blue

Stella & Terence’s Irish & English Inspired Northern Virginia Wedding

A groom from Ireland & a bride from Wiltshire [a Southerner!], England – throwing a DIY, handmade wedding in Northern Virginia. I think I love everything about the sentence I just typed.

Douglas Pettway Photography dropped this stunner of a wedding in my Two Bright Lights inbox, and the minute I got the details from Stella – I was smitten. Terence & Stella used a TON of DIY, borrowed, thrifted, & low-budget purchases to create the wedding of their dreams. They also relied heavily on my 4th DIY Wedding Tip, having friends & family volunteer a lot of time & talent to their wedding. I know you will love this one :)

Terence & Stella’s Handmade, Budget-Friendly Northern Virginia Wedding

About the couple:

Terence and Stella met at the 21st birthday party of a mutual friend in Terence’s hometown of Limerick, Ireland in 2001. They started dating the following year, while Stella was at University in Liverpool. After a few years in a long-distance relationship, Terence moved to England, and in 2006 they began their American adventure by moving to the DC area. Terence is an engineer in the aerospace industry, and Stella is an interior designer. They live in Sterling, VA with their Alaskan Malamute, Madra.

Stella tried on lots of dresses in stores and finally found one she liked that was way over budget. So she searched online and found a vendor to recreate the dress for a third of the cost.

Since it was still winter, darker rich colours seemed more appropriate, but we still wanted to have some fun, and to get away from the typical winter wedding colours, so we paired navy dresses with orange shoes for our ladies outfits, the bride wore blue shoes, and we used cream, blue and orange flowers to tie things together elsewhere.

Looking for a barn wedding venue in Northern Virginia? Coomber Hall sounds amazing! The couple shares why they chose it as their wedding venue:

 We knew we wanted an older venue, but struggled to find a place that would allow us to fit all our guests in one room without using a marquee (it was a February wedding), and to have flexibility while still having charm and authenticity. Stella’s step-mother came across the civil war era venue Coomber Hall and emailed a link to her. Once we visited, we knew it would be perfect, and it was only a couple of miles from St Joseph’s church where the ceremony was taking place. The estate has a gorgeous old house which backs to a pair of barns – one derelict, one renovated and used as a school of music, dance venue and now wedding venue.

I love this detail about the yellow car they used for the wedding:

A friend volunteered to drive from Baltimore with their daughter’s pre-restoration 1967 Chevy Impala to use as the wedding car. As huge fans of the tv show ‘Supernatural’, it was the couple’s dream car!

Click inside for the rest of Stella & Terence’s handmade, family-run Northern Virginia wedding ~ with lots more details on their DIY projects!

Pin It

Cecelia & Wasim’s Hip Modern Washington, DC Wedding

When a new message popped up in my inbox from Megan Noonan Photography, with the subject “Cecelia & Wasim’s wedding” – well, I was pumped. Cecelia & Wasim’s awesome Washington, DC art gallery engagement had made my “Best of 2011 Engagement Features“, so naturally, I knew their wedding was going to be unique, ultra-hip, and 100% them.

Cecelia confirmed my suspicions:

After getting engaged, I seriously tried to convince Wasim that we should go to the courthouse, get married, have a small dinner with family and friends, and call it a day.  Wasim, however, was very adamant about having a full blown wedding. I am so very glad that I “caved in” because we had a blast.

Wasim and I said that our goal was for our guests to eat, drink, and dance well at our wedding. Personally, I wanted to make sure that in the process we stayed true to ourselves without getting locked in traditions that didn’t fit our personalities, and that we didn’t break the bank while doing so.

I mean what could be more Capitol Romance than what Cecelia said – a wedding that “stayed true to ourselves”, not “locked in traditions that didn’t fit” them and “didn’t break the bank” – I mean those are practically my commandments!

Cecelia & Wasim’s Non-traditional, Modern Wedding at the Hotel Palomar in Arlington, VA

Cecelia shares how they chose Hotel Palomar in Arlington, VA as their wedding venue:

I am a huuuuuge fan of modern art (hence my choices for the   engagement session), so I was originally looking a venues with a modern and artistic vibe.  Once we stepped in the Hotel Palomar, I absolutely fell in love with the theme, “Art in Motion” and the artwork.  The fact that Wasim loved it and actually picked the hotel as his number one choice completely sold me on the venue.  We knew we made the right decision when we had our tasting…can you say Yuuuuummy!!??

We also wanted to make sure that we could have the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception at one location since the vast majority of our guests were from out of town.

i mean have you ever seen sexier, hipper bright blue wedding shoes than Cecelia’s? love.

love her sophisticated, twist bun wedding hairstyle!

Their invitations used the cobalt blue, smokey grey, and white color palette. so modern!

And just this last peak before I make you click inside to see the rest! Cecelia went non-traditional and opted for clutches over bouquets. I have been talking about that alternative bouquet idea for ever – and am THRILLED to get to show how awesome it looks in a REAL wedding!

Click inside to see the rest of Cecelia & Wasim’s Modern, Nontraditional Washington, DC wedding by Megan Noonon Photography.

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