Very excited to introduce a Capitol Romance first-timer (The Girl Tyler!) to the blog today and my oh my is she kicking things off with a bang. Let me just say that her submission included, “I have a great DC wedding I’d love to send your way … complete with a Tina Turner Drag Queen performance”. Well hell yes, you had me at Drag Queen performance. At a wedding?! I LOVE IT.

But the fun doesn’t stop there, this DC wedding is chock-full of DC themed wedding details! A Washington, DC themed wedding cake & a Capitol Bikeshare groom cake, whimsical DC-themed map invitations, and mini pie favors from a Georgetown pie shop made up their wedding details (amid others) and the whole thing was captured beautifully by The Girl Tyler.

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

dc themed blue yellow wedding


Photographer:  The Girl Tyler | Heirlooms and extras: Bethany Lorelle | Bride’s Dress: Curvaceous Couture | Floral Designer: Fifi Flowers | Tuxedo and Mens Attire: Mens Warehouse – Vera Wang Collection | Bakery (Favors): Pie Sisters | Hair Stylist: Red Door Spa | Musicians: Spencer Bates | Groom Cake Designer: Sticky Fingers Bakery | Wedding Cake Designer: Sweets by E | Invitation Designer: The Girl Tyler: Design & Photography | Other: Tina Turner Impersonator | Bride’s Shoes: TOMS | Etsy Designer: Anthology on Main | Officiant: Divine Transformation Weddings | Reception Venue: Mount Vernon Inn | Cake Toppers: Pegged – Custom Kokeshi Doll Cake Toppers on Etsy | Submitted via Two Bright Lights

Ryan and I met in 2009 on where we both bonded over being on the college newspaper and mutual interest in exploring the DC area.  Ryan’s first phone call to Kimberly was from a bike ride he did to Mount Vernon.  Mount Vernon was Ryan’s favorite destination in DC and he’s very fond of his bike rides on the Mount Vernon trail.

When it came time to pick a wedding location, we really wanted to get married at a historical location that reflected our love of DC. Mount Vernon had a special place in my (Kimberly’s) heart as I had moved often as a kid when her father was in the Navy but always thought of DC as home.  Kimberly’s parents had also loved taking her and her siblings to Mount Vernon.

whimsical dc themed wedding invitations

Our invitations were custom illustrations of us happily riding on our bicycles to Mount Vernon as we wanted to let our guests know that they were in for a whimsical and beautiful journey on GW Parkway to the venue. Our canvas welcome bags had a custom Mount Vernon logo with our names and a drawing of the venue on it. We had a custom Map from The Girl Tyler in our invitation package and the two of us had lists of our favorite things to do in the area and area pamphlets in the bags.

blue engagement ring

We originally were going to do all black suits and dresses to make it easy for the bridal party but Kimberly’s friends convinced her to go with what she really wanted which was blue and yellow.  Kimberly’s favorite colors are blue and yellow, partially because of her allegiances to Georgia Tech, her undergrad alma mater, and Georgetown, her graduate school.  Plus Kimberly has always loved the simple and beautiful look of yellow sunflowers.  Ryan’s first flowers for Kimberly were also sunflowers.  The gray tuxedos were chosen to pop against the blue.


The bride’s bouquet was a mixture of white and yellow flowers that were intended to look like they came from Martha Washington’s garden.  The bridesmaids had bouquets of yellow sunflowers and hydrangeas.  Our ceremony began with an introduction to Mount Vernon.

And the bride wore TOMS because she loves TOMS!

silver glitter toms bride bride in glitter tomsgroom in grey suit billy ball boutonniere

 We really wanted to show our guests the kind of hospitality that Martha and George Washington were famous for showing their guests at Mount Vernon Inn Restaurant.  The Washingtons were known for welcoming anyone, poor, rich, friends, strangers, into their homes and showing them kindness.

mt vernon inn wedding

Click inside for the rest of Kim & Ryan’s personalized, DC themed wedding at Mt. Vernon Inn!

Ryan and Kimberly made the newspaper program in honor of their college newspaper days.  They used a photo with the Ramblin’ Reck, Georgia Tech’s mascot in the cover.  Kimberly had hired the Ramblin Wreck for their engagement party in Atlanta because it’s a tradition for the bride and groom to ride in it on their wedding day but since Atlanta is too far away from DC, they had an engagement party with it instead.  Ryan and Kimberly worked on the articles in the program together and also printed them up together as well.

newspaper wedding program designmt vernon inn wedding ceremony

Etsy Love: The flower pomanders for the ceremony decorations came from Anthology on Love, an Etsy seller, and were made out of vintage books. The hand-fasting cord, Kimberly’s veil, and Kimberly’s head pieces were handmade from Etsy sellers.

paper flower pomander

We worked with Rev Tim Mulosmanaj on a custom ceremony that reflected the two of us and our family traditions. The ceremony had an introduction to the history of Mount Vernon.  Rev. Tim gave a nondenominational Christian sermon that tied in well with Kimberly’s Catholic heritage and Ryan’s Protestant upbringing. We [also] did custom wedding vows.  Ryan had beautiful and funny vows that made Kimberly tear up and was a hard act to follow.

After the closing prayer, Ryan really wanted all of the guests to do a closing from Battlestar Gallatica so Rev Tim incorporated it into the ceremony.  It went like this:

  • Tim: So say we all
  • Everyone: So say we all
  • Tim: (louder) So say we all!
  • Everyone: (louder) So say we all!

The guests all went with it and it was an amazing moment to close out the ceremony.

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Ryan’s cufflinks were Metro bus tokens from 1982, the year Ryan was born.  It was a nod to Ryan’s love of public transit and the year he was born.  They were a wedding gift from Kimberly.

navy blue long bridesmaids dresses yellow bouquets groomsmen grey suits blue ties navy blue bridesmaids dresses Rieck_Jones_The_Girl_Tyler_326528_iZ2XpX3j_low Rieck_Jones_The_Girl_Tyler_326530_i2HpfWnd_low

Now prepare yourself for all the fun DC themed details about to come your way! Starting with these adorable tandem-bike escort cards:

tandem bike escort cards dc themed guest bookmt vernon inn wedding georgetown pie shop wedding favors dc themed wedding cake washington dc themed wedding cake

Gah! I love that DC skyline detail IN THE CAKE. How cool is that?!

custom wood doll cake toppers capital bikeshare grooms cake

We wanted a piano-bar feel to the reception and had Spencer Bates, a singer/piano player, play during the ceremony and reception.  We wanted all of the music to be original and what we and our friends and family wanted to hear. For the ceremony procession song, we used Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Hard to Concentrate.”  For the recession song, we used Counting Crow’s “Mr. Jones” in honor of Ryan and Kimberly becoming Mr. and Mrs. Jones. Spencer’s repertoire was really diverse and featured everything from classic piano bar songs to modern-day rap and pop music.  Our guests loved it and had a great time requesting their favorites in their RSVPs and also the day of the wedding.

dc themed wedding

And finally, about that Tina Turner impersonator ….

Surprise Guest Entertainment: Kimberly’s favorite artist of all time is Tina Turner and her first step after booking the venue was trying to book the famous ShiQueeta Lee of DC for the wedding.  She had always dreamed of having a Tina impersonator at the wedding.  ShiQueeta Lee has a super busy schedule so Kimberly checked repeatedly over the next year 14 months and booked ShiQueeta in August.   ShiQueeta’s performance was a real surprise for many of our guests and made Kimberly’s dream come true.  Kimberly’s nieces even got in the act and played Tina/ShiQueeta’s backup dancers.

tina turner drag queen dc weddingdc themed mt vernon inn wedding

Congratulations Kim & Ryan! Thank you for sharing all the beautiful details of your DC-themed, Mt. Vernon Inn wedding with us! A special thanks again to The Girl Tyler for submitting their images to us via Two Bright Lights.

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