offbeat DC weddings

Capitol Romance Best of 2014: Best Washington DC Weddings of the Year

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When I started this blog it was my mission to find Washington DC weddings that did not fit the traditional, opulent norm of what most people think of when they hear the term “DC wedding”. I wanted the offbeat, the nontraditional, the funky, and the downright awesome – and I am ecstatic to say that I have been able to find ALL of these. Maryland & Virginia were amazing this year – delivering some of the most beautiful and personalized weddings I’ve seen …. but the variety we got from our DC proper weddings – well, I just have to admit that DC killed it. We had DC themed details, a lightsaber fight outside the Capitol, two brides in red, a truly modern affair, and a legit Mardi Gras style parade – just to name our favorites.

We’re counting down the Top 5 Washington DC weddings of 2014, but be sure to check out ALL the amazing weddings we featured this year, here.

#5. Kim & Ryan’s Offbeat, Washington DC Themed Wedding at Mt Vernon Inn

Ok so I cheated  a little with this one – Mt. Vernon Inn isn’t technically in DC proper, but every single detail of this wedding was Washington, DC themed (mini pie favors from a Georgetown pie shop, DC map invitations) – including the Capital Bikehsare groomscake, that I just love so much.

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Image: The Girl Tyler

#4. Katy & Shamena’s Intimate Dupont Circle Elopement in Washington DC

It’s not a round up of best DC weddings without highlighting one that occurs between two people that don’t actually live in DC. Thanks to our marriage laws, DC gets TONS of couples from all over the map that just want to be married. As these lovely ladies put it: “we came to DC because we didn’t just want a civil union; we wanted to be married”.

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Image: eKate Photography

#3. Alexis & Jason’s Modern Washington DC Wedding at the W Hotel

In a complete 180 from the others on this roundup, Alexis & Jason upped the modern factor with their stunning DC wedding at the W. Everything about this DC wedding screamed chic and modern and I love how much fun everyone seemed to have.


Image: JPix Photography

#2. Katja & Alex’s Offbeat & Intimate Washington DC Wedding at the Phoenix Park Hotel

This was such a close call between #2 and #1 – Katja & Alex completely personalized their wedding day with mentions of Zombie Apocalypses in their ceremony, stunning vintage attire, Grooms in kilts, German rituals, lego ring holders, and the ultimate DC wedding picture: a Star Wars light saber fight in front of the Capitol building. Yup, this wedding ruled.


Image: Kathleen Hertel Photography

#1. Zach & Maria’s Offbeat, Personalized Washington DC Wedding at Hillyer Art Center

Zach & Maria packed SO MUCH of their personalities into their wedding. Janet Reno masks, a New Orleans-style Brass Band, family skits, a push-up contest (which the bride joined in on!) and my absolute favorite: a legit Mardi Gras style parade that took the guests from the ceremony to dinner. Masks, umbrellas, feathers, and a band leading the way. This wedding was just SO cool – I wish I could have been there!


Image: De Nueva Photography 

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Sharon & Michele’s Intimate, Localized Washington DC Wedding

I love a good intimate, DC wedding – I think you guys all know this by now. Sharon & Michele got married at The Old Stone House in Georgetown and their lunch reception followed at Founding Farmers. Their cupcake (cake cutting) was from Baked & Wired – well it doesn’t get much more DC than this, does it? Thanks to Kat Forder for the beautiful images!

Sharon & Michele’s Intimate, Localized Washington DC Wedding

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Photographer: Kat Forder Photography | Ceremony: Old Stone House | Reception: Founding Farmers | Cupcake: Baked & Wired | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

From Kat:

“This past August Sharon and Michele reached me from their home in Louisiana and explained their plans for their fun filled road trip wedding weekend. They were looking forward to a long weekend family celebration in Pennsylvania, and while en route they thought they’d stop over in DC and get married! I immediately fell in love with their adventurous spirit and was thrilled to be invited to document their day.

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Their day began at The Graham Hotel in Georgetown where I learned about how all the details of their day came together with surprising ease. Everything from their wedding outfits, to their shoes and accessories seemed to “jump out at right when we needed them”. Their outfits were found brand new in second hand shops, and little details were contributed by family and friends.

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At first they weren’t sure if they would get a professional photographer for their celebrations. Their DIY entrepreneurial spirit has served them well in their own small business The Avatar Course and, with the help of their friends, they enjoyed a DC wedding celebration with many personal touches. In the end they decided that their story should be told in a beautiful and lasting way.

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Click inside for the rest of Sharon & Michele’s gorgeous, intimate DC wedding.

Top 10 Offbeat, Creative & DIY DC, MD, & VA Weddings from 2012

Closing out the week with our Top 10 Offbeat, Creative & DIY Maryland, Virginia, & Washington DC Wedding Features from 2012. Man, if I thought narrowing down the engagement sessions to 10 was hard …. this task was nearly impossible. So much so, that I HAD to have “honorable” mentions – because I just couldn’t pick only 10.

Which, in retrospect of why I started this DC wedding blog ~ and what my mission is [to find creative, DIY, & offbeat DCArea weddings], it’s actually a REALLY good thing. It means that the landscape of Washington DC area weddings IS changing – and couples in our often traditional [and expensive] wedding scene are finally getting outside the white wedding box, and I couldn’t be more thrilled about that.

So keep those offbeat DC, VA, & MD weddings coming 2013, and in the meantime, enjoy some seriously amazing offbeat weddings from 2012.

My Top 10 Offbeat & DIY Washington, DC, Maryland, & Virginia Wedding Features

 The bride wore green, the food was from food trucks, the best man & maid of honor were dogs … oh yeah & the entire wedding was a SURPRISE! Ben & Jen’s Offbeat Washington DC wedding by Leslie Maron Photography tops our list!

Bridesmaids in yellow & green, DIY wedding details, and almost everything handmade, Taylor & Stuart’s DIY Maryland wedding by Rebekah J. Murray was a shoe-in [Part 1 here, Part 2 here].

When I was designing my booth for Borrowed, I scoured the ends of the internet for “industrial wedding” inspiration. Nothing I found came close to Harmonie & Vi’s seriously amazing, industrial wedding at the Gutierrez Studio in Baltimore, MD by Voula Trip Photography. An umbrella chandelier, custom glasses, handmade wire signs, mismatched bridesmaids, & so much more. As their favors said, “let the series begin”:

This one made the list due to one of the most “offbeat” and budget-friendly DC wedding venues I have ever seen … the couple’s apartment complex! Charles & Scott’s Offbeat, Apartment Complex Wedding in Washington, DC was one just so cool – and really emphasized how the WEDDING is the most important part of your wedding day. This one by Red Shoes Photography.

Now we go hip … like SUPER hip & stylish, with Cecelia & Wasim’s Modern, Stylish Washington DC wedding by Megan Noonan Photography. My favorite element of this modern DC wedding was that Cecelia had her maids hold clutches, instead of bouquets – but there is SO much more to love in this wedding too.

Fiddles, flannel & food trucks, Natalie & Kahlis’ Eclectic, Handmade River Wedding in Virginia knocked my socks off. Thanks to Sara Sultan Photography, I got to share a seriously beautiful VA wedding by a river with a ton of handmade and heartfelt details, and a completely customized Quaker wedding ceremony. I am sure this will be one of your favs too.

 Emailing with this bride was one of my favorite highlights of 2012 – we shared SO many common thoughts on the wedding scene in DC and I was honored that she submitted her insanely awesome wedding to MY blog. Sarah & Steve’s Offbeat Vintage Baseball Maryland wedding was a serious highlight of my 2012 features. The bridesmaids wore mismatched dresses in neutral tones, with lace and the groomsmen wore whatever suit they wanted. The entire wedding was centered around Steve’s love of baseball and Sarah’s love of vintage things. The combination was something truly special [with some seriously awesome wedding songs chosen too!].

There was so much awesomeness that we split this feature into 2! Images by Barnyard Photography, Part 1 here, Part 2 here.

I am in awe of this next couple’s talent. The bride is an interior designer, and the groom is a carpenter. You can only imagine how stunning their DIY Virginia wedding was then. Katie & Andy’s DIY, Whimsical Travel Themed Virginia wedding by Heather Bee Photo was such an amazing feature [ Part 1 here, Part 2 here]. The groom handmade SO many of their decor details [escort cards in an old door, chalkboards for signage, & more] and they travel themed wedding invitations are a must see. Also, the whimsical color scheme of coral, blue, & tan perfectly complimented the completely outdoor Virginia reception design!

This next DIY wedding was so jammed packed full of inspiration & DIY details, it was a no brainer to add to this list. The bride is an art teacher, and most of the items they used for their wedding decor, centerpieces & details, came from the bride’s own backyard! Amanda & Keith’s DIY Woodland Maryland Wedding by ZADesignz is a dream for any couple looking to create wedding decor from trees, wood & branches. Almost every element of their wedding included branches & tree – so check it out!

And last, but not least ~ TWO intimate weddings BOTH at the Tabard Inn in Washington, DC [yes, I know I am cheating hardcore here, but I adored BOTH these weddings and just couldn’t pick one … so deal with it ;-p ]. Both featured intimate receptions and both featured brides in some seriously awesome short wedding dresses. See, you can’t pick one over the other either, right?!

Rebecca & Matt’s Intimate, Offbeat Washington, DC wedding at the Tabard Inn by Red Shoes Photography

Jess & Mitch’s Offbeat, Intimate Washington DC Wedding at the Tabard Inn by Michelle VanTine Photography

HOLY COW! We did it … we narrowed down our favorite features to 11. Can you believe it?! I don’t think I can. Just like with our engagement features, I need to thank again all the amazing area wedding photographers that submit these amazing weddings to my blog. Every feature on my blog is truly special to me and  I cannot thank all the photographers that share their images with me to post here. So thank you all and I am SO excited to see what 2013 brings us!



offbeat affordable DC weddings

Welcome to Capitol Romance, the wedding blog that showcases all things nontraditional when it comes to real, authentic Washington, DC area weddings.

Here at Capitol Romance, we like to use words like nontraditional, unconventional, and unique. What these words really mean to us, is that couples found a way to throw a wedding that was a legitimate reflection of their personalities, inspirations, and the things they love most in life. It is important to remember that weddings aren’t a contest and they certainly shouldn’t all be the same. After all, if no two people are alike, then no two couples are alike, and if no two couples are alike, than no two weddings should be alike either.

So throwout everything you thought you knew about the typical Washington, DC wedding (including that on average it costs about $50,000 to get married in DC). We are here to show you how awesome and genuine weddings in our nation’s capitol really can be.

Hotel reception halls not your thing? Can’t see yourself in a strapless, floor-length wedding gown? Feel like you are more sneakers than heels or headbands than tiaras? Good. Then you are in the right place. Capitol Romance welcomes all DC area couples that pushed wedding traditions out the window, dared to be different, and endeavored to throw the most heartfelt wedding that their budget could allow.

Please stick with us as we work to bring you updated posts over these next few weeks as we get the blog up and running smoothly. In the meantime, please send all ideas, inspiration, and thoughts on non-conventional Washington DC weddings and vendors to

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