I want to become a society lady Rockin' a new rock?!

When we first laid eyes on Jocelyne and Thomas’s wedding, it was hard to pull away from the show-stopping ruby-red, pink, blush and white florals—they are STUNNING. But, it’s the groom’s description of their vision—how they got to Blossom & Vine‘s florals, and all the details of their day—that has us smitten. The day at Patapsco Female Institute, or as Thomas refers to it “the Greek revival style ruins of a Civil-War-era-girls’-finishing-school-turned-Gilded-Age-summer-hotel-turned-World-War-I-veteran’s-hospital that felt a little like a forgotten wing of Hogwarts tucked away on a wooded hilltop in central Maryland” was planned by Blue Canary Events and introduced with gorgeous invitations by Shore Calligraphy. Read as Thomas explains how the couple created a special day that was truly “them,” with rain, and love and cheer and beautiful images by Alice Che Photography.

From the groom: We initially talked about having a vintage, organic, outdoor, springtime wedding. And I suppose if you wanted, you could probably find pieces of each of those descriptors reflected in various elements of our actual wedding. (I say “probably” because if I were being totally honest, I’d admit that I still don’t know quite what all those words mean–and certainly not strung together like that.) But the truth is, as we wound our way through our sixteen-month-long engagement, the wedding-planning-by-checklist-of-abstract-adjectives approach gradually gave way to a simpler directive: the wedding–every detail of it–should feel like us.

And there could not have been more appropriate way for us to plan our wedding. One of the most important lessons Jocelyne and I have taught each other is that, when you’ve found your person, preconceived notions of what a relationship should look like go out the window. Even if you had long thought that your ideal partner would be an NPR-listening, hybrid-pickup-driving vegetarian, you may just discover that your soulmate checks none of those boxes (being, instead, a political moderate who enjoys munching mediocre chicken fingers while taking in a Nats game)–and that the life the two of you will build together is something new for both of you. So that’s what we did. From the venue–the Greek revival style ruins of a Civil-War-era-girls’-finishing-school-turned-Gilded-Age-summer-hotel-turned-World-War-I-veteran’s-hospital that felt a little like a forgotten wing of Hogwarts tucked away on a wooded hilltop in central Maryland; to the favors–a hundred of our favorite books, from all stages of our lives; to the officiant–Thomas’s boss and good friend from the best job (and, perhaps, year) of his life; every aspect was uniquely, weirdly us. Jocelyne’s lifelong obsession with dinosaurs meant that, of course, she’d process to the Jurassic Park Theme Song. (And our collective obsession–that none of our family seemed to share–with an odd, internet mashup of Shut Up And Dance With Me and Video Killed The Radio Star meant that a string quartet arrangement of the former 2 would serve as our recessional.)

Thomas’s love of fruit led to a smattering of fresh, ruby-red strawberries amongst the otherwise white and blush and candy-apple red floral arrangements (as well as a tier of white cake with blackberry buttercream and passion fruit curd in a cake that was otherwise designed to, as Jocelyne said, “be as chocolatey as possible without literally being brown”). And songs that our parents introduced us to as young children turned into the backing tracks for our mother-son (Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay) and father-daughter (Doo-Wah-Diddy) dances. (The unbridled enthusiasm of the latter–which Jocelyne’s dad had been choreographing for months–can’t be adequately described here. Suffice it to say, whatever you’re imagining, it was better.) Even Jocelyne’s dress had our fingerprints on it, as she rejected the idea of an off-the-rack purchase, and instead opted for a custom-made combination of halves of two different dresses by Eve of Milady.

And now, that’s really the defining thing that has stuck with us: that whatever it was that we built, it really felt like us. One of my favorite pictures from the wedding (of the literally thousand-plus pictures that our amazing friend-slash-photographer Alice sent us) is of the two of us standing just outside one of the venue’s stone window frames, looking in at our friends and family on the dance floor, warmly lit by the light of about a thousand candles. There are precious few opportunities on your wedding day to pause and reflect, but (thanks to Alice’s foresight) we were lucky enough to have the chance to step back and take in the full view of that enchanted evening that we had created together.

Photography: Alice Che Photography // Planner: Blue Canary Events // Second Photographer: Inloveness Photography // Florals: Blossom & Vine// Calligraphy: Shore Calligraphy // Venue: Patapsco Female Institute // Dress Designer: Eve of Milady // Wedding Dress Boutique: Elegance by Roya // Hair: Ashley Taylor // Makeup: Tymia Yvette // Cake: Fluffy Thoughts Bakery
// Catering: Main Event Caterers // Rentals: Something Vintage Rentals // Band: The Finns by Sam Hill Entertainment