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wedding website

Move over .com .wed is here!

visit www.get.wed

SPECIAL OFFER: $20 DISCOUNT ON THE PURCHASE OF A 1 YEAR .WED REGISTRATION. USE PROMOCODE LV6VT43SB2 AT WWW.NOMINATE.WED TODAY!


Looking for a dramatic setting for your wedding or reception?

For an event as unique as you are For your personal tour contact Susan Landess, Sales Manager, at 703-993-9344 or slandess@gmu.edu HyltonCenter.org/Rentals Find us on Facebook bridesandweddings.com I B6-W I

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True Love Stories never have endings...

Our elegant clubhouse and breathtaking views of the Potomac River will leave a memorable impression on all of your guests. Classic elegance, fine service and exquisite cuisine set us apart. Let us effortlessly orchestrate all the details.

Qiver Creek Club A Member ofthe ClttbCorp Family

43800 Olympic Blvd., Leesburg 703.779.2022 www.rivercreekclub.com

Photography: Djijo Studios; Gown & Veil: Soliloquy Bridal Couture; Hair & Makeup: Enlightened Styles; Jewelry: Hunt Country Jewelers; Flowers: Buttercups Florals; Cake: Cake Panache. 2I

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create your beginnings with us. Your wedding day should be one of your fondest memories Allow us to make you a guest at your own party. We’ll be there through each step of the planning process, ensuring you can relax and enjoy your special day.

Every detail of your event is completely customized to reflect your individual style and taste. 14675 Piedmont Vista Dr., Haymarket • 703.753.5922 Ext. 225 • piedmontclub.com We offer gorgeous ceremonies on our patio adjacent to our ballroom or by beautiful Lake Chantilly. Accommodating up to 225 guests, our flexible setup options with dark wood Chiavari chairs, new cherry wood dance floor, neutral décor and rustic chandeliers will set the tone for your classic country club wedding. And, best of all, we schedule only one wedding a day — allowing all the focus on you!

14901 Braddock Road, Chantilly • 703.631.9560 • www.chantilly-national.com www.BridesandWeddings.com. . . . . . bridesandweddings.com B

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hat a year it has been so far! From our new logo to our new website, beaufitul Lookbooks and exciting contests, Brides & Weddings has started off 2017 with a burst of excitement! Our website, www.bridesandweddings.com, is the go-to resource for Northern Virginia brides and grooms. There you will find the people and places to make your perfect wedding day. You can use keywords that reflect your Rebecca Barnes wedding vision in our search bar and discover the best in Northern Virginia wedding professionals. Or, you can sign up for our newsletter to receive special offers and calendar of events — from bridal shows to bridal shops. Read our blog, enter contests or follow us on social media for the latest information. Our wedding guide is packed with helpful tips, stories, timelines and photos to help create the perfect wedding for you. We give you the knowledge you need to make your planning successful and less stressful, along with showcasing some of the top wedding professionals in Northern Virginia.

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But the best part about Brides & Weddings is relationships. We are your riends and neighbors — large enough to have resources, but small enough to serve you as a friend. Our commitment to engaged couples is to make the journey to your wedding day as smooth as possible, by providing ideas, resources and maybe a little bit of inspiration for your celebration. This is the first day of the rest of your lives. What matters is that you are creating not just a day, but lifetime together. Thank you for taking the time to be a part of the Brides & Weddings community. Best wishes for a beautiful wedding and a happy marriage.

Rebecca Barnes P u b li sher

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TICKETS AND INFO AT WEDDINGEXPERIENCE.COM 6

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DISCOVER THE LATEST TRENDS

a1

FIND YOUR DREAM LOOK

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TASTE DELICIOUS CAKES

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SEE BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS

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CHAT WITH WEDDING PROS

SAVE TIME AND MONEY

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CONTENTS 7 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN SELECTING A WEDDING VENUE

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14 QUESTIONS

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HOTELS YOUR ONE-STOP SHOP

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WEDDING BLOGS

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GIRL FOR ALL SEASONS

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RECEPTION GUIDE

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WEDDING CAKES WITH STYLE

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A handy list of things that you should consider when choosinga venue for your wedding.

What to ask your caterer.

Flexible space, all-inclusive receptions and your guests under one roof.

How to use wedding blogs to plan your big day

Choosing the perfect season for your wedding

Find the best venue for your event.

Get the one that suits you.

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WEDDINGS 

should be

FUN Awesome, Awesome,

AWESOME!

This venue is

The staff is beyond

STUNNING! WONDERFUL!

'llarbour ' View

''

Unique !;:vents on the River's l;:dge

Phone 703.910.4273 info@harbourviewevents.com facebook.com/harbourviewevents www.HarbourViewEvents.com

Come visit the only waterfront wedding venue specializing in FUN! bridesandweddings.com B

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CONTENTS

84 90 102 102

HERE COMES THE BRIDE

Where to find the dress of your dreams.

BRIDAL FASHION LOOKBOOK OUTDOOR SHOOTS

Best area and ideas for outdoor shoots in northern virginia

WEDDING FLOWER REALNESS

From bouquets & boutonnieres to ceremonies & receptions in flowers.

108 118 125

THE WEDDING GALLERY

Take a stroll through these wedding day images.

PARADISE FOUND

Some of our favorite exotic places for your honeymoon.

DIRECTORY OF SERVICES Publisher....................................................................................................... Rebecca Barnes Director of Operations & Photo Editor..........................................................Amanda Baity Digital Media Coordinator.........................................................................Ashleigh Balsamo Art Director...................................................................................................Holli Rathman Copy Editors...............................................Ashleigh Balsamo, Peter Lineberry, Carole Keily The Staff...................................................... Caitlin Stephens, Laura Dickey, Robyn Dickey Cover Image by...................................................................... Kathleen Atkins | JOPHOTO Brides & Weddings is published twice yearly and distributed free of charge through area jewelers, bridal salons, venues and bridal shows, as well as NoVA Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s bridal registries. Find us online at www.bridesandweddings.com. For advertising opportunities, call 703.847.7412 ext. 3 or email sales@bridesandweddings.com. www.facebook.com/bridesandweddings Copyright 2017 Brides & Weddings

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DISCOVER A PEACEFUL AND IDYLLIC HUNT COUNTRY SCENE WIT H T H E ROLLING HILLS OF THE BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAINS IN THE DISTANCE. ELEG ANT BA LLROO M LARGE BAC K PAT IO H ANDSOME. VICTORIAN BA R C EREMONY OVERLOOKI NG BULL RUN POND EXQY ISITE PHOTO LOCATI ONS BRIDE & BRI D A L PARTY C HANGI N G AREA GRO OMSM EN C H ANGING A REA

3520 jAM ES MAD ISON HWY.

WEDDINGS & SP E CIAL EVENTS

HAYMARKET. VA 20169 • 70 3.753.7777 GOLFBU LLRUN.COM PHOTOGRAPHER: L EPO LD I' HOTOG RAPHYGOM

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YOUR GUIDE TO AN

EXCEPTIONAL EVENT

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utting together a great wedding doesn’t happen by accident. It takes careful planning and the enlistment of talented event professionals. Use the following tips to help plan your perfect day. Take some time and visualize your event: close your eyes and walk through it in as much detail as you can, from start to finish. This takes a little time, but you’ll find that it enhances creativity and helps you anticipate and avoid problems. Your site sets the tone for the experience: make sure your site fits the guest list — don’t try to squeeze too many people into the venue. And don’t pick a huge site that will make a small gathering feel uncomfortable. And remember, you’re not just choosing a site for an event — you’re also choosing a backdrop for your wedding photos. Be clear about your reception’s purpose: This helps you create the right setting, mood and format. For example, if you want your guests to mix and mingle, don’t choose a sitdown dinner. A buffet or stations create far better movement and interaction. Define your event’s personality: If your rehearsal dinner is going to be the first time that families meet, your goal is to put everyone at ease. Even the most elegant and expensive party will flop if the food, location or format makes your guests feel uncomfortable. Include the right people in the planning process: Think about the stakeholders in your event. You don’t need to bring them all together in one room, but enlisting their help in thinking through each phase of the planning assures a smoother and more rewarding event. 12

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Create a master plan: Put everything on paper and in your trusty binder. Writing down each step helps you spot things before they cause a problem. Include week-by-week and day-by-day action steps, identifying who’s responsible for what. Include all vendor contact information in this plan. Work closely with the experts: The more your wedding professionals understand your event, the more value they are to you. Make sure your wedding partners understand your budget. Take a few minutes to talk about what you’ve liked (or haven’t liked) at other weddings. Experts can use this information to make suggestions and create just the right event for you. Look for vendors who can help you handle more than one aspect of your event. A caterer can help you with rental items and decor, and give valuable recommendations for sites, floral designers, bakers and entertainment. Keep everyone in the loop: Setting up a website is particularly valuable out of town guests can see where you have booked a block of guest rooms. Use the website to give a schedule of events, RSVPs, directions to the ceremony and reception sites and other important details. Be prepared for emergencies: By thinking about them ahead of time, we can keep little crises from becoming disasters. Have a list of taxicab services handy for those who have had too much to drink. A first-aid kit is always a good thing to have, and find out if any of your guests know CPR. Michael Evans is the owner of Helga’s Caterers in McLean. To schedule a consultation regarding your reception, rehearsal dinner or guest brunch, call 703.556.0780.


Nestled less than a mile from Reston Town Center, Hidden Creek Country Club's rolling landscape and scenic golf course views are the perfect backdrop for outdoor ceremonies. Adjacent to our ceremony site is our year-round covered deck, an ideal setting for cocktail hour. Afterwards guests will be invited into our Fairway Reception Hall to enjoy fine cuisine and detailed service. Hidden Creek features affordable wedding packages starting at $38.95 per person and custom packages to fit your unique style.

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____, !fidden Creek

~OUNTRY CLUB

To Schedule a Visit, Please Contact Annette B. Armitage

703.437.5222 x106 Catering@HiddenCreekCC.com ml Pinterest.com/HiddenCreekCC/

1771 Clubhouse Road Reston, VA 20190

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ENGAGEMENT RING A LT E R N A T I V E S

ot every bride is the same, so why should their engagement rings be? In fact, you may even find that your hopeful bride-to-be doesn’t even like diamonds. Diamonds aren’t mandatory in engagement rings or wedding bands as the featured gem. There are so many stunning gemstones out there that limiting yourself to just the diamond could be a disservice to your one-of-a-kind partner. If you want something a little bit more unique for your ring, here are some options that are quite gorgeous for you to consider.

Sapphires

There are a lot of reasons why you may want to consider a sapphire instead of a diamond. First of all, it’s almost as hard as diamond, ranking just behind its more popular gem on the Mohs scale. And there are so many different color variations that you can buy — sapphires may be most famous for being blue, but they can also come in green, yellow, pink and white.

Amethyst

Garnet

Garnets are great for a few reasons. The color is unique and gorgeous, which makes it stand out against ruby. Another is because they’re inexpensive and look richer than they are. If your bride loves the vintage look, this is the gem you should be looking at.

Ruby

Speaking of rubies, these are also a great option. If you play a larger ruby with some accent diamonds, you are going to create a great ring. Rubies have the same hardness and properties as sapphire, so this gem will last a lifetime.

Onyx

Onyx is a gorgeous gemstone that most commonly comes in black, though there are other varieties that you can enjoy. If you want something that’s modern and unique but very chic, the onyx could be an excellent choice.

Moissanite

Amethysts are beautiful, purple gemstones that add flair to your engagement ring. They’re another durable gem that can be worn on a daily basis without issues. They’re not quite as durable as a sapphire or diamond, but they’ll stand the test of time with some extra care.

Cubic zirconia and other diamonds get a bad rap, in part because they’re easily dulled and scratched and won’t stay perpetually shiny like a real diamond. Enter moissanite, a crystal that naturally occurs in meteorites, is nearly as hard, dense and scuff-resistant as a diamond and has greater brilliance and fire.

Emeralds

Man-Made Diamonds

With the gorgeous deep-green color found in an emerald stone, this is a timeless gem that offers a stylish and luxurious touch to your ring. These may not be as popular as they once were, but you can get something that’ll really create a magical piece, especially when used with a modern setting.

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Man-made diamonds are physically and chemically identical to natural diamonds. White diamonds that have been grown in a laboratory typically cost 15-20 percent less than comparable natural diamonds, and colored, lab-made diamonds can be a whopping 80 or 90 percent cheaper than their mined equivalents. The fact that mined diamonds are literally millions (and sometimes billions) of years old is certainly romantic, but it’s wrong to call a lab-grown diamond “fake.”


Happily Ever After Starts Here

Heritage Hunt Golf & Country Club is the ideal location for your special day. From grand affairs to intimate gatherings, we have the perfect setting for your storybook event.

Call us today for a tour! 703-743-2005 Photo credit: Stephanie Messick Photography

6901 Arthur Hills Drive, Gainesville, VA 20155 | www.heritagehunt.net An Associa CMC & Up to Par Managed Property

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a diamond is

Forever The following merchants are happy to assist you and your fiance in finding the perfect engagement and wedding rings. Please let them know that you found them in Brides & Weddings of Northern Virginia.

Achikian Goldsmiths 140 Church St. NW, Vienna (703) 255-2255 www.achikian.com

Belle View Jewelers Belle View Shopping Center, Alexandria (703) 768-4900 www.belleviewjewelersva.com

Adeler Jewelers 772-E Walker Road, Great Falls (703) 759-4076 www.adelerjewelers.com

Boone & Sons 1320 Old Chain Bridge Road, McLean (703) 734-3997 www.booneandsons.com

Ashby Jewelers 9407 Main St., Manassas (703) 368-4653 www.ashbyjewelers.com

Caulkins Jewelers 36 Catoctin Circle SE #B, Leesburg (703) 777-1108 www.caulkinsjewelers.com

B & C Jewelers Bradlee Shopping Center, Alexandria (703) 379-6010 www.bcjewelers.net

Daniel Roberts Fine Jewelers 10254 Main St., Fairfax (703) 734-7770 www.danielrobertsfinejewelers.com

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Eternity Jewelers 267 South Van Dorn St., Alexandria (703) 823-0691 Express Jewelers Pentagon Row www.jewelershowcase.com (703) 351-7481 Exquisite Jewelers 8404-A Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield (703) 912-5739 Five Star Jewelers 5765 Burke Centre Pkwy #S (703) 239-1300 www.fivestarjewelers.net Hartman Jewelers 36 Main St., Warrenton (540) 349-4123 www.hartmanjewelers.com Hunt Country Jewelers Custom Bridal Jewelry Specialists 105 East Main St., Purcellville (540) 338-8050 www.huntcountry.com The Jewelers Workshop 169-B Broadview Ave., Warrenton (540) 347-1761 Jewelry by Designs 2932 Prince William Pky., Woodbridge (703) 580-8880 www.jewelrybydesigns.com Ketterman’s Jewelers 38-C Catoctin Circle SE, Leesburg (703) 777-0033 www.kettermans.com May Jewelers 8032 Leesburg Pike, Tysons Corner (703) 448-0866 www.mayjewelers.com Mervis Diamond Importers 1900 Mervis Way, Tysons Corner (703) 448-9000

1700 K St. NW, Washington DC (202) 293-0600 5480 Wisconsin Ave., Chevy Chase (301) 215-9500 1775 Rockville Pike, Rockville (301) 231-0030 www.mervisdiamond.com Princess Jewelers 529 Maple Ave., Vienna (703) 255-5050 www.princessjeweler.com Quinn’s Goldsmith Custom Jewelry Designs 199 Union St., Occoquan (703) 494-1662 Stonebridge at Potomoc Town Center (703) 878-1622 www.quinnsgoldsmith.com Salona Jewelers 1333 Chain Bridge Road, McLean (703) 848-2660 www.salonajewelers.com Solovey Jewelers 1475 Chain Bridge Road, McLean (703) 356-0138 www.solovey.com Touch of Gold Fine Jewelry 202-A Washington St., Occoquan (703) 490-4544 www.touchofgoldva.com Watch & Jewelry Exchange of Tysons 8150 Leesburg Pike, Vienna (703) 893-0566 www.watchandjewelryexchange.com VA Gold Buyers 21580 Atlantic Blvd., Sterling (703) 444-7804 www.vagoldbuyers.com Waldin Jewelers Dulles Town Center, Sterling (703) 421-0030 www.waldinjewelers.com bridesandweddings.com bridesandweddings.com

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TYING THE KNOT IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA

The legal age for marriage is 18 years old. Couples under 18 must have parental consent. Blood tests are not required. There is no waiting period and licenses are valid for 60 days. Both bride and groom must be present to apply for and sign the marriage license. Identification (i.e. driver’s license or military ID) must include a photo and social security number. Divorce/death information regarding previous marriages must be provided under oath. Cost is $30 (cash), with the exception of Prince William County ($32.50 cash). Call your location for office hours. ALEXANDRIA CITY Alexandria Circuit Court, Clerk’s Office Marriage License Division, 3rd Floor, Rm. 307 520 King St., Alexandria 703.838.4044

FAUQUIER COUNTY Fauquier County Circuit Court Clerk’s Office 40 Culpeper St., Warrenton 540.347.8610

ARLINGTON COUNTY Arlington County Courthouse 6th Floor, Room 6700 1425 North Courthouse Road, Arlington 703.228.4510

LOUDOUN COUNTY Loudoun County Circuit Court Clerk’s Office, 3rd Door 18 North King St., Leesburg 703.777.0270

FAIRFAX COUNTY Clerk of the Circuit Court Public Services Counter, 3rd Floor 4110 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax 703.691.7320

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY Courthouse Station 3rd Floor, Suite 301 9309 Center St., Manassas 703.792.6019

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estled in picturesque Loudoun County, Virginia, Oatlands Historic House and Gardens boasts more than 200 years of history and 30 years as a wedding venue. The mansion and beautifully terraced landscapes offer the perfect setting for exchanging your vows, enjoying cocktails, and exploring the 4.5 acre formal gardens.    For your reception, celebrate under an elegant tent on either on the mansion’s front lawn or paved terrace near the historic greenhouse, or in the 1903 Carriage house.  The gardens, grounds, history, and stunning vistas provide a charming and timeless setting for your special day. 18

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20850 Oatlands Plantation Ln. Leesburg, VA 20175 703. 7 7 7 . 3174

oatlands.org


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5025 CASANOVA ROAD • \VARRENTON, VA 20187 540-788-4600 • POPLARSPRINGSINN.COM bridesandweddings.com I B&-W I

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7 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN

SELECTING A WEDDING VENUE

If you close your eyes right now and picture your wedding, you probably see your fiance beaming at you, the ring slipping onto your finger, your loved ones happily gathering together. But where is all this merriment taking place? After the decision to get married, a location is usually the next big choice that newly engaged couples make. But even though selecting the venue is an early and important decision, that doesn’t mean it’s an easy one! Here is a list of things that you should consider when choosing a venue for your wedding.

Capacity

Space is a crucial consideration when selecting a wedding venue. Before you begin your search for the perfect venue, it’s a good idea to have an estimate of how many guests you plan to invite. This often means creating a rough draft of your guest list. If your guest list is expansive, many churches and banquet halls may not have the capacity to fit everyone. And if your guest list is small and intimate, you don’t want to be rattling around in a huge space! Knowing a rough number of guests you want to invite will help narrow down your search from the beginning.

Style

To some extent, you’ll be bringing your aesthetic into the venue when your vendors set up for the wedding, but the inherent nature and style of a venue is a foundation that cannot be changed. It’s best to choose a venue that fits with the style and feel that you’re envisioning for your wedding day. For example, a cathedral ceremony and ballroom reception might not be the best fit if you crave a whimsical wedding, and a barn venue will not be a great option if you have your heart set on an elegant, formal affair.

Budget

Unless you are working with an unlimited wedding budget, money is another factor to consider. If you have a wedding planner, they will be able to steer you toward venues that are a good fit for your budget initially. Beyond that, make sure you ask a lot of questions as you tour each venue to get a good handle on what’s included and what features will incur additional costs so you can try to compare apples to apples when considering multiple venues.

Upkeep

One thing to pay attention to when touring venues is their cleanliness and general maintenance. Is the landscaping well tended? Are the bathrooms clean? What kind of staffing will there be on your wedding day to keep everything spic and span? The condition of the venue on a touring day will tell you a lot about the management and their standards. Make sure that those standards match with your own! 7 THINGS TO CONSIDER — CONTINUED PAGE 22 20 I

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the

Elegant Choice for your day

With ideal options for both indoor and outdoor events, the picturesque setting provides you with everything you need to create a day you and your guests will always remember. Centrally located in Northern Virginia, this country club event venue offers a newly renovated Clubhouse featuring a bright and modern aesthetic to provide an elegant setting for as many as 220 guests. • • • • •

Newly Renovated Clubhouse Interiors Arnold Palmer Designed Championship Golf Course Lakefront Views with Water Fountain Feature Lushly Landscaped Exterior Event Space Customizeable Catering Menus & Event Coordination

EventsAtRegency.com | 571.261.3335 | 15351 Championship Drive, Haymarket, VA 20169 bridesandweddings.com

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7 THINGS TO CONSIDER — CONTINUED

Packages

Depending on the venue, they may offer different packages for events. Look into each venue’s catering packages to see whether they suit your needs. Some locations will provide tables, tablecloths, cake stands and other things that will save on your bill with an outside rental company, while others provide only the space. Neither is right or wrong, but you need to be sure you know what you’re getting before you book the venue.

Permits & Privacy

If you’re planning to have your wedding outside or in a public place, permits may be required. Do your research and get the necessary documents ahead of time. Another thing to consider is whether other people will have access to the area during your wedding. Holding a wedding in a public place can lead to a lot of onlookers, so consider how important your privacy is to you on your big day!

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Management

Trust your gut! The workers and management can tell you a lot about what your future experience might bring. Make sure you feel a connection with the staff and that you trust them — they are going to be the ones who ensure your day runs smoothly. As you tour different venues, take note of whether they are listening to you and whether you will feel comfortable working closely with them throughout the months leading up to your wedding day. For many couples, their wedding is the only time in their lives that they will ever book an event venue. So, it’s OK if you feel a bit out of your element and experience a steep learning curve! We encourage you to check out online photos of other weddings at the venue. Seeing other people’s weddings can give you inspiration and a better idea of what the space looks like in all its glory. It’s also a very good idea to check out reviews or talk to other brides about their experiences with the business! And as we mentioned before, a good wedding planner can be a huge help in guiding you toward the venues that will suit your wedding best!


Stonewall Golf Club prides itself on offering guests a variety of customized menus tailored to meet each bride's specific needs. The utmost of attention to detail is observed as our team of experts assist from start to finish in planning your special day. To inquire regarding availability, please contact Jeanna Hilton,

703.753.6156 jhilton@stonewallgolfclub.com

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15601 Turtle Point Drive Gainesville, VA 20155

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for newlyweds HOME-BUYING ADVICE

FROM VIRGINIA REALTY

Brides & Weddings recently sat down with real estate husband and wife combo Bill and Peggy Burke to get their advice for engaged or newly married couples when it comes to buying your first home together. Peggy gives us some great tips on buying your first home and even a little marriage advice.

How long have you been a REALTOR? I was first licensed in NC in 1981....and licensed in VA in 1984. I have been a REALTOR for 36 years....33 years in Virginia. Bill has worked in and around development of real estate forever and has been a REALTOR forever too. What do you enjoy most about your job? The best thing about my job is that I get to meet a lot of different people from different places. They all have a different need. I assist people with the purchase of “home” and how to make it home. I work with sellers who are moving up or moving out of the area and I help them to start on the next leg of their life’s journey. I also work with landlords and tenants. Everyone’s situation is a puzzle and I feel like my job is to help them solve the puzzle. Bill works on the commercial side. So he handles any of the people we know who have a need for commercial space or land for commercial or residential. Sometimes it is a company that someone we know works for who has a new need or evolution to a new situation. He also does business and church consulting. All of this, too, is a puzzle. We really like helping people with whatever game plan they have and sometimes help them to see where it needs tweaking! Do you offer any real estate services for engaged couples or newlyweds? They are really no different from everyone else. They are just typically a little more nervous. We thrive on being patient and helping them to discover what their needs are. We can easily explain the process one-on-one and craft the process to fit the individual couple. 24

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PARTNERS

Some brides get overwhelmed with planning a wedding at the same time that they are shopping for a home. Are there any ways to make the home buying process easier and less time consuming? Because everyone’s situation is different, we meet with the couple and get a really good idea of what they are looking for, where they want to be and what their price range is going to be. Then we do the hard part and will try to narrow things down for them so that they can worry about the “getting married” part. After we discover what their likes and needs are we can keep them from having to look at “everything.” Then if what we find turns out to not be what they are looking for, we switch gears and go in a different direction until we get it all right! Any tips you can give readers on the home-search process and how to compromise if your styles are different? Most houses are pretty much the same in this area. Neighborhoods offer different amenities and yards are level or not. So, as soon as we zero in on where they want to live, we can help them to figure out how to adapt the house to the cook in the family, the garage mechanic or craftsperson, the man cave, the library, the sewing room...the game room...that’s the fun part...helping them use the house in ways that make it “their” home. What is your advice for the young to-be-married or newlywed couple who both own homes but are looking to “trade up” after the wedding? If they both own a home coming into the marriage we can help the couple decide if they want to sell one of them, rent one of them or keep or sell them both and buy something different. It is all part of the discovery process that starts with getting to know them and what they really want to accomplish. They may be able to become landlords or they may not want to do that. So, we explore all possibilities with them before making any suggestions. It really is a counseling service. We


want to help them to do what is right for them. Not what we want them to do. What are the two or three hottest neighborhoods/ areas for first-home purchases right now? Again, this really depends on the couple, their age, their lifestyle. In this area lots of people getting married are already established in a community and want to stay there. Others will want a place with a good walkability score, or more rural where they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have an HOA, or a golf community, or near a rec center, or close to commuter routes. Some want something newer. Others want something older with character. Still others want a townhouse or condo. So, again, that first meeting is so important and sometimes we make them think of things that have not crossed their mind. It is a puzzle. Bill & Peggy Burke are brokers for Virginia Realty Partners, LLC, a Real Estate Brokerage and consulting firm offering services in Residential, Commercial, Land and Specialty Markets. They can assist you with any real estate need in Northern Virginia, as they have a combined 75+ years of experience. Visit their website at virginiarealtypartners.com to see local listings and find out more.

One Destination, Three Venues, Nine Settings,

Endless Possibilities! Farm Brew LIVE at Innovation Park offers nine distinct, yet equally beautiful, private spaces with custom menus and personalized service ensuring your wedding day is as amazing as you envision. For further information, please contact Events@FarmBrewLive.com or go to

bridesandweddings.com

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Photos by Brooke Danielle Photography

One-Hour Scenic Drive West of Washington DC, via I-66

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134 Golf CLub Circle Front Royal, VA 22630 540.635.3588 shenandoahvalleygolfclub .com


Holiday Inn· Arlington at Ballston

“Let us take care of everything... So you can focus on your family” • Grand Ballroom for up to 180 guests • Inclusive BRIDAL Suite for Wedding Night • Customized WEDDING Packages & On-site coordination • Complimentary Metro shuttle & Free parking for all

www.hairlington.com I 703-243-9800 4610 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22203 www.BridesandWeddings.com. . . . . . bridesandweddings.com B

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Beautiful BARN WEDDINGS

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ustic and romantic, barns offer a unique alternative for a wedding reception. Throughout the western countryside of Northern Virginia, land owners with special zoning can offer their properties for wedding receptions a limited number of times a year. Wineries that host weddings are borrowing barn architecture for their tasting room designs. Event centers are popping up with the look and feel of barns, coupled with modern amenities. There’s even a country club in Fairfax that boasts a barn exterior with newly remodeled banquet space. Barns offer a blank décor canvas. You can play up the countryside with hay bales, barrels for cocktail tables and carnival lights. Or take your design in a different direction with the unexpected elegance of fine linens and china, Chiavari chairs and beautiful floral centerpieces. If you have your heart set on a barn wedding, here are some guidelines to help you choose the right location — for both your style and budget. More moving parts can mean more money: If you are hosting your event on an individual’s property (be they family-friend or someone booking a limited number of weddings), the odds are quite good that you will need to truck in everything. Think about what that means. There’s the obvious, of course: tables, chairs, possibly ceremony seating. But what about lighting, heating/ air conditioning (or fans at the least)? And finally, where are all of your guests going to use the bathroom? Your guests’ comfort should be a high priority if you want a successful event.

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Granted, answering these questions doesn’t fall under the “fun” part of wedding planning. But by considering these basics and your budget, you will go into planning your barn wedding better prepared. Individuals who have experience hosting events on their properties will be able to provide references for rentals — from the reception basics to HVAC systems and mobile lounges. And if you’re going this route, hiring a seasoned event planner to coordinate all of these parts is a wise investment. Another area of consideration is guest parking. Event centers and wineries have adjacent parking lots. With an individual property, parking may be in a nearby field. Will you need a valet to park your guests’ cars? Will there be access to either the venue or transportation (think golf cart) for those who cannot make the trek from the field to the barn? When looking for a caterer for your barn wedding, seek out professionals who have either worked the property or have experience setting up and serving in a similar environment. Often pop-up kitchens need to be erected the day of the event. Will a generator be required or can the caterer access the electric at the property? Barn weddings are beautiful in large part because the venue is surrounded by nature. Individuals who rent their properties for weddings are usually working the land as well. Please be respectful of the fields and livestock. The farm is not a petting zoo for your young guests. There may be sights, sounds — and smells — that are not part of the typical wedding reception. If you plan thoroughly, think of the comfort of your guests and work with knowledgeable professionals, your barn wedding will go off without a hitch — go enjoy that hayride and bonfire with your family and friends!

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WONDERFUL WEDDING WEEKENDS

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n this modern day of transient lifestyles, wedding guest lists contain relatives and friends traveling from both coasts. To make the most of the time couples can spend with their friends and family members, brides and grooms are planning wedding weekends and hosting multiple events in unique venues.

Rehearsal Dinner This event is held the night before the wedding and now includes not only the bridal party, but family members and out-of-town wedding guests. It is not unusual to have a guest list of 50 attendees. More couples are utilizing interesting venues, such as wineries, for these events.

The wedding weekend consists of numerous parties and activities centering around guests getting to know each other while enabling the bride and groom time to relax and enjoy catching up with friends and family. A wedding weekend agenda typically goes like this:

The Wedding & Reception By now, your guests have had some time to get to know one another better, so let the good times begin. Relax and enjoy the day, whether it’s an elegant ballroom event, a trip back in time at a historic bed & breakfast or a casual catered affair in the countryside.

The Ice Breaker This party is usually held on the Thursday evening prior to the wedding. This dinner has replaced the traditional rehearsal dinner as it is often the first time the bride and groom’s families meet. It’s a good idea to keep this event on the casual and fun side, incorporating themes like a barbecue or Hawaiian luau. Bridal Party Outings These events are designed to allow for some relaxation before the big day, and again, give guests a chance to make new acquaintances and renew old friendships. Outings can include trips to a spa for the feminine side of the bridal party, golfing for the groom and his buddies and sightseeing tours and excursions to local wineries for wedding guests. 30

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Post-Festivity Brunch This is the perfect opportunity for the bride and groom to thank out-of-town guests, friends and family members, and to open gifts. Put the emphasis on hospitality and relaxation. The wedding weekend allows you time to relax and enjoy visiting with all of your guests. Use venues that offer many opportunities for different events for your guests while keeping their traveling time to a minimum. With a wealth of historic sites, B&B’s, wineries, shopping outlets, spas and golf clubs, Northern Virginia is the perfect place to hold your wedding weekend.


Wedding Season at Briar Patch

Whatever the season, we offer a breathtaking, romantic setting in the heart of Virginia horse & wine country for your wedding weekend.

Briar Patch Bed & Breakfast Inn 703.327.5911 • www.BriarPatchBandB.com 23130 Briar Patch Lane

Middleburg VA 20117 bridesandweddings.com

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YOUR ONE STOP WEDDING RESROURCE

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fter the engagement ring is on your finger, the questions looms, “Where should I have my wedding?” Although many options are tempting, from historic homes and favorite restaurants to exotic locations like mountain tops, many brides must find a balance between budget, planning time and out-of-town guests’ requirements. Hotels offer convenience, value, a wide array of capabilities and experienced staff to make wedding planning and the big day effortless, costeffective and polished.

Sometimes a bride and groom cannot get a church location for their ceremony. They may practice different religions and decide that a non-religious ceremony is more appropriate. Hotels offer space for ceremonies and decorations such as lattice panels and archways to personalize the room. In addition to the ceremony and reception, there are many other events that surround a wedding, including the rehearsal dinner, bridesmaids’ luncheon and departure brunch. Most hotels offer custom menus and even discounted rates for these additional events and with a variety of function rooms from which to choose, each event can take on a unique atmosphere. With so much going on, the guests and the bride can find themselves running all over town. Hotels frequently offer a complimentary bridal party hospitality room removed from the cocktail hour to allow the bride, groom and their closest friends and family members a chance to catch their breath in privacy.

Where should I have my wedding?

Convenience Today’s brides are busy with families, careers, studies, travel, hobbies and of course a fiance. Some brides are even planning weddings from another town or state. Many of the wedding guests are traveling from a distance to share in the special day. Some will be drinking during the reception. Hotels offer the ability to hold both the reception and guest rooms in one place so that no one will need to drive afterward. Most hotels offer a complimentary bridal suite with wedding packages and many airport hotels allow the couple to leave their car in the parking lot and take the courtesy shuttle to and from the airport for the honeymoon. 32

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Value The cost of a wedding reception can vary widely due to a number of factors: type of reception, HOTELS — CONTINUED PAGE 36


FINALLY!

Photo: AE Landes Photography

The perfect marriage of a captivating ballroom and a passionate staff to bring serenity instead of stress to your wedding day!

2500 Neabsco Common Place Woodbridge, VA 22191 703.590.2500 www.woodbridge.hgi.com Clean lines, modern design and lots of natural light make the Hilton Garden Inn a perfect setting for your ceremony and reception. Our gorgeous ballroom â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with floor to ceiling windows â&#x20AC;&#x201C; can accommodate up to 180 guests. Ideal upscale city center location, just off I-95 near Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center and Potomac Mills Mall and only 20 miles from Washington, DC. Customizable packages with all inclusive per person pricing to fit your desires and budget. Delicious onsite catering, brand new guest accommodations and a complimentary honeymoon suite. To schedule your tour and consultation, contact our Wedding Specialist at 703.590.2500.

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HOTELS — CONTINUED number of guests, time of day or year and menu selected. Hotels offer reception packages that typically include reception room set-up with tables and chairs, a selection of tablecloths and napkins, staging for the head table or a band, a dance floor, cake and gift tables and basic centerpieces — all at a per-person price. Hotel menu packages come complete with hors d’ oeuvres, two to four courses for plated meals or lavish buffets, hosted bars featuring cocktails, beer, wine and soft drinks and champagne toast and cake cutting for every guest. Capabilities As many brides quickly discover, much about the wedding experience has very little to do with the bride and groom themselves. There are friends, families, friends of families and other guests who must be thought of every step of the way. Most families contribute some or all of the funds for the festivities and expect to have some say in everything from the time of year and the guest list to the location and relative distance many of the guests must travel. Hotels can offer the best of all possible worlds when it comes to satisfying a multitude of requirements. By law, hotels are required to maintain accessibility for guests with all kinds of disabilities. From ramps and elevators leading to their public spaces to Braille signage throughout the building and smoke detectors for the hearing impaired, your guests will be treated with the utmost in discretion and comfort. Reception catering is another example of how hotels can accommodate a wide variety of needs. Most offer pre-planned children’s meals consisting of a fruit cup, chicken fingers, fries and soft drinks, but they can also prepare vegetarian or vegan meals, low cholesterol or sodium entrees and other specific requirements. They can further customize their beverage offerings so that your bar features your favorite drinks, including expanded wine bars, microbrew beers or specialty martinis. Some hotels will also permit outside caterers to provide the meals for your reception when the menu is something outside of their packages. This includes Kosher or Halal catering, 34

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Ethiopian or Korean cuisine or any other requirement you may have. Some will even contract the caterer for you. Experience The execution of the events on the day of your wedding is not something that should be left in the hands of the inexperienced. Hotels employ and train teams of experienced and professional staff members to cater to your every need. The banquet manager and captains will ensure that your ballroom is set correctly with gleaming glassware, crisp linens and a uniformed staff to wait on you. From the lighting of the candles to adhering to your carefully planned agenda, the banquet department will deliver everything you planned and more. The chef and his culinary team prepare delicious meals to tempt your guests. Guaranteeing that the food is fresh, hot and tasty, they can feed from 50 to 500. The catering director and managers tie it all together: your initial site visit, menu planning, agenda detailing and table placement diagramming. They will place your favors and place cards and greet your limo. As your liaison to the other hotel departments, they can assist with guest rooms and special dietary requests. They can also recommend florists, bakers, photographers and entertainment. Most hotel chains maintain brand standards of operation that add yet another level of experience to the team of professionals working with you. From equipment and staffing guidelines to continuous training and operational policies and procedures, hotels offer you their good name and reputation for hospitality. Many also award frequent traveler points for all of your catered functions — a great way to pay for your honeymoon! From your guests checking in to the shuttle for the airport where you depart on your honeymoon, hotels offer convenience, excellent value, a wide range of capabilities and an experienced team. Hotels are your one stop shop for weddings.


11787 LEE JACKSON MEMORIAL HWY FAIRFAX, VA 22033

FairfaxMarriott A T

F A I R

O A K S

WHERE CONTEMPORARY ELEGANCE MEETS HEARTFELT DEDICATION

WEDDING RECEPTION | WEDDING CEREMONY REHEARSAL DINNER | BRUNCH | BRIDAL SHOWER

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MONICA BLAZE@WHITELODGING COM

703.667.2101 MARRIOTT.COM/IADMC

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MEALW H ASERV I CE T’S YOUR STYLE?

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eddings come in all different sizes and styles, each uniquely beautiful and representing a happy couple. Based on a couple’s theme and plans for the day, it makes sense then that the style of the reception at a black-tie wedding varies from that of a backyard barbecue. While there are different styles of catering that can be utilized during your reception, keep in mind that only you and your significant other can decide which option – or options – best fit your needs for your overall wedding vision. Sit-down dinners typically consist of a multi-course meal in which each course is plated and served individually to guests. This elegant option allows your guests to feel pampered and is traditionally used for more formal affairs. This style of service has a greater expense due to the increased staffing requirements needed in order to adequately serve your guests. Formal sit-down dinners can be quite regal, especially when butlered French service is used where each guest is served at the table, offering an extra layer of elegance for your guests. Family-style dinners are a cozy, intimate way to serve your guests. With platters and bowls placed on each table, your family and friends have the ability to select their portions through self-service. In order to successfully carry out a family-style meal, you must have enough staff to service each table and enough space at the tables to comfortably fit your guests, as well as the food 36

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and equipment. This style emanates the casual comfort of family gatherings at home – without all of the work and worry! Food stations are a fun, interactive alternative to buffets, allowing for increased flexibility and options. Stations provide your guests with opportunity to customize their meals and they promote mingling in a more casual atmosphere. Because items are often made to order, it’s important to have more staff and more time for dinner. Food stations are a great way to provide an additional dimension to your reception. Buffets are always an excellent option, particularly for couples who want to serve a wide variety of food choices to their guests. They provide greater flexibility, allowing guests to pick the items that most satisfy their palates, as well as controlling how much or little of each item is served. This style tends to be the least expensive and may be a good option for those on a budget. With endless display possibilities, buffets are a great way to provide a dramatic focal point for your reception. By working with your caterer or food and beverage manager, you’ll find the right style that fits your style! Michael Evans is the owner of Helga’s Caterers in McLean and a regular contributor to the Brides & Weddings website blog. To schedule a consultation, call 703.556.0780 and visit www.helgascatering.com.


A genuine Virginia estate with stunning gardens nestled among notable, southern architecrure. Sweeping meadow views make this venue a unique and picruresque sening for weddings and impmtant celebrations. Less than an hour from D. C. , we welcome you to visit and begin planning your day!

a special wedding and event venue

16306 Rockland Lane Leesburg, VA20176

(908) 310-9891 www.historicrockland.com contact@historicrockland.com

Call 703.480.7454 or visit HIDullesAirport.com bridesandweddings.com I B<>-W I

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A BAR

WITHOUT BREAKING THE BANK

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pen bar versus limited bar … price per person versus consumption. Cash bar – no way! Remember, these are your guests, not your buddies out for a night on the town. Bar budgeting is a key part of reception planning and Christopher Williams, Event Manager for The Fish Market, has some great advice. An open (or full) bar includes wine, beer, and a variety of liquor (both rail and call brands) and is the most expensive to host. When estimating consumption, Chris says, count on two to three drinks per person. Beer is $4-$5 a bottle; wine $5-$6 a glass, and mixed drinks run $5-$6 for rail liquor (such as Aristocrat vodka) to $7 for a call brand, such as Absolute. “Plan on more than less,” advises Chris. “That way there is no sticker shock and if your bar comes in under budget, great. And your event manager will let you know when you get close to budget so we can slow things down.” And some venues offer, in lieu of consumption pricing, a flat price per guest for bar service. To help curb bar expenses, consider a limited bar. “Couples are going back to basics,” says Chris, “and offering rum & Coke, vodka tonic, and Jack Daniels & Coke.” A limited bar should include a craft or seasonal beer, along with a domestic or import, white and red wine selections, and signature cocktail. And keep that signature drink simple. “The simpler, the better,” Chris says. “It will please more people and have less ingredients – which cuts down on mixing time.” Count on using one bartender per 20-30 guests to cover the mad rush at cocktail hour. Another way to cut bar expenses is to offer a full bar during the cocktail hour, then switch to beer and wine during the dinner hour, explains Chris. “It’s a better alternative than shutting down the bar during dinner,” he says. And you don’t need to offer liquor at your rehearsal dinner. “You don’t want to overdo it,” says the event manager. Chris sees two trends with bar service for today’s couples. “I’m seeing smaller groups for the actual rehearsal dinner and then opening up the room for other guests after dinner for cocktails and trays of light hors d’oeuvres. And for the reception, it’s an open bar for cocktail time, beer and wine for dinner service and going Dutch treat for the after party.” And don’t forget your guests who enjoy a non-alcoholic beverage. “Those beverages are usually included in the menu price,” says Chris, “but check to be sure. Offer coffee, tea, soda or lemonade – and maybe a signature drink like a Shirley Temple.”

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The Ultimate Setting for Magical Weddings...

Making memories for decades with a blend of romance,luxury and elegance, The George Washington is a charming mix of history and first class service. Whether your dream wedding is an intimate gathering of family, or a large gala event, our wedding specialists will make sure your day is perfect!

Engagement Parties ∙ Bridal Showers ∙ Luncheons ∙ Teas ∙ Spa Parties ∙ Rehearsal Dinners Ceremonies ∙ Dinner Receptions ∙ Strolling Receptions ∙ Farewell Brunches

103 East Piccadilly Street • Winchester, VA 22601 Phone: 540-678-4700 • Fax: 540-771-2726 www.wyndhamgeorgewashington.com bridesandweddings.com

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PLANNING FOR

Mother Nature

(WHETHER SHE’S INVITED OR NOT!)

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oday’s brides and grooms are increasingly interested in outdoor weddings. Being outdoors gives a sense of relaxation, freedom and visual excitement that four walls just can’t match. Declaring your vows and saying “I do” with a slight breeze in the air and the sun setting behind the trees is romantic and unforgettable. Having your wedding outdoors does come with some unpredictable elements. But with a little planning and a bit of affability, nothing will stand in the way of experiencing all the best of your special day. When choosing an outdoor venue, determine if a “Plan B” is needed in the event of uncooperative weather. Additional tenting may be necessary in the occurrence of heavy rain, storms or high winds. Consider the seasonal temperatures to determine if additional heating or cooling may be necessary to keep you and your guests comfortable. A professional caterer will know how to handle the open air, but put yourself at ease by making sure they are familiar with the site, its specific amenities and how important it is to you that they are prepared for weather-related surprises. And talk to your photographer in advance. Discuss your backup plan and ask for suggestions in the event of poor weather conditions. Photographers often remark at how amazing photographs are in the rain. Clouds seem to filter the sun’s harsh rays and create the perfect lighting.

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You’ll also want to consider your clothing — and let’s not forget the shoes. Highheeled shoes aren’t always the best for grassy conditions, so consider going with some trendy flats. Think about the style of your gown and your comfort while mingling with your guests. Choose lightweight, romantic dresses for the bridesmaids with lengths that won’t get caught on outdoor surfaces. In early spring and fall, you may need to add a decorative layer to enjoy the falling temperatures that arrive with the onset of the evening. And don’t forget about the man you love and his groomsmen — a traditional tux may not be the perfect option. Remember, many types of insects are attracted to flowers, so keep your arrangements simple and elegant. In the same way bees are attracted to flowers, mosquitoes can be attracted to you. To keep them at a distance, use citronella candles and torches. They also love perfumes and colognes, so think about going au natural on the big day. With a little planning, the unexpected becomes expected! And if Mother Nature does in fact arrive and brings an unruly guest, relax, enjoy and laugh. You have Plan B! Remember that rain on your wedding day does not mean bad luck. It simply means that the atmosphere was sufficiently unstable to support any more rising air and consequently, precipitation happens. Happy Planning!


A DREAM COME TRUE. Host the event of your lifetime at the premier hotel in the Washington metro area. Whether

you’re envisioning an intimate gathering or a grand gala, our expert wedding professionals will create a one-of-a-kind celebration to remember. Call us and let’s make your big-day expectations come to life.

OPENING JULY 2017

A Southern Management Hotel

WEDDINGS & OCCASIONS | RED DOOR SALON & SPA 7777 Baltimore Avenue, College Park, MD 20740 | (301) 637-5399 | TheHotelUMD.com

Where Wedding Dreams Come True.

Weddings & Events at the Holiday Inn Dulles Whatever the need, we’re committed to providing outstanding value, with the best service in top quality surroundings. Rehearsal Dinners Ceremonies Receptions Bridal or Day-After Brunch

Bridal Showers Bridal Dressing Room Groom’s Room Wedding Room Blocks

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14 Q U E S T I O NS F

TO ASK YOUR CATERER

ood and catering typically comprise one of the largest portions of a wedding budget. Whether it’s a local vendor who provides cuisine specific to your wedding theme or a full-service caterer equipped to help make your day seamless, asking the following questions can help to ensure your wedding food and reception will be unforgettable for you and your guests: Do you specialize in a certain type of food or serving style? Whether you’re looking for a certain serving style or a specific cuisine to coordinate with your wedding theme, it’s important to find out how your caterer typically handles receptions. Ask if menus are set or if there’s the option for customization. Can you make a family-favorite recipe for our reception? Some caterers, are willing and able to recreate the dish on a large scale for all of your wedding guests if you provide them with the recipe. Have you previously worked at our wedding venue? Many venues provide a list of preferred or exclusive caterers while other locations may not have any restrictions. Make sure the caterer has at least done a walk-through at the site to know how the kitchen is set up, where their staging area will be and how the reception will be laid out. And if you’re still on the hunt for the perfect wedding venue, your caterer may be able to point you in the direction of a location that can accommodate your guest list and wedding theme.

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Are you licensed and insured in the state of ___? Some venues require proof of insurance for outside vendors and/or a liquor license if there is going to be a bar. You will want to make note of this early and discuss this requirement with your caterer prior to booking. Will someone be there to oversee the event? On the day of the wedding, it will be important that someone experienced is there to coordinate the event from set up to break down to ensure that everything runs as planned. Can you break down the anticipated costs of our reception? It is crucial to determine what is included in the cost per person, any staffing and/or set up expenses and whether or not equipment rentals are included. When discussing rentals, be sure to inquire about color options to customize your event and match your color scheme. What are your payment policies for deposits, cancellations, overtime and gratuity? Figuring out the company’s payment methods and policies will help to make sure you’re both on the same page when it comes to securing your wedding date, as well as financial expectations. Do you provide any additional services to help coordinate on the day of the wedding? Catering companies vary greatly in terms of their additional services. Some are associated with restaurants and/or specific cuisines and provide food service only. Others may act as full-service caterers who provide optional services such as


event coordination and/or design, as well as assist with finding and booking other vendors, such as florists, DJ’s or bands, photo booths and chocolate fountains. Can we provide our own alcohol? Is there a corking fee? If your venue and/or caterer allow you to provide your own alcohol, stocking your own bar can be a great cost-saving solution. Just make sure to ask about any fees that may drive up the cost. Is the wedding cake included in our package? Some catering companies provide beautiful and delicious wedding cakes that are perfect for couples who appreciate a good “one-stop shop.” But if you have a specific baker in mind, be sure to address this early in the planning. If you are providing your own cake, ask about a cake cutting fee so there are no last minute surprises. What is the usual ratio of staff to guests? The answer depends on the size of the event, serving style, menu demands and equipment needs. However, by asking up front, you’ll have an idea of what to expect and understand how the caterer works to ensure a smooth dining experience for all of your guests.

Is it possible to set up a tasting? Most catering companies provide some sort of tasting experience for their clients either prior to booking or before the event to finalize your menu choices. When arranging your tasting session, inquire how many food options will be available, if there are any associated costs and how many guests can participate. When do you need a final head count? This will help you to determine when you need your RSVPs so you have time to contact any stragglers and submit your final numbers to the caterer in time for preparation for your event. What happens to the leftovers? Unfortunately many couples do not get the opportunity to enjoy as much of the delicious food because they’re so busy mingling with their guests. Having the catering team package any leftovers for you and your new spouse is a great way to make sure you get to have your cake and eat it too! Michael Evans is the owner of Helga’s Caterers in McLean. To schedule a consultation, call 703.556.0780.

Fabulous Wedding Celebrations at Affordable Prices Since 1981 Voted one of Washington’s Top 5 Caterers www.helgascatering.com

703.556.0780

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HOW TO USE WEDDING BLOGS TO PLAN YOUR BIG DAY

1. Learn to identify your wedding style.

When you begin planning your wedding, you may not know what your wedding style is, other than “beautiful.” Wedding blogs provide great descriptions and definitions that can help you understand and better refine what wedding style appeals to you. You might find that you love boho weddings with whimsical touches, or you may discover that regal elegance in a garden setting is precisely right for you. Whatever your style, wedding blogs can be an excellet way to find it before you make any non-refundable décor decisions.

2. Connect with vendors, designers & shops. One remarkable thing about wedding blogs it that they tend to be great about crediting 44 I Bc>-W I bridesandweddings.com

vendors. When you see an incredible gown on a wedding blog, the chances are good that the post will also tell you the designer and possibly the boutique. By utilizing the vendor credits, you’ll likely also be able to track down the planner, florist, cake artist and more. This is particularly useful when you find posts that share weddings from your part of the country.

3. Encounter new ideas and trends.

Season to season and year to year, the wedding industry is changing and evolving … but trends don’t always hit every part of the country at the same time. There may be a fab new trend that hasn’t made it to your circle yet. Since wedding blogs are worldwide, they can expose you to ideas you wouldn’t otherwise encounter. When


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hen you’re newly engaged (or anticipating getting engaged), it can be easy to fall down the rabbit hole of wedding blogs. After all, there are so many great blogs out there, and they’re full of gorgeous images! Many brides find themselves spending countless hours scrolling through these blogs and becoming overwhelmed by all of the weddings they see published and by the imagined pressure to recreate those images or to compete with them. Don’t worry – we’re not going to tell you to stop looking at wedding blogs! In fact, we are going to help you use them better! Here are some specific ways to use wedding blogs so that they inspire you rather than adding stress:

you come across an awesome new trend, pin it or add it to a “to research” list so that you can decide if it’s right for your big day.

4. Find sources of inspiration, not duplication!

This is a huge, important point that we hope stays with you as you go on to click and scroll through wedding blogs — wedding blogs are there to help you find inspiration for your celebration, not to get you to recreate someone else’s wedding! Each image you see on a wedding blog is the record of a specific moment and is the product of a unique set of circumstances. With the millions of variables involved, it is nearly impossible to precisely recreate someone else’s

image … and why would you want to? No matter how hard you and you vendors try to create exactly what you saw on that blog, it will at best be a mimicry of someone else’s work at someone else’s wedding. If you choose to go that route, you’re missing out on the opportunity to make your wedding the unique celebration of you that it could be. So instead of attempting to exactly imitate someone else’s wedding, use what you see and learn from wedding blogs to discover what you love and to inspire your own vision! When you communicate that vision to your vendors and then trust them to be creative, you’ll adore your special and custom-to-you wedding day! Visit bridesandweddings.com to view our blog, full of real wedding features and advice from experts. bridesandweddings.com

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HOW TO INCLUDE YOUR

DOG

Photo by Rising Lotus Photography

IN YOUR WEDDING CEREMONY

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hen planning a wedding, you may feel obligated to include every family member, friend and second cousin twice removed. However, as most dog owners consider their family dog a family member, these beloved companions are often left at home and not included into the festivities. After ensuring the venue will allow a non-Service Dog, your first consideration is temperament and training. Does your dog have what it takes to remain obedient and focused during a onetime attempt as a ring-bearer or as a member of the wedding party? If your dog can or has completed 46

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a basic obedience test (ie: Canine Good Citizen(CGC)) they may have the obedience and ability to perform during the ceremony. Typically, a well-trained family pet needs several weeks of specific training to conduct a few simple tasks during the ceremony. Two of the easiest would be an escort of a groomsman or bridesmaid, a Ring Bearer or Flower Girl. Both only expect your pet to follow five or six basic commands (sit, down, wait/stay, come, heeling/walking, Focus, and hold/carry) Another consideration would be an outfit and wearing a pillow or carrying a basket. Prepare your dog ahead of time if you expect them to wear special attire or having additional weight on their back. Start simple, a bandana, harness, dog clothing. When your dog is accustomed to wearing different types of clothing, transition them into their attire for the event or wearing a pillow.

have icing and a similar design to the wedding cake, but they’re made with dog-friendly ingredients. Most bakeries should easily be able to make something for you.

Getting Groomed

While you probably expect your wedding party to get their hair and nails done before the big day don’t forget about your pet! Take them to the groomers for a fresh bath and cut. Here are some basic tasks that your dog will need to know for their prospective roles:

1. Ring Bearer/Flower Girl: • • •

Prepare, prepare, prepare.

Your setting and event play a huge part of your success on the big day. There may be 100 people, and countless new sounds and smells that your dog will need to ignore. Start to take your dog and train in every dog friendly environment in which you have time and access. Treat every new or old training environment just like the big day. If your dog is not very social to people or exciting situations, don’t expect them to fake it on the big day. Make the training as fun and enjoyable for you both as possible.

Have an exit plan in place.

Arrange to have someone who is not a guest at your wedding come and take them as soon as the ceremony is over, or as soon as they finish walking down the aisle. You don’t want to have to worry about your dog at the reception. If you want your dog to stay be sure you have that designated person on hand for bathroom breaks, etc.

But if you do bring your pup to the reception, get them a cake.

A lot of people will get their dog a special cake from a doggie bakery on their wedding day, to make sure that they also have something special happening. They look like regular cakes, they

Carrying the rings or flower petals during the ceremony Walking with an usher or escort while carrying a basket or wearing a pillow Coming down the aisle unescorted. A controlled recall or ‘come’ command while carrying a basket or wearing a pillow

2. Usher: • • •

Escorting the wedding party to their position at the altar The dog takes the position of an usher, escorting a bridesmaid or groomsman The dog will be handed off to the designated person who will maintain control of them for the duration of the event.

3. Groomsman/Bridesmaid: •

The dog is escorted to their position and remains standing or sitting during the entire ceremony. (this would require the most training and preparation)

Christopher Baity is the founder and Executive Director of Semper K9 Assistance Dogs, a 501(c) (3) organization that trains service dogs for disabled service members and their families. He has over 15 years of dog training and handling experience. Currently a Certified Dog Trainer (CDT), evaluator and service dog instructor, Baity is proficient in animal behavior, obedience training, and kennel management. As a Marine Combat Veteran and military working dog handler and kennel master, Baity has worked with all types of breeds and temperament of dogs. bridesandweddings.com

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Photo by AE Landes Photography

Photo by AE Landes Photography

all seasons • GIRL FOR•

P

erhaps the biggest decision you’ll make in regard to your wedding – besides the engagement itself, of course – is your venue. By locking down a location, you’re also making a final selection on your date, and therefore, your wedding season, which is a huge step toward hosting your nuptials. As with all aspects of your event, the decisions that you make will have their benefits and consequences, and this notion is particularly the case when the timing of your vow exchange is concerned. You may have your heart set on having your celebration during a certain month, but it’s important to do your research on what problems you may encounter before you sign that contract. Choosing the perfect season for your wedding reminds us of the scene in Grease 2 (if you have not seen it we suggest that you do!) ‘A Girl for All Seasons.’ For the talent show, the Pink Ladies dress for each season in a sort of calendar girls walk the runway skit. With that in mind, we’ve gathered a list of the main pros and cons of each season as it relates to your wedding to help you make this appropriate choice! 50

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Spring •

PROS: The natural beauty. It’s a time of rebirth, and Mother Nature does not take that lightly. Think of the abundance of bright blooms and greens – all highly photographable with the soft lighting of spring! Timing will be ideal. There aren’t many major holidays, and people are less likely to be taking any vacation during the spring, other than parents taking children on trips during their spring break. Hopefully, this will ensure maximum attendance from your guests. CONS: It’s peak wedding season. Because the timing and weather come together quite nicely, spring is often thought of as “wedding season.” This means that prices will be higher and vendors will be more difficult to book. Allergies are in full swing. If you manage to avoid the April showers, you could still be caught up in the midst of annoying allergies. Stuffy noses and lots of sneezes don’t make for the best wedding atmosphere.


Summer •

PROS: Extended celebrations. Those long summer nights make for great party-til-dawn receptions, as the sun sets much later and the climate stays mostly mild in the evening. You have the option of a much-longer wedding. The most theme options. This season is typically the most friendly toward every kind of concept you can think of – minus a snowy wedding, of course. Everything from rustic chic to garden party to ballroom glamor to tropical fun is up for grabs. CONS: Difficult to beat the heat. In most places, the scorching summer sun could pose a major problem for any outdoor element of your big day. In some places, this can limit you to an entirely indoor celebration! Lighting won’t be ideal. The harsh light in the summer is the opposite of the pictureperfect lighting of a cloudier day. This could negatively alter the outcome of your photos.

Fall •

PROS: The most reliable, mild weather. Fall is known for generally having more consistent weather – perhaps the least amount of surprise twists and turns. Far often, you’ll get exactly the kind of day you’re envisioning. Minimal décor required. The changing leaves, rich colors and organic splendor of this season can make up about half of your planned decorations — especially for a bohemian or rustic-chic celebration.

Winter •

PROS: More bang for your buck. Winter signifies a major lull in weddings, so often, you can get discounts on bigger venues and other professionals that would typically cost far more. There’s such a sense of romance. Tying the knot around the holidays – or even in January or February when it’s still crisp and cold – can be so lovely and warm. What better feeling to have while celebrating your commitment to one another? CONS: Attendance might dwindle. If you’re hosting December nuptials, you could be interfering with the plans of your friends and family, whether it’s finishing a school semester, big work projects or holiday travel plans. The most limiting time of the year. You will find that a winter wedding doesn’t allow for much flexibility. Due to the cold, you’ll likely have to be indoors, which can limit your concept options drastically. Additionally, due to the holidays, the beginning of a new semester, and Valentine’s Day, your available dates are also quite limited.

CONS: • Finances could be tough. This is notably the time of year when budgets are a little tighter. In the aftermath of summer vacations and anticipation for the holidays, both couple and guests alike may find this a hard time to shell out extra money. • A popular time for a rustic-chic theme. One of the most popular concepts for a fall wedding is rustic, which means many barns and lodges will have been booked up long in advance. Additionally, you may feel that your theme has been overdone by the time November rolls around. bridesandweddings.com

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WEDDING WORD GLOSSARY

ARBOR: An arch of branches, vines and/or flowers that the bride and groom stand under to say their vows. Also sometimes called a “wedding arch.”

• BUSTLE: Fastening the wedding dress in back to lift the train off the ground. This is usually done for the reception to allow the bride to move and dance more easily. Bustling the dress is often accomplished with hidden buttons, hooks and/or strings. Below you can see a gown before and after being bustled. •

DAY-OF PLANNER: A wedding coordinator who works with you primarily on the day of the wedding to make sure everything goes smoothly (as opposed to a full-service planner who works with you throughout all of the months leading up to the wedding).

DESTINATION WEDDING: A wedding that takes place away from the couple’s home. Often, a destination wedding takes place in a dream vacation spot.

ELOPE: Long ago, eloping meant getting married without telling your family, usually because they didn’t approve. Now, eloping has evolved to mean any wedding that takes place with only the bride, groom and officiant.

ESCORT CARDS: Cards that display the guest’s name and indicate the table they have been assigned for the reception.

FIRST LOOK: When the bride and groom see each other privately in their wedding attire before the ceremony.

GRAND ENTRANCE: The moment when the bride and groom are announced and enter the reception. The grand entrance often leads directly into the first dance.

• PROCESSIONAL: The part of the ceremony in which the wedding party and bride walk down the aisle. This can also refer to the music that plays during this time. • RECESSIONAL: The part of the wedding in which the newly married couple, followed by the wedding party, walk back down the aisle after the ceremony. •

SIGNATURE COCKTAIL: A specialty drink chosen just for the wedding. The recipe or name often has meaning for the couple.

STATIONERY SUITE: All of the stationery for the wedding: save-the-dates, invitations, RSVP cards, envelopes. This is sometimes also called an “invitation suite.”

• TABLESCAPE: The arrangement of the place settings, centerpieces, table numbers and other decorations on the reception tables. • TROUSSEAU: The clothes, linens and other items that a bride saves for her wedding and new married life. Often includes pretty lingerie. •

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TRUNK SHOW: A special sale where wedding dress designers travel to a store and offer their gowns directly to the customers. It often includes a discounted price or the ability to purchase gowns that are not otherwise available. B W

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.wed

Wedding Websites & Domain Names

t seems almost second nature to want to create a wedding website. You can share your love story, post your engagement session photos, keep your guests in the loop and drop not-so-subtle hints about your gift registry. And your website provides a great icebreaker for bridal party members who haven’t met yet. “How to build a wedding website” nets over 31 million (yes, million!) results on Google. Templates make design easy and hosting is often free. The basics of your wedding website should include: • An “about” page, which is the story of how you met and fell in love (a great place to put your e-session gallery). • A “cast of characters” that includes your bridal party and why they play a role in your wedding. • Details (date, time, location) for all events. • A registry page which you can easily update. • Guest accommodation information with links to hotels. • A way for guests to RSVP electronically for any (or all) events. • A “guest book” so friends and family can send good wishes.

Until recently, a cumbersome domain name was the biggest drawback to a wedding website. But now, personalized names are available with the domain name of “.wed.” Adrienne McAdory, a Washington D.C. military contractor, secured this top-level domain name through the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers with a lengthy application process and a hefty fee. In 2013, she learned that she had won the rights to .wed and launched her business vision. “Lots of engaged couples want their own wedding websites, but the addresses they want aren’t available because other couples are already parked on them,” says Adrienne. Through the .wed domain, a couple can purchase an inexpensive address (like mikeandmary.com) for two years. “Long enough to see them married,” she explains. Once the two years are up, the URL’s price increases dramatically. The reason, says Adrienne, is to basically price the current couple out, leaving the address open for a new Mike and Mary. It’s fairly simple to “mask” the long URL provided by your wedding website host with your vanity domain name – and it’s a lot easier for your guests to remember. To check the availability, visit www.get.wed.

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Make your wedding

Truly Special

in a rustic, yet elegant, country setting.

Barn style pavilion for 150 Tented events for up to 300 • Full service catering • Overnight accommodations • •

540.364.2627

www.marriottranch.com

Every Cinderella wants to dance with her Prince Charming … Let The Wedding Dance Specialists show you how – in just hours!

Let your best self shine THE WEDDING DANCE SPECIALISTS Convenient VA & MD locations

703.626.7016

www.TheWeddingDanceSpecialists.com “Creating memories one step at a time” bridesandweddings.com

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Facility

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Sep.Ceremony Area: Outside Space: Dance Floor: Changing Room: Caterers Permitted:  Guest Rooms: 

Menu Price Range: Seating Capacity:

Reception & Rehearsal Guide t-

COUNTRY CLUBS Bull Run Golf Club: Pg. 11 $$$ 350 Y Y Y Y BC NB 3520 James Madison Highway W/ Haymarket TP 703.753.7777 www.bullruncc.com

Discover an idyllic Hunt Country getaway, now featuring a newly renovated ballroom for special events and weddings.

Chantilly National GC: Pg. 3 $$$ 160 Y Y Y N N NB 14901 Braddock Road, Centreville 703.631.8560 www.chantilly-national.com

We schedule only one wedding a day, allowing us to focus all of our attention on you!

Heritage Hunt Golf & CC: Pg. 15 $$ 330 Y Y Y Y E NB Experience traditional 6901 Arthur Hills Dr., Gainesville hospitality in a classic 703.743.2005 setting. www.heritgehuntgolf.com

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Hidden Creek CC: Pg. 13 $$$ 200 Y Y Y Y N NB 1711 Clubhouse Road, Reston 703.437.5222 www.hiddencreekcc.com

The “hidden jewel” of Reston, surrounded by an oasis of rolling landscapes and golf course views.

Piedmont Club: Pg. 3 $$$ 200 Y Y Y Y E NB 14675 Piedmont Vista Drive Haymarket 703.753.5922 ext. 225 www.piedmontclub.com

Affordable, elegant receptions. Ask about special savings on select dates.

Regency at Dominion Valley Pg. 21 $$$ 200 Y Y Y Y N NB 15351 Championship Drive Haymarket 571.261.3335 www.eventsatregency.com

Lushly landscaped outdoor amphitheater for ceremonies. Newly remodeled ballroom.

River Creek Club: Pg. 2 $$ 300 Y Y Y Y E NB 43800 Olympic Blvd., Leesburg $$ 703.779.2022 www.rivercreekclub.com

Breathtaking views of the Potomac. Classic elegance, fine service and exquisite cuisine.

Shenandoah Valley GC: Pg. 26 $$ 300 Y Y Y Y E OS Picturesque event 134 Golf Club Circle, Front Royal venue in the heart 540.635.3588 of the Valley. Discounts Shenandoah www.shenandoahvalleygolfclub.com

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for Friday & Sunday wedding receptions, based upon availability.


Facility

Caterer Required . CR Required List . . . RL Preferred List . . . . PL Bride’s Choice . . . BC

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Nearby . . . . . . . . NB Ethnic . . . . . . . . . . E On-Site . . . . . . . . OS Tented Patio . . . . TP

Yes . . . . . . . . . . . . Y No . . . . . . . . . . . . N

Sep.Ceremony Area: Outside Space: Dance Floor: Changing Room: Caterers Permitted:  Guest Rooms: 

$101-$125 . . . $$$$ $126 & up . . $$$$$

Menu Price Range: Seating Capacity:

Under $50 . . . . . . $ $51-$75 . . . . . . . $$ $76-$100 . . . . . $$$

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RESTAURANTS 2941 Restaurant: Pg. 22 $$ 200 Y Y Y Y N NB 2941 Fairview Park Drive Falls Church 703.270.1601 www.2941.com

Wonderful food from our awarded chef. Lush landscaping, koi ponds, waterfalls, world-class artwork, and a lakeside view.

Stonewall Golf Club: Pg. 23 $$ 150 Y Y Y Y N NB 15601 Turtle Point Drive Gainesville 703.753.6156 www.stonewallgolfclub.com

Flagstone patio overlooking Lake Manassas, perfect for ceremony or cocktail hour.

HOTELS

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Fairfax Marriott at $$$ 280 Y N Y Y N OS Fair Oaks: Pg. 37 11787 Lee Jackson Memorial Hwy, Fairfax 703.667.2101 www.fairfaxmarriott.com

Our beautiful Garden Atrium is suitable for a memorable wedding ceremony or an elegant reception. Newly remodeled.

Hilton Garden Inn Woodbridge $$$ 180 N N Y Y E OS Pg. 35 2500 Neabsco Common Place, Woodbridge 703.590.2500 www.woodbridge.hgi.com

Onsite catering, per person, all-inclusive pricing, complimentary honeymoon suite, complimentary use of breakout room for any and all needs.

Holiday Inn Arlington: Pg. 27 $$ 150 Y N Y Y N OS 4610 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington 703.243.9800 Ext. 7116 www.hiarlington.com

Delicious catering options sure to delight the palates of you and your guests.

Holiday Inn $$ 150 Y Y Y Y E OS Washington Dulles: Pg. 43 TO 45425 Holiday Drive, Sterling 300 703.480.7443 www.hidullesairport.co

From beautiful room décor, delicious menu options, and even dressing room packages, we have truly thought of it all. Our talented wedding specialists will work with you to plan every detail.

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The George Washington — $$$ 180 Y Y Y N OS OS A Wyndham Grand Hotel Pg. 41 103 E Piccadilly St, Winchester, VA 540-678-4700 wyndhamhotels.com

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Sep.Ceremony Area: Outside Space: Dance Floor: Changing Room: Caterers Permitted:  Guest Rooms: 

Menu Price Range: Seating Capacity:

Reception & Rehearsal Guide t-

The Hotel at the $$$$ 1200 Y Y Y N OS OS University of Maryland: Pg. 43 7777 Baltimore Ave., MD 301-277-0777 www.thehotelumd.com

BED & BREAKFAST/INNS Briar Patch: Pg. 33 CR 200 Y Y Y Y BC OS Plan a countryside 23130 Briar Patch Ln. Middleburg wedding weekend at 703.327.5911 our historic B&B. www.briarpatchbandb.com Marriott Ranch: Pg. 55 $$ 150 Y Y Y Y N OS 5305 Marriott Lane, Hume $$ 540.364.2627 www.marriottranch.com

Poplar Springs Inn & Spa: Pg. 19 $$ 100 Y Y Y Y N OS 5025 Casanova Road, Warrenton $$$ 540.788.4600 www.poplarspringsinn.com

Seasonal pavilion. Let the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge lend the perfect touch to your special event. 170 natural acres. 21 room Inn. Full service Spa w/salt water pool. One stop - catering; pastry chef; minimal/ no rentals required. One venue – ceremony, reception, overnight accommodations.

FARM/BARN WEDDINGS Farm Brew LIVE: Pg. 25 $$$ 162 Y Y Y N OS NB 9901 Discovery Blvd, Manassas m.arnest@VillagioGroup.com http://farmbrewlive.com/ Windy Knoll Farm: Pg. 31 $$$ 150 Y Y Y N BC NB 11602 Kettle Run Road Nokesville 703-927-1512 www.windyknollfarm.com

HISTORIC PROPERTIES.

Oatlands Plantations: Pg. 18 CR 250 Y Y Y N RL NB 20850 Oatlands Plantation Lane Leesburg 703.777.3174 www.oatlands.com

Two beautiful tented spaces; elegant gardens for ceremonies & cocktails; stately mansion and rolling vistas for photo ops. $$$ 150 Y Y Y N BC NB

Historic Rockland: Pg. 37 16306 Rockland Lane Leesburg 908-310-9891 www.histirucrockland.com 58 I

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Caterer Required . CR Required List . . . RL Preferred List . . . . PL Bride’s Choice . . . BC

.

Nearby . . . . . . . . NB Ethnic . . . . . . . . . . E On-Site . . . . . . . . OS Tented Patio . . . . TP

Yes . . . . . . . . . . . . Y No . . . . . . . . . . . . N

Sep.Ceremony Area: Outside Space: Dance Floor: Changing Room: Caterers Permitted:  Guest Rooms: 

$101-$125 . . . $$$$ $126 & up . . $$$$$

Menu Price Range: Seating Capacity:

Under $50 . . . . . . $ $51-$75 . . . . . . . $$ $76-$100 . . . . . $$$

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Waverly Mansion: Back Cover $$$ 150 Y Y Y Y N NB 2300 Waverly Mansion Dr., Marriottsville MD 301.572.7744 www.historicwaverlymansion.com

Celebrate in beautiful wooded areas and gardens and beneath the gorgeous silk-lined

Manassas Park Community CR 200 Y Y Y N Y NB Center: Pg. 51 703.335.8872 www.manassasparkcommunity center.com

Budget friendly wedding packages! Our beautiful parks andunique building serve as the perfect backdrop to capture your memories.

tent

MUSEUMS, GALLERIES, ART CENTERS Hylton Performing Arts Center CR 300 Y N Y Y BC NB Pg. 1 10960 George Mason Cir., Manassas 703.993.9344 www.hyltoncenter.org

Rich colors and interesting architecture throughout the building provides stunning settings for photos.

WATERFRONT WEDDINGS Anchor Inn: Back Cover $$$ 175 Y Y Y Y N NB 7617 Water Oak Point Road, Pasadena MD 301.572.7744 www.anchorinnmd.com

Celebrations at the Bay: $$ 300 Y Y Y Y N NB Cover $$ 2042 Knollview Ave, Pasadena MD 301.572.7744 www.celebrationsatthebay.com

The perfect intimate Chesapeake Bay wedding venue. Surrounded by water on three sides, the beauty of the bay will set the backdrop.

This all-inclusive Back beautiful Chesapeake Bay waterfront venue is the perfect backdrop. Enjoy several choices of stunning outdoor ceremony sites with indoor back-up options for weather.

Harbour View: Pg. 9 CR 320 Y Y Y Y PL NB 13200 Marina Way, Woodbridge 703.910.4273 www.harbourviewevents.com

Unique events on the river’s edge. Special incentives for select dates.

ACROSS THE RIVER

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I

(The) Villa: Back Cover $$$ 300 Y Y Y N N NB 4060 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, MD 301.572.7744 I

Two beautiful ballrooms, award-winning catering and planning. All- inclusive packages w/

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social media

S

Wediquette

ocial media is embedded in our day-today life; in fact, for most of us, social media facilitates the majority of our daily interactions with others. We use social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to stay in touch, share updates and celebrate milestones; it’s only natural that social media has found its way into wedding celebrations. That said, before uploading a photo of the happy couple saying “I Do,” it is important to remember your social media wedding etiquette.

HERE COMES THE HASHTAG

A particularly social couple may utilize social media to engage and communicate with their guests from the first RSVP to the last thankyou caRoad While the majority of couples still choose to mail out paper invitations, many opt for electronic RSVPs: a cheaper, more environmentally friendly option. It’s also a more efficient option for guests. 60 I B<>-W I bridesandweddings.com

Wedding websites and blogs are also commonly used to share updates and information about the wedding day, the registry and anything that wasn’t covered on the invitations. Social-savvy couples may also request and encourage their guests to upload photos taken at their wedding to a photo-sharing site such as WedPics or Wedding Party. Alternatively, a unique hashtag may be provided for guests to categorize photos posted on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. Digitally catalogued photos enable the couple to revisit the special (and sometimes hilarious) moments the days after their wedding. Similarly, guests can swap stories and re-hash inside jokes long after the last dance-off.

WEDDING COUPLE TIP

If you would like your guests to share photos with an app or website, make sure this


information is communicated clearly and in advance either through your wedding website or via signage at the reception. Otherwise, you may end up with several hashtags and countless irretrievable photos. Something as simple as “If you are sharing photos, make sure you use our hashtag: #PWLivingWeddings” will let guests know how to upload photos with the group.

GUEST TIP

While it may be tempting to capture every moment through your device, remember to look up and experience the wedding. You wouldn’t want to miss a big moment because you were applying the Valencia filter to your latest photo on Instagram. After all, it was you and not your social media followers who were invited to share in this special day. Your followers can wait.

PRIVACY, PLEASE

While there are many arguments endorsing a webbased wedding infused with social media, it isn’t uncommon for a couple to go one step further and request their guests be present and refrain from using smartphones and other electronic devices. Before you gasp in horror, we could all learn something from the un-plugged wedding. If a couple has discouraged the use of smartphones, odds are they are more concerned with ensuring guests enjoy the evening than with ensuring guests have updated their social media. Simply put, the emphasis is placed on the guests experiencing the wedding through their eyes, not their phone. While your wedding day is a special occasion, “checking in,” tweeting and photo sharing may be daily (if not hourly) routines for many of your guests.

WEDDING COUPLE TIP

If you would prefer photos and details from your wedding not end up on social media sites, politely ask your guests to refrain from doing so. Just like the weddings involving social media, signage can be particularly effective in delivering this message. For example, “We ask that you visit with your friends here today. Do us a favor and please put your phones away.”

GUEST TIP

Pay attention to the wedding correspondence you receive. Has the couple specifically requested guests refrain from using their phones during the wedding and/or reception? If so, be respectful — the couple has asked you to share in one of the most important days of their life. Be a guest first, photographer/blogger/tweeter second. When we think of wedding etiquette we may think of toasts, attire, glass clinking and perhaps even dance moves. Today, we must also think of social media. Photos, videos, tweets and check-ins are fluid in our society. While we can control what we share about ourselves, we can’t always control what others share about us. When planning your wedding it is important to determine how you feel about social media: what role, if any, will it play? Regardless, we must all be reminded to be social first, media second. Amanda Causey Baity is Brides & Weddings Director of Operations and Photo Editor. A wedding photographer in the metro Atlanta and east Alabama area, she now resides with her family in Manassas, Va. She can be reached at amanda@ bridesandweddings.com. bridesandweddings.com

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Style wedding cakes with

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edding cakes are a centerpiece for the reception — they balance a bridal couple’s style, palette, theme, and creativity. And couples are now mixing tradition with contemporary elements to create unique designs. Here are some helpful tips when choosing your wedding cake. Find your comfort zone: It’s important to be comfortable with your wedding cake vendor, whether it’s a full service bakery or dedicated wedding cake specialist. You should be offered a consultation where you are able to taste various flavor combinations, browse through a portfolio of their work and begin to create your cake. Celebrate with style: Gone are the days in which wedding cakes had to be round and covered with a thick white icing with

tons of piping. Brides and grooms are now incorporating color, shapes, sugar flowers, height and even cupcakes. Consider having a square cake with each tier slightly off-set and decorate it with very delicate piping to highlight the squares like custom gift boxes. Think about using taller round cakes with vibrant-colored sugar flowers for extra height and attention. Defy gravity with a “topsy turvy” cake that looks ready to topple over. Try adding brushed embroidery to a traditional round cake to awe your guests. Or change things up a little and make each tier a different shape, color or design. Have some fun with cupcakes and create a cupcake tower with a small cake on top for tradition. Create your own statement!

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Receive a COMPLIMENTARY CAKE on your FIRST ANNIVERSARY with each wedding cake order

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CAKES WITH STYLE—CONTINUED Look good and taste good: The wedding cake is usually one of the first items guests see when they enter the reception. They admire it all evening and, finally after much anticipation, get to have a slice. Make those bites memorable — the cake should taste divine! Ask when your cake will be baked to ensure freshness. Use seasonal flavors such as mango with fresh berries (summer), pumpkin or apple spice (fall), peppermint or gingerbread (winter) or carrot or lemon (spring). You can even mix up some classics to create your own combination. Try a vanilla sponge cake layered with chocolate ganache and raspberry mousse topped off with vanilla whipped cream, or a devil’s food cake with chocolate buttercream filling and iced with vanilla buttercream. Or surprise your guests with red velvet cake filled with Chantilly cream and fresh strawberries! Different tiers can be different flavors to make for variety. And for your guests with special dietary needs, there are bakers who can make sugar-free, gluten-free and even vegan (egg and dairy-free) cakes! Images below, Cakes by Happy Eatery

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The “icing on the cake:” Fondant is dough-like icing made with sugar, glucose and glycerin. Because of the ingredients, fondant is usually a very sweet icing. It is beautiful for covering cakes because of its ultra smooth and glossy finish. Fondant is also great for designs involving draping, hand painting, brushed embroidery, stenciling or embossing. If you are not using those elements, most skilled cake decorators are able to achieve a smooth, almost fondant-like look using a soft icing such as whipped cream or buttercream. Groom’s cakes: Most people think of the bleeding armadillo cake from the movie Steel Magnolias when they hear “groom’s cake.” While you may want to tease your new husband, you can also surprise him with a special cake made with just him in mind. If he is a huge football fan, have the baker recreate his favorite team’s helmet. For the avid fisherman, how about creating a bass boat? You can also recreate his night out with the boys with a complete poker table. This cake can be served alongside the wedding cake, or at the more intimate rehearsal dinner.


The final touches: What will you do with the top tier of the cake? Think about using some fresh or sugar flowers to enhance the colors and design of your wedding bouquet. Monograms are also very popular, as are the traditional bride and groom. And the details don’t stop there. Once the cake is delivered to your reception site, how will it be displayed? Cover your table with a beautiful linen and complementary overlay. Elevate your cake and place some votive candles around for ambiance. Or how about flooding the table with rose petals? Your wedding cake vendor will help you find the best way to highlight your cake. Remember to choose a reputable cake professional who you are comfortable with, one who can accommodate your needs and will not be affected by weather, staffing or “Plan B” on your special day. Keep all this in mind as you prepare to eat (cake), drink, and be married! Emily Wu and her sister Victoria are the owners of Cakes by Happy Eatery, a full service bakery. To see their cake designs and learn more about the bakery, visit www.cakesbyhappyeatery.com.

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Photo by A Paige Photography

Don’t step on anyone’s toes

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xcited about rehearsing that new “first dance” choreography you learned but have no room to practice? For about $10 an hour you can practice in one of the many professional studios around the area. Here are some tips to help ensure a pleasant environment and allow you to feel comfortable practicing in the studio.  • If space allows, dancers should set up speakers and use mirrors at opposite corners of the studio; once all four corners are full, fill in the middle sections. Rent space during non-peak hours (anytime before 6 p.m.) if you are practicing tap or flamenco, drumming or other loud percussive dances. • Use earphones — especially if you need to play music loudly or nonstop and when directly next to ongoing lessons. Be mindful of volume levels and speaker location/angle. Turn your music off when not dancing to minimize the overall noise in the room. • If you are beside a privacy/noise-dampening curtain, assume that your neighbors expect you to use it or switch places so they can take advantage of this amenity. Check with the office about if/when the curtain can be used. Ask permission before adjusting the teaching environment.      • Due to the close and direct contact nature of the dancing, use sanitizer or wash hands frequently. Don’t leave your belongings around the studio to “save” a space indefinitely. Let your neighbors know when you plan to return. By using common sense and good etiquette, you’ll create a fun practice environment. Remember, successful practice will help you shine in the wedding day spotlight. ™ Deborah Joy Block is the owner of The Wedding Dance Specialists. To learn more about wedding dance bootcamps and lesson packages, visit theweddingdancespecialists.com. 66

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wedding wedding planning planning timeline timeline

Visit our website to download a printable copy!

A HELPFUL CHECKLIST A HELPFUL AND CHECKLIST AND STEP-BY-STEP STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO PLAN GUIDE YOUR TO BIG PLAN DAYYOUR BIG DAY courtesy of BridesandWeddings.com courtesy of BridesandWeddings.com

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Hair and makeup Dress to impress Get hitched Greet everyone Enjoy!


advice from real brides

“Planning a wedding is one of the most stressful things I have ever done. The best advice I can give is don’t try to please everyone, do what will make you happy when you look back on this day. Also, don’t sweat the small stuff. There will be a few things that don’t go right on the big day, so just try and go with the flow and have a good time!” —Allison H “The two best tips I received was that no one else knows what you wanted to plan so if it doesn’t happen it’s OK because no one knows it was supposed to happen and at the end of the day the only thing that matters is that you get to marry your best friend. Enjoy it all and don’t let the little things hold you down!” —Mandy J

Planning a wedding can feel like stepping into the unknown — exciting and intimidating at the same time. Are you prepared to tackle all the details?

Relax!

Our full service coordination, coupled with expert tips and advice, will make planning your wedding seem like child’s play.

540.842.6040

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“Soak it up! I paid way too much for a veil and then forgot to put it on for the ceremony. These things happen and you won’t care in the moment, you will just be floating and enjoying the moment.” —Erin M “Make your wedding about you and your groom. Everyone loves to chime in with their ideas, but it’s really about you two. When all of the glitz and glamour is done, and your special day is over, it will just be you and your new husband.” —Erin R “We planned every second of the day, and were ONLY worried about poor weather. Guess what? It was supposed to be a gorgeous fall day, and instead, it was freezing, it poured and hailed. But, it was still the most beautiful day. Truly try to enjoy every moment, and keep in perspective that it’s just the first of the rest of your very best days.” —Cait B “Enjoy the process and start early! Plan for extra expenses and don’t take it too seriously. At the end of the day, no matter what goes wrong (and something will), you will be married to your best friend.” —Remington J

Let our 5-Star reviews

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703.314.2209 dblplatinumevents.com doubleplatinumevents@live.com bridesandweddings.com

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DOs & DON’Ts F O R S AY I N G “ I D O ”

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se the following Dos & Don’ts and you’ll have all your fashionable “ducks in a row:”

1. DO choose accessories that work with your dress style. Don’t wear an elaborate necklace with a gown that features an already adorned neckline. For a sleeveless dress, try a simple bracelet rather than big bangles. Avoid excessive hand jewelry – keep a clean pallet so your wedding ring will shine.

2. DON’T over accessorize.

The only distraction from the dress should be your glowing face. All accessories should complement the dress – not compete with it.

3. DO keep jewelry classic, yet elegant.

Pearls, diamonds, neutral-colored metals and stones are always safe choices. You may choose to abandon this rule for themed weddings, or if your dress is non-traditional or avant-garde.

4. DON’T distract from beautiful hairstyles with too much “stuff.” Consider jeweled hair pins, a mother-of-pearl comb or a diamond tiara – and just choose one.

5. DO enhance a backless dress with a Cartier Backdrop Necklace. Look around to find inexpensive versions and vintage look-alikes.

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6. DON’T forget that good tailoring is critical. An inexpensive dress can be transformed to an eye-stopping piece of haute couture with the right stitching. A well altered garment should fit the body, without bunching or pinching the skin. Select a tailor with superb credentials – now’s not the time to show off your Home Ec sewing skills.

7. DO enhance your look with a body shaping undergarment. These garments can bring an instant hour glass shape to the body, straighten posture, and even cause you to instantly appear two sizes smaller.

8. DO remember good tailoring for the groom. Jacket sleeves should be long enough to expose a half-inch of the dress shirt. Avoid cuffing formal trousers. A gentleman should stand out on his wedding day – play with colorful ties, bow ties, pocket squares, boutonnieres and cummerbunds. Now’s not the time to wear Chuck Taylors – unless they’re part of the wedding party’s ensemble.

In the end it’s all about you and your individual style. Always trust your inner feelings when choosing dresses, suits, tuxedos and accessories. And remember – have fun and say “I Do!”


~~~

BOUTIQUE 703.490.2697

9411 CJ3attfe Street

I :Jvtanassas

Arielle Hedrick reviewed Amy's Bridal Boutique- 5 star September 16. 2016 Hands down the best place to get a dress! Amy is nothing but amazing and she will become your best friend. She has been so patient and never pushed me. Just what you need when getting a wedding dress. I will only pass her name around.

Amy you rock! Thank you for everything.

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Photos by Kathleen Hertel

BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Three words that describe your wedding:

RUSTIC, ELEGANT, PARTY!

Real Brides & Weddings BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Tell us your story. Include how you met, your engagement, etc.

BRIDE: We both belonged to the same gym and had mutual friends that worked there. I started to notice a guy that was popping into my conversations when I was talking to someone and started to talk to me before or after our workouts. He walked me to my car one day after the gym and asked for my number. We went to see a Marvel comics movie and he regretted it quickly after seeing that the movie had Hugh Jackman shirtless for 80 percent of it! He was a good sport about my love for marvel comic movies but vowed to never to take me to one again. Ryan was deployed in Bahrain for a year but had a two-week break in between he could travel anywhere to. Naturally he came home to Virginia to see me. He told me he planned a two-night staycation in D.C. at the W and had a reservation for dinner at Bourbon Steak, a restaurant I had been wanting to try. It was a little after our anniversary and he had been gone for seven months so I wasn’t suspecting that something was brewing. We woke up early the first morning in D.C. and walked the monuments. We were standing on the steps of the Lincoln memorial when a man asked if we could take his picture. I obliged and he offered to take ours. As I’m handing the man my phone and getting ready to pose for a photo, Ryan asks me to hold something for him, but when I turn around he’s down on one knee with a ring box. I was shocked and so was the man! He didn’t know what to do at first but then was able to capture the special moment for us! That night we celebrated with the most amazing meal at Bourbon Steak and just celebrated our anniversary there again! 72

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BRIDES & WEDDINGS: What was your theme? What inspired you to pick that theme? BRIDE: We had a rustic feel to the wedding with nautical details. I have a very mixed style of boho, preppy and edgy rolled into one. I have a love for anything nautical and we were also living in Hawaii at the time. Plus it also happens that Ryan is in the coast guard, which is a happy coincidence with my love for anchors. We wanted to bring a piece of our home in Hawaii to the wedding with our decor pieces and wedding favors while also celebrating the natural beauty of the venue. BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Wedding Colors? BRIDE: Seafoam green and coral

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BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Describe the first dance. BRIDE: We spent a lot of time picking the song. Ryan is really into music and was excited about finding the perfect songs for the wedding. He said when he played this Beach Boys song, he could just imagine us dancing to it. When we had our first dance, it was like we were back in our living room practicing, just easy and having fun. I knew there would be many more nights of dancing ahead. BRIDES & WEDDINGS: What local vendors did you use? BRIDE: Venue: Riverside on the Potomac; Photography Kathleen Hertelâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;Love and Adventure Photography; Catering: Purple Onion; Cake: Main & Market

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REAL BRIDES AND WEDDINGS—CONTINUED

BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Describe the dress you chose and the moment you knew it was the one. BRIDE: I didn’t have a “dream” dress like some people have. I only knew that I didnt want something too form fitting so that I would be comfortable and able to move. I wanted a dress that was a little boho yet timeless and elegant. The dress I found was made by Amsale with a sweetheart neckline and sheer overlay with a beaded leaf design on the bodice. I actually had earrings I purchased because I loved the design and the vintage style, and they happened to match the beading on the dress perfectly. The dress made me feel beautiful and the fact it already matched earrings I owned was the icing on the cake.

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REAL BRIDES & WEDDINGS—CONTINUED

BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Favorite Detail? BRIDE: I loved the floral work on the arbor for our wedding ceremony. My mom’s friend was the florist and did an amazing job making such a stunning piece.

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REAL BRIDES & WEDDINGS—CONTINUED

BRIDES & WEDDINGS: Any advice for other brides? BRIDE: While planning and the details are important and sometimes fun to do, don’t let that be your main focus. If you find yourself going off budget or getting frustrated with your fiance or others, take a step back from planning. Go enjoy a good meal or activity. Don’t forget why you are doing all of this in the first place. There were moments I got carried away with buying decor and gifts or being frustrated with trying to make decisions on vendors and had to remind myself that at the end of the day none of that matters because you are celebrating the start of your new life!

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Labella Bridal Boutique:

A Premier Choice H

ave you recently gotten engaged and starting to plan the all-important parts of a dream wedding? We sat down with Ellalyne Brayman of Labella Bridal and she detailed some of the elements that make her bridal shop stand out above the rest. First we discussed the shop’s name, Labella Bridal; Brayman decided on this because Labella means beautiful in Italian. “When I was doing modeling in Italy it was a word I heard all the time and could see how good it would make women feel,” she says. “And that is the feeling I am trying to recreate to this day. It’s a very humbling experience to work with women, and help them reach a certain level where they can look at themselves and think to themselves ‘labella’.” Brayman says, “Additionally, we pride ourselves on customer service. As we like to say, we are here to serve, not to sell. Our appointments are a minimum of one hour long and completely one-on-one with the bride. We don’t let our appointments stop once she leaves for the day; we like to follow up with her over the following weeks to make sure she is not too overwhelmed.” PREMIER CHOICE—CONTINUED ON PAGE 82 80

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The making of a perfect wedding day.... The love of your life and a gorgeous gown from Labella

• New as well as select designer consignment gowns • Bridesmaids and Prom dresses • Expert, onsite alterations and custom design • Beautiful accessories and special occasion dresses • Latest styles in formalwear Call today for your consultation

703.494.2929 labellabridalboutique.com Located in Old Town Occoquan 313 Mill St., Occoquan, VA TUES-WED: 11-5 THURS: 11-8 FRI: 11-5 SAT: 10-6 SUN & MON BY APPT. bridesandweddings.com

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A PREMIER CHOICE

Another key component to the success of Labella Bridal is its location. Located in Occoquan, it’s nestled between wine shops, small cafes and the river. The picturesque setting couldn’t be more perfect. A little dress shopping, a little wine tasting and a nice lunch—sounds like a win-win to us. “Occoquan is a wonderful town to be in because it allows us to have formalwear, but not an intimidating storefront,” says Brayman about why Occoquan is ideal. “It’s right on the water, and is kind of a hidden secret. There’s a quaint charm here, and everyone knows each other. There isn’t that competition with neighboring businesses that you might feel in city areas; instead we all work together on referring customers to one another.” 82

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And speaking of storefronts, have you noticed their elegant windowscaping? She explains, “It really is a team effort, especially when we get in new dresses. If there’s a holiday or season we want to celebrate, we plan all the windows to match accordingly, and sometimes add in hanging decorations. Sometimes you get so into decorating one window, you forget about the other three and then have to match those as well. It’s a lot more work than people might expect.” As if you needed more reasons to visit Labella Bridal, they recently added on an additional bridal room with three more dressing rooms, so now they can carry a wider selection of bridal sizes. “We are also adding

new formal dresses and accessories every day. Recently we got in a new line of sweet sixteen and Quinceañera dresses. We’d like to add more, but they sure take up a lot of space. Right now we are focused on spreading the word about our store and helping every customer that walks in that door,” Brayman says with a smile. Labella Bridal is located at 313 Mill St., Occoquan, VA. Lisa Collins-Haynes is a wife, mother and international travel writer. Her life’s tagline is “Living a liberated life of leisure.” She holds a Master of Business Administration degree. Follow her on Instagram @living_a_ charmed_life. bridesandweddings.com

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HERE COMES THE

Bride Select your wedding fashions from the finest bridal salons in Northern Virginia. Gowns, bridesmaids dresses, formal wear, accessories and shoes — it’s all there at your full-service independent bridal shop. For a custom-designed gown, check out the area’s bridal fabric retailers and designers. And don’t forget to shop for your trousseau!

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Amy’s Bridal Boutique 9411 Battle St., Manassas (703) 490.2697 amysbridalboutique.com Ann’s Boutique 5709 Burke Center Parkway, Burke (703) 250-3100 annsboutique.com Anna’s Bridal Spot 8804 Pear Tree Village Ct, Alexandria (703) 360-4272 annasbridalspot.com Best Bridals & Tailoring 4300 Chantilly Shopping Center, Chantilly (703) 378-3222 bestbridalsva.com Bobbie’s Bridal Boutique 11258 James Swart Circle, Fairfax (703) 273-2629 bobbiesbridal.com Bridals by Natalie 210 North Lee St., #104, Alexandria (703) 751-8620 bynatalie.com Ellie’s Bridal Boutique 225 North Washington St., Alexandria (703) 683-8697 elliesbridal.com Eternity Bridal Boutique 6531-A Little River Turnpike, Alexandria (703) 354-9330 eternity-bridal.com Global Bridal Gallery 687 South Washington St., Alexandria (703) 739-2743 globalbridalgallery.com Gossypia 325 Cameron St., Alexandria (703) 836-6969 gossypia.com Katherine’s Bridal Boutique 3104 Duke St., Alexandria (703) 370-8922 katherinesbridalboutique.com

Labella Bridal & Consignment Boutique 313 Mill St., Occoquan (703) 494-2929 labellabridalboutique.com Le Reve Bridal & Tuxedo 213 Loudoun St., SE, Leesburg (703) 777-3757 lerevebridal.com Leesburg Bridal & Tuxedo 705-D East Market St., Leesburg (703) 777-8822 leesburg-bridal.com Macy’s Bridal Salon by Demetrios Tysons Galleria Mall, McLean (703) 902-4330 demetriosbride.com Metropolitan Formalwear Fair Oaks Mall, inside of Sears (202) 390-6633 metroformal.com Tang’s Alterations 8675 Sudley Road, Manassas (703) 393-8458 Rosalin’s Bridal Boutique 706 S. Washington St., Falls Church (703) 532-0288 rosalinsbridal.com Soliloquy Bridal Couture 754 Elden St., Suite 103, Herndon (571) 449-2580 soliloquybridal.com Trousseau 306 Maple Ave. W, Vienna (703) 255-3300 trousseaultd.com White Swan Bridal 425 Maple Ave. W, Vienna (703) 255-9032 whiteswanbridal.com bridesandweddings.com

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Photo by Rob Jinks Photography

amy’sbridal YOUR ONE-STOP SHOP

I

Photo by Rob Jinks Photography

t’s that time of year when our Facebook timelines are flooded with pictures of brandspanking-new engagement rings and status updates screaming, “I said yes!” Are you one of the lucky ones who updated your status recently to engaged? If so, time is of the essence once you set a date — and Amy’s Bridal Boutique is waiting to serve you. “Why should I consider Amy’s Bridal?” you may ask. Well, for starters, it’s been a staple in the community since August 2008 and has developed into a one-stop boutique for all your wedding needs. Amy Domenech, the owner, has thought of everything and eliminated a lot of unnecessary steps in the process. Amy’s Bridal Boutique has the resources and capabilities to take care of you, the groom and the bridal party.

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Photo by Dawn Gardener


“My boutique has all sorts of things to offer,” Amy says. “I love many aspects of weddings and we are ever changing. Wedding gowns are my specialty. However, we also offer bridesmaids dresses, tuxedo rentals, gown preservation, accessories, photo booth rental, wedding planning, coaching and day-of coordinating. If I don’t have it or offer it, I have an amazing network of professionals that I can refer you to.” Now that you know why Amy’s Bridal is the place to start for your wedding day planning, you may wonder what kind of experience you can expect when visiting the boutique. “My brides should look forward to a quaint, low-key personal experience. We do kindly request and recommend that you schedule an appointment. I prefer to see one bride at a time. It’s a great time, no pressure. I am very fair and I run an honest business. We operate by the Golden Rule, ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,’” explains Amy. She goes on to say, “My mission is to change the way things are done in my corner of the world. Having experience at other bridal salons, as both a consumer and employee, I just always felt there had to be a better way. A way to simplify the process, remove the ‘stuffiness’, and value the clients that are keeping your business in existence.” As we chatted a little more with Amy, we asked her what the upcoming trends would be like for this wedding season. She was a wealth of information and shared some industry hot tips and nuggets of knowledge with us. Brides can expect to see more low and sexy backs with lots of details, flirty-layered skirts, soft feminine lace, plunging necklines and even more color for 2017. Bridesmaids: Stella York just introduced a beautiful deep burgundy. The metallics dresses are hotter than ever with the release of a long sleeved version! Tuxedos: I’m seeing lots of fitted styles and maybe even more grooms opting for a wedding suit instead of a tuxedo. There you have it ladies — some real insider information that will keep you looking classy, fabulous and stylish on your wedding day. As you’re making your decision on dresses and the details, Amy offers some valuable advice to all brides. She wants you to remember to keep an open mind. The gowns look ridiculous on

the hangers. Don’t pass them up just because it’s not something you had envisioned. Try them on! Wedding dress shopping is unique. More often than not, women walk away with something they would have never thought of wearing! Also, do not fall for the pressure sales! There is nothing worse than a bride’s buyer’s remorse! Sleep on it, think about it, and pray about it, but whatever you do, buy with confidence! That’s a refreshing piece of advice and something you don’t hear every day from salespeople; but that’s just another reason why Amy’s Bridal Boutique is such a special place. They have an amazing wow factor and it’s customer service! Brides continually share their experience with family and friends, and Amy explains that’s why her word of mouth business is so strong. “More and more people are choosing Amy’s because when you’re here you’re family. You will never be a number, and you will always be celebrated in my boutique,” she says with pride. Lisa Collins-Haynes is a wife, mother and international travel writer. Her life’s tagline is “Living a liberated life of leisure.” She holds a Master of Business Administration degree. Follow her on Instagram @living_a_ charmed_life. bridesandweddings.com

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Grooms GET INVOLVED

Images Courtesy of Amy’s Bridal Boutique

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s the cost of weddings rise, as well as the age of today’s bride and groom, many couples find themselves sharing the cost of their wedding, with little to no help from their parents. Although there are benefits in being able to make the wedding completely unique, along with showcasing the couple’s styles and personalities, the groom’s financial obligation has opened the door to the vast world of weddings. The groom now has an opinion on something he has never thought of before, while the bride has been following her favorite wedding blogs for over two years now. In preparing to go on the wedding planning journey together, it is very important the couple finds effective communication tools

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to make the experience one that brings them closer. And both parties must compromise in order to have key elements that are important to each of them. A great way to start the process is to sit down with a list of all the vendors that need to be hired and decide on who will be in charge of paying for, booking and communicating with each one. For example, if the groom is really into music, then he should be in charge of hiring the DJ or band; if the bride is an avid photographer, she should choose their wedding photographer. The couple should find their three favorite vendors, and then research the pros and cons of each so they can make the final decision together.


HERE IS A HELPFUL CHECKLIST, REVISED FOR TODAY’S GROOM. TWELVE MONTHS OR LESS Decide on the division of financial obligations and vendor communication. • Set budget for the entire wedding. • Ask parents or relatives if they plan on contributing and how much. • Prepare a guest list with addresses and titles by asking family and relatives on groom’s side. • Research designated vendors, set up appointments and book. • Choose best man, groomsmen and ushers. • Decide on where you are going for your honeymoon, and get passports if necessary. • Decide on where the rehearsal dinner is going to be held and send deposit. • Select bride’s engagement ring. •

SIX MONTHS OR LESS Select the style tuxedo and vest colors for all men in the wedding party and register at a formalwear store. • Confirm reservations for the honeymoon. • Buy wedding rings. • Decide on rehearsal dinner menu and order invitations. • Let all attendants know the time and location of the rehearsal practice. • Turn in necessary form at work to take time off for the wedding and honeymoon. •

ONE MONTH AHEAD Set up final meetings with designated vendors. • Mail rehearsal dinner invitations. • Purchase gifts for your attendants. • Purchase any items needed for the honeymoon. • Confirm honeymoon details and reservations. • Confirm all attendants ordered tuxes. • Make arrangements for lunch with groomsmen the day of the wedding. •

THE WEEK OF THE WEDDING Confirm all attendants have a timeline. • Confirm all vendors have a timeline. • Get a haircut (early in the week). • Give final guest count to the caterer for the rehearsal dinner. • Pick up the wedding rings from the jeweler or have them cleaned. • Pick up tuxes and have all groomsmen try them on two days before the wedding. • Pack for honeymoon. •

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BRIDAL FASHION

Lookbook A

my’s Bridal shared some ‘Real Stella York Brides’ with us to showcase the beautiful dresses the designer has to offer. Enjoy these gorgeous gowns and find more wedding gown inspiration on our website: bridesandweddings.com.

LEFT: This dress takes illusion lace to a new level with illusion-lace detailing on its bodice, low back and sleeves. The ethereal skirt is made from fine French tulle over rich, matte-side Lustre satin. A thin band accentuates the waist. The back zips up with ease under pearl buttons. A: This Lace over Lustre Satin sheath dress from the Stella York wedding gown collection features beautiful vine shoulder straps, a low back with a zipper closure, and a sweep train. This dress comes in ivory Lace over Lustre Satin in ivory, cafe, or harvest. B: Handcrafted with stunning detail, artfully layered Diamante embellishments adorn the sweetheart neckline of this sexy column-style wedding dress made from vintage-inspired corded Lace on soft Tulle over Lavish Satin. The back zipper is concealed under sparkling crystal buttons. C: Romantic beaded lace makes up the fitted bodice of this breathtaking A-line wedding gown from Stella York. The tulle skirt boasts sprinklings of embroidered lace just below the detachable Diamante-beaded belt. The lace illusion back features an easy-close zipper hidden under fabriccovered buttons.

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D: This French Mikado designer ball gown from Stella York is the perfect dance between elegance, sophistication and whimsy. Its figure-flattering fitted bodice features a sweetheart neckline and crisscross pleating that plunge into a thick, waistaccentuating pleat that can be worn with or without the added bling of our Diamante band. The back zips up under fabric covered buttons that continue to the edges of its court train. Choose from traditional white or romantic ivory. W

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A. dramatic illusion lace back and sleeves adorn this hand-embellished sheath gown, glimmering with metallic lace appliquĂŠs and embroidered with beading.

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This modern keyhole back wedding dress features a structured, fit-and-flare silhouette and high neckline for a fresh and updated bridal style. The Grand Mikado fabric gives off a sense of true elegance, while the long train give this otherwise simple wedding dress a hint of drama. Clean lines create a silhouette that elongates the body for a sleek and modern hourglass frame.

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B. Elegant and enchanted, this designer Lace wedding gown from the Stella York classic wedding dresses collection features handcrafted Diamante beading and Lace in your choice of gold, ivory or white. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll love how the sexy shoulder straps and plunging V neck frame your face and draw the eye to your waist, while the fit-and-flare silhouette hugs your every curve. C. This romantic lace gown features a shimmery bead and lace pairing that creates a soft, hourglass shape. Linear lace on the bodice creates curves in the waist while a very subtle beaded empire waist draws attention to the brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s face. The lace details throughout this gown has a romantic and elegant feel through lace that cascades down from a very heavy pattern at the bodice, to a subtle pattern at the skirt. A strapless sweetheart neckline features dazzling beads that sparkle and shine.

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A. This flowing Stella York sheath bridal gown was imagined and crafted to provide an exceptional fit without sacrificing comfort . Constructed from breezy tulle and corded lace, it is completed with a Diamante-beaded belt that slims the waist â&#x20AC;&#x201C; showing off your curves. The back of this bridal gown zips up under fabric-covered buttons for ease of use. Inspired by whimsy and romance, this gown would complete any beachside wedding.

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Exquisite lace and dazzling Swarovski crystals combine to create this strapless fit and flare wedding dress.

Standout lace appliques on fine tulle work together to create a stunning design. Strapless sweetheart neckline with lace detailing frames your face, while the fitted bodice hugs your every curve. Choose from a corset A: Delicate corded lace on tulle closure or a zipper closure hidden skims the shoulders and under fabric-covered buttons. neckline of this lightweight gown while buttons trail a zipper closure accenting an illusion back. B: Demir Stretch Satin provides sleek luster to this slender silhouette. Ruching envelopes the bodice and asymmetrically plummets below the waist, while the train pours into a gorgeous balloon hem.

Photo by Blue Martini Photography

B. This Lace over Dolce Satin lace wedding dress features a lovely sweetheart neckline and trumpet silhouette that is both slimming and sexy. Fine detailing, like the slimming vertical lace pattern and elegant scalloped Lace edging along the sweetheart C: Understated, yet rich in design, neckline and hem, makes this slimming designer gown this tulle and Chic Organza fit and a perfect complement to your attitude, style and spirit. flare features a slimming ruched bodice, with a textured swirling C. This lace and Regency organza fit and flare wedding dress features a beaded sweetheart neckline that cuts rosette skirt. just below the hip into a swirling textured skirt. D: Exquisite bead embroidered Choose from a corset closure or a zipper closure under fabric-covered buttons. lace adorns the bodice in this sheath wedding dress with Swarovski crystal neckline and stunning double keyhole back. bridesandweddings.com

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BRIDAL ATTIRE CHECKLIST B

ridal attire is more than just a gown. This handy checklist, courtesy of Trousseau Ltd., will keep you – and the ladies who play a key role in your wedding day – looking great from head to toe.

Bridal Attendants: o Foundation o Dyeable Shoes and Handbag o Jewelry o Hair Ornaments

Personal Attire: o Tiara, Hairpins, Headband or Comb o Bridal Veil o Bridal Jewelry o Garter o Bridal Foundation Bustiers and Shapewear to Look Your Best! o Hosiery o Shoes o Handbag or Make-up Pouch o Handkershief o Gloves o Wedding Night & Honeymoon Lingerie o Get fitted with Trousseau’s Bra Expert

Mothers of the Bride and Groom: o Foundation o Dyeable Shoes and Handbag o Jewelry and Hair Ornaments

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Stationery: o Save the Date Cards o Wedding Invitations o Thank-you Notes & Personal Stationery Bridal Accessories: o Guestbook and Pen o Ringbearer Pillow o Cake Knife and Toasting Flutes o Lucky Sixpence


Visit BridesandWeddings.com for local bridal events. giveaways & our preferred vendor profile listings!

a uni9u e s ca ndin a via n exp e ri e n ce tor wom e n & me n

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TANG'S

alteratzOns FULL-SERVICE BRIDAL SHOP CREATING A STRESS-FREE, MEMORABLE EXPERIENCE FOR YOURENTIREWEDDING PARTY 8675 SUD LEY RD. VIRGINIA ) 393-8458 com

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Hair Styling by Crystal at Shear Image Hair Salon

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Photos by Rob Jinks Photography

Hair Trial

Wedding

ftentimes, something that gets overlooked while prepping for your wedding day is your hair style. While you may be combing Pinterest and finding cute ideas from our “Real Brides & Weddings” features on the blog, you may not be thinking about a wedding hair trial. Talk with your stylist ahead of time and plan out a trial appointment to try different looks. You may be surprised to find that the style you chose does not look like you expected! On the day of your hair trial, bring anything you think will help your stylist understand the looks you love or the style of your wedding. Bring the veil or any hair accessories you plan to wear. Have a friend take a photo of you in your dress at a fitting. Bring a color swatch if you have it and even bring the style you are wanting your bridesmaids to have. All of these things can effect the overall look of your bridal beauty plan.

Your Hairstyle Should Complement Your Overall Look

Look for options that complement your neckline and bodice of your dress. Also, don’t forget to wear makeup unless your stylist will be doing that in the trial as well. Not only do you want to see your hair and makeup together, but you will be staring at yourself in the mirror for a couple of hours and will want to put your best face forward!

Bring Accessories

There are so many great hair accessories available now to add a gorgeous accent to your wedding hair. It will depend on the look you’re going for. For a more classical look, you might want to wear a Swarovski crystal brooch. Jeweled barettes can be great as well. Some trending items at the moment are floral crowns, headbands, pearl pins.

Try Multiple Styles or Something New

Your hair trial gives you the chance to live with a look and discover whether you feel comfortable with it. If your hair artist suggests looks that you hadn’t considered before, don’t feel pressured to follow their advice — but while you have their expertise at your fingertips, you may as well give it your consideration. 98

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Make Sure Your Bridesmaids Match

Take your stylist the options you are planning for your bridesmaids if you are doing matching hairstyles. This will help determine the best look for your style. If you want all your wedding party to have the same look, you may want yours to be the opposite.

Document the Day

Be sure you have someone taking photos of the styles so you can reflect on them later. A lot of planning and decisions will happen in between your hair trial and the actual day of! You donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t want to forget your perfect hairstyle!

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Rescue TO THE

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o matter how organized you are and how much planning you’ve done before the wedding, you should always expect the unexpected. And an emergency kit for your wedding day is the best way to prepare. If building your own kit, start at least two or three months before the wedding so you can gather the items over time. This allows you to consider the possible needs of your close friends and family. Designate someone to be responsible for the emergency kit, bringing it from location to location and keeping it readily available. Suggested emergency kit items:

• Band-Aids • Blotting papers • Bobby pins • Bottle of water • Clear nail polish • Deodorant • Emery board • Feminine products • Hairspray • Hand lotion

• Hand sanitizer • Lipstick or lip gloss • Mints • Pain reliever • Qtips • Safety pins • Small lint brush • Super glue • Tissues

• Tums/Rolaids • Sewing Kit with scissors • Granola bars or other easy-to-carry snacks • Straws (you don’t want to mess up your lipstick) • Chalk, tied for easy packing, hides scuffs and marks on white leather and fabrics.

You will also want to make a list of items to carry in your purse. • Cell phone • Mirror • Handkerchief or tissues • Nail file • Lip gloss or lipstick to match makeup • Perfume One of the great advantages to hiring a day-of coordinator is the extensive emergency kit this professional brings to every wedding. Your coordinator will carry glue and staple guns, floral wire, hundreds of safety pins, fasteners, packing tape, lighters, scissors and more – there is nothing the kit can’t handle! So remember, either put your emergency kit in the hands of a professional or start putting yours together early and you’ll be prepared for anything! 100

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YOUR BEAUTY TIMELINE T o help you plan for hair and makeup, here’s a timeline for looking, booking and getting ready for your big day:

6-12 MONTHS: Read reviews of local hair stylists and makeup artists. Be sure to ask your wedding vendors for recommendations — bridal salon staff and your photographer are great resources. Bridal shows are also a good way to find beauty professionals and often provide an opportunity to see their work. Book your hair stylist and makeup artist as soon as possible – especially if you are getting married during a popular month like May or October. Early booking will mean less stress later! 3-6 MONTHS: This is the time to book hair styling and makeup trials. Go over your vision for your hair and makeup with your professionals. Try all your options and take pictures. If possible, book your appointments on a day when you can try on your gown, so you can see your complete look. To help things run smoothly the day of your wedding, keep these timeframes in mind: Bride’s hair and makeup: Allow 1-1/2 hours for your styling. This gives enough time to get it right and to make any tweaks from the trial run. The bride’s makeup should be applied while her hair is being set or after her hair is finished. Bridesmaids’ hair and makeup: Each bridesmaid should allow 35-40 minutes for her hair styling and the same amount of time for her makeup. Hairstyling can range from just a few minutes for a simple primping to an hour or more for an intricate up-do. It is better to overestimate how much time is needed. This allows for different styling choices and last minute add-ons. bridesandweddings.com

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WEDDING FLOWER REALNESS

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Photo by Erin Kelleher Photography

Photo by Jasmine White Photography

Photo by Lindsay Vann Photography

Photo by Casey Hendrickson Photography

Photo by GSquared Weddings

Enjoy this collection of beautiful wedding flowers. Recently featured on our blog, these bouquets and blooms all came from recent real weddings. Visit our website to see more real weddings and get inspiration for your day.


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Photo by Love & Adventure Photography

Photo by Gary Lun Photograhy

Photo by Krissy Breece Photography


Floral CHECKLIST

To keep you on track with your floral needs, here is a brief checklist: r Bride’s Bouquet r Maid/Matron of Honor Bouquet r Bridesmaids’ Bouquets r Flower Girl’s Bouquet or Basket r Floral Headpieces r Hostesses’ Flowers r Mothers’ & Grandmothers’ Corsages r Fathers’ & Grandfathers’ Boutonnieres r Groom’s Boutonniere 104

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r r r r r r r r r r r

Best Man’s Boutonniere Ushers’ Boutonnieres Ring Bearer’s Pillow Ring Bearer’s Boutonniere Altar or Chuppah Flowers Aisle or Pew Decorations Reception Room Flowers Head Table Centerpiece Guest Table Centerpieces Cake/Buffet Table Decorations Toss Bouquet


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MANASSASMANASSAS > HistoricMANASSAS battlefield > Historic battlefield > Manassas >Regional Airport Historic battlefield > Manassas Regional Airport > Manassas Airport > HistoricRegional Downtown

OCCOQUAN OCCOQUAN OCCOQUAN > Riverfront> Riverfront > Riverfront > Shops > Shops > Shops QUANTICO QUANTICO QUANTICO > Marine Corps Museum > Marine Corps Museum > Marine Corps Museum > Downtown > Downtown > Downtown ALEXANDRIA

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SHENANDOAH SHENANDOAH SHENANDOAH > Skyline Drive > Skyline Drive > Skyline Drive

WHITE POST WHITE POST WHITE POST > Dinosaur Land > Dinosaur Land > Dinosaur Land

MT. VERNON > Waterfront MT. VERNON MT. VERNON

> Waterfront > Waterfront FAIRFAX STATION > Burke Lake Park

FAIRFAX STATION FAIRFAX STATIO > Burke Lake >Park Burke Lake Park bridesandweddings.com

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MULTI-CULTURAL

MARRIAGES ere in ethnically diverse Northern Virginia, H multi-cultural marriages embody the best of customs and traditions. Here are just a few:

CHINESE

The color red is considered a symbol of happiness and luck. It is often used on invitations.

GREEK

The bride carries a lump of sugar to ensure a sweet life. Ivy in her bouquet represents endless love.

HINDU

Prior to the wedding day, the bride is tattooed with henna on her hands and feet, known as Mehndi. She wears a red sari embroidered in gold to symbolize abundance and fertility.

PERSIAN

During the ceremony married women place a white satin cloth above the couple’s heads. Two cones of sugar are placed in the cloth and rubbed together to represent snowflakes of sweetness and joy.

LATIN-AMERICAN

A cord called “el lazo” is placed around the couple during the ceremony, signifying they are bound for life.

ITALIAN

On her wedding day, the bride does not wear any gold as it is thought to bring bad luck.

JEWISH

At the end of the wedding ceremony, the groom breaks a napkin-wrapped wine glass under his foot as remembrance of the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

AFRICAN-AMERICAN

To pay homage to ancestors from days of slavery, couples “jump the broom” to sweep away the old and embrace the new. 106

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PHOTOGRAPHY

CHECKLIST r Bride dressing for ceremony r Bride, full-length solo r Bride with parents r Bride with mother & father separately r Bride with grandparents r Bride with sisters & brothers r Bride with maid of honor r Bride with attendants r Bride with ring bearer, flower girl r Garter being put on r Groom, full-length solo r Groom with parents r Groom with mother & father separately r Groom with grandparents r Groom with sisters & brothers r Groom with best man r Groom with groomsmen

r Groom with bride’s parents being seated for ceremony r Bridesmaids walking down the aisle r Flower girl, ring bearer walking down the aisle r Bride and father approaching altar or canopy r Bride’s father giving her hand to groom r Exchange of vows r Ring ceremony r Recessional r Formal bride & groom together r Newlyweds and parents r Newlyweds and entire bridal party r Close-ups of bride’s & groom’s hands clasped together r Receiving line — guests and bridal party

r Cake table r Bride & groom cutting/ feeding each other cake r Best man toasting newlyweds r Newlyweds toasting each other r Cake and punch servers r Musicians r Newlyweds’ first dance r Guests dancing r Bride tossing bouquet r Groom removing garter r Guests throwing rice r Newlyweds getting into limousine or car r Post-reception party r Bride’s mother assisting her into going-away outfit r Bride/groom alone with new stepchildren

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WEDDING GALLERY

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AE Landes Photography


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DG Photography


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DG Photography

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Rob Jinks


WEDDINGâ&#x20AC;&#x2C6;GALLERY

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SHOP SMART FOR YOUR

P

photo booth

hoto booths are a great way to capture pictures of all the guests who came to celebrate your wedding, as well as fill the downtime during the reception. But photo booths are not all the same. If you are thinking of adding a photo booth to your big day, here are some tips to help you choose the right one: GET A VISUAL: Before renting a booth just based on price, make sure to see pictures of the photo booth that will actually be at your event. Photo booth rental companies have different styles of booths in an array of shapes and sizes. Most companies use some sort of box style layout with drapes. Some simply provide a backdrop to stand in front of and have a camera set up on a tripod to snap your pictures, while others provide sophisticated designs with custom backgrounds, live LCD displays and customizable panels. A visual not only allows you to see if your booth will match the aesthetics of your wedding, but also lets you know if its size is ideal for your event space.

MAKE SURE THE PHOTOS WILL LAST: Equipment is important, especially if you want to blow up the photos taken in the booth (which would require a high megapixel DSLR camera). But other factors contribute to the quality of the prints. Photo booths are designed to take advantage of space limitations, so lighting (both inside the booth as well as the type of flash) and printerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s DPI (dots per inch) are very important. Ask if the photo booth can provide professional, lab-quality photo prints. Some companies use ink jet printers which are prone to fading, smearing and the images do not last. How fast is the printing process? Now, the difference between 10 and 20 seconds might not seem like a big deal, but take this time difference and add it up over the course of a four-hour reception. The speed of the printer allows guests to take more pictures in the booth, determines the length of the line which forms outside the booth and allows more overall photos during the course of your event. PHOTOBOOTHâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;CONTINUED ON PAGE 116 bridesandweddings.com

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PHOTOBOOTH PERSONALIZE YOUR PHOTO BOOTH EXPERIENCE: Many companies advertise that they can provide customized layouts and designs. However, what’s their definition of ‘customized?’ Don’t be fooled by companies claiming to customize layouts/logos and then show you simple captions on print. These businesses tend to not have professional grade software and/or lack the expertise of a graphic designer to do a true customization for you. What happens if you would like to decorate the outside of the booth with a poster size picture or wrap? Consider what the booth is made of – with some materials, like fabric, these customizations are not possible. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR: Many companies claim they offer photo booth rentals. However, it is simply an add-on service to their core business and not their specialty. Make sure the company you are dealing with is reputable. Is this a full time business or just something the company does on the side?

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Check what is included in each price quote. Often vendors will try to lure you in with a low startup cost and then charge for extras such as a customized logo, customized design, or live display slide-shows of pictures taken during your event. Do you have to pay for set-up/tear down? Are there travel/delivery fees to your event’s location? Many companies will offer different packages that include different features and functionality. Sometimes they can be confusing to differentiate, so make sure you fully understand what you are getting. Make sure it is an apples-to-apples comparison. Some companies advertise that they will match or beat any competitor’s price. But are they matching the quality, reputation, experience and service of their competitors as well? Michael Stump is the Owner of Tip Top Photo Booths, an elite photo booth rental agency. To see their booths and samples of their work, visit www. tiptopphotobooths.com.


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Why a DJ?

n today’s world of MP3 players, smart phones, Bluetooth speakers and streaming services, why hire a DJ? It’s a common question that’s being asked more and more.

Here are a few reasons why a DJ still has an important place at your event: • A DJ will interact with you and your guests and adjust the playlist accordingly to get folks dancing. • A DJ is the master of ceremonies who makes those important announcements and, along with the event planner and venue staff, keeps the reception moving. • Choosing a DJ is less expensive than renting a professional PA system. • DJs come with backup equipment – does your rental? • Professional DJs carry liability insurance.

The equipment is managed by a professional so you don’t have to ask a friend to be a part of your reception by manning the music.

Do your research to get an idea of what a DJ costs and then plan it into your budget. Meet with potential DJs in person. There are different personalities that do not come out over a phone and you want to make sure that you fit together. Have everything in writing and a contract to protect both parties. And be sure to ask your other vendors for recommendations. They see – and hear – a lot of DJs. Joe Peralis is the owner of Firedog Entertainment, a full service company offering DJ services, custom lighting and photo booths. To learn more visit www.firedogdjs.com.

DJ & Master of Ceremony Lighting Design Photo Booth Video Montage Photography by Marirosa

Image: Butterfly Photography

Because YOU’RE that important.

571.248.1126

WWW.FIREDOGDJS.COM

Customized, one-stop entertainment shopping for a memorable event bridesandweddings.com

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Paradise Found R

omance, romance, romance – whether it’s found in an exotic port of call like Costa Rica or Fiji, a history rich experience in Paris or Greece, or our own tropical delight of Hawaii, you’ll find paradise in one of these locales for your honeymoon or destination wedding. Let one of these travel professionals help you plan that trip of a lifetime! Images provided by Power Trips Travel and Divine Destination Weddings & Honeymoons.

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its ntorini is known for e Greek Islands! Sa th rs e ito lik vis e ts nc an ma ch ro en s Nothing say of Mykonos ecture. The island hit arc e iqu un d an beauty ters. and crystal clear wa with sandy beaches

nificent ists of 333 mag Idyllic Fiji cons re sq er a million ua islands spread ov e th m fro ean. Away kilometers of oc and isl er rg la r he e of ot a hustle and bustl of g in i gives the feel in s resorts, Tokorik w vo ur yo Exchange private retreat. . el d chap a charming islan

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st â&#x20AC;&#x201C; but it could ju e City of Lights th as n ss ow ki a kn e is ar Paris Love. Sh n as the City of e as easily be know joy a picnic by th en s, ee ys ps-de-El e th by er nn under the Cham di ith w d finish the day Eiffel Tower an e. rid at bo tic an Seine and a rom

e 50th state is i and Kauai, th na La d i, au M i, e Hawai ic mountains an island names lik inspiring volcan s, he ac be ed With beautiful ud Secl tropical retreat. Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s own u. yo t ai aw s et ns breathtaking su bridesandweddings.com

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5 REASONS TO USE A

HONEYMOON TRAVEL SPECIAL IST D id you know that the services of a professional travel agent come at no cost to you? Why stress over planning the most special trip of your life? Read on and learn from Travel Consultant Sandy Pullen of Divine Destination Weddings & Honeymoons five reasons to use a professional agent:

ALL IN THE DETAILS: Travel is no longer simple. There are so many details that go into every trip. Your honeymoon specialist will guide you throughout the entire travel process: provide packing tips and transfer options, advise on the best excursions, tell you how to find that secluded spot at the resort, give restaurant recommendations — and even explain the rules to shuffleboard!

,,_______ _

CUSTOMIZED SERVICES: Whether you You Are are looking for breathtaking REST ASSURED: You are your Your Travel beaches, amazing mountains travel consultant’s top priority.  If or a Greek adventure, travel Consultant’s Top anything should go wrong during consultants who specialize in Priority your trip, such as a flight being honeymoons and destination changed, your professional travel weddings understand that agent is there for you! each traveler is unique. An agent’s first step will be to talk with you and SEEK A SPECIALIST: Many consultants understand your specific travel needs, interests who specialize in destination weddings and and desires, then translate them into your own honeymoons are also certified specialists for personalized travel adventure. many locations, hotels and resorts.  They travel to — and around — popular spots, stay in BEST VALUE: A professional travel the rooms, eat the food and meet the staff. consultant will use industry relationships to Experience, education and continued training offer you exclusive vacation packages, amenities allow consultants to use their expertise to make and travel specials that you won’t find sure your trip turns out above and beyond what anywhere else, as well as help you get the most you dreamed it would be. value for your travel budget.

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Connect with Divine Destination Weddings & Honeymoons via their website (www.divinedw. com) or call 703.282.8178.


HONEYMOON

Checklist

AIRFARE $ GROUND TRANSPORTATION

$

HOTEL OR LODGE

$

FOOD & BEVERAGE

$

TIPS & GRATUITIES

$

SIGHTSEEING $ SHOPPING $ TOTAL $

TRAVEL AGENCY PHONE DESTINATION

AIRLINE FLIGHT NO. DEPARTURE/ARRIVAL

CRUISE LINE/SHIP CABIN NO. DEPARTURE/ARRIVAL

Whether it’s celebrating your vows on a private beach, honeymooning in an exotic locale or simply enjoying a romantic escape, we’ll make your journey a flawless experience.

RESORT/HOTEL PHONE RESERVATIONS

Pack these essentials: r Airline tickets r Passports/Visas r Camera, film r Sewing kit r Medicines/Prescriptions r Extra contact lenses or glasses r Credit cards r Toiletries r Electrical plug adapters r Travel iron r Clock radio, travel size r Travelers checks r Hair dryer

Your concierge travel experts

703.282.8178 • divinedw.com dana@divinedw.com bridesandweddings.com

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Find us on Facebook @ Outside the Window

Now at The Cottage in Luckettâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s VA Open 6 days a week!

Hand-painted salvage windows! Great for wedding decor or a one of a kind gift for that special couple.

holli rathman

301.452.5575 â&#x20AC;˘ holli@hollirathman.com C u s t o m D e s i g n s Av a i l a b l e U p o n R e q u e s t . 124

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Directory BANQUET VENUES

COUNTRY CLUBS

River Creek (703) 779-2022 www.rivercreekclub.com

Bull Run Golf (703) 753-7777 www.golfbullrun.com

Shenandoah Valley Golf Club (540) 635-3588 (See pg. 26) www.shenandoahvalleygolfclub.com

(See pg. 11)

Chantilly National (703) 631-9560 www.chantilly-national.com

(See pg. 3)

Heritage Hunt (703) 743-2005 www.heritagehuntgolf.com

(See pg. 15)

Hidden Creek (703) 437-5222 www.hiddencreekcc.com

(See pg. 13)

Piedmont Club (703) 753-5922 ext. 225 www.piedmontclub.com

(See pg. 3)

Regency at Dominion Valley (571) 261-3335 (See pg. 21) www.eventsatregency.com

Stonewall Golf (703) 753-6156 www.stonewallgolfclub.com

(See pg. 2)

(See pg. 23)

RESTAURANTS 2941 Restaurant (703) 270-1601 www.2941.com

Brass Cannon (703) 753-6140 www.stonewallgolfclub.com

(See pg. 22)

(See pg. 23)

HOTELS

Fairfax Marriott at Fair Oaks (703) 352-2525 (See pg. 37) www.marriott.com/IADMC bridesandweddings.com I B <>-W I 125


(The) George Washington: A Whyndam Grand Hotel (540) 678-4700 (See pg. 41) www.whyndamhotels.com/whyndamgrand/winchester Hilton Garden Inn Woodbridge (703) 590-2800 (See pg. 35) www.woodbridge.hgi.com

Oatlands Plantation (703) 777-3174 www.oatlands.org

(See pg. 18)

Waverly Mansion (301) 572-7744 (See Back Cover) www.historicwaverlymansion.com

Holiday Inn Arlington at Ballston (703) 243-9800 (See pg. 27) www.hiarlington.com

CLUBS & COMMUNITY CENTERS

Holiday Inn Washington Dulles (703) 480-7422 (See pg. 43) www.hidullesairport.com

Manassas Park Community Center (703) 335-8872 (See pg. 51) manassasparkcommunitycenter.com

(The) Hotel at University of Maryland (301) 918-5676 (See pg. 43) www.hotelumd.com

MUSEUMS, GALLERIES, ART CENTERS

UNIQUE PLACES

B&B’S / INNS / BARNS

Briar Patch Bed & Breakfast (703) 327-5911 (See pg. 33) www.briarpatchbandb.com Farm Brew Live (540) 364-2627 www.farmbrewlive.com

(See pg. 25)

Marriott Ranch (540) 364-2627 www.marriottranch.com

(See pg. 55)

Poplar Springs Inn & Spa (540) 227-7028 www.poplarspringsinn.com

(See pg. 19)

Windy Knoll (703) 927-1512 www.windyknollfarm.com

(See pg. 31)

HISTORIC PROPERTIES Historic Rockland (908) 310-9891 www.historicrockland.com 126

B W

bridesandweddings.com

(See pg. 39)

Hylton Performing Arts Center (703) 993-9344 (See pg. 1) www.hyltoncenter.org/rentals

WATERFRONT Anchor Inn (301) 572-7744 www.anchorinnmd.com

(See Back Cover)

Celebrations at the Bay (301) 572-7744 (See Back Cover) www.celebrationsatthebay.com Harbour View (703) 910-4273 www.harbourviewevents.com

(See pg. 9)

“ACROSS THE POTOMAC”

(The) Villa (301) 572-7744 (See Back Cover) www.thevillaweddingvenue.com

BRIDAL ATTIRE & ACCESSORIES

Amy’s Bridal Boutique (703) 490-2697 (See pg. 71) www.amysbridalboutique.com


Labella Bridal & Ladies Apparel Boutique (703) 494-2929 (See pg. 81) www.labellabridalboutique.com Labella Too! (703) 494-2929 (See pg. 81) www.labellabridalboutique.com Tang’s Alterations (703) 393-8458 www.tangsalterations.com

(See pg. 97)

BRIDAL SHOWS

TRose International Bridal Show (See pgs. 55) www.trosebridalshows.com Washington Wedding Experience (301) WEDDING (See pgs. 6&7) www.weddingexperience.com Wedding Salon www.weddingsalon.com

(See pg. 49)

The A Bridal Show www.theabridalshow.com

(See pg. 53)

CAKES

Cakes by Happy Eatery (703) 530-8898 (See pg. 63) www.cakesbyhappyeatery.com

CATERING

Cakes by Happy Eatery (703) 530-8898 (See pg. 63) www.cakesbyhappyeatery.com Catering by Uptown (301) 572-7744 (See Back Cover) www.cateringbyuptown.com

CONSULTANTS/ COORDINATORS

Amy’s Bridal Boutique (703) 490-2697 (See pg. 71) www.amysbridalboutique.com Double Platinum Events (703) 314-2209 (See pg. 69) www.doubleplatinumevents.com Engagements by Ballestracci (540) 842-6040 (See pg. 69) www.engagementsbyballestracci.com Virginia Realty Partners (703) 819-8388 (See pg. 25) www.virginiarealtypartners.com

DANCE LESSONS

(The) Wedding Dance Specialists (703) 626-7016 (See pgs. 55) www.theweddingdancespecialists.com

BEAUTY

Dansk Day Spa (703) 492-1991 www.danskdayspa.com

(See pg. 97)

Embrace Makeup Artistry (571) 762-0621 (See pg. 101) www.embracemakeup.com Shear Image Hair Salon (703) 590-7447 (See pg. 101) www.facebook.com/shearimagehairsalon08

DÉCOR

Outside the Window (301) 452-5575 (See pg. 124) Facebook: Outside the Window

ENTERTAINMENT

Helga’s Caterers (703) 556-0780 www.helgascatering.com

(See pg. 29)

Firedog Entertainment (703) 623-7786 www.firedogdjs.com

Marriott Ranch (540) 364-2627 www.marriottranch.com

(See pg. 55)

FAVORS

(See pg. 117)

Cakes by Happy Eatery (703) 530-8898 (See pg. 63) www.cakesbyhappyeatery.com bridesandweddings.com

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127


FITNESS

Competitive Edge Athletic Performance Center (571)398-2813 www.competitiveedgeva.com

LIGHTING & SPECIAL EFFECTS (See pg. 55)

GIFTS Outside the Window (301) 452-5575 (See pg. 124) Facebook: Outside the Window

Firedog Entertainment (703) 623-7786 www.firedogdjs.com

(See pg. 117)

PHOTO BOOTHS Firedog Entertainment (703) 623-7786 www.firedogdjs.com

(See pg. 117)

GUEST

Tip Top Photo Booths (703) 843-4658 (See pg. 116) www.tiptopphotobooths.com

Briar Patch Bed & Breakfast (703) 327-5911 (See pg. 33) www.briarpatchbandb.com

PHOTOGRAPHERS

ACCOMMODATIONS Fairfax Marriott at Fair Oaks (703) 352-2525 (See pg. 37) www.marriott.com/IADMC (The) George Washington: A Whyndam Grand Hotel (540) 678-4700 (See pg. 41) www.whyndamhotels.com/whyndam-grand/ winchester Hilton Garden Inn Woodbridge (703) 590-2800 (See pg. 35) www.woodbridge.hgi.com Holiday Inn Arlington at Ballston (703) 243-9800 (See pg. 27) www.hiarlington.com Holiday Inn Washington Dulles (703) 480-7422 (See pg. 38) www.hidullesairport.com (The) Hotel at University of Maryland (301) 918-5676 (See pg. 43) www.hotelumd.com Marriott Ranch (540) 364-2627 www.marriottranch.com

(See pg. 54)

AE Landes Photography (703) 539-2049 (See pg. 107) www.aelandesphotography.com DG Photography (703) 981-7109 www.dawngardner.com

Rob Jinks Photography (703) 401-7695 (See pg. 114) www.robertjinksphotography.com

TAILORS

Tangâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Alterations (703) 393-8458 www.tangsalterations.com

Divine Destination Weddings & Honeymoons (703) 282-8178 (See pg. 123) www.divinedestinationweddings.com Power Trips (703) 754-7509 www.powertripstravel.com

bridesandweddings.com

(See pg. 123)

WEDDING WEBSITES (240) 476-9595 www.get.wed

B W

(See pg. 97)

TRAVEL AGENTS

.WED

128

(See pg. 106)

(Inside Front Cover)


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Brides & Weddings Magazine Vol 30  

What a year it has been so far! From our new logo to our new website, beautiful Lookbooks and exciting contests, Brides & Weddings has start...

Brides & Weddings Magazine Vol 30  

What a year it has been so far! From our new logo to our new website, beautiful Lookbooks and exciting contests, Brides & Weddings has start...