An Elegant Pavilion Wedding With a Retro Twist

Rachel and Alex’s big day in October of last year included two different settings, bright dahlia-filled arrangements, and plenty of twinkling string lighting. The couple, who met through the dating app Hinge, decided to hold their ceremony outdoors at the scenic Rockwood Manor. There they exchanged vows underneath a flower-filled chuppah, which was handmade by the bride’s uncle and even included the couple’s name carved into a wooden sign that dangled above them during  the “I dos.”

After the garden-inspired ceremony, guests were transported to a more retro-inspired setting, Glen Echo Park’s Bumper Car Pavilion. The rest of the night included caricature artists, mixing and mingling, and a sit-down dinner of beef short rib, salmon, pumpkin sage ravioli, and a vegan option of risotto-stuffed poblano chiles. Yum! It was important for the couple to find a venue (venues) that represented their personalities. “We wanted to find a venue space/spaces that reflected us,” explains the couple. “Beyond that, we wanted delicious food and wine, and to prioritize throwing a fun party for our family and friends.”

The couple ended the night with a special treat: a lemon cream and carrot cake were served as well as apple cider donuts from Apple House, “our favorite spot in VA,” says the couple. They even had a late-night snack option, too. “We also served Bahn Mi from a favorite restaurant in Seven Corners before the reception ended,” says Rachel. Check out their early fall wedding below for more details.

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The Details:

Photographer: Lauren Swann Photography | Venue: Rockwood Manor (ceremony); Glen Echo Park (reception) | Planning & Design: Lula Mae Events | Florist: Colleen West | Invitations: Smitten on Paper from Declaration of Invitations | Catering & Cake: Main Event Caterers | Hair Stylist: Beauty by Sue  | Makeup Artist: Real Doll Makeup | Bride’s Attire Hayley Paige from Love Couture in Potomac | Bridesmaids’ Attire: Adrianna Papell | Music/Entertainment: District Strings (ceremony music); Dan Bloom (reception) | Transportation: Awards Limousine Service (wedding party); O’Brien Bus Service (guests) | Videographer: Patrick McNamara of Drawn to the Image | Caricature Artist: Marie Cheek


Assistant Editor, Washingtonian Weddings

Jacqueline comes to Washingtonian with close to five years of digital content experience and SEO best practices. She previously was a senior editorial associate at WeddingWire, specializing in wedding fashion, and before that, an assistant at Vow Bride. Originally from Norfolk, Virginia, she now lives in Columbia Heights.

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