Sarah and Matt wanted their wedding day at Woodend Sanctuary to feel elegant, formal, and warm and enlisted the team at Wit Weddings to make their mood come to life. An all white palette in the florals by Love Blooms and some adorable black-and-white stripe details are totally timeless. We’re especially loving the asymmetrical chuppah with dark wood and their grandparents’ talliot. Sarah absolutely stuns in her hi-low Monique Lhuillier gown and the couple radiant happiness and lovely details are are captured to perfection by the always-amazing Rachel Solomon.
From the bride: Matt and I met in Washington, D.C. in 2009 when my then-roommate offered, unbeknownst to me, to let Matt stay at our apartment on the couch for a bit. Matt ended up staying for two months – and during that time, we didn’t get along so well. Finally, Matt got a job and moved out of the apartment. We remained friends, and two years later, I realized I couldn’t stop thinking about him. After that, we finally started dating.
I had always wanted an Arizona wedding, as a southwestern-girl living on the East Coast, but Washington, D.C. was home and where Matt and I met, so we decided to get married in Washington, D.C. When we were looking for a venue, we wanted to find somewhere outside that had room to move around – a luxury that not a lot of venues in Washington D.C. afforded. And, we wanted to find somewhere that we could have red wine throughout the celebration – believe it or not, due of the historic nature of a lot of places in D.C., red wine is not allowed. My family is avid red wine drinkers, so that was a must. We finally found Woodend Sanctuary in Chevy Chase, Maryland and fell in love with it. As soon as we booked the venue, friends and family started coming out of the woodwork telling us about how they – or their parents – or their friends – were also married at Woodend – so we knew it would be a special place.
Matt and I started planning by thinking about what kind of wedding we wanted – we wanted to create a wedding that felt warm, elegant and timeless. Our favorite weddings have been those where we feel like part of a community, and that’s exactly what Matt and I wanted to create. When it came time to really start planning, I had to pick and choose things to spend money on, and things to DIY. Even though all of our decor & paper was DIY (minus the floral), I didn’t want it to feel too DIY or rustic. Instead, I wanted it to feel really pulled together and classy.
I focused my colors on ivory/cream, gold, greens, grays/black – keeping it really simple and elegant. My sister-in-law is a fantastic artist, and created us a program cover/crest that we used throughout the event. The artwork reflected us and the venue – it had a lighthouse and a cactus on the top (Matt is from Boston) and the flowers on both sides of the crest were modeled after the floral arrangements Emily Harmon from Love Blooms used for my bouquet. We used the complete piece of art as our program cover, and then used pieces of it for the table numbers and menus, printing everything on the weekends at home.
Because D.C. can be hot in September, I created a fan that was a “Run of Show” – something that I create for every event I do at work, so I knew my friends and family would laugh about it. On every run of show, you have to write “for planning purposes only” — on the wedding run of show, it said “for party planning purposes only.” The fan was tied off with a black and white striped ribbon – as were the table numbers and the invitation envelope.
I’m obsessed with anything marble, so I created marble slabs from cardboard and marble contact paper for the floral arrangements to sit on both at dinner and cocktail hour. I also used the marble contact paper to cover a large piece of foam board, which I used as the table seating chart – I printed table numbers onto square pieces of paper I purchased at Paper Source, framed it with black cardstock and added gold push pins and a small black and white striped ribbon as accents. I also knew that I wanted to seat everyone individually at the table with escort cards, so I went to Home Depot and purchased small marble tiles where I wrote everyone’s name in calligraphy using a gold pen.
For rentals, I chose dark cream and ivory linens for dinner and cocktail hour. I knew I wanted the floral arrangements in gold vases, and there were gold chandeliers already in the tent at Woodend Sanctuary where the dinner would be, so I opted to have gold chiavari chairs. I wanted to do white on white place settings, so I chose a plain white dinner plate as the “charger” and had a salad plate that had leaf impressions on it for some texture. I also chose low etched wine and water goblets – since we were serving dinner family style, I didn’t want to have tall glasses that might get knocked over while guests were passing around food.
I found Emily from Love Blooms through a friend of Matt’s – she was fantastic and worked within my budget, which wasn’t huge, so she is a miracle worker! All of the floral connected and was the same blush, cream and white floral, from the bouquets to the cocktail hour floral to the dinner centerpieces. Emily took my vision of an asymmetrical chuppah with dark wood and our grandparents’ talliot and brought it to life. There were two great mantels in the mansion at Woodend, and I knew those would need a bit of decor too. My friends and I saved gorgeous liquor bottles for a year and Emily put greenery and blooms in the bottles and placed them asymmetrically on the mantels.
Photography: Rachel Solomon // Event Coordinator: Wit Weddings // Florist: Love Blooms // Venue: Woodend Sanctuary // Makeup: Irina Gerasimova // Hair: Billy Maloy, Scissor & Comb // Catering: Spilled Milk Catering // Gown: Monique Lhuillier via The Bridal Salon at Saks Jandel // Shoes: Jimmy Choo // Groom: J. Crew // Bridesmaids: Joanna August // Rentals: DC Rental // Guitar: Sean Holloran // Band: Jukeboxx Lite // Invitations: Paperless Post