same-sex wedding

Oscar and Blaine // Mexican Cultural Institute Wedding, Washington, DC // DC wedding coordinator

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah The Plannery's fab coordinator, Tarra, brings you this blog post about Oscar and Blaine's wedding at the Mexican Cultural Institute. I was so bummed I was unavailable for this one, but was very glad Tarra was able to assist these wonderful men. Take it away, Tarra!

Blaine + Oscar = Bloscar! This is the one case where I would say merging the couples’ names together was sheer genius. In many ways, Blaine and Oscar are complete opposites…Oscar love to dance, Blaine does not.  Blaine is very (self-admittedly) Type A, Oscar is not…but Bloscar truly had a personality of his own! Evidenced by a wedding full of details representing both Blaine and Oscar’s personalities and backgrounds.

On the one hand, this special day represented your traditional style wedding (tuxedos, bowties, a formal Episcopal service, etc.)  On the other hand, this wedding gave off a modern, laid-back yet sophisticated vibe - and of course it was extremely FUN!  I think this blend is exactly what Bloscar was going for.  The perfect Greek and Mexican amalgamation. Notable examples include the beautiful Greek crowning tradition performed at the ceremony, and the reception held at the Mexican Cultural Institute featuring a kick ass mariachi band! Even the menu created by Spilled Milk was inspired by Greek and Mexican cultures.  The best part was the Mario Bros photo booth theme!!! Granted, the Mario Bros are Italian, but still somehow it fit in like a glove!

The final thing I will mention about this fantastic wedding was the crazy déjà vu experience I had.  Same-sex marriage + Impeding Hurricane Joaquin = Tarra wondering how the heck she was in this boat again! What are the chances I would experience this two times, in two different roles…first as a bride, then as a wedding coordinator?   Never fear, Bloscar was in excellent hands if I do say so myself!  And it truly my pleasure working with them - Congrats again, Oscar and Blaine!

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Photo by Khalid Naji-Allah

Oscar and Blaine's Vendors:

Coordinator: Tarra, The Plannery

Venue: Mexican Cultural Institute

Catering: Spilled Milk

Photography: Khalid Naji-Allah

DJ: Khelan Bhatia

Lighting: Protech

Photobooth: Snapshot Moments

Cake: Touche Touchet Bakery

Food Truck: DC Slices


Becky & Melanie's DIY Arlington VA Wedding

Photos from the weddings I’ve worked on this year are slowly coming in and I’m so excited to share them with you!

First up are Becky and Mel, two fabulous ladies who are not only total sweethearts, but DIY goddesses. Seriously. I’ve never met a craftier bunch (as you’ll see from the photos, below). These wonderful women contacted me in January wondering if it was possible to plan a wedding in 4 months, and a DIY one at that. As you know, there aren’t many rules in my planning book, so I of course said that anything was possible.

Becky and Mel got married and had their post-ceremony reception at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Arlington, VA. All you thrifty brides and grooms out there should know that St. George's has a meeting hall that they rent out even to those not performing their ceremony in their church. It’s a great deal and a great space as long as you’re willing to give it a little TLC (which Becky and Mel were - with a little help from yours truly).

The wedding day was captured beautifully by Crystal at Lily B Photography (And did I mention this was the first wedding she’s ever done? She was a friend of the brides and a member of the church and while a super-talented photographer had not yet done a wedding. I thought she did an amazing job).

First of all, you have to love Becky and Mel because they had fabulous green shoes. That just needs to be mentioned straight away.

They got dressed (with a minor wardrobe malfunction which I was able to remedy) and then headed off to pre-ceremony portraits.

Followed by the ceremony in St. George’s beautiful sanctuary

Earlier in the day, and during the ceremony, I, along with some hired servers and awesome friends of the brides, were putting the reception together. This was a big job. Becky and Mel were the ultimate DIYers in that not only did they do all their own decor (down to the most amazing details), they self-catered their brunch reception as well.

There was a bloody mary bar. A waffle bar. A candy bar.


Basically - a ton of great food, awesome details, and a big ton o’ fun.

And did I mention the photobooth?

There was a photobooth


There was also Becky’s father who talked me into the photobooth with him


All in all, a really wonderful start to my wedding season, and a great day! And the best part about DIYing your wedding? You get to keep all the leftover booze.

Becky and Melanie's vendor team:

Venue: St. George's Episcopal Church
Photographer: Crystal Hardin, Lily B Photography
Photo booth: SillyShotz
Rentals: DC Rentals
Event Coordinator: Katie Wannen, The Plannery

Musings on Equality

“The federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity,” Justice Kennedy wrote. “By seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others, the federal statute is in violation of the Fifth Amendment.” It's been a pretty great day. DOMA was overturned and the ruling on Prop 8, though not the complete victory it could have been, at least means Californians get the marriage equality laws they want and most likely gay marriage will become legal there. Inequality is still out there (my marriage is recognized in GA while other same sex marriages are not), but I think the steps taken today are huge and important and historic.

My decision to be quite open about my support of same sex marriage wasn't a difficult one for me to make (as I've discussed previously here). But I've recently been reminded that it's a decision that others appreciate. I had an amazing time at the Say I Do Expo recently, and met some truly remarkable couples (that I'm dying to work with - call me, please!). Beyond that, I recently had a vendor at a wedding take me aside at the end of the evening. He said he'd taken a look at my website and that he wanted to thank me for being so open about my support, because he was going to his sister's wedding the following week. She was marrying another woman. His quiet and simple thank you really struck me. It reminded me that though my support is easy and I don't give it a second thought, there are a lot of other people out there who still don't support marriage equality and same sex couples. So here's hoping today is yet another step in the right direction. Love is love. And rights are rights.

p.s. Edith Windsor rules

Say I Do Expo 2013

I'm baaaaack! Wow. Wedding season hit and I disappeared from this blog. I'm going to try and be better for the rest of the season!

One of the things keeping me so busy, besides the lovely weddings I've been working on, was the Say I Do Expo which I was honored to attend this past Sunday. It was a wonderful day - I met a bunch of amazing LGBT couples about to get engaged, some who had just gotten engaged, and others very close to their wedding date! I wasn't sure what to expect from this expo but it was a truly wonderful experience and had a great turn-out. I also met a lot of awesome vendors as well - one of whom took some pics of my booth and was kind enough to share them with me! Big thank you to photographer Chris Ferenzi - you all need to check him out. Looking forward to working with some of the couples I met at Say I Do this year and next!






(I look a little tired... perhaps doing a wedding the day before with a 15 hour work day wasn't the best idea?)

Marriage Equality

I'm very sad I'm unable to be downtown today, supporting marriage equality. But wanted to do a quick shout-out here to show my support. As I've mentioned in previous posts, I love love. And in my opinion, you can't be in the wedding industry, and love love and be anti-gay marriage. As the Onion pointed out so well today, I can't believe we're still dealing with and discussing this issue. So let's do this, Supreme Court. Seriously. I pray that by the end of the day I feel thankful for having personally witnessed a great moment in history.

And let's not forget: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."



p.s. This is also a great article my husband made me aware of. I love hearing words of support and encouragement where you least expect it.

Say No To The Dress

Disclaimer: this post is for the ladies. I love me a lady in a tuxedo. I personally feel super powerful and sexy wearing them. Call it a pantsuit, call it menswear for women - whatever it is, I love it. And I especially love women that rock it on their wedding day. So I thought I’d indulge in my love for the pantsuit and share some of my favorites today.

I gotta start with my all-time favorites which are way out of my price range, but needed to be included. These two Alexander McQueen from the Resort 2013 collection are STUNNING.


I love this high-wasted tuxedo that Leelee Sobieski rocked back in ‘11


Apparently the CFDA awards in ’11 brought out the amazing tuxes cause I also adore this one Kirsten Dunst wore


These Zach Posen wide leg trousers are sadly sold out, but I love the art deco feel, and with a bit more of a feminine touch


via Lyst


Rachel Zoe knows a thing or two about menswear for women. I love this whole look with the 70’s flare


Finally, East Side Bride had a great post about how and where ladies should shop for suits. It includes some helpful advice and the comments section had good tidbits as well.

Oh, and OffBeat Bride just featured a wedding with bridesmaids in suits. BRIDESMAIDS IN SUITS! I love it. LOVE. IT.

If you rocked a tux at your wedding, send it to me to share! I love them and it will bring me much tailored happiness!


Maryland, I love you

  I love love. I wouldn't (and couldn't) be in the wedding business if I didn't. And so while I try not to get too political on this blog, the one thing I never shy away from is my support of marriage equality. Though I'd like to believe I'd support it no matter what, it is personal. I have too many family members, too many great friends, too many wonderful colleagues that are directly impacted by marriage equality to ignore this basic civil right.

So I am delighted (and thrilled, and giddy, and basically jumping and leaping around my house) that Maryland's people came out and voted yesterday - a historic day in which, for the first time ever, the people upheld marriage equality by vote.

Politics can get me down sometimes - but the basic awesomeness of love always makes me feel better and gives me the warm fuzzies. I simply do not believe our nation can be hurt by having MORE love in this world. More commitment, more love, more marriages, and more weddings in the Metro area? Yes, please. Just, yes. So thank you, Marylandians - you truly inspire me and give me a sh*t-ton of hope.


From Obama's speech last night:

"What makes America exceptional are the bonds that hold together the most diverse nation on earth. The belief that our destiny is shared; that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another and to future generations. The freedom which so many Americans have fought for and died for come with responsibilities as well as rights. And among those are love and charity and duty and patriotism. That’s what makes America great...

I believe we can keep the promise of our founders, the idea that if you’re willing to work hard, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from or what you look like or where you love. It doesn’t matter whether you’re black or white or Hispanic or Asian or Native American or young or old or rich or poor, able, disabled, gay or straight, you can make it here in America if you’re willing to try."