It was nearly a decade after they first met as students at James Madison University that Sheila Nasseri and Thomas Fadoul III said “I do” at Murray Hill in Leesburg, Virginia. The couple’s stunning spring wedding included a traditional Iranian ceremony outdoors and a colorful reception in a beautifully draped barn peppered with a palette of bright coral, deep navy, and soft yellow. Photos by Megan Noonan Photography.
Virginia natives Sheila and Thomas (who goes by Tommy) first met as freshman at James Madison—they were assigned to the same dorm—but it wasn’t until they literally ran into one another at the cafeteria salad bar on Sheila’s second day of a new job nine years later that sparks flew. “Lots of coffee and lunch dates turned into catchup sessions, which turned into officially dating four months later,” the couple says.
Shelia—happy to see a familiar face—recalls thinking Tommy had great hair. He was impressed by the salad she was creating for lunch. Their first official date was a romantic dinner al fresco in the courtyard at Old Anglers Inn, and two-and-a-half years later, Tommy proposed to Sheila in that same spot at her 30th birthday celebration, where his toast turned into a surprise proposal in front of their closest family and friends.
Just under a year later, on May 29, the two wed in a traditional Iranian ceremony—including a beautiful traditional Iranian sofreh that the bride’s mother and aunt put together—overlooking the Potomac River in Leesburg’s Murray Hill. Though rain threatened the day, the weather held out and the couple’s garden party with a Middle-Eastern twist went off without a hitch.
After the waterfront ceremony, the newlyweds took a stroll through the woods from the ceremony, to the venue’s rustic, yet romantic, barn to celebrate.
“Sheila wanted to combine bright punchy coral tones with navy and soft yellows to really create an impactful color story,” says wedding planner Tabitha Roberts. “Some personal touches that I love [include] the place card ribbon table settings and the rustic farm accents.”
To kick the reception off, Sheila and Tommy danced their first dance to Leon Bridges’ “Coming Home.” For dinner, guests dined on their choice of rockfish, tenderloin, or summer veggie pasta from Spilled Milk Catering, and for dessert, a yellow cake with whipped cream and fresh fruit by Yas Bakery.
The couple’s signature drinks were cucumber mint gimlets and Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin IPA. Floral arrangements throughout were designed by J. Morris Flowers, and included peach, coral and orange roses, peach, orange and yellow tea roses, orange gerbera daisies, white and peach stock, green hydrangea, green hanging amaranthus, curly willow, jasmine vine, salal and eucalyptus.
The pair, who currently reside in Cambridge, Massachusetts, honeymooned in Thailand.
Photographer: Megan Noonan Photography Event Coordinator: Roberts & Co. Events Venue: Murray Hill Florist: J. Morris Flowers Invitations: Minted Caterers: Spilled Milk Catering Cake: Yas Bakery Hair Dresser: Nicole McConnell Bride’s Gown: Romona Keveza, Hannelore’s Bridal Boutique Groom’s Tux: J. Crew Transportation: Road Yachts Music/Entertainment: Jarrett Laskey (ceremony); DJ Saam Bozorghmehr (reception) Draping: Elegant Momentz Tent: A&A Tents Rentals: DC Rentals