful, handmade Maryland wedding!

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Capitol Romance: Jess & Chris’ Offbeat, James Bond Inspired Engagement Shoot

Posting is light today due to some other, vastly more important things going on in our wonderful country [and specifically, right here in our beautiful city!]. It’s a bit crazy to think that I could probably walk outside my house and HEAR the inauguration festivities occurring. Sometimes I think I take for granted how cool it is to live in Washington, DC especially during events like this.

So, with my twitter feed up and my TV on non-stop inauguration coverage, I’ll take a few minutes to share a really cute/fun engagement session from East Port Photography, submitted via Two Bright Lights. The couple opted for a James Bond inspired shoot, with some drama & fun inside Red Red Wine Bar in Annapolis, MD.

Jess & Chris’ Offbeat, James Bond Inspired Engagement Session in Maryland

 From the photographer:

Sexy. Glamorous. Dangerous. Cutesy engagement photos in the park are nice, but Jess and Chris tossed that idea aside in exchange for something more dramatic and theatrical. With the recent release of Skyfall, the couple and I concocted a James Bond-esque inspired photo shoot. We found a faux Walther PPK gun to resemble James Bond’s and shot at Red Red Wine Bar in Annapolis, which is gorgeously decorated with chandeliers and overscaled upholstered furniture.


A special thanks again to East Port Photography & Two Bright Lights for making this offbeat Maryland engagement session possible.

Now go enjoy the history being made! Happy Inauguration Day 2013!

Capitol Inspiration: Vintage Camping Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot

It’s that time again. Another Friday is upon us, and so is an inspiration wedding feature to get your creative juices flowing. Today we have Little Bird Media sharing a really cool vintage camping inspired wedding shoot that was based on the Wes Anderson film, Moonrise Kingdom.

I am not at all familiar with the movie – but the images and design of this shoot (gold mason jars, maps, lanterns) and the vintage, neutral color palette, are inspirational regardless. A special thanks to Little Bird Media, Two Bright Lights, and the rest of the amazing vendors listed below, for making this wedding inspiration feature possible!

Vintage Camping Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot


Shoot concept + design: Dechele of Darian and Dechele Events and Ashley Grace of Little Bird Media

Photographer: Ashley Grace of Little Bird Media

Set decorating + styling: Dechele of Darian and Dechele Events

Location: Rappahannock River Historic Fredericksburg, Virginia

Hair + Make-up: Brooke of Brooke Stone Stylist

Cupcakes: Kaycee of TasteBudz

About the Styled Shoot Concept:

Film director Wes Anderson is known for his artistic vision and it is evident in his latest film, Moonrise Kingdom. After seeing the 1960’s vintage campground themes we were inspired to put together an inspiration shoot centered around the film. We wanted to showcase the beauty of an outdoor camp inspired wedding and the Rappahannock River was the perfect location.

With the natural beauty from the trees and rocks and the river tucked away in the background, we were sold on the location as a true nod to Camp Ivanhoe. In sticking to the natural feel we used floral decor from the wooded areas to set a tone that mirrors the natural setting of the film.

Moonrise Kingdom’s uses a color palatte full of neutral reds, yellows, greens, blues and nudes; so we wanted to keep true to the color concept from the film and to add pops of colors to enhance the shoot design. We added lanterns, a vintage record player, and mason jars to add another level of comfort for our camp site.

Click inside for the rest of this dreamy, Moonrise Kingdom inspired wedding styled shoot!

Capitol Romance: Matt & Tom’s Offbeat, Art Gallery Wedding in Maryland

Today’s real wedding feature is the photographer’s FIRST EVER submission. I was honored to get to share her first wedding feature, and even more honored to share such a special love story.

Matt & Tom met online, and immediately hit it off. Tom is an LGBT activist, and Matt is a music teach – and both focuses were woven perfectly through their offbeat, orange & teal wedding! A special thanks to Erica Abbey Photography for sharing this real Maryland wedding feature.

Matt & Tom’s Offbeat, Art Gallery Wedding in Maryland

^LOVE this picture

Short “about the couple”

Tom, an LGBT activist and Matt, a music teacher and vocalist, met on OKCupid and hit it off immediately. What more could they want than someone else who’s outgoing and driven, but nerdy enough to play Mario Kart or marathon Batman cartoons?

We didn’t opt to buy our tuxes for the wedding, but we did want to keep a part of the outfit that reflected our style. We found a website that refashions vintage fabrics into neckties that had a really charming checkered pattern using both of our colors. We decided that it’d be a cute idea to have one with a necktie and one with a bowtie so that our matching outfits could be a little more unique.

It took us a while to pick our colors (teal and orange). It was an early Summer wedding that was partially indoors and outdoors so we wanted something appropriate for the season, but we also wanted colors that were slightly more casual and fun because that reflects the type of people we are. We spent a lot of time looking at color palettes online and ended up picking one that was based on a picture of a tropical beach; it’s the most common natural occurrence of our two colors together as well as the place most people are thinking about on June 2!

Click inside for the rest of Matt & Tom’s offbeat, Maryland wedding at the Strathmore Mansion.

DIY Tutorial: DIY Fringe Tissue Paper Backdrop from Hey Love Designs

Today we are sharing a SUPER RAD DIY wedding tutorial thanks to the amazing Michelle at Hey Love Designs.

I shared our own DIY photobooth backdrop from streamers a while back, but I LOVE the way this DIY Fringe Tissue Paper Backdrop looks. It would be SO easy to work in different colors, an ombre effect, or even use metallic tissue paper to give the backdrop an extra pop!

This particular fringe backdrop was used for a bridal shower. But you could EASILY swap out the bunting to say pretty much anything. Perfect for a backdrop for an engagement party, bachelorette party, bridal shower, OR wedding!

How to Make a DIY Fringe Tissue Paper Backdrop from Hey Love Designs


  • Board – Foam, cardboard, wood, etc
  • Tissue Paper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Double-Sided Tape or Glue

Head on over to Hey Love Designs’ blog for the rest of this step-by-step, DIY Fringe Backdrop tutorial!

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