Mary and Geoff were married at the beautiful Gambrill State Park, just outside Frederick. This wasn’t your typical traditional wedding. Mary wore a short green dress. Geoff changed into a Flying Dog T-shirt minutes after the ceremony. They cooked their own crabs. (Basically, it was super awesome.) Mary and Geoff live Downtown Frederick and wanted to incorporate their love of nature into their day. They invited only their closest friends and family to keep the day intimate. After a sweet ceremony officiated by their friend, they headed to Gambrill’s Tea Room for a crab feast and dancing on the outside deck. Our own editor, MK of Mary Kate McKenna Photography, captured this perfect summer wedding… enjoy!
Some people say that Volt restaurant helped put Frederick on the map. Its executive chef, Bryan Voltaggio, lent his name and his culinary prowess to the iconic restaurant, and many flock to the North Market Street hotspot for a special dinner. The historic Downtown Frederick restaurant played the perfect host for the August wedding of Thea and David. From the bride and groom:
Volt’s food and service are without equal and their events coordinator, Julie Rudzin South, went above and beyond our expectations. Surrounded with joy and love by our friends and family, some of the most memorable moments of our lives were artfully captured by our photographer. We are eternally thankful and we could not have wished for a more beautiful day!
It all started with an e-mail to a girl who I had never met in person before. My mom had given me an email address and told me I should write first and say ‘hello.’ All I knew was that her name was Kim. First there were e-mail exchanges, then telephone calls and eventually our face-to-face meeting at her place in North Carolina. When I first saw Kim, she was wearing the prettiest white dress when she opened the door. She later confessed to me that it took her hours to prepare for our first date and that she was very nervous. I was definitely nervous, too. Every new memory we shared with each other has been special, from our first time having sushi together to eventually planning our wedding. Our paths were set so that we would one day meet each other and no matter how we got to this point, we ended up in each other’s lives as husband and wife.
Isn’t that just so sweet? We love their casual stroll downtown and how Daysy documented their love of Downtown Frederick. Thanks for sharing and congrats to Kim-Ngan and John!
WORDS BY MOLLY FELLIN SPENCE | PHOTOS BY DAVID S. SPENCE
Earlier this month MK gave us a few good reasons why you need to take engagement photos. So, now that you have no doubt that an e-session is the right thing to do, you need some tips and inspiration to make it happen! And that’s where I come in… here’s 4 tips to help you plan and execute a great engagement session with your photographer.
TIP ONE: PLAN AROUND YOUR FAVORITE SEASON
Now that temperatures are warming up in the region, lots of couples are venturing outside to their favorite park or other outdoor destination for e-session photos. Spring is a great season, with all of the colorful flowers and blossoming trees. Keep in mind that spring can also mean rain showers, so bring along a pair of rainboots and an umbrella for some puddle-splashing fun. Summertime provides plenty of daylight and loads of location options (the beach! your family’s lake house! an amusement park!). Summer can also be your photographer’s busiest season, schedule-wise, so be sure to plan way ahead for this season. Fall colors can’t be beat, and temperature-wise, this season is pretty perfect. If you’re going for a cozy, warm feeling in your images, this is the season to plan for. And don’t count out winter! Sure, it’s cold outside, but bundling up in layers and playing in the snow can make for some awesome natural portraits. If you and your other half love skiing and snowman-making, consider planning your e-session in the colder months. Bonus: you’ll likely have your pick of dates and times, since this is the slowest season for most photogs!
TIP TWO: INCORPORATE YOUR PERSONALITY
How do you spend your time together as a couple? Do you like to hang out with friends at your favorite local pub? Are you big fans of wineries? Or can you be found strapping on your hiking boots and heading out on a long, windy trail? Maybe you love to cook elaborate meals together? Think about your passions as a couple, and ask your photographer to incorporate those into your engagement session. Formal portraits are nice, but capturing you two together, being yourselves, and enjoying what you’re doing together can make for some truly awesome, memorable images.
TIP THREE: BRING ALONG YOUR FURRY FRIENDS.
Did you two become pet parents together? Then, bring along your furry friend to your engagement session! This may be the only time to get photos of you three together, since many venues don’t allow pets to attend wedding ceremonies or receptions. Quick tip: if you’d like to include your pet, it may be a good idea to enlist a friend or family member to come along as well, to serve as a pet wrangler. You’re probably going to want a few photos of just the two of you, and you’ll need some extra help during those times.
TIP FOUR: RELAX AND HAVE FUN!
I know, when someone tells you to relax that can be one of the most difficult things to do. Here’s how to accomplish it: Don’t overthink it. Wear clothes that make you feel comfortable. Go barefoot if it feels right. If you love getting dressed up, then do it! But if that makes you cringe, don’t be afraid to wear a T-shirt and shorts – if that’s truly you. Don’t worry about matching colors with each other, but do try to wear complementary colors. Most importantly: Be yourself, and your photos will reflect a relaxed, happy couple.
Molly Fellin Spence is an editor for Heart of Frederick, and co-owns Spence Photographics, a Downtown Frederick photojournalism studio, with her husband, chief photographer David S. Spence.
Jennifer and Alex said their vows under a weeping willow at Baker Park, took a pedicab ride down Market Street after, then ended the day with a backyard reception at their own home. It was a breezy, beautiful summer day, captured by Mary Kate McKenna Photography. Here’s how Jennifer describes the day and the events leading up to it…
‘Blue Moon no orange’ were the first words spoken. Alex may not remember, but that was also the first night he ‘unofficially’ told me… and the rest of the bar… he loved me.
I was general manager at a Downtown Frederick restaurant and Alex was in on a Friday night for happy hour. According to him it was my ‘sassy lime green skirt and red hair’ that caught his eye. As time and Blue Moons went by, Alex had drunk up enough courage to introduce himself. Cheesing like a cheshire cat he says to me in a nutshell, “I’m Alex, I’m Russian…date me.” How could I resist such a smooth talker? Our first date was at Café Nola. I will never forget where we sat, what we were drinking, and the black T-shirt and jeans he had on. Thinking back on it , we both laugh that we couldn’t hear a word the other was saying over the music… we just smiled and nodded at each other the whole time.
Alex and I eloped while on vacation in Miami. It was the perfect day…the weather was gorgeous, the scenery was mesmerizing. After snorkeling we drove to a nearby mom-and-pop shop, bought our $30 sterling silver wedding bands, and then tied the knot at a nearby courthouse, bathing suits, flip flops and all. I thought that was the best day of my life… until we did it again.
A year later, Alex and I decided to get married again and include our closest family and friends. We wanted the ceremony to be in Baker Park where Alex proposed, and the reception to be in our backyard. We wanted the wedding to have a rustic feel to it, and I wanted to make as much of the decorations as I could. I wanted to cater the wedding myself, too. We hired a friend of a friend to man the grill, and he served hotdogs, burgers and chicken skewers. There were a lot of long nights before the wedding, and I couldn’t have finished it without the help of my mom and my maid of honor. As another bride once said, ‘If you want it done right, do it yourself. But if you want it done at all, let people help.’
Since Alex is Russian, we incorporated some Russian wedding traditions. Right after the ceremony, we all walked to a nearby bridge and took a lock brought by Alex’s mom from Russia and locked it on the bridge. We then took the key and threw it in the water to show that our love is locked forever. Next was the throwing of rice and Russian coins at our feet as we walked up to our house. There we were greeted by Alex’s mom who had a loaf of bread and salt. Her offering showed the acceptance of welcoming me into the family. Alex and I took a bite at the same time, and whoever took the biggest bite was the ‘ head of the household.’
The reception was a casual backyard barbecue with our closest friends and family. I really wanted a dessert table, and champagne glasses filled with rock candy – Alex was all about the whiskey and cigar table for the men. All of the small details that were incorporated in the wedding were a representation of ourselves, and made for an amazing day that I wouldn’t trade for anything!Photography :: Mary Kate McKenna Photography Ceremony :: Baker Park, Frederick Reception :: Couple’s home Dress :: Coralie Beatrix on Etsy Hair :: Structures Salon Cake :: Sweet & Savory Music :: Erin Frisby from Miss Shevaughn and Yuma Wray Pedicabs :: MacFawn’s Green Rides Barrels :: McCutcheon’s Apple Products Vintage sodas :: North Market Pop Shop Made by Jenny :: invitations, cake topper, napkins, food, flower arrangements and bouquets
5 Tips for Your Wedding Registry
Words by Relish Décor | Images by Mary Kate McKenna Photography
You found the “one,” got the ring, and picked a date. Now what? It’s time to start thinking about a wedding registry! By giving gifts, guests can celebrate your marriage and help you to stock your new home. Here are some tips to keep in mind when creating your bridal registry.
1. Do what you want.
We work with brides of all ages, cultures, hopes and dreams. Your registry should be about who you are and where you want to go in the future. The planning process can be crazy; keep in mind what really matters: you and your fiancé.
2. Timing is everything.
Register six to eight months before your wedding. It may sound early, but your guests will appreciate you taking the guesswork out of gift buying for engagement parties or showers. Many couples also update registries before any parties to make sure that there are plenty of options for guests to work with.
3. Bring the proper support.
Whether your fiancé, your maid of honor, family member, or a whole entourage comes to your registry appointment, make sure they are ready to support your tastes and choices. When in doubt, keep it simple. After all, these gifts are for you!
4. Think long term.
Remember, you are registering not only for the present day, but also for your entire life together. This is the time to ask for china, flatware and linens that will become cherished heirlooms. Just because you live in a tiny apartment right now, doesn’t mean you won’t host family holidays in your future home.
5. Balance your selections.
It’s important to provide a variety of price points for your guests. Aim for at least twice as many gifts as guests, ranging from under $50 up to $300 and above. Your cash-strapped brother and wealthy aunt both need to have options within their budgets.
Relish Décor is a lifestyle boutique known for a stylish selection of tabletop housewares, kitchen furnishings and unique gifts located in Downtown Frederick, Maryland, with a goal to provide a curated selection of merchandise not commonly found in the mainstream retail market. Relish offers a personalized wedding registry experience for couples in store and online at relishdecor.com.
Words by Molly Fellin Spence | Photos by David S. Spence
Back when my parents got married in the 1960s, most (probably all) of the wedding planning was done exclusively by the ladies. (Think: Steel Magnolias, “My colors are blush and bashful…”).
All eyes were on the bride, and little attention was paid to the guys. But modern grooms are stepping up to the plate and getting way more involved in the planning process. (Think: midnight taco trucks at the reception; engagement sessions featuring his favorite ride; or a signature cocktail mixed up for the cocktail hour.)
During the last decade or so, guys have really started to show off their personal style on their wedding day, with great results. For some guys, this comes naturally. Others may need a little nudge.
So, in the spirit of nudging, here are 6 ways to show of your Guy Style on your wedding day:
1. Take inspiration from the season. Having an outdoor, summertime wedding? Consider going without a suit jacket and throwing on a vest or an interesting pair of suspenders, like Lucas and his guys did (below). Bonus points for completing the look with colorful bowties!
2. Get creative with headwear. Love wearing hats? Trade out your baseball cap for a vintage fedora or stylish newsboy. Or, go old-school, like Jon Paul, and add a pocket watch, too.
3. Don’t fear the boutonniere! Flowers can be fun… and manly! (Sort of.) Try a single flower or small succulent instead of an elaborate rose. Or ask a crafty friend to create something unique (See Jon Paul, again, above). One of the most creative ways we’ve seen florals on guys is Henry’s lapel decoration (below). We love how his flowers were set inside an old shell casing, a nod to his military service.
4. Shoes can be comfy AND cool. Love to wear cowboy boots, Doc Martens or Chuck Taylors? (I feel you.) Then buy a nice, shiny new pair and don them on your big day! The casual and formal can work well together!
5. Show off your heritage. Got some Scottish blood? Go for the kilt, like Raymond did on his wedding day.
6. Even if you’re feeling conservative, add a little bit of flair. Sure, it’s always OK to go with a traditional, classy tuxedo. But try to add a little something fun and unexpected to your outfit. How about a great watch or cool cufflinks? A pair of stylish sunglasses at an outdoor wedding or colorful socks anytime of year are some small but great ideas.
Molly Fellin Spence is an editor for Heart of Frederick, and co-owns Spence Photographics, a Downtown Frederick photojournalism studio, with her husband, David (who has quite a bit of Guy Style himself)!
Rachael of Rachael Boer Photography recently sent us the cutest engagement session using our very favorite backdrop – our beloved Downtown Frederick.
“Kim and John were looking for a historic urban setting for their engagement portraits. I instantly thought of Frederick, since the downtown area is extremely cute and offers a lot of variety. We scheduled this session for sunset and had a great time exploring the Historic District, shooting in alleys, parks, sidewalks and on street corners. What we captured is an engagement album full of love, laughter and gorgeous sunlight. These two were married a few months later in a beautiful outdoor ceremony and have recently celebrated their first anniversary!”
From the photographer:
Cristina went down to Peru to help out at an orphanage, and on the last week there, she met Gonzalo. During the next few days, he would either look for her or text her. She came back to the states, and it was not quite over yet. It started with facebook chat, made its way to texting, and finally they admitted feelings for each other. So Cristina decided to go to Lima, Peru to visit him. The day she got there, he got a ring. And before she left, he got down on one knee.Having the engagement session in downtown Frederick was PERFECT. It was full of energy and they had a blast, at least I hope so! Their love is evident in the many smiles and hugs.
Photographer: Elizabeth Fogerty
It isn’t quite time for snow in Frederick, but it’s coming! Here’s an engagement session to get you ready… and see? It’s not that bad AND you can do cute photos!
Jonathan and Julia met as young children while going to church together. At 10 years old they were teased by siblings that they liked each other. It was soon realized that they in fact did like each other. They spent a lot of time instant messaging and writing notes to each other. For Julia’s 13th birthday, Jonathan bought her a heart shaped locket with a picture of him in it. Parents got wind of this and things quickly changed. Fast forward 6 years later to Julia’s college graduation, when her brother invited Jonathan on the family’s celebratory trip. Jonathan stayed an extra day when Julia’s friends went home and they spent time talking and catching up. They were surprised by each other’s personalities and changes during those six years. About three weeks later the two went to a family wedding together and their families were so surprised and excited, as it had been predicted for years. After 17 months of dating, Jonathan proposed on Christmas Eve. He asked Julia to grab gifts out of the trunk, she opened the trunk only to find the open ring box. When she turned around, surprised and confused, she found Jonathan on one knee. The 6.5 month engagement will consist of planning a wedding and buying a house. The two are getting married July 13th, 2014 at The Links at Gettysburg and will be honeymooning in Punta Cana. Thank you to Mary Sarah Photography for sharing this day with us!
Well, we were hoping there would be no reason to post any other snowy engagement sessions, but here we are four days into March with two snow days! Spring, are you almost here?
The only good thing about more snow is that we get to show you this beautiful and sweet e-session by Daysy! And, these two are getting married this week- how exciting! Congrats you two!
Why did you do your engagement session in Frederick? Is there anything special about the places you went?
We were looking for a place where we could find in the same area churches, pavilions, gazebos, so we would have different backgrounds. Our photographer suggested Frederick and we loved! No regrets at all! We really like the results!
Where do we begin with these two? They are full of joy and so adorable! Alyssa and Michael had a charming outdoor engagement session in December, right in the heart of Downtown Frederick and even at a Christmas tree farm! We just love when the holiday lights go up around Frederick – they make us feel so festive! Photos by Mary Kate McKenna Photography