Aaron & Lauren’s H Street Engagement Pictures in Washington, DC

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Images: This Rad Love

Come on now, we all know I am an absolute SUCKER for engagement sessions that take place in my neighborhood. Boundary Road is one of the coolest interiors on H Street, and I just love my NE neighborhood SO freakin’ much. But also, Sarah with This Rad Love takes amazing pictures and I just loved Aaron & Lauren’s vibe. After meeting at a now defunct marketing company in Bethesda, the two bonded over 12 hour days. After 6 years, they decided it was finally time to tie the knot :) Here’s their love story & DC engagement pictures!

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With Lauren’s busy work and school schedule, Aaron had difficulty slowing her down long enough to propose. He decided to be sporadic and propose over the weekend without out planning anything. “It will come together naturally,” he thought… That Saturday he tried to get her to go on a picnic, but she insisted that she wanted to see her mom instead. Aaron figured he could pop the question later that evening over a nice homemade dinner. On their drive home, however, Lauren saw a friend of theirs walking on the sidewalk and waved him over, ” hop in and get a drink with us,” she called. Classic Lauren.

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The next morning, Aaron convinced her to take a day off from work and school so they could go for a hike. Aaron, looking for the perfect spot, stopped her in front of a picturesque waterfall. Before he could drop to one knee, a child screamed “I hate this place!” and threw a bottle of water on the ground right at his feet. Aaron was running out of options. A few times Aaron asked Lauren to take a detour off the beaten path to darker parts of the trail to which she replied, “I’m not going in there.”

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Click inside for the rest of Lauren & Aaron’s SUPER awesome DC engagement pictures!

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#PopUpRomance is BACK (and it’s better AND bigger than ever!)


Image: Maggie Winters Photography

Some of you might remember a little something called #PopUpRomance that Pop Wed Co & I teamed up on at last year’s PRIDE parade/weekend during the DC MEET Market. And just in case you don’t know about it, check out my recap of last year’s event here.

Well Maggie & I are super pumped to let you all know that #PopUpRomance is indeed having a sophomore year, but this time we are teaming up with GayWeddings.com & Wedding Wire as part of their #WedWeCan movement, to host one HUGE pop-up vow renewal that EVERYONE is invited to attend and take part in.


#PopUpRomance2.0 will have SO much more going on this year, all going down the morning of June 13th, at the Embassy Row Hotel – and you’re invited (encouraged!) to attend. We’re going to have flowers, desserts, a DJ, and a sign making station so that everyone can make their own awesome sign to have during the parade. Last year Rose & Nicole ROCKED the parade with their “just RE-married” sign and I can’t wait to see what people come up with this year!


WeddingWire has built an event page where you can find out lots of information, including a schedule for #PopUpRomance2.0:

  • 10:00am-10:45amEnjoy complimentary beverages and snacks and mix and mingle with local Wedding Professionals, couples, and President of GayWeddings.com, Kathryn Hamm.
  • 10:45am-11:15am: THE MAIN EVENT! A Pop-Up Vow Renewal with Pop Wed Co!
  • 11:15am-12:00pm: Continue to mix and mingle and make your “Just Married!” sign! When the event concludes, we invite you to take part in the festivities around the DuPont Circle area.
  • 3:00pm: Meet us back at the Capital Pride Parade Wed We Can staging area (location to be announced at the event) and get ready to march! *T-shirts will be provided!

Personally, I am SO VERY excited to get to renew my vows with Andy (as we approach our FIVE YEAR wedding anniversary this November!) at the 40th anniversary of Pride! I REALLY hope some of you are able to join – I hope to see you there :)


Brad & Matt’s Laid Back Wedding at the Winery at Bull Run in Virginia

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Images: Chamberlin Photography | submitted via Two Bright Lights

Blogging late today with some friends in town meeting Evie but I wanted to just start today’s post with a little plug for my favorite wedding show in DC that is this Sunday – The Say I Do Expo. We, unfortunately, will not be able to attend this year, but have been lucky to be a part of it in the past and it’s truly a GREAT wedding show (with FABULOUS LGBT vendors & resources!). Check it out.

And now for today’s real wedding! Brad and Matt have been together for 16 years and engaged for 4. They have a great love of travel, and so the variety of wedding cakes they had designed, each represented a country/city they visited!

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The gentleman chose to have their ceremony and reception at The Winery at Bull Run, as they love wine and history~ the venue is adjacent to the Historic Manassas Battlefield. Both of the grooms mothers gave them away!

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The theme of the wedding was ‘Five’… Five colors: red is Matt’s favorite, blue is Brad’s favorite, green and purple are their second favorites and gold just ties all of the colors together. Matt also likes to collect Mardi Gras masks, so gold represents that, as well! The five cakes each had photographs that the grooms took, themselves, while visiting each destination. The gift jars, for guests, incorporated the wedding color scheme.

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Click inside for the rest of this gorgeous Virginia winery wedding!

DIY Tutorial: How to Make a DIY Storage Ottoman ~ Part 2

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Images & Tutorial: Ribbons & Bluebirds

And we’re back with Part 2 of our DIY Storage Ottoman tutorial. Part 1 is back over here, which shows you how to make the box portion. Now Jenn is back for the second part – how to upholster your ottoman! Take it away Jenn.

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If you started with a cube already  or you followed along with our DIY Storage Ottoman Part 1 tutorial, we’re ready for part 2: tackling the upholstery.

Upholstery can be intimidating, but it’s not hard!  Once you pick up a few tips and techniques, and you get a feel for the fabric you’re using, you’ll be upholstering like a pro.  On that note, if you love upholstery projects I can’t recommend Design Sponge’s Upholstery Basics series enough – they do a fantastic job of walking you through the professional method for a bunch of projects step by step.


Materials, should all be available at your local fabric store:

  • Storage ottoman box, (buy: Home Basics Storage Ottoman, or make yourself from our Part 1 DIY Storage Ottoman Tutorial)
  • Furniture feet, from Part 1
  • 1” High Density Foam (I used 2 yards, 24” wide)
  • 2” High Density Foam (I used a 15×17” chair pad)
  • Dacron batting (I used just over 2 yards at 54” wide
  • Outer fabric – yardage will depend on fabric width. I used 3 yards of fabric at 42” wide for my ottoman, which was slightly larger than the dimensions we used in Part 1.
  • Felt or other heavy lining fabric
  • Ribbon or other trim for finishing
  • Fabric covered button kit, 7/8” size

Tools needed:

  • Staple gun (I use a light-weight gun and it works great without killing my hands.)
  • Marker/pen
  • Hot glue gun
  • Spray glue
  • Xacto knife
  • Fabric scissors
  • Kitchen paring knife
  • Fabric glue
  • Sewing machine
  • Straight pins
  • Iron

So when we left off last, we had a bare box with the hardware installed for furniture feet, and a separate lid.  Now it’s time to finish it off with cushy foam padding and fabric.

Lay your box on the 1” thick upholstery foam, and use a marker to trace the size you need.  For the first two pieces, measure the foam to exact the size of the panel (should be 12.5”wide x 11” tall), and cut using a pair of sharp, heavy-duty scissors. Use spray glue to attach the foam panels to the sides of the box, on opposite panels.


Use the box, now with two sides covered in foam, to measure out the longer sides for your second pair of panels, to overlap the first corner – these should be approximately 14.5” wide but can vary based on how accurate the rest of the your construction has been.  Attach the third and fourth panels to your box with spray glue.  If you don’t have enough foam in a continuous piece to cover a side, you can splice two pieces together to form the full panel: just cut the two pieces you need and use spray glue to attach a thin piece of fabric over the joint. When you’re finished with this step, the outside of your box should be covered in 1” foam.

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For the top, take your piece of 2” foam and trace the exact size of your top piece.  Cut this piece out – it will be more difficult to keep your cuts straight vertical, but it can still be done with the fabric scissors.



Katie & Michael’s Pop Up Pi Day Wedding at &Pizza in DC

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Images: Maggie Winters for Pop Wed Co.

Guys. This DC wedding is so freakin’ rad it’s making my face hurt from smiling so hard at all the pictures. Not only did this rad wedding come from my favs, Pop Wed Co, but it took place on Pi Day … AND at a pizza place! But not just any pizza place, one of my favorites in DC – &Pizza! The pictures are so fun of course, but I love all the details from Michael & Katie too. Sharing why they wanted a small wedding and the reasoning why they chose Pi Day for their wedding date! Check it out :)

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We wanted to get married, but I knew that I didn’t want a formal wedding. I was having trouble with the idea of a wedding, and we tossed around different ideas. I saw an article about Popwed.co and I knew that’s what I wanted to have- a quick, low key, small, laid-back wedding. We had also recently moved to the DC area together, and getting married in DC seemed like a way to mark our time here.

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Maggie did a great job in putting together most of the fun details. She was also excited about us getting married on Pi Day. We had no particular ties to any specific date or time, but knew we wanted to get married within the year, and hopefully during pleasant weather.

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As a math teacher, I knew that the upcoming Pi Day (March 14) was going to be the most epic Pi Day of the century- 3-14-15, and I lightly suggested that we get married then. Michael thought it sounded fun (and I bounced the idea off a few math teacher friends to see if I was being too nerdy- they assured me I was not!). Once we had the date nailed down, Maggie suggested the venue. We thought it was perfect- we love pizza, and we love the idea of &pizza (that I can get something with unique vegetarian ingredients and Michael can get pizza covered with pepperoni and sausage).

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We originally invited just our parents and siblings (and their husbands/wives/kids), but we had close friends who really wanted to attend. So we gave up on limiting the number of guests, and told friends they were welcome to come if they wanted, but not to expect a traditional reception (we held a larger reception for all family and friends in Ohio a few weeks later). A couple weeks before the wedding, we had a few other friends call us and say that they were coming. As more and more friends decided to come, we felt so very loved! It was really fun to be surrounded by our close friends and family- about 20 people total- who traveled all the way from Ohio.

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Click inside for the rest of Katie & Michael’s super rad Washington DC wedding on Pi Day!

Tinita & Jerrod’s College Rivalry Engagement Pictures in Maryland

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 Images: Terri Baskin Photography submitted via Two Bright Lights

Hope everyone had a WONDERFUL weekend. It’s my last wedding-free one for a bit and I was happy to have Andy back home and get some things cleaned up around the house. I cannot believe it’s June. Seriously, where did May go!? For today we have an adorable “college rivals” engagement session featuring Jerrod & Tinita. They both wanted to pay homage to their alma maters during their engagement pictures (with insanely awesome collegiate sweaters), which also happen to be rivals. Check it all out below!

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Jerrod attended North Carolina A&T State University and Tinita attended Howard University. The two schools have an athletic rivalry that spans many years, so the couple made fun of one another in cute and playful ways during their engagement session. Currently, Jerrod is working on his second Master’s Degree and Tinita has her Ph.D! They met at church and what was once a casual friendship has blossomed into a love story that they will share with all of their friends and family at their wedding at the Bolger Center in Potomac Maryland.

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Giveaway: Win Wedding Photography Package from Stephen Gosling Photography


A few months ago Stephen Gosling Photography emailed me about helping him to celebrate the re-brand of his photography business with something BIG. He said he’d like to give away a wedding photography package to one of my readers and I was STOKED. So to help Stephen celebrate his new logo, designed website, & blog, we are teaming up to host a giveaway for one lucky couple!

If you are unfamiliar with Stephen’s work (IDK how! We’ve featured him a ton here!), Stephen Gosling Photography is a boutique wedding photographer based in Old Town Alexandria who photographs couples all over the DC area and also further afield. Check out his snazzy new logo/brand:


Stephen shares, “Based in the DC area since 2007 I have been lucky enough to shoot many amazing couples at some of the DC areas most beautiful and interesting wedding venues.  And to celebrate the new look for my business I want to celebrate by shooting your wedding!” Here are a few of his favorite images:

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So let’s get down to the details! The first and foremost is that there IS a date specification for this wedding photography giveaway:


So now that you know that, here’s how to enter!

  • Email your submission for the giveaway to studio@goslingphotography.com | with the subject line: Wedding Photography Competition via CapRo
  • Your submission must include:
    • Full names of the couple to be married
    • Location of wedding
    • Date of wedding
    • A description of your wedding (include info on a theme if there is one)
    • Why you read Capitol Romance and why you should be chosen to win the competition!


Chicago Sky v Washington Mystics

Terms and conditions:

Wedding must be between Dec 31st 2015 and April 2nd 2016. | Wedding must be in Washington DC or within 60 miles from Old Town, Alexandria. | Availability is based on photographers schedule. | You must not have already booked a wedding photographer.  If you have signed a contract with a wedding photographer for your wedding date then you are exempt from applying for the competition. | Stephen Gosling Photography must be the only contracted wedding photographer shooting at the event. | A Stephen Gosling Photography wedding contract must be signed. | Prize has no monetary trade-in value.

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Prize package is for Stephen Gosling Photography’s #1 wedding package, which includes:

  • 8 hours of wedding day coverage
  • High-resolution images edited for quality and clarity delivered on USB drive and FTP download
  • Online gallery with e-commerce capabilities

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We can’t wait to see the submissions and look forward to helping one lucky couple score a seriously awesome deal for their 2016 wedding!

Alli & Mark’s Washington DC Themed Wedding at Keswick Vineyards

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

Images: Jodi Miller Photography

 I really love when couples self-submit their weddings to my blog because they are usually readers that have a similar outlook to me on the DC wedding scene (or really just weddings in general). Alli emailed me last month, excited to submit her DIY, DC themed wedding that took place at a gorgeous winery in Charlottesville and I know you guys are going to love it too! The darling yellow & grey colors, the DIY projects, and the DC Metro table names – just to name a few! Check out all the images and details from Alli & Mark!

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

Mark and I are about as nontraditional as you can get – who meets on the Metro and then gets married? We wanted our wedding to reflect that as well.

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

We chose Charlottesville because we wanted to get away from the city, but still be equidistant from our families in North Carolina and Michigan.  I go to Charlottesville every year to visit family during Christmas, so it feels like home, and Mark has always loved it because it reminds him of his college town of Ann Arbor, MI. We looked at seven vineyards in one day, but once we saw Keswick Vineyards, with its beautiful white estate, it’s “Edgewood Room”, which was the name of the street where we first lived together, and its views of the rolling hills, we knew it was the place we wanted to get married. The theme of our wedding was very easy to come by since we met on the DC metro; all of the details really figured themselves out from there.

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

After trying on many so-called “traditional” wedding dresses, I fell in love with one with a modern twist – the back was cut out and it had a trumpet shape – completely opposite of the romantic lace dress I had in mind.  I also didn’t want my girls in traditional bridesmaids’ dresses, so they were welcome to wear different versions of a casual grey dress and yellow shoes with whatever hair, make-up and jewelry they were comfortable in (they are all incredibly beautiful, so I knew none of those details would make any difference)!

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

The grey and yellow was only really used in the wedding party attire and my yellow shoes.

I started my wedding day with a morning yoga class, led by my bridesmaid (and friend since kindergarten), with all of my girls – bridesmaids, flower girls and cousins.

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards

The wedding coordinator at the church was my Aunt Karen.  With my cousin on the drums and his bandmate as pianist, they performed music by Sigur Ros to accompany us all down the aisle.  Two of our best friends read scripture and my cousin Avery read a passage from the Velveteen Rabbit.

Allison + Mark; September 10, 2011; Keswick Vineyards


DIY Tutorial: How to Make a DIY Storage Ottoman – Part 1


Images & Tutorial: Ribbons & Bluebirds

We’re back for DIY Wednesday with Part 1 of a DIY tutorial to make a super awesome upholstered storage ottoman – perfect for a home office, bedroom or nursery. I took the easy way out and bought a super cheap yellow one from IKEA for our nursery, but DIY maven Jenn’s is SO MUCH more awesome. One because she made it, and two because it’s completely customized! Take it away Jenn!

How to Make a DIY Storage Ottoman – Part 1: Building the Box


Perhaps you have noticed a trend in my DIYs lately: I am very deep into my nesting phase. This is coming from someone who is pretty much always in a nesting phase, pregnant or no, so you know when it comes to my nursery I have been going a little overboard.

One of the trends I have been seeing a lot of in design and retail right now is the small storage ottoman – perfect for small spaces and a great way to keep clutter neatly tucked away.  I see this little ottoman as being a perfect place to tuck toys, books, or spare blankets! This tutorial is long, but definitely not complicated, and would be a great place for a beginner upholsterer to start.  Today we’re looking at part one: building the box. Check back soon for part 2 when we dive into the upholstery!

Materials (should all be available at your local hardware store or of course via Amazon)


Tools needed:

  • Saw, if you are not having your pieces cut at the hardware store
  • Power drill and 3/8” drill bit
  • Hammer
  • Wood Glue and clamps

*NOTE* if you use a thickness other than ½”, you will need to resize some of the pieces of this list as some factor in material thickness. See diagram to determine your cut list.



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