(Follow this link to view all the images from Martha & Steve’s wedding. The password is Martha’s maiden name.)

The childhood church for Steve and his bride Martha was the setting for an exuberant wedding celebration in Alexandria, Virginia recently. Their entire wedding party, including four ring bearers and a flower girl, all children of Martha’s sister and her husband Amy and Ryan, all descended on the church just before their guests began arriving, filling the church to near capacity on a gorgeous spring day. To add to the personal touches, the Right Reverend Marc Andrus, Episcopalian bishop of California and childhood pastor to Steve, traveled eastward to preside over the ceremony at Emmanuel Episcopal, offering a practical and heartfelt homily during the service. Martha wore a stunning Monique Lhilluier gown which completely wowed Steve, waiting for her at the altar. After their first kiss as husband and wife, and just as they began recessing, they both paused to hug their beaming parents in the front pew.

The floral decor at the church and later, at Amy and Ryan’s home for the tented reception was, as usual for Marianne at Helen Olivia, just stunning! Pam Barefoot, planner extraordinaire of ATrendy Wedding, designed the event’s decor down to the placement of the name cards. The tent was just gorgeous and their guests loved seeing it as they entered after hanging out for cocktail hour at the pool drinking mint juleps and lounging on the furniture outside. While we love capturing individual moments on a wedding day, the eye candy of details is still great fun to document for our clients, and their reception was amazing.

The five kids who served as ring bearers and flower girl fulfilled their duties with aplomb, and provided us with so many great moments to capture, perhaps even more than usual with little ones. They sat on the edge of the dance floor, watching Martha & Steve dance for the first time to Nina Simone’s Feeling Good, along with the rest of their family and friends. The party then started in earnest, with The Mustangs getting everybody (and seemingly their brother) out on the dance floor for the rest of the night. There was only a pause in the dancing for the delicious dinner that Occasions catering put together for everyone with cuisine-themed stations in the tent’s corners. We love working with them–such great food and wonderful service. Fancy Cakes by Leslie set up a multi-tiered confection complete with chocolate petals for the cake cutting, and Pam even arranged for a massive dessert bar with not only bite-sizes sweets but even frozen cheesecake dipped in chocolate, on a stick. Mmmmm…good!

Later in the evening Steve grabbed the mic and played it up to a roaring crowd, including his wife, singing along with the band. We love it when we see impromptu songs performed like that! The couple was, throughout the day, so relaxed and happy it was infectious to all around them. It was a huge party and everyone clearly enjoyed spending time with the happy couple and their families. Thanks, you two, for having us play a part in your celebration, and congratulations!

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