When it comes to life lessons, these teachers know first hand that when you combine the talents of Amie Decker Beauty, A. Dominick Events, and Vicki Grafton Photography you’re guaranteed a beautiful outcome. From stunning blooms by The Orangerie, to luxe linens provided by La Tavola, every detail of this wedded gallery affair is a masterpiece. Watch the entire day unfold in the right here!
From Vicki Grafton Photography… Sarah & Michael were married on July 12, 2014 at Christ Church in Georgetown followed by a Classic DC reception with southern charm at the gorgeous Corcoran Galley of Art.
Some of my favorite reception details included the use of farm tables and lounge rentals in the classic space, the relaxed food stations and the cafe lights hung overhead.
From the beautiful Bride… Michael and I had always known of each other through mutual friends in DC, but our romance really began at a “Friendsgiving” dinner party in 2010. By the time New Year’s Eve rolled around, it was clear that we shared something more than just goofy dance skills and an obsession with Love Actually. It didn’t take long for me to know that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. Several weeks later, we had our official DTR (define-the-relationship) on a plane ride back to DC from my best friend’s wedding in Texas, which also happened to be the first time I was a bridesmaid and the first time Michael met my dad and childhood friends. To my joy and amazement, the person sitting next to us on the plane asked if we were newlyweds, so needless to say, things went well. Fast forward three and a half years later to July 12th, 2014, with countless more weddings, a career change and grad school, and a move away from DC in between, and we couldn’t have been more ready to finally tie the knot!
We are both teachers – Michael proposed on the beach at sunset where we live now (Virginia Beach, VA) on a Friday night after my first week of school. I spent about a week basking in the glow of betrothal before I dove head first into wedding planning. The first thing I did was hire A. Dominick as our planner. It was one of the best decisions I made and I cannot say enough good things about the professionalism and dedication of their team, and using a planner in general. We considered a few other locations for our wedding, but since DC was so close to our hearts for many reasons, we knew all along that it was the place. When we lived there we attended Christ Church, Georgetown together, and since I had daydreamed about marrying Michael there pretty much every Sunday we went, I didn’t look any further. On my first wedding-related trip to DC, I met with several photographers that had been recommended to me, but I knew before even meeting Vicki Grafton that she was my first choice. Vicki has an incredible talent, a kind heart, and a quiet sense of humor that will make every couple feel completely at ease.
The reception venue proved to be a little bit trickier for us – we had originally reserved one location in Georgetown, but several months later, it fell through for various reasons. I was scrambling and stressing (to put it lightly) to find a new venue, but with the help of A. Dominick and by the grace of God, we were able to secure the Corcoran Gallery as our replacement. Having our reception there was surreal and truly such a blessing and a privilege. To any brides who are dealing with planning snafus and stressful moments (and if you haven’t yet, you will), everyone tells you that “it will all work out,” because one way or the other, it really just will. In the midst of planning and deciding so many things with your wedding, it can be easy to lose sight of the true significance of getting married. Don’t let your inner bridezilla get the best of you!
I was honestly a skeptic of the whole “your wedding day is the best day of your life” idea. I had friends who’d told me their weddings were a stress-filled blur, and I agreed that it seemed like a lot of pressure to be putting on one day of your life. So I was happily surprised to find that ours was just a little taste of what I think heaven must be like. There was so much joy, excitement, and happiness! So much celebration and love. It really was the best day. I know I owe a lot of that to our wonderful parents for their unconditional love and support, our loyal family members and friends who traveled to DC to help us celebrate, and our amazing team of vendors for making it happen.
It’s hard to pick from so many happy moments, but one of my favorites was an unexpected first look with my dad. Michael and I did a first look in the courtyard of the Ritz Carlton and enjoyed a special moment together, mostly giggling and being giddy. I thought we were going to head back inside but Vicki told me to wait, and as Michael disappeared around the corner, out came my dad…wearing a leopard print tuxedo jacket. We both dissolved into laughter, which helped us deal with the very raw emotion of the day; my dad and I are extremely close and the wedding was a big moment for us. He proceeded to jokingly don the jacket at various times throughout the night, a move which both entertained and I think confused some of our guests. My younger sisters now live in fear of that jacket making reappearances at their weddings, but to me, it was the perfect touch of comedic relief that I could never have planned!
Another favorite memory is when Michael and I had our first dance. We surprised everyone with a slightly choreographed routine to Jackie Wilson’s “Higher and Higher,” which may or may not have concluded with a lift a la Dirty Dancing (okay, I wasn’t exactly horizontal like Jennifer Grey…). We were both a bit nervous about pulling it off, but once we did, it really set the tone for the rest of the party. I am pretty sure that we left the dance floor maybe twice for the remainder of the reception, something that neither of us regrets. The night ended with one final surprise – Michael rented a vintage Rolls Royce as our getaway car, and the driver took us on a private midnight tour of the monuments. I remember looking in the mirror of the elevator going up to our honeymoon suite, trying to grasp the bittersweet feeling of this day being over. Happily I know now that weddings don’t just last one day…they live on long afterwards in memories, keepsakes, and most of all, the love that you are building on as a married couple.
Photography: Vicki Grafton Photography | Videographer: Blue Sky Films | Event Planning: A. Dominick Events | Floral Design: The Orangerie | Wedding Dress: Liancarlo | Ceremony Venue: Christ Church Georgetown | Reception Venue: Corcoran Gallery Of Art | Shoes: Kate Spade | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Donna Morgan | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Milly | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Zimmermann | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Diane Von Furstenberg | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BHLDN | Catering: Occasions Caterers | Makeup: Blend Make-up Artistry | Hair: Amie Decker Beauty | Lighting: Frost Lighting | Band: EastCoast Entertainment | Grooms Attire: Jos. A. Bank | Ceremony Music: Sage String Quartet | Transportation: Atlantic Mark Services | Vintage Car Rental: Lasting Impressions | Bowties: Collared Greens | Bridal Belt: BHLDN | Drapery: Fabrication Events | Farm Table Rentals : Something Vintage Rentals | Food Truck: Captain Cookie And The Milk Man | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Printed Materials: RSVP Stationery | Rentals: Amaryllis | Ribbon Wands: Jessica Anne Boutique Etsy