Washington Real Weddings: Rachel and Roman

This lively wedding includes a late-night summer street fair—with popcorn, pinwheels, and corn dogs—at an Alexandria hotel.

The newlyweds with a “Just Married” banner. All photographs by Stephen Bobb of Love Life Images

Rachel and Roman, who first met at work, wanted their August 20, 2011, wedding to resemble a “summer fair, colorful, with vintage accents,” says the bride. A computer specialist and freelance designer, she created many of the wedding decor details herself.

“Rachel was all about having a cohesive visual style, which turned into a lot of late-night crafting projects!” says Roman.

The wedding was held at the Hotel Monaco in Alexandria, a city where the couple often hang out. “Ripple” by the Grateful Dead played as Rachel walked down the aisle, and “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles accompanied the recessional; both were performed by a flute and guitar duo.

The pair wed under a birch-pole chuppah adorned with paper pinwheels the bride created. Guests sipped lemonade to keep cool.


Afterward, Rachel, Roman, and their 95 guests enjoyed Lillet-accented martinis (Roman’s favorite drink) and peach mimosas (Rachel’s favorite) during a cocktail hour on the hotel porch. Escort cards, created by Etsy vendor Kate Greiner, were shaped like tiny pennants. Guests signed vintage postcards in lieu of a guestbook.

At the reception, lush floral arrangements of roses, football mums, dahlias, stock, yarrow, hydrangeas, and spider mums were placed in milk glass vases and blue bell jars. Napkins featured paper pinwheel rings the bride and her bridesmaids created.

“Our ingenious guests began wearing the pinwheels in their hair, as bracelets, or around their ties,” says Rachel.

Guests dined on chicken breast roulade with spinach, mushrooms, and Gruyere; garlic mashed potatoes; and grilled sirloin. The wedding cake featured a tier of white cake with lemon and cream cheese fillings, and two tiers of red velvet. The cake was adorned with a custom wooden topper: a miniature version of the couple with their cat.

Later in the evening, a “summer street fair” was held in the Hotel Monaco’s courtyard. Carnival favorites such as gelato, corn dogs, cotton candy, root beer floats, funnel cake, and popcorn were all served, and a photobooth entertained guests.

“We couldn’t imagine a better ending,” says Rachel.



Photographer: Stephen Bobb of Love Life Images

Wedding Planner: Pam Barefoot of Atrendy Wedding

Ceremony and Reception Venue, and Catering: Hotel Monaco, in Alexandria

Gown: Jenny Lee, purchased at Carine’s Bridal Atelier

Hair: Elegant Hair by Giselle

Makeup: Ericka Sykes

Bridesmaid Dresses: LulaKate, purchased at Bella Bridesmaid

Groom’s Suit: Jos. A Bank

Invitation and Paper Goods Designer: The bride (she has her own design business)

Floral Designer: Philippa Tarrant Floral Design

Cake: Fluffy Thoughts Cakes

Ceremony Music: Musical Expressions

Reception Music: In Full