Letter to the Editor: Emergency Repairs at the Fairmont DC

This is my first ever “letter to the editor” type post – but I got an email yesterday from a bride to be that is dealing with some unfortunate issues with her wedding venue. I wanted to share her letter so that you all, my readers, could be aware of this – not only if The Fairmont is your venue, but also to reiterate the importance of obtaining venue insurance, and thoroughly vetting your venue before you book with them.

PLEASE be sure to ask your venues what their policies are if something like this were to happen at their space. The more you know and the more you ask, the better protected you will be. Thanks to Katey for sharing.


**UPDATE – Please read the bottom for The Fairmont’s response**

I am not sure if you would post anything like this – also curious if you have heard from any other brides –  but our wedding is June 29 (of this year) at the Fairmont in DC and we were informed yesterday that there will be a major construction project undertaken to address an external water leakage. They will be erecting scaffolding on the external walls that face the street and in the interior courtyard. It essentially ruins the aesthetic of the space. I understand that an issue like this is out of the hotel’s control, however this is the issue:

The hotel insisted to me over and over again that they only just found out about this issue on Friday of last week. However, after pressing them, I learned that another couple learned last week at their tasting. We also are in the process of pulling the permit applications, which we may have identified but need to confirm. If these are one in the same for this project, the hotel was seeking permits for this work  in March.

The Fairmont is letting people out of their contracts with full refunds, but we believe that because this emergency project must take place during the high season of weddings, they are purposefully withholding this information until closer to the event to make it difficult for people to find alternatives.

Also people should be warned that their guest rooms may be impacted.

Would you be willing to let people know about this potential issue? In addition to the couple we met, they know of two other couples potentially impacted.

We don’t want other couples of DC to be caught flatfooted.

I also plan on contacting other local wedding blogs. I would like to get the word out to as many couples as possible.

Thank you for listening.



The Fairmont has since responded:

I just spoke with the director of sales and marketing, Shannon Schneider, and she apologized profusely for what happened and acknowledged that we should have been told sooner. She assisted me with all of the questions our contact could not. And in addition to refunding our money, the hotel has compensated us for our trouble. I did not even ask for it – I just wanted to be made whole. It would be great if you could share this update on the blog as well.  Even though our experience with Mark was not up-to-par, the management has taken steps to rectify the situation, very graciously. Always good to point out when they make it right or you get to the competent person who can help you.

Pin It

Liza & Mike’s Personalized, DIY Rustic Barn Wedding in Maryland

Douglas Pettway Photography has been killing it lately! Sending me some of the most awesome, personalized, and moving real weddings. This one, Liza & Mike’s, is no different. The couple both grew up in Virginia, so they knew they wanted something laid-back, and natural when it came to their wedding. They came across a barn in Southern MD at Jefferson Patterson Park and just fell in LOVE. They loved the casual barn and knew the natural setting would make for some killer portraits (they were right!).  They hired their family & friends to come together to make this wedding possible, and it’s so apparent just how much love was involved in this wedding day. Take it away Liza & Mike!

Liza & Mike’s Personalized, DIY Jefferson Patterson Park Wedding in Maryland

DIY maryland barn wedding


Photographer: Douglas Pettway | Venue: Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum | Wedding Coordinator: Erica – friend of bride | Desserts: Cakes and Confections – no wedding cake only bite size desserts | DJRich Barreto | CatererWhitman’s Catering | Flowers: DIY – assembled by friends and family | Hair: Platinum Hair Salon

 map bunting wedding decoration

We loved the casual barn setting with simple decorations. This was a DIY wedding so we didn’t want to go overboard with the decorations since we were in charge of taking it all down and being cleaned up by 10 pm. The natural setting was beautiful so we didn’t need to do too much. We bought lace runners and used juice glasses to do simple flower arrangements.

DIY maryland barn wedding DIY maryland barn wedding

A coworker had told me about the venue. We had looked at a ton of places in VA. Since we both grew up in VA I assumed that’s where we would get married, but we fell in love with this venue in Southern MD. The water and beach was a great background for our couple pictures.

DIY maryland barn weddingoutdoor wedding ceremony benches jefferson patterson wedding ceremony

Click inside for the rest of Liza & Mike’s gorgeous, handmade Maryland barn wedding.

Introducing #PopUpRomance ~ A Vow Renewal Giveaway & Collaborative Art Event


Guys!!! Pop Wed Co & I are teaming up to bring something EXTRA AWESOME to the DC MEET Market on June 7th! For starters, it’s Capital Pride weekend, and for seconds, the market is going to be taking on a PRIDE theme, as it sits right on the parade route. So Maggie & I though – why not up the ante and do something EVEN more awesome to help celebrate love on such an amazing weekend!?

Boom. We give you, #PopUpRomance.

One part collaborative art installation, and one part vow renewal giveaway, #PopUpRomance is going to be SO SO AWESOME. We have lots of goodies in store for our vow renewal giveaway winners (ENTER BELOW!!) and the art installation is going to be going on all day at the DC MEET Market. So PLEASE come join us on Saturday, June 7th and help spread the LOVE.


Want to enter our Vow Renewal Giveaway?!!? Leave a blog post comment to tell us about YOUR love story and why you want to renew your vows on Capital Pride Weekend at the DC MEET Market!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway: Win a Custom, Stoneware Wedding Ring Holder

Giveaway: Enter to Win a Custom, Handmade Stoneware Wedding Ring Holder

Thanks to the ever-awesome Love, Lori Michelle, I was introduced to another talented, local DC artist that makes custom items for weddings & special events – this time, from pottery! Meet Sarah (the lady behind Why Food Works) and check out her pottery company, Stoneware By Sarah. You can check out her Facebook page, Stoneware By Sarah, or the store to order a customized piece. All the pots are fired at over 2000F, so they’re oven, microwave, and dishwasher safe! She even has an entire “wedding collection” of pieces that would make for an awesome, local DC wedding gift idea!


A bit about Sarah & her pottery company:

Sarah has been doing pottery for 2 years – she started on a whim, and now thinks she’s hooked for life.  Her main business is nutrition – doing healthy, interactive dinner parties in people’s homes – so it only makes sense that her hobby ends up on the table, too!  After seeing some glass-bottom pieces in a studio, she got the idea to give wedding gifts to friends with glass from the wine served at their reception melted into the bottom of mugs, ring dishes, and spoon rests.  It’s a perfect way to preserve the memory of the day, and would be a great use of the glass broken at Jewish ceremonies, too, since only a small shard is needed to incorporate into the piece!
Pretty rad right?! Well Sarah is giving away a custom wedding ring holder (seen above!) to one lucky reader! Just comment on this post, what you’d use the wedding ring holder for and like Sarah’s Facebook page, and share on Twitter for extra chances to win!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Let’s Get Personal: New Years Resolution Check-In & Grade

This year I set a New Years Resolution (who didn’t), but I also had some REAL resolve to actually work on the resolution and work to meet it this year. I knew 2014 was going to be a crazy year – personally and professionally, and so far it hasn’t disappointed. With a full set of weddings, starting a new project at the day job, launching the Classifieds, launching the DIY Wedding Workshops, changing up our vendor guide … and SO MUCH MORE, 2014 has already turned out to be one crazy year. And it’s only just May!

So our resolution this year was to work on “follow-through”. Actually doing the things I said I would do. This meant everything from ACTUALLY making that dinner date with a friend or colleague, after the common place “we should get drinks!” is exchanged, to completely some huge projects that we dreamed up and have started. For today’s personal post, I thought it might be fun to check in on my resolution and grade myself for the year so far. Because believe it or not, come June, 2014 is already half-way over (Mind. Blown).

Let’s Get Personal: New Years Resolution Check-In & Grading

offbeat dc wedding blog

I’ll start by saying that this post will include 2 grades, one for my personal life and one for my professional. In both areas I think “follow-through” is important for different reasons. Personally, I had grown pretty tired of the ever-growing flakiness of people in my personal life. Plans are made, and so easily broken or never seen through completion. Cell phones make it too easy to flake out on promises of “texting you later”. Now let’s be honest here. I am 100% guilty of doing this too! Last year I often told friends that I would be somewhere and when the time came, the couch seemed like the better option and that half-truth text message got sent.

“Ah sorry! I didn’t see my phone until just now, probably not going to make it ….” This needed to stop. I needed to be better at following-through on the commitments I made, no matter how informal. So I resolved to do that this year – make those dinner/drink plans we always TALKED about making (but never did).

So far, I’ll give myself a C+ personally (thanks in part to the 2 emails, I literally JUST sent to friends I’ve been meaning to grab drinks with for a few months now). I’m still doing the “sorry I just saw this” text a bit too much, but all in all, I think I’ve been better about making concrete plans with people and actually following through on those plans. The funny thing is – once you ACTUALLY follow-through with the plans, you’ll find that you end up having a GREAT time.

Professionally, I’ll give myself a B. I’ve followed-through on some HUGE things this year already, but there have been 2 projects that fell victim to lack of follow-through on my part. One was probably for the best (and probably won’t come to fruition this year – and that’s OK) but the second, I need to just GET DONE. I’m not sure what it is, but I just can’t bring myself to do the things that need to be done on it.

I guess I should realize that I do have 6+ months left to get my grades up, but hey, at least I am passing ;)

Your turn! How are you doing on your New Years Resolution?

Sarah & Dave’s Modern, Intimate Washington DC Wedding at Fathom Gallery

It’s been far too long since we’ve had Sweet Tea Photography on the blog! But she sent us this darling, modern DC wedding at one of my favorite new(ish) venues in DC and I just couldn’t say no! Fathom Gallery is SO much awesome. Located right in Logan Circle, super industrial meets modern design (the barn doors Sarah & Dave got married under will make you want to move in – I always do every time I’m there), lots of the furniture is provided, and the gallery even prints YOUR photos and hangs them around the gallery during your event!

Seriously. This place is so rad and I am SO pumped that I get to work there in June! I loved how Sarah & Dave used pops of red in their flowers against the sleek, white of the gallery. I also love how even though their wedding was small, it didn’t stop them from having SO much fun once the party started. Thanks again to Sweet Tea Photography for sending us this one!

Sarah & Dave’s Modern, Intimate Washington DC Wedding at Fathom Gallery

modern intimate DC wedding Fathom Gallery


Photography: Sweet Tea Photography | Venue: Fathom Gallery | Wedding Planner: Some Kind of Wonderful Events | Bride’s Dress: Heidi Elnora via Soliloquy Bridal Couture | Catering: 42 Degrees of Catering | Florist: Lynn Vale Studios | DJ: DJ Rich, Bialek’s Music | Celebrant: Capitol Hill Celebrant

2014-05-04_0006 modern DC bride groom

In a truly artful fashion, Sarah and David were married at Fathom Gallery. The couple’s immediate family gathered for a touching and intimate ceremony in front of the gallery’s sliding silver doors (the feature that sold Sarah on the location). Immediately following the ceremony, the rest of the guests hit the dance floor while sporting sunglasses made for the special day, dancing to music provided by DJ Rich from Bialek’s.

modern pink red bouquet

Special touches included linens from the groom’s sister’s wedding for the buffet, framed pictures of the couples hanging throughout the gallery, markers at a dry erase wall for the children to draw on and guests to write greetings and best wishes, and a beautiful roof top deck where guests cool down from dancing.

modern DC bride groom modern intimate DC wedding Fathom Gallerymodern intimate DC wedding Fathom Gallery

Click inside for the rest of Sarah & Dave’s intimate, modern DC wedding at Fathom Gallery.

Corey & Anna’s Cherry Blossom, Washington DC Engagement Pictures

I used to get a TON of “traditional” DC engagement submissions all the time – monument after monument, a million cherry blossoms, and more. But (maybe because I raged against them) it’s been A WHILE since I’ve gotten any and man, I sort of missed them! Don’t it always seem to go ….

So for today we have Matoli Keely Photography sharing Corey & Anna’s beautiful Cherry Blossom, Washington DC monuments engagement session. Classic, gorgeous, and just what I needed today. Take it away Corey & Anna!

Corey & Anna’s Cherry Blossom, Classic Washington DC Engagement Pictures by the Monuments

DC mall engagement pictures

How they Met:

Corey’s cousin, Tyler, met Anna while they were both studying Graphic Design at Harding University. Tyler and Anna became instant best friends. When Corey moved to Alexandria, Virginia in 2010, Tyler insisted that he meet Anna. Tyler’s instincts were right, on January 3rd 2011 Corey and Anna met for dinner at Mai Thai in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. Their first meeting went so well that Corey kissed Anna that night and they have been together ever since.

DC mall engagement pictures DC mall engagement pictures DC mall engagement pictures DC mall engagement pictures DC mall engagement pictures

Click inside for the rest of this gorgeous DC engagement session – including a shot of that engagement ring AND the proposal story!

Last Call for Alcohol – er DIY Wedding Workshop Tickets!

Happy Friday Romancers! We’re interrupting our normal “wedding inspiration” post with a few announcements and links for the weekend instead! I mean, pretty much everyone and their brother wants to be outside drinking and not strapped to a computer, reading a wedding blog anyway. Am I right? So let’s get this going!

Capitol Romance Announcements & Links for the Weekend!

On Tuesday night, we collaborated with Studio DBI & Typecase Industries to design a dinner party for Union Kitchen’s inaugural “Producer’s Dinner”. Or as DC Eater likes to call it, a Potluck on Steroids.

uk20 uk19

We had a BLAST designing something with Studio DBI that was fun, hip, and BRIGHT (of course). We also loved getting to meet so many awesome food and drink purveyors – all working out of Washington, DC! Man I love this city and getting to be a part of events like this!


[Me making friends with the ah-mazing Rare Sweets!]

One last reminder for everyone that ticket sales for our first DIY Wedding Workshop (this Sunday, 2pm to 4pm at the Ulysses Room) END TONIGHT!!! Please please please share with any of your friends and family that might be interested in learning how to make something special for their wedding or event!

diy how to wedding veil DC DIY wedding veil

We were featured on ScoutMob! Check out the awesome write-up they shared here.


And last, but not least, let’s check in with some of the AMAZING things our blog sponsors are doing!

The Happy Couple blogged a gorgeous Spring Maryland wedding!

Stephen Gosling Photo blogged a beautiful Cherry Blossom Engagement session.

Check out Ribbons & Bluebirds IN ACTION at the Indie Bridal Party DIY Paper Rose Station!

Have a great weekend Romancers! We’re pumped for our first May wedding coordination gig and of course the workshop on Sunday! SEE YOU THERE! <3

Arlene & Adam’s Intimate, Washington DC Elopement at Park Hyatt

Arlene and Adam didn’t want a big wedding. They dreamed of a big honeymoon and a perfect, small, elegant but modern ceremony.

So that’s EXACTLY what they did! I am SO pumped to have Val and Sarah on the blog today, sharing Arlene & Adam’s intimate, DC wedding. Arlene’s BHLDN dress is gorgeous, and her cobalt blue heels are WICKED. But really, my favorite thing about intimate weddings are just how meaningful they are. Strip away the money, the huge guest list, and all the crazy decorations and what’s left is really the MOST important part of the wedding day – ya know, the act of two people actually getting married. Take it away you guys!

Arlene & Adam’s Intimate, Washington DC Wedding at the Park Hyatt

intimate modern DC wedding


Photography: Val & Sarah | Bride’s Dress: BHLDN | Flowers: America’s Beautiful Florist | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

About the couple … and why they decided to get married ;)

After 8 years together, we decided to get married shortly after learning that Game of Thrones Season 4 wouldn’t be on the air until April 2014 and we needed SOMETHING to do until then. Seriously, how sweet is Game of Thrones Season 4 going to be!?

cobalt blue bridal heels

On her dress:

 Just bought it online and loved it and kept it. I got it pressed the week before at Besson’s Cleaner’s on 14th in NW and I’m only mentioning that because I had a bear of a time figuring out exactly what people do about wrinkles in wedding dresses. Turns out you can just get it pressed at the cleaners! Who knew? They even put it in a hanger form so that it kept its shape. Best $20 I spent on the whole wedding.

intimate moden bhldn wedding dress modern groom attiremodern bride getting ready

More from Val & Sarah:

They found the perfect setting at the Park Hyatt in Washington DC by holding their ceremony in the Presidential Suite. Wearing a short dress, and a perfect pair of royal blue shoes, Arlene walked to Adam with Thank You For Being A Friend (Yes, the Golden Girls Theme Song) playing in the background. The pair were married in front of their immediate family by a close friend. Perfect. Intimate. And Gorgeous. What more could you ask for?

intimate modern DC wedding intimate modern DC wedding intimate modern DC wedding

Click inside for the rest of Arlene & Adam’s intimate, modern DC wedding!

Need Help Making DIY Projects for Your Wedding? Attend Our Workshops!