Archived

SUSIE & MICHAEL | 9/28/19 | Mayflower Hotel Washington DC

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It was great to be back at Mayflower Hotel Washington DC the second time this year! No matter how many times we shoot here, there’s something always fresh and unique to capture. It definitely helped as well that Susie & Michael were always game to explore the hotel to get some shots.

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. 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 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!

Ceremony

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. 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 from Wandering Woo Photography 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!

Reception

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 DC, 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!

To check out another film from the Mayflower Hotel, click here.

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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Mayflower Hotel DC Wedding

Jillian & Daniel

Jillian & Daniel | 5.26.19 | Mayflower Hotel DC Wedding

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The Mayflower Hotel DC Wedding of Jillian & Daniel was one for the books! It always helps when you have the amazing vision of Jillian Jenkins from Elle Ellinghaus Designs. She and her team pulled together a grand, classy wedding at one of my favorite hotels: The Mayflower Hotel in the heart of Washington DC.

We spent the morning with the bride and groom opening each others’ gifts surrounded by their loved ones. I always love it when they do the first look between the father and his daughter.

Tears were shed, and I can’t imagine to shed my own for my own daughter’s wedding (Lord willing).

Soon after was the first look between Jillian & Daniel which occurred right outside the hotel. Shortly after was some bridal party photos after with the wonderful husband and wife team of Audra Wrisely Photography.

I believe this was my third time at this hotel, and I was surprised how fresh everything still felt in terms of getting our shots.

It helps us that every photographer has their own vision and style which helps in the different parts of a venue or location being used.

I also love how the hotel is in the heart of DC and right on the streets to capture the busyness and fast paced environment. It’s no New York, but DC still has its own life, history, and beauty.

Ceremony & Reception

We then began to setup for the ceremony while capturing the Ketubah signing as well. I can definitely appreciate and love Jewish traditions having studied the Bible in seminary and on my own time.

Although I am losing my ability to read Hebrew, the songs and spoken language still resonate throughout the signing, ceremony, and even the Hora dance!

After the ceremony, we began to setup for the reception and I am always in awe of Jillian Jenkins and her designs for a wedding, especially the reception. Such beautiful work!

Upon entering for their grand entrance, the reception officially began with their first dance surrounded by all their loved friends and family, hilarious and heartwarming toasts from both sets of parents, hilarious toasts, and the traditional hora dance, all guided by the fabulous Black Tie Band.

We are honored to have captured such a full wedding experience in somewhat of a familiar setting of the Jewish custom with awesome vendors and a beautiful venue!

We are blessed we can do this and create everlasting memories like these for our couples! Congrats again, Jillian & Daniel! Mazel Tov!

To check out another Jewish wedding, click here.

Vendor Credits

Venue: The Mayflower Hotel
Planning + Design: Elle Ellinghaus Design
Photography: Audra Wrisley Photography Florals: Wicked Willow
Band: Black Tie Band
Rentals: Party Plus Tents + Events Makeup: Alison Harper & Company
Officiant: Rabbi Jack Luxemberg
Gown: Ania Bridal

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Mandarin Oriental DC Hotel

Anna & David | Washington D.C.

Anna & David | 3.23.19 | Mandarin Oriental DC Hotel

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I had the pleasure to reunite with Anna’s family having shot her older sister, Hannah’s wedding a few years ago. Their day started out getting ready at what I think is the best hotel in DC, the Mandarin Oriental DC. In addition their customer service was the best I had experienced!

Usually at this time some of the cherry blossoms would have been blossoming, but we were a tad bit early, however, the first look outside in the courtyard due to the wind made for great video and a dramatic entrance! They braved the cold which made it worse with the wind and started some bridal party photos which continued into the National Gallery of Art.

Soon after the ceremony commenced in the hotel followed by the traditional Korean tea ceremony called the “Paebaek.” There’s a tradition where the parents of the couple throw dates onto a piece of cloth the bride and groom are holding to catch.

Typically many dates are caught, but surprisingly only one was caught which means they will be having one child.  It’s just a tradition! However, Susanna and I always talk about how we wish we did a Paebaek for our wedding. We regret what could have been more memories to cherish and for all of our future children and grandchildren to see.

Shortly after, the reception commenced with the traditional elements of the first dance, a touching dance with David and his mother, toasts, cake, and a bouquet toss. Anna & David couldn’t have been any more sweeter to us and made for such a fun, relaxed, yet epic wedding day. See for yourself above and enjoy their beautiful union at the Mandarin Oriental DC Hotel!

If you want to check out another Korean-themed wedding, click here.

Vendor Credits

Venue: Mandarin Oriental DC
Florals: Atelier Ashley Flowers
Photography: Sincereli Photography Hair & Makeup: Susan Lim Makeup Artist DJ & Lights: NYX Entertainment & Events
Cake: Cake

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District Winery DC Wedding

Vineetha & Nihar | Washington DC

Vineetha & Nihar | 3.15.19 | District Winery DC Wedding

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It was my first time shooting a District Winery DC Wedding. Due to high winds they moved the ceremony indoors, however, the light still shined well during the traditional Hindu ceremony.

However, the day first started with us for Vineetha & Nihar’s first look.
Both their attire looked stunning and they were so excited to see each other for the first time dressed up. Vineetha was especially happy to see Nihar in his “cute” turban.

Soon after the first look, the traditional Baraat took place. For those who don’t know, think of the Baraat as one long entrance from the groom to see his new bride awaiting him.

Some Baraats have elephants, but Nihar rode on a horse along the streets next to District Winery and eventually made his way to Vineetha’s parents and family waiting for Nihar and his crew of dancers and family.

They performed some Indian mantras and traditions which you can see in the video above.

Their ceremony began beautifully and went off without a hitch, despite the many customs and traditions that took place under the Mandap canopy, such as the mantras, pouring of certain liquids, circling around the fire, some more bling, etc.

They both got changed in time for the reception and entered the reception with their bridal party with the parents dances shortly following. After, they performed their first dance to John Legend’s “All of Me” with a beautiful orchestrated dance. Throughout the rest of the night were the sweet and meaningful toasts from beloved ones and a casual night with dancing, followed by their epic sparklers exit.

I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day in March in Washington DC and for such an awesome couple as Vineetha & Nihar. Congrats again to you two!!

Vendor Credits

Venue: District Winery
Florals/Event Design/Mandap Design: Sarah Khan Event Styling
Photography: Michael Stavrinos Event Planner: Rebecca Chuvalas
Hair: JSL Visions Makeup: Jacqueline Gellner
DJ: DJ Phlipz

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