offbeat maryland wedding

Shannon & Jae’s Eclectic, Handmade Woodend Sanctuary Wedding

Every detail and decision was made with this in mind, everything had purpose.

Today we have a lovely, handmade Maryland wedding at Woodend Sanctuary thanks to The Happy Couple! Shannon & Jae had been together for 7 years before deciding to get married. Shannon wrote such lovely words about this time spent together and what that meant for their wedding – I really can’t do a paraphrase justice, and so, I’ll just do a direct copy/paste of her words:

Jae and I had been together for seven years when we were married. Over the years we have found that while we come from different backgrounds, we share many experiences and have far more in common than what separates us. On our wedding day, we wanted to celebrate our love for each other and share our gratitude for our friends and family who have helped us to grow into who we are both individually and as a couple. On our wedding day we wanted to feel like ourselves, to make our guests feel comfortable, and to enjoy the time bringing our friends and family, our community, together in celebration. Every detail and decision was made with this in mind, everything had purpose.

Shannon & Jae’s Personalized, Family Oriented Maryland Wedding at Woodend Sanctuary

handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (14)


Photographer:  The Happy Couple Photography | Bride’s Dress: Justin Alexander | Event Planner: Denise Robinson Simms | Bride’s Earrings: DIYed by Bride | Hair Stylist: Elena Gioacchini, Bang Salon Metropole Caterer: Windows Catering Company | Floral Designer: Wollam  Gardens | Reception Venue: Woodend Sanctuary | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (2)

I was very close to my Grandmother who passed away the year before I met Jae. The lace wrapped around my bouquet was found in my Grandmother’s sewing kit and was a way of keeping her close to us that day. I (also) made my own earrings, piecing together elements of different pairs I had seen and liked.

handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (6)handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (4) handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (5) handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (9)

We were married by Brenda, a very close friend and extended family member. She and her husband Scott traveled from New Mexico to be with us for our wedding day and Brenda worked with us ahead of time to create our own ceremony. With the help of Jae’s parents, we incorporated an important aspect of his culture and family tradition during private family time prior to the ceremony.

As part of our ceremony, we asked friends and family to read quotes that reflect our thoughts on marriage. The four quotes also represented the four directions.

handmade maryland wedding at woodend sanctuary (12)

Click inside for the rest of Shannon & Jae’s eclectic, handmade wedding at Woodend Sanctuary

Pin It

Kevin & Mary’s Pink & Orange Maryland Wedding at Milton Ridge

Kevin & Mary both love Maryland. They are huge Orioles fans and Kevin even proposed at Camden Yards. So when it came time to plan their wedding – obviously the color orange needed to be included. They also decided to use a ton of fun Maryland themed details for their wedding day that gave it a super fun, and personalized touch. Throw in a touch of pink (Mary’s favorite color), a bunch of handmade wedding details, and the bride & groom both in chucks – and well, we’ve got another fine Capitol Romance Maryland wedding feature on our hands! Thanks to Tori Nefores Photography for sharing this one with us via Two Bright Lights.

Kevin & Mary’s Pink and Orange, Maryland Themed Wedding at Milton Ridge

offbeat hot pink orange Maryland wedding


PhotographyTori Nefores Photography & Design | VenueMilton Ridge | Officiant: Father Rob (Milton Ridge) | StationeryThe Inked Leaf | Floral DesignEvents Plus | DJ: DJ Bob Popik | Catering and LinensMilton Ridge | Cake and DessertsHerman’s Bakery | Hair and MakeupMilton Ridge | Bridal AttireSimone’s Bridal  | VeilJ. Crew | Bridesmaids AttireSimone’s Bridal | Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Westminster Tuxedos | ShoesConverse | FavorsOriental Trading and Utz | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

  bride in pink chucks

For their wedding, they were inspired by their home state and included special touches throughout their special day. Kevin and Mary are huge Orioles fans (hence the orange) and Mary’s favorite color is pink. Kevin even proposed at Camden Yards with special help from the Oriole bird himself.

groom in black chucks pink and orange bride bouquet

Both being natives of Maryland, the wedding theme was “From Maryland with Love.” Showing their Maryland pride throughout the entire event. From Maryland themed wedding invitations (The Inked Leaf – Etsy) to having each reception table have a Maryland theme (Orioles, Ravens, Under Armor, UMD, Ocean City, Deep Creek Lake, etc.) the theme was clear to all guests.

mismatched pink bridsmaids dresses

Mary’s cousins served as her “Pink Ladies” helping her with many details.

hot pink orange church decorations wedding

Click inside for the rest of Kevin & Mary’s hot pink & orange, Maryland themed wedding at Milton Ridge!

Chuck & Marcia’s Renaissance Fair, Handfasting Ceremony in Maryland

Lately I’ve found myself in a few situations where the topics of wedding themes have come up and those around me have been super judgey about couples doing something “tacky” “nerdy” or “weird” for their wedding. I really don’t understand why people feel the need to judge someone else’s wedding. It’s not your wedding – so it really doesn’t matter what you think. I’ve always taken the mindset that as long as the couple is making meaningful decisions (and not decisions based soley on ‘how can I get my wedding on a blog?!?!?!’), then really, that’s all that matters.

It’s YOUR wedding day. Do what makes you and your partner happy – and that’s exactly what Chuck and Marcia did. Thanks to Douglas Pettway for sharing his images of this offbeat Maryland wedding ceremony to us!

Chuck & Marcia’s Handfasting Ceremony at a Maryland Renaissance Fair

maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony

We met through At the time my dad’s health was declining, and I had decided to sign off for a while since most guys I was meeting didn’t understand. The night I was going to sign off, I was sent some new matches for the week and he was among them. His profile included some photos of him at Renaissance events. I had been attending Renaissance fairs for a few years and really loved them, so I figured I would go ahead and email him. He emailed back and the rest is history!

In addition to our common interest in Renaissance festivals, we discovered a shared love of the outdoors, camping, family, and interest in our Celtic heritages.

maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony maryland renaissance fair handfasting ceremony

Click inside for the rest of Marcia & Chuck’s Maryland Renaissance Fair handfasting ceremony!

Elisha & Josh’s Eclectic and Offbeat, Nautical-Themed Maryland Wedding

Today’s real Maryland wedding feature encompasses so many things I love! A couple took a sometimes cliched theme (nautical) and made it their own! They embraced local culture, included special and handmade details, and instead of sticking to a strict color palette, the bride answered, “Meh I’m not putting myself in a box.” HAH! I love it! The result was an eclectic, offbeat nautical-themed Maryland wedding that was mostly just jam packed with FUN. My favorite detail might be the totally NOT-bridesmaids dresses that the bride had her maid’s wear (adorable, off the rack seersucker dresses) but the mini pumpkins in the bouquet are a close second! Hold on to your hats Romancers because we have a long post for you today with images from Sugar Farms Weddings!

Elisha & Josh’s Eclectic, Offbeat Nautical Themed Maryland Wedding

offbeat alternative nautical maryland wedding


Photography: Sugar Farms Weddings | Venue: Herrington on the Bay | Bridesmaid Dresses: Jessica Simpson | Groom & Groomsmen Suits: Custom, Made to Measure suits by David Hart | Cake: Made by Groom’s Mother | Groomsmen Anchor Pocket Squares: Gap | Groomsmen Whale Tie Clips: J. Crew | Yarmulkes: Handmade | Bride’s Shoes: Ted Baker  | Bride’s Jewelry: Anthropologie | Chuppah: Handmade (from Target linens!) | Invitations: Etsy | Programs: DIY by Bride | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

While having a nautical-themed wedding in Maryland can be cliche, the bride, Elisha, is from Knoxville, Tenn., originally. Knowing that many guests would be coming from out of town and seeing the Chesapeake Bay for the first time, the couple decided to just go ahead and embrace the local culture and style for their nuptials. They wanted a lot of special details, so the wedding was chocked full of handmade touches. The color scheme came together rather organically. Instead of picking the pallet first, Elisha and Josh found the vintage nautical invitations and let them serve as the inspiration.  After finding a bridesmaid dress evocative of the invitations, everything else – the groomsmen clothing, yarmulkes and flowers – all just started to fall in place. There were no strict rules about what was or wasn’t in the scheme; everything just had to sort of “go.” It drove some people crazy when they asked the bride what her color scheme was and for the first few months, her answer was “Meh, I’m not putting myself in a box.”

offbeat alternative nautical maryland wedding offbeat alternative nautical maryland wedding

Instead of typical bridesmaids’ dresses, Elisha chose an off-the-rack Jessica Simpson seersucker dress for her friends that could be reworn for other occasions. (They were $80!) It had a fun blue-and-white stripe with triangle back cutout and tomato red piping. They wore blue nautical knot earrings (gift), their own red pumps and little gold anchor necklaces with lapis stones (gift). Full disclosure: The bride liked the dress so much, she bought one for herself, too, to wear to the next Preakness!

groom yellow nautical tie

Josh, the fathers, Elisha’s “bride’s man” (her brother) and Josh’s groomsmen wore custom-made suits and ties designed by Josh’s friend, menswear designer David Hart. Hart is originally from Severna Park, Md., and is now making his own clothing line in NY. The suits were one-of-a-kind, which David kindly made at cost for the guys.

offbeat alternative nautical maryland wedding invitationsmaryland first look pictures annapolis first look pictures annapolis first look pictures

Elisha’s favorite DIY detail was the nearly 90 yarmulkes her mother handmade (enough for each man) for the ceremony. Elisha got the idea that she wanted quirky, nautical yarmulkes for her Jewish wedding. After searching the Internet and not finding what she was looking for, she realized her mother Megan, who is a sewing wiz, could make them. Elisha bought an assortment of coordinating nautical fabrics online and shipped them to her mom in Tennessee. She also had a custom-made rubber stamp made with the wedding details (names, date, location) and some fabric ink pads and sent them to her mom. She found a free yarmulke pattern online. Even FOB Isidor helped with the process by cutting fabric and ironing! Strips of the leftover fabric were used to wrap the bridesmaids’ bouquets.

The chupah – or wedding canopy – was one of the most romantic easy-breezy ones this biased bride has ever seen! Learning that Jewish canopies can be hundreds of dollars to buy or rent, the bride brainstormed a cheaper solution. After explaining over and over to people that the fabric she was looking for would be similar to the sheer linen curtains in her living room, she decided: Why not use them? She bought five panels at Target for about $70 total and the groomsmen stapled them to the pergola making a canopy.

handmade DIY yarmulkes chuppah

Click inside for the rest of Elisha & Josh’s eclectic, handmade Nautical Maryland wedding in Annapolis!

Ashley & Jon’s Elegant Warehouse Wedding at the Annapolis Fairgrounds in Maryland

Yowza, I just can’t seem to get this post written. Between the snow, some personal things, my regenerating unread inbox folder, and my wedding this weekend – I am all over the place! I even had one of my crazy stress dreams last night where I flipped out/yelled at some spa pedicurist and then stole lipstick to get back at them for making me wait 5 hours to never get a pedicure. Haha – what does THAT mean ?! Anyway, today we have a super cute Annapolis Fairground Wedding from Eastport Photography. It features Ashley & John, some fun baseball themed portraits, and an elegant warehouse wedding reception. Yes, I did say elegant warehouse – because that’s exactly what their reception looked like! They DIYed a TON of the wedding and it included a Smores bar, popcorn bar, and a funfetti cake (yes!). Slightly ironic consider the bride is a dentist. Check all the full set below!

Ashley & Jon’s Elegant Warehouse Wedding at the Annapolis Fairgrounds in Maryland

annapolis fairgrounds wedding


Photography: Eastport Photography | Catering: Main Ingredient | DJ: DJ K Rock | Bride’s Dress: Vera Wang | Venue: Annapolis Fairgrounds | Flowers: DIY | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

Ashley and Jon’s Annapolis Fairgrounds wedding was a long time coming! The couple met almost 10 years ago when they were just young teenagers! They tied the knot this past weekend at the Annapolis Evangelical Presbyterian Church in front of 300 guests and then celebrated in an elegantly decorated warehouse at the Annapolis Fairgrounds.

annapolis fairgrounds wedding babys breath bridesmaids bouquets

Ashley and the girls got ready in the bridal suite of the church. Ashley’s bouquet was a delicate pink paper-flower bouquet and the bridesmaids’ bouquets were simple baby’s breath and twine. Her dress was a beautiful Vera Wang gown with a white flower sash.

simple bridal makeup simple bridal makeup bouquet

Meanwhile, Jon and the guys were busy getting ready at Jon’s house. He gave each of his groomsmen personalized baseball bats as gifts. I must say, the guys look pretty tough with their bats!

groomsmen with bats blue and grey wedding party

Click inside for the rest of Ashley & Jon’s Elegant Warehouse Wedding at the Annapolis Fairgrounds in Maryland!

Rochelle & Matt’s DIY, Offbeat Block Party Wedding in Baltimore City, MD

A couple week’s ago I got invited to this super fun DC wedding vendor party at Eastern Market and got to catch up with Rochelle (one of the editors of Charm City Wed and owner of Hair by Rochelle). She asked me if I would ever be interested in featuring her own wedding – as it was super DIY, super offbeat, and in a park in Maryland. I told her – WELL DUH, of course I would! To make the feature even more special, we decided to feature it today, the 3-year anniversary of when Rochelle & Matt actually got married, in a tiny park between traffic lanes in Baltimore city.

Happy Anniversary you crazy kids and thanks for sharing your awesomely offbeat Maryland wedding with us! Thanks to The Light in Us Photography for the images!

Rochelle & Matt’s Offbeat, DIY Park Wedding in Baltimore City, Maryland

offbeat maryland park wedding


Photography: The Light in Us Photography | Flowers: DIY | Cupcakes: DIY | Decorations: DIY | Bride’s Dress: David’s Bridal | Bridesmaids Dresses: Their Own | Hair & Makeup Artist: Friend of the Bride, Ashley Scheiner | Venue: Eutaw Place Median Park

On their relationship and how they decided to get married:

First of all, we got married really quickly after meeting.  From the day we met to the day we got married was just about 6 months.  We just KNEW.  And no one could tell us other wise.  (Good thing he’s perfect for me! :)

When we started discussing what we wanted for our wedding, we both independently thought, “wouldn’t a community block party be awesome?!” but didn’t want to ask each other.  It took a few days of chatting before Matt just blurted it out, and I said “NO WAY I WANT TO DO THAT TOO!”  You see, him and I met through the church we go to in our neighborhood, which has a huge heart for uniting the surrounding community.  The area we live in has a very affluent neighborhood bordering a poorer neighborhood, and we wanted to have a wedding celebration that invited everyone from all walks of life and in doing so, helping to break down socio-economic and racial barriers.  We don’t see ourselves as “rich white people” trying to help “poor black people”, which is the mentality a lot of white people have and we’re trying to buck against.  We’re merely a family living in the city that wants to build relationships and break stereotypes.

^this is awesome.




We decided that we would have a very non-traditional wedding day.  It wouldn’t be a “ceremony” followed by a “reception”.  We would have a block party, and structure it so everyone could enjoy the block party fun first (bounce house, velcro wall, face painting, barbeque, hula hooping), then we’d break and have people sit for the short ceremony, then we’d recommence the fun stuff along with music and dancing.


_DSC0729 1

Click inside for SO MUCH more of Rochelle & Matt’s offbeat “block-party” wedding in Maryland.

Jared & Michelle’s Offbeat, Til Death Halloween Wedding in Maryland

You had me at “a bride in black, with a ’til death do us part” theme. The “Cake Fight” was only the (wait for it) icing on the cake, that is this awesome, offbeat Maryland wedding submission from Marcella Treybig Photography.

Jared & Michelle’s kick ass wedding is the perfect reflection of the wedding themes I try and push here: they did things THEIR way, making decisions based on who they are and what reflects them as a couple. There is no way they could fit into the cookie cutter wedding themes – because it’s not who they are, so instead of attempting to do that, they said screw it, and did things how they wanted! Which included a whole lot of awesome. I think you guys are really going to like all the touching and personalized decisions they made with their offbeat, intimate Maryland wedding.

Jared & Michelle’s Offbeat, Halloween Wedding in Maryland

offbeat halloween til death wedding maryland farm outdoors


Photography: Marcella Treybig Photography | Venue: Private home in Maryland | Bouquet: DIY Brooch Bouquet | Decorations & Flowers: DIY | Cake: Bride’s brother | Catering: Provided by family | DJ: Friend with a laptop | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

Jared and Michelle were looking to do a small wedding that really reflected “them” as a couple and I think all the awesome DIY touches this stylish bride did really set her wedding on that course.

offbeat bride maryland tattoos black wedding dress

offbeat bride maryland tattoos black wedding dress

Michelle went thrift shopping to find all those awesome brooches she had in her bouquet and really did an awesome job.

She lost a very close friend to her and (some of the other friends present at her getting ready room) who gifted her a photo of the passing friend in a charm and attached it to her bouquet. It was a really touching moment as she shed many tears that morning getting ready.

offbeat halloween dark brooch bouquet

I pretty much love this “version” of the standard “bride holds up dress to reveal sparkly, expensive shoes” image. Michelle opted for some black knee socks & kickass black boots instead. Love.

offbeat bride maryland tattoos black wedding dress


Jared is an artist, he works on cars and does some awesome custom paint jobs – which is why they chose to wear those shirts “suits just isn’t who we are”. They got all the guys personalized shirts with their names on them and these sweet knifes too.


Michelle on her way to her first look! haha!

offbeat bride maryland tattoos black wedding dress

offbeat halloween til death wedding maryland farm outdoors

Click inside for the rest of this awesome Halloween “Til Death Do Us Part” themed Maryland wedding!

Capitol Wedding: Kate & Ben’s Handmade, Local & Sustainable Maryland Wedding Reception

I love this afternoon’s real Maryland wedding feature submitted by One Summer Day. It features a completely handmade, and locally focused Maryland wedding reception (after the couple already married in Maine). The couple, Kate & Ben, wanted to have a reception back home in MD with their family and friends and they wanted the day to reflect what they hold important in their lives, namely their Chesapeake Bay pride.

One Summer Day shared that their wedding was chock-full of gorgeous vintage and DIY touches that all drew organically from elements of the Eastern Shore, both, in terms of visual details, as well as sustainability and local economy.

Lots of fun DIY, handmade details and a ton of involvement from family and friends made this beautiful MD wedding reception possible!

Kate & Ben’s Handmade, DIY & Local Maryland Wedding Reception

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY


Photographer: One Summer Day | Bride’s Dress: BHLDN | Groom’s suit and sneakers:  J. Crew and New Balance | Band: Flashback | Caterer: Highfield Bakery | Florist: DIY | Venue: Groom’s Uncle’s Home | Rentals: Eastern Shore Tent and Events | Lighting and dance floor: Borrowed from neighbor | Linens: Vintage from Ebay | Tablescapes: DIY, Vintage Oil Lamps & Postcards | Oysters: Marinetics Choptank Sweets | Chalk artwork: Grooms’s cousin, an art student | Parasols: Oriental Trading Co. | Wayfinding Signs: DIYed by Bride | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

 Details from the couple:

Our reception was separated from our wedding by a week and several states–we got married in Maine with 17 people, but still wanted to celebrate in Maryland with our folks and friends. I wanted to be sure it had the relaxed feel of our wedding itself, and most of that was achieved by taking time with the details I really cared about, but letting go of an ideal of perfection.

handmade DIY chalkboard sign wedding

Ben and I are both proud Marylanders, and as I work at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, it was really important to us that it reflect our local roots in a lot of those details- a chalkboard with “marriage made in Maryland” welcoming guests, Maryland flags behind the band, postcards like the ones in my museum’s collections for the tables, a family farm on the Tred Avon River.

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY

I also wanted it to feel timeless, so ditching the tent and going for a good old under-the-stars barbecue seemed like a way to make it fun, easy, and less formal, but still special. We were VERY lucky that it didn’t rain, and it made dancing under the clear night sky that much more incredible.

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY

handmade local maryland wedding small budget DIY

Click inside for the rest of the beautiful images from this handmade Maryland wedding, including more information on their small budget & DIY details!

Capitol Wedding: Cheryl & Andrew’s Offbeat 1970s Disco Glam Wedding in Maryland

When I saw Deb Lindsey Photography share an image from this amazing, offbeat Maryland wedding, I just knew it had to be on Capitol Romance. A 70s glam, disco theme? Check. Black and hot pink colors? Check. An ombre cake? Check, 70s styling with a groom in hot pink bell bottoms? CHECK!

And the list goes on. Cheryl & Andrew tricked out their disco themed wedding and it looks like they had SO much fun doing it!! What a unique wedding with some seriously awesome details! Let’s get this going!

Cheryl & Andrew’s 1970s Glam, Disco Themed Wedding in Maryland

offbeat maryland wedding blog 190s disco glam themed pictures

Hair Stylist:  Elegant Hair by Giselle | Florist: DaVinci Florist | Cinema and Video:  Blue Sky Films | Cake Designer:  Fancy Cakes by Leslie | Makeup Artist:  Bridal Artistry | Event Venue:  Dolce Bolger Center| Photographer: Deb Lindsey Photography | Submitted: Two Bright Lights



The black birdcage veil, that AWESOME low-pony with twists … love this glam bridal look!



hilarious groom response to a first look B)


offbeat maryland wedding 1970s disco glam theme

Click inside for the rest of Cheryl & Andrew’s Offbeat, Vintage Glam Disco Wedding in Maryland by Deb Lindsey Photography!

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