Images: Kristen Finn

I can’t think of a better wedding to get my butt back into blogging gear, than Mai & Rachel’s. Not only did these fabulous ladies plan & execute the MOST fabulous DIY, luau-themed wedding, but they were Kara’s first clients with Capitol Romance Weddings & the result was M-A-G-I-C-A-L. Rachel & Mai also just watched Sadie for my while I was in Vermont on vacation – so even EXTRA rad points happening here. You guys are going to love this one though -> Hula lessons, fire knife dancers, BBQ, and MORE. So much DIY inspiration here & even the guests got into the Hawaiian spirit with their attire. You’re gonna love this one.

Our party was a DIY smorgasbord. We had so many helpers, including Kara, who kept us on target and grounded. We decided early on that we wanted a casual party with games, fun, and relaxo-time. The luau theme fit perfectly because we spend a good bit of time in Hawaii. The venue had to be indoor AND outdoor, and only Patapsco Female Institute fit the bill for us. It was beautiful, quirky, spacious, indoor but also outdoor, and roof-free for starry night dancing. It was also a blank slate that we could make our own.

I did the invitation in watercolor, mostly orange (I love orange), so we used orange in our signs, as well as the same two typefaces from the invitation. Our creative friends even designed a floral stencil ‘aloha’ for the signs and hotel giftbags!

So along with at least a dozen of our peeps, we DIY’d everything from the lighting (LED lantern strings, rented up-lights for the white walls, and lots of white candles in jars), to the burlap table runners, the flowers (baby’s breath arranged in mason jars by Dawn), and the games (we made big boggle and giant jenga).

Even the food had a little extra DIY as guests could build their own bibimbap bowls and BBQ sandwiches. The Captain Cookie & the Milkman truck was such a hit that fully grown adults chased it around the venue.

We could never have done it without our pro bono decor tsarina, judicial expert, k-food crew, water runner, shuttle bus captains, sommelier, sign maestros, setup and takedown crew, and Kara. We did not DIY the hula and fire knife dancer show; you’re welcome!


Photographer: Kristen Finn | Wedding Coordinator: Kara at Capitol Romance Wedding Coordination | Catering: Beefalo Bob’s and Korean Korner | Tiki Bar: Maui Wowi DC | Dessert: Captain Cookie & the Milkman | Vintage Furniture: Vintage Affairs | Hula & Fire Dancers: Hoku Hawaiian Entertainment | Transportation: A Touch of Class Limousine

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