Swapna & Bobby | 10/05/19

Swapna & Bobby got married at their lavish spectacular wedding in Northern Virginia at the Westfields Marriott Dulles Hotel. It was great to be back after almost 5 years had passed. It’s a local favorite for different cultural weddings. Previously we had done a Muslim/Hindu wedding here and it’s a great place to hold a really large party.

We were privileged to capture day number 3 of their 3 day extravaganza. If you didn’t know by now, Hindu weddings are multiple days with various types of customs and traditions. The more days the better. Get with the program, Americans!

The day started with both Swapna & Bobby being so welcoming as they were getting ready and prepping for their first look outside in the front of the hotel. A few tears were shed as all her jewelry was being put on her. I’m sure everything must have been pretty heavy! But you wouldn’t know from her excitement to see Bobby!

After more tears were shed upon seeing each other, we did some photo sessions with the always amazing Nat Wongsaroj Photography and the groomsmen and Bobby made their way further out in the front to prep for their Baraat. Think of the Baraat as the bride walking down the aisle to meet her groom, but this time it’s a long celebratory walk/dance with groom’s side and family and friends making their way to greet the bride’s family and friends and perform a mini-ceremony. During this walk/dance, sometimes the groom is on an elephant, horse, but in this case Bobby was in a nice car from Regal Limo Inc.

As the official ceremony began shortly afterwards the Baraat, Swapna makes her way with her parents in the outdoor ceremony beautifully arranged by Yaadein Weddings with flowers from Nova Blooms by Megan. I love seeing how Indian ceremonies include so much of the parents, relatives, and friends in their unique customs. There’s definitely some traces I see in Korean tea ceremonies with the types of foods involved, colors, different families’ blessings to the couple, and even the circling that occurs.

As they made their way out to their car for an exit, they made their way back to get some rest as well as change into their second formal outfits. We did some quick nighttime shots with Nat and began setting up for the grand entrance into their grand ballroom.

Definitely a highlight of the day is all the dancing and choreography involved. Bobby & Swapna performed a beautiful first dance followed by many performances from their bridal party and a highlight from the bride – a large group flash mob!

You can witness all of these in their highlights above! Watch and leave a comment! And enjoy this most special day in the lives of Swapna & Bobby!


Vendor Credits

Venue: Westfields Marriott Dulles
Planner: Preetie Exclusive Events
Decor: Yaadein Weddings Mendhi: Henna by Shazia

Florist: Nova Blooms by Megan, LLC Photography: Nat Wongsaroj Photography
Hair & Makeup: Salon SBS

Transportation: Regal Limo Inc.
DJ: DJ Lucky USA Bride Wedding Outfit: Frontier Bridal Boutique

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SUSIE & MICHAEL | 9/28/19

It was great to be back at Mayflower Hotel in Washington DC the second time this year! No matter how many times we shoot here, there’s something always fresh and unique to capture and it doesn’t help that Susie & Michael were always game to walk in and around the hotel to get some shots as well as some shots in nearby Georgetown.

But the day started out with some quick shots with Michael and his groomsmen. I brought along Andrew which was his first wedding assisting me (who is now my official second shooter)! Michael was relaxed and enjoying his time and we were able to capture some of his details quickly before moving into the bridal suite. Susie was so kind as well which added to the comfortability of us shooting and being in our element. Part of our job is to make our couples comfortable and relaxed as they have so many things to do and think about. Our couples being kind and relaxed is just the cherry and Susie & Michael were just that!

As much as we love first looks, we love just as much first looks at the ceremony. I remember bawling at my own wedding as I saw my bride, Susanna, walking down the aisle with Canon-D playing in the background. Michael also became emotional seeing Susie walk down the aisle and we just live for these moments!

The ceremony went without a hitch and they both gave eloquent, heartfelt vows to each other which you can hear in the video above! Although the ceremony went without a hitch, the start time was a little delayed which made for a rush of a trip to Georgetown to capture their portrait sessions. Paul Woo was awesome to work with because he’s quick and fast! He had to be, but you’ll be amazed the amount of things that we can capture and you’ll never be able to tell when looking at our video that we were rushed for time, so don’t sweat it if things get delayed. Delays happen all the time and we are ready for it!

We love Historic Georgetown as there are so many picturesque scenes with the old and modern. When we all Uber’d back to Mayflower Hotel, we got ready for the grand entrance which we love at the Mayflower because they welcome everyone on a terrace in the grand ballroom. They performed their first dance and was followed immediately by the Lion Dancers, which is a traditional wedding custom and performance from acrobatic Chinese dancers – Michael, being Chinese.

With Susie, being Korean, they also did a Paebaek traditional tea ceremony which we love shooting because Susanna and I did not do one at our own wedding. The lack channels into passion in what we do which I have expressed multiple times throughout the years! Haha.

The rest of the evening went smoothly and beautifully with Fluffy Thoughts Cakes always delivering extravagant cakes and a sparkler exit in the back of the Mayflower. We are again so happy for Susie & Michael entrusting us to capture their wedding day and also entrusting our vision in the final product! Congrats again to you two!

Check out their Highlights above, leave a comment, and be inspired by the awesome vendor team with their links below!

Vendor Credits

Venue: Mayflower Hotel Autograph Collection DC
Planner: Gilded Leaf Events
Florist: Blooms Reston Floral Photography: Wandering Woo Photography
Hair: Hairxjojo

Makeup: Suhreal Artistry
DJ: DJ Phlipz Cake: Fluffy Thoughts Cakes Lion Dancers: Yee Association @ Washington CYC Korean Paebaek Ceremony: Wedding Story, LLC

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I can’t say enough good things about this destination wedding we shot in Central California this past summer.  Coming from the previous wedding’s beautiful, but most humid shoot ever to 70s degree weather all day and night along Pismo Beach was absolutely amazing.

I got to meet Irene for the first time in her respective hotel rooms at the Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa. I got to meet a few of her friends and family along with her & Barry’s precious son, Henli.  Turns out Barry happens to be a fellow UC Irvine alumni and we were reminiscing about our college days with such a weird mascot as the anteater.

The ceremony was overlooking the pristine water on such a beautiful day as they read their beautiful vows to each other and went right into the cocktail hour on the nearby lawn. After some photos with the two, there were some introductory toasts and back onto the lawn for their first dance. I loved how the rest of the night took place on this lawn and how carefree everyone was. Such a pure and intimate celebration with LOTS of dancing, especially from Henli.

We were able to sneak Barry & Irene away into a nearby bluff for some sunset photos, after Barry changed into some comfortable and dress shorts (very cool choice!) Again, pure magic with these two as they watched the sunset and were just themselves and soaked up the night.

It had felt like a long time since we were able to cover a reception outside and it was such a plus to do so in an amazing location. It was my first wedding away from our new home in Maryland, and it acted like a nice break from all the moving and transition, even though I had been flying a lot already from West Coast to East Coast. So thankful Irene & Barry found me to capture their special union together in such a beautiful and intimate destination wedding.

 

Vendor Credits

Photography: Allyson Magda Photo
Photobooth & Churro Cart: Grand Celebrations
DJ/MC: Epic Entertainment Slo
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The moment I stepped into Tara & Chris’ hotel suite in Richmond, Virginia, it felt like such a safe space. Tara & Chris were so welcoming, surrounded by their children, and I think 6(?) dachsunds! Mommy & Daddy dachsund with their 4 children puppies. It was a whole family affair!

We arrived at Lola’s Farmhouse Bistro, a small farm/restaurant with the ceremony setup right next to the restaurant and under some trees where there was just enough sunlight cascading down, that it created such beautiful light – especially for Tara’s grand entrance into her ceremony with her son. Tomika Arnold Carter brought down the house with her rendition of Amazing Grace and a Whitney Houston’s “I Believe in You and Me”. Already, the Spirit was filling up this wedding! And that wasn’t just the first half. She definitely helped bring a soulful and beautiful spirit to this wedding.

After some nice sunset portraits, Tomika helped Tara & Chris with the bridal party jump right into an awesome celebration of the couple with a very lively Gospel song. The energy was on fire! The rest of the evening had a hilarious, yet heartfelt toast from the matron of honor, another powerhouse performance from Tomika for their first dance with Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing” cake, bouquet, some traditional dances, and some real all-night dancing going on.

 

 

Did I mention how good the vendor meal, which was food from the restaurant, was? Lobster ravioli!

Despite this being one of the most humid weddings I’ve ever shot, the small and intimate feel throughout the day truly made it a joy to work, let alone being filled with God’s Spirit throughout the day! Every wedding we shoot is special and this continues to add to special experiences and feeling so honored to have captured these amazing moments for this couple and their family. Enjoy their Highlights edit, leave a comment, and watch their entire first dance as well above!

 

 

 

for your notethank you