washington dc weddings

Meg & Erik’s Washington DC Wedding at The Embassy Suites & Maggiano’s

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (17)

Images: Michelle VanTine Photography

Oh there is SO much to love from today’s real Washington DC wedding brought to us by the lovely Simply Breathe Events & Michelle VanTine Photography. A modern ceremony & reception setting with the most gorgeous shade of purple for their color palette and decor. But really, what gets me the most here is the story behind this wedding & couple: Tiffany shared that working with them was like working with your 2 closest friends; they love DC and wanted to incorporate that into the wedding, as well as, honor their family members every way they could. You guys will love this one.

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (10)

From bride, Meg:

We are both from the DC area, and really wanted to incorporate our love of DC into our wedding. I grew up in Germantown, MD while my husband grew up in Chevy Chase DC, so we felt having a metro theme was totally appropriate! We named our tables after various metro stops that had meaning to us (i.e. Cleveland Park was where I lived when I first moved to DC, my husband went to school at U of Md, and my father used to work near the Farragut North metro station) We provided explanatory notes to showcase why we chose each metro stop. We also chose to use replica paper fare cards as our place cards to tie everything together!

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (14) modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (12)

We chose to have our wedding in Friendship Heights because it had a lot of meaning for us. My husband used to live there, so we spent quite a bit of time in that area (and at Maggiano’s!) going on dates and just hanging out. We wanted a venue that was easily accessible for both our friends who lived in the city and our relatives who traveled from as far as Alaska, and we felt that the Embassy Suites and Maggiano’s were the perfect combination!

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (12)

Our guests could park their cars and walk to the ceremony, and if they wanted to explore the city, hop on the metro. Our ceremony space at Embassy Suites spoke to us because we loved the openness and brightness of the space. It felt like we were outside even though we were indoors! I was way too type A to have an outdoor ceremony and Embassy Suites was the perfect compromise! We chose Maggiano’s because we LOVED their food and knew they would provide us with quality food at a reasonable price, even when making the food for 135 people. Turns out we chose right- our guests raved about the food all night and the next day!

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (15) modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (13) modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (16)

I chose Calla Lillies for my bouquet and my bridesmaid’s bouquets because they were my mother’s favorite flower. My mother passed away in December 2011, and I felt the Calla Lillies were a lovely, yet subtle, way to pay tribute to her.

One of my good friends had two charms made for me to hang on my bouquet- one with a picture of my mom and one with a picture of my dad. It was like they were able to walk down the aisle with me even though they couldn’t be there. It meant so much that she did that- it was such an incredibly amazing gesture.

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (11)

Both of my parents had passed away and instead of walking down the aisle by myself, I asked my best friend Colin to walk me down the aisle. Having Colin walk me down the aisle was special in so many ways- not only is he my best friend (and basically my brother at this point), but my husband and I met thanks to Colin (and Colin’s older brother). My husband’s best friend is Colin’s older brother, and Colin, his older brother, and myself all went to college together.

modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (18) modern washington dc restaurant wedding pictures purple (4)


Pin It

Guest Post: A Real DC Bride’s Take on Her Wedding Venue

pictures stevenson ridge wedding venue DC MD VA (4)

We’re back with Carolyn, our real DC bride to be guest blogger, sharing her love of the venue she chose! If you can remember, she talked all about her DC wedding venue search a few posts back and now she’s here to share everything she loves about the one she picked. Take it away Carolyn!

Why I Love My DC Area Wedding Venue | By: Carolyn Thombs

pictures stevenson ridge wedding venue DC MD VA (2)

The first time I went to Stevenson Ridge was back in 2012 when I did hair and makeup for all of the models at the Cupcakes and Cocktails bridal show. I thought the venue was so cool and had a great vibe. Who knew then that I would be getting married at that very venue 4 years down the road!

I hadn’t thought of this venue when I initially started my venue search because I didn’t think that they could hold over 200 ppl. I finally decided to check it out when I was hitting somewhat of a dead end and I am so glad I did! They can hold 216 max! This also helps in making us have a definitive cut off for the guest list, which is a whole other can of worms to get sorted.

pictures stevenson ridge wedding venue DC MD VA (1)

I went ahead and emailed them to check out all the specs before we decided on scheduling a visit. Elizabeth was so wonderful and responded to all of my emails promptly and concisely.

The visit was wonderful! My mom and sister (MOH) came with me and got to meet Elizabeth as well. She was so welcoming and answered all of my “hardcore” questions. I had been set on a different venue when we showed up so I was trying to remain unbiased. That resolve soon faded as we talked with Elizabeth and got to look at the grounds. My mind completely switched and Stevenson Ridge became my main squeeze for venue choice!


I love the lodge feel of the main venue, just the smallest accent of rustic-ness, but mainly polished and not overly ornate. The perfect blank canvas to build Jon and I’s perfect wedding. The major bonus was the fact that they have some lodging onsite as well! This means, if we want, each year we can come back and spend our anniversary in one of the cabins and reminisce about our wedding!

pictures stevenson ridge wedding venue DC MD VA (5)

They are so great at making you feel at home and not pressuring you into anything! I can’t wait to start going over set up and everything and actually getting to see it all come together. Bottom line is that if you and your fiancé are a little opposite on style choices this venue is the perfect combination of down to earth and chic sophistication that will please any couple trying to find that balance.

pictures stevenson ridge wedding venue DC MD VA (3)

Robert & Jessica’s Summer Garden Party DC Wedding at Dacor Bacon House

summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (11)

Images: The Hill Studios, LLC via Two Bright Lights

Apologies for the lack of posting on back to back days. Andy, Evie & I left SUPER EARLY Friday morning to head to NJ to put together an epic surprise anniversary party for my parents (oh you KNOW I will be blogging it once we get the pictures!). My siblings and I started planning this party two years ago and it was worth every second & dollar spent to see my parents’ faces when they arrived and were greeted by SO MANY people from their past and present. The party took on a whole other meaning too, as my parents sold our home in NJ and are moving out this month. I’ll try not to dwell on THAT because I will probably just start crying ;-p. Yesterday was spent recouping from the weekend/catching up on emails and prepping for my 2nd to last wedding of 2015. Seriously – where is this year going?!

But for today we have the lovely summer garden wedding of Robert & Jessica; college sweethearts that moved to DC from Pennsylvania after college and starting their careers. Their intimate affair at the Dacor Bacon House is a perfect summer wedding that was both elegant and fun. A great DC wedding venue if you are looking for that “garden wedding” feel. Check it all out!

summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (22) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (7)

We wanted a DC themed wedding that felt elegant and timeless, but most importantly fun. After months of venue searching we found the Dacor Bacon House just blocks away from the White House with a huge outdoor garden that would make for a great place to dance the night away.

summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (3) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (4)

Rob’s father married us and wrote incredibly touching vows. It was short and sweet and while we never said I do it was beautiful and memorable.

summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (24) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (9) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (1) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (13) summer garden party DC wedding Dacor Bacon house (2)


Guest Post: Picking a Wedding Venue for Your Washington DC Area Wedding

Image: An Endless Pursuit from Julice & Steve’s DIY Picnic Wedding at Woodlawn Manor

Our guest blogger, Carolyn is back today to share with you her venue search for her DC area wedding! Carolyn shares not only the venues she was looking for but how she went about her search. As a reminder to all my readers, my favorite resource for venue searching in the DC area is Partyista! Take it away Carolyn.

Searching for the Perfect Venue | by Carolyn Thombs

I am also a makeup artist and quite familiar with the wedding industry, however that has not made this as easy as I had originally thought.

What helped me in my search was researching places first and then having a list of questions for them when we visited the venues. Scheduling visits can be difficult but we were able to mostly knock it all out in one day. If someone doesn’t get back to you promptly give them a week, but after that kick them off of your list because who knows if that is how it will be while the planning is going on when time is of the essence. It is always good to mesh well with the manager of the property since you will be dealing with them quite a bit and you don’t want to be butting heads with them and having that turn you into a dreaded bride-zilla.

I was definitely stressed a bit in the beginning but, now I feel so relieved and ecstatic about this venue and know that my wedding is going to be so dreamy and everything I have ever wanted!!

Image 1

Since Jon and I got engaged, finding the perfect venue was one of the aspects about planning that I was the most stressed about. So of course, that is the first thing I wanted to get out of the way; though I am starting to see that finding the perfect caterer (delicious food and budget friendly) is going to be an even more painful headache to deal with. But more on that later….

I had quite a few limitations when looking for a venue for our wedding. I wanted to keep it somewhat close to my parents house so they wouldn’t have to dish more for travel costs and for some level of convenience for them and something budget friendly, not made of money here! I am cursed with always loving the more expensive item on any list out of any category, so many of my first glance choices had to be knocked off the list immediately. Other restrictions included a large enough location for a ceremony and reception that could fit over 175 people. Not as easy to find as I thought it would be. Most locations that I liked had a 150 limit. I have a large extended family and love them all, and quite a few friends between Jon and I as well as industry friends and family friends. Eeks! So many stipulations, I know, but I promise I am not the bridezilla type! At least I hope I am not…yet!

Image: Olde Silk Mill by Amber Kay Photo from A Modern Grey & Yellow Industrial Styled Shoot

The first venue we looked at was the Old Silk Mill in Fredericksburg, which honestly I thought was going to be “The One”, it could fit the whole wedding and ceremony and bonus it has an inn attached to it, so out of town guests would have a very convenient place to stay. I loved the industrial elegance of the mill and the fact that it was a great combination of both Jon and I.

Image: Woodlawn Manor by Voula Trip Photography from Kim & Brandon’s DIY Maryland Wedding

The next location we checked out was Woodlawn, which is a historical house near Springfield. Kaitlin was so wonderful to talk to and was very prompt in replying to my emails. The venue was beautiful and could accommodate our estimated wedding size and could house a ceremony and reception. The only downside was we needed to get tents and everything had to be outside. Also they only allow you to use their approved caterer, which would have cost us the whole budget plus some. Unfortunately that nixed Woodlawn off the list.

Image 4


A Recap of Our Last 2014 DIY Workshop & A Look Ahead to 2015 Workshops


Image: Cynthia Shipp Photography

We ended last year’s slate of 2014 Capitol Romance DIY Workshops with something beautiful: watercolor techniques with Ribbons & Bluebirds. I was astounded (as I usually am) by how talented the attendees are. People seemed to create watercolor wreaths, their own logos, and beautiful flowers with ease! I think some of this is the fact that I get the coolest attendees at these workshops, but I also think most of it is due to our amazing professional vendor hosts.


Jen walked our attendees through a general overview of working with watercolor paints – where to get the good ones, what brushes to use (and which you certainly should NOT use) and let attendees know a super watercolor success secret: a lot of it comes down to the type of paper you use! Attendees each got a brush, some paints, and a color wheel for their setup (along with the other goodies that come with each Capitol Romance DIY Workshop: a notepad & favor treat).


Yes, those are BOURBON flavored marshmellows!

Jen took attendees through different designs and ideas, teaching everyone how to master a simple watercolor technique and then letting them “have at it” using their creativity to come up with and practice their own ideas.



Click inside for more from our last 2014 DIY Workshop AND read about our 2015 DIY Workshops!

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

best of 2014 dc weddings header (Medium)

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.

dc themed wedding


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”.

dc intimate elopement

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 

Sara & Matt’s DIY, Modern Purple Whittemore House Wedding in Washington DC

modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (18)

[Images: Linda Wang Photography]

Tiffany of Simply Breathe Events sent over this DARLING modern Washington DC wedding today! Sara & Matt picked the delightful Whittemore house for their venue, and while it’s more of a traditional place, they upped the modern factor with their style choices and bright purple color palette. There are SO many fun details from this DC wedding feature.

modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (3) modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (4)

We looked at A LOT of wedding venues. We really wanted a space that felt intimate and warm, and wouldn’t require us to do a whole lot of decorating. We knew pretty much from the moment we walked into Whittemore House that was going to work for us. We knew it would feel cozy, and we could bring our personal touch to it without having to do up the whole space.

modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (6) modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (5)

I wanted to keep the colors simple so they would make the rest of the details and decisions easier, not harder. I chose a range of purples matched with gold and ivory, thinking purple was a flexible palette that wouldn’t clash no matter what shades came out. The bridesmaids got to choose any purple dress they liked, and they came out pretty different!

modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (7) modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (9) modern purple Jewish wedding Washington DC (10)

Click inside for the rest of Sara & Matt’s adorable modern DC wedding at the Whittemore House!

Dori & Geoff’s Intimate DC War Memorial Wedding in Washington, DC

This intimate Washington, DC wedding at the DC War Memorial is the PERFECT example of how, just because you are having a small, low-key wedding, doesn’t mean you have to skimp on details! Dori & Geoff had a TON of awesome details in their DC wedding – a custom wedding dress, an intimate ceremony performed by the groom’s uncle and the coolest crest that they had a graphic designer create that represented their union. They used the crest on paper products and decor throughout the wedding and reception and the result was SO awesome! Check out their entire wedding from Love Life Images below.

Dori & Geoff’s Intimate, Modern DC Wedding at the DC War Memorial & Hanks Oyster Bar

intimate modern Washington DC wedding


Photographer: Love Life Images | Ceremony Location: DC War Memorial | Reception Location: Hank’s Oyster Bar | Wedding Coordinator: Events by Sofia | Bride’s Dress: Original design by Coren Moore | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Makeup Artist: Jan Scott | Groom’s Tux: Bonobos | Florist: Jackie Kanatzar | Cupcakes: Baked and Wired | Transportation: Corporate Chauffeured Services | Officiant: Groom’s Uncle | Ceremony Music: Pamela Ferguson | Invitations: Hannah Learner, Illustrator and Caroline Friedman at Paper Becomes You.

Love Life Images adorable ring bearers

We both wanted a small, intimate, family gathering. Geoff’s uncle is performing the ceremony. We also wanted the dinner to be relaxed and a lot of fun.

intimate modern Washington DC wedding intimate modern Washington DC wedding ceremony DC war memorial

The ring bearer is the Bride’s nephew and godson. Geoff’s goddaughter, Charlotte is our flower girl and my godson, Henry is the ring bearer; both of these kiddos are very special to us.

intimate modern Washington DC wedding ceremony DC war memorial intimate modern Washington DC wedding ceremony DC war memorial

Click inside for the rest of Dori & Geoff’s intimate Washington DC wedding!

Gillian & John’s Washington DC Brunch Wedding at Sequoia in Georgetown

I love brunch. I also love weddings. So obviously I REALLY love brunch weddings (sometimes I wonder why the heck I didn’t have one myself). I am also considering specializing in only brunch weddings for my wedding coordination business (I kid – but seriously, getting home at 5pm is awesome). But other than the food, the thing I think I love about brunch weddings is how relaxed they are. Other than the super early wake-up time, brunch weddings have a different vibe to them – one that is more focused on enjoying a casual setting with your guests and one that is less focused on crazy “blog-worthy” details.

All of this is apparent in Gillian & John’s DC Brunch wedding today. They kept things light, cool, and easy, but still personalized and fun, by hosting a crazy cool rehearsal at the Mansion on O, and then throwing a brunch wedding the next morning and an afterparty later in the evening. They kept things local with DC wedding details and super awesome wedding vendors. Everything was planned to a T by Rebecca Dick with Blue Canary Events & captured beautifully by Procopio Photography. Check it all about below!

Gillian & John’s Washington DC Brunch Wedding at Sequoia

dc brunch wedding sequoia


Photographer: Procopio Photography | Wedding Planner: Rebecca Dick, Blue Canary Events | Wedding Rehearsal Venue: The Mansion on O | Ceremony & Reception Venue: Sequoia, Georgetown | Band at Reception: The Winn Brother’s Band | After Party: Bar George | After Party Band: 90’s cover band “White Ford Bronco” | Hair Stylist: Alison Harper & Co. | Makeup Artist: Blend | Floral Design: B Floral Event & Design | Photobooth: Majestic Photo Booth

From the photographer:

Their rehearsal was at this crazy cool old mansion called The Mansion on O. You can have dinner on the main floor and then explore the rest of the mansion. This place is covered from head to toe with chotchkies and music memorabilia. It has secret doors and passageways that will really get you lost! Guests found and put on vintage hats as they meandered about. It was not only unique but a great ice breaker for folks that didn’t know each other prior to the wedding.

washington dc wedding invitations mansion on o street rehearsal dinner mansion on o street rehearsal dinner

From the bride:

Basically- our goal was to have our friends all become friends. Having the wedding on a holiday weekend, we knew people would be foregoing time with their families, so we wanted to make it worth while. Our main focus was the music, even with a brunch wedding, we wanted people to dance – and they did! John grew up in DC proper, and I grew up in Fairfax county, so we are both local -which is rare in DC!

mansion on o street rehearsal dinner mansion on o street rehearsal dinner DC winter wedding winter bride fur

Click inside for the rest of Gillian & John’s Washington DC brunch wedding reception at Sequoia!

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