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This Bride’s Grandma? Best. Officiant. Ever.

This wedding is what bespoke celebrations are all about. It’s one part Southern and one part Scottish as a nod to the bride’s family heritage. But my very favorite detail? The grandmother of the bride didn’t just attend the wedding, she actually married them. Talk about a day to remember. Vicki Grafton photographed, Monachetti filmed, and we’re headed straight to The Vault.



From Ashlee Virginia EventsSince the wedding was in the fall and took place at Oatlands which is a beautiful lush outdoors venue, we came up with a color scheme that spoke to Margot and also enhanced the gardens. Since the ceremony took place in the lower gardens we celebrated the gardens that already had greenery bloomed, and decided to just highlight the space with floral arrangements at the altar. The bridesmaids dresses were navy, so we choose a color scheme of creams, grey’s, beiges, greens, and whites to compliment the navy.

James is preppy and loves the outdoors so we incorporated some items within the design that he would be surprised about, for example the taxidermy ducks, the bird stamps, and the cigar/whisky bar. Since Margot’s family heritage includes a Scottish background, she wanted to make sure we included the navy tartan pattern that still complimented the color scheme. We had the navy tartan pops of pattern throughout the design with the groomsmen’s pocket squares, blankets and scarves for the guests, and a tartan runner for the guestbook.

From The Bride… I like to think our love story is very “quintessential DC.” James and I met while standing in line on Capitol Hill. My first thought was “this is such a great networking opportunity,” because, of course, we live in DC and both worked in the same sector at that time.

We sent a few emails back and forth, but then quickly lost touch. Fast forward one year — I moved to a house in Glover Park and noticed “this man” who I recognized but couldn’t quite place. Turns out, “this man” would be my future husband James. James reached out to me soon after, and we found out that we lived and worked a block away from one another – the closest thing to fate either one of us has ever experienced.

Our first date was at a bar called Circa in Dupont Circle. A “happy hour” soon turned into a three hour discussion about everything from fantasy football to our favorite music to our love for the outdoors. We then decided to train for a half marathon together, and James spent the next few months trying to keep up with me. It was during those runs that we realized that we had something special. All of this led to an engagement on May 31st, 2014 when we were vacationing at a friend’s lake house while watching the sun set over the mountains.

James is from California, and I’m from Boston, but we’ve absolutely fallen in love with the Virginia countryside since living in DC. I grew up riding horses, and James is an avid fly fisherman, so we like to think we have a little bit of the south in us, even though we didn’t grow up here. Even though the wedding was black tie optional, we wanted to keep the design very simple, and elegant – with a lot of white and green tied in. Some of my highlights was the long farmhouse table (where the wedding party sat), the bourbon/whiskey bar, and the outdoor furniture that we brought in for the cocktail hour.

Our favorite moment by far was when we said our vows in front of our family and friends. It was an incredibly intimate and emotional for us, especially because my grandmother married us. The band was also a highlight – I barely think anyone ate the entire night!

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Photography: Vicki Grafton Photography | Cinematography: Monachetti | Event Planning: Ashlee Virginia Events | Floral Design: LeRoy French Flowers | Wedding Dress: Peter Langner | Invitations: Nico & Lala | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Hair + Makeup: Amie Decker Beauty | Band: Elan Artists | Groomsmen Attire: Menguin | Venue: Oatlands Plantation | Cocktail Music: Paul Pfau | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Vintage Rentals: Paisley & Jade

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When Friends Fall in Love, They Then Marry in a Rustic Barn Wedding

When a childhood friendship develops into a lifelong love, you know what you do? You plan the ultimate barn wedding complete with unbelievable design details. Captured by Meredith Sledge, this is one celebration that’s refined rustic and totally chic. We’ve got it all waiting for you in The Vault!


From the Bride… Lee and I have known each other since we were 10 years old, though back then we would never have thought that on June 25, 2016 we’d be committing ourselves to one another in front of our friends and family. But after six years of dating and thirteen years of being friends and the time came to plan our wedding, there was no other place considered besides our hometown, Charlottesville, Virginia.

Our relationship was built on friendship, and Lee and I wanted our wedding to have the same comfortable and at home feeling we’d found in each other. When my mom and I started looking at venues in Charlottesville, Lee’s one requirement was he wanted us to be able to wear our cowboy boots at the reception. We came across Panorama Farms Event Barn and just knew this was the place for our wedding. The rustic barn would allow us to create a wedding that perfectly described us as a couple.

We chose the theme of rustic elegance and had so much fun incorporating the theme into different elements of the wedding. Our invitations were wrapped in lace and twine sewn by my mom. The church pews were lined with mason jars filled with beautiful white hydrangeas. Our caterer provided a delicious family style meal to make guests feel at home. And our course, Lee and I danced the night away in matching cowboy boots.

The word that best describes Lee’s and my wedding is joyful. There was never a moment we didn’t have a smile on our faces. Our commitment to one another was many years in the making and truly blessed by the Lord. The wedding was the perfect start to our life together as husband and wife. All our vendors were integral to making the day flawless, and they helped us create a day that we both haven’t stopped smiling about.

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Photography: Meredith Sledge | Event Planning: Margaret Bloom | Floral Design: Blue Ridge Floral | Cake: Favorite Cakes | Invitations: Reaves Engraving | Ceremony Venue: St. Paul's Ivy | Reception Venue: Panorama Farms | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids | Catering: A Pimento Catering | Hair + Makeup: Jeanne Cusick | Band: Sam Hill Entertainment | Groomsmen Attire: Men's Wearhouse

Saying “I do” in the Outer Banks of North Carolina is EVERYTHING

Guys, I love ALL weddings… I really, truly do.  But, if I am being honest, it’s those seaside nuptials in paradise that really get my heart pumping. I’m talking miles of sandy beaches, crystal blue waters and, of course, a beautiful locale like the Sanderling Resort making every moment happen perfectly.  I mean, a vaca of a lifetime meets the ultimate wedding? Yes. Please.

Located in the oh-so-stunning Outer Banks of North Carolina, the Sanderling Resort is everything you’ve ever wanted (and more) for your Big Day. Think space for 15-180 guests, luxe accommodations and mesmerizing sunset views to add a little touch of romance to your festivities. From their ah-mazing venue options to their knowledgeable staff to their relaxing spa, the team at Sanderling Resort will turn your dreams into an absolute reality.  We promise you that.

Contact the Sanderling Resort TODAY to speak to one of their full-service event planners and begin planning your destination celebration.  We can’t wait to see you say “I do” in the Outer Banks, lovelies.