Summer and Steven

In her first year of wedding coordination, Kathleen helped with a wedding at Turf Valley.  She were very excited when she got an inquiry to help with another wedding at this familiar venue.  Summer and Steven lived in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio and were getting married at Turf Valley in September.  They needed some help the month leading up to the wedding to pull everything together as well as coordination on the wedding day.

That May Kathleen was going to Cleveland for another wedding.  She figured out a time to be able to meet with Summer and Steven.  This was definitely the farthest she had gone for a face to face meeting!  A few months later, Summer and Steven made the trip to Maryland.  Kathleen met with them again, this time at Turf Valley.  They did a walkthrough of the grounds and went over wedding day details.

The fact that Summer and Steven lived in Ohio made no difference in the preparation for the wedding.  Just like with any couple, Kathleen kept in touch with the bride and groom and confirmed all of the details with each of the vendors.  Both the ceremony and reception were taking place in the same location, so when the wedding day arrived, Kathleen and Danielle both went straight to Turf Valley.  When they got there, the florist was there ready to place the flowers.  The ceremony was scheduled to take place outside.  It was a beautiful sunny day with only wind in the upcoming forecast.  Kathleen stuck with the original plan of having the ceremony outside and the florist got to work.  The flowers looked gorgeous!

When it was time for the ceremony to begin, everything looked great.  While the wind had picked up a little, it was not of any real concern and Kathleen knew that having the ceremony outside was the right choice!  Kathleen and Danielle coordinated with the bridal party so that they could all make their way to their starting positions without letting the bride and groom see each other.  The ceremony began right on time with the groom making his way through the trees to the guests.  The ceremony continued without a hitch.

After the ceremony, the bridal party rode around the grounds in a golf cart to take their pictures.  Kathleen was very happy that everything was so running smoothly.  All of a sudden, two bridesmaids in a golf cart rode towards Kathleen in a panic.  While taking pictures, some pollen from the bridal bouquet had gotten on Steven’s tux and no one could get it out.  Kathleen went straight to the “Bridal Emergency Bag” she brings to each wedding.  Using supplies in the bag, the pollen came off of the jacket without any leftover residue.  Kathleen also took the bridal bouquet and made sure that there was nothing left on the bouquet that could get on the bride or groom.  Kathleen then let the florist know about the incident so that she was aware of what happened.  The florist was fantastic and told us to contact her again if we needed any different flowers or any help.

The rest of the cocktail hour was spent taking more pictures.  It was then time for the dinner portion of the evening to begin.  The rest of the evening went very smoothly.  While a few of the vendors butted heads over some details, Kathleen ran interference.  She worked with everyone to make sure things ran as planned and the bride and groom knew nothing of it.  The end of the night came and the guests left laughing and full of joy.  Kathleen and Danielle stayed behind and got everything cleaned up and taken to the right places.  They were so happy to be able to be there for these two amazing people and were so happy that Summer and Steven visibly had an amazing day and night!

Ceremony and Reception at Turf Valley, Catering by Turf Valley, Photography by Life Gallery Studios, DJ Scratch DJs, Flowers by My Flower Box Events

Posted in Weddings by Wolf's Weddings by Katheen | 2 Comments

Emely and Josh

About a month before their wedding, Kathleen received an e-mail from Emely.  Emely was getting married and had been planning on handling all of the wedding details herself.  As the wedding day was approaching, she realized she needed some extra help.  Luckily, Emely’s wedding happened to fall on the one weekend Kathleen had free!  Kathleen replied to Emely and got right to work!

Emely had done a majority of the work herself and wanted someone at her wedding to make sure things ran smoothly.  Kathleen confirmed the details with the other vendors and offered a few suggestions to help ensure the event would be a huge success.

The day before the wedding, Kathleen met Emely, Josh and their families at the ceremony site for the rehearsal.  Emely and Josh showed up in t-shirts that read “I’m his” and “I’m hers.”  They were both so excited for their wedding day!  The rehearsal was a success and everyone went straight to the rehearsal dinner.  Kathleen enjoyed being able to talk to some of the bridal party throughout the evening and hear stories about Emely and Josh.

On the day of the wedding there was rain in the forecast.  While the ceremony was going to be inside, the cocktail hour and reception were supposed to be outside.  Kathleen kept an eye on the weather throughout the morning.  She showed up to the ceremony site with supplies in hand in case there was any rain or any other minor bumps in the day.  Josh and his groomsmen all arrived on time and began getting ready.  As scheduled, shortly before the ceremony was supposed to begin, Emely showed up with her parents and bridesmaids.  She was so happy, she was glowing.

Once everyone was in place the ceremony began.  Kathleen stayed in the back to make sure there were no hiccups.  Everything went very smoothly.  Kathleen enjoyed watching a slideshow that showed Emely and Josh’s journey towards marriage.

When the ceremony was finished, the family stayed to take pictures.  Kathleen went straight to the reception site to make sure everything was ready to go before any guests arrived.  The decision was made to stick with the original plan and have the reception outside.  As guests began arriving, the reception area was ready and looked gorgeous.  The skies had cleared and the sun was shining down.

As guests arrived, they made their way around the grounds.  While guest were enjoying the cocktail hour, Kathleen had something out of the norm on her mind.  Emely’s parents had set up a surprise for the bride and groom.  They were going to have a mariachi band play some music after the introductions.  Kathleen had to make sure everything was timed right so that the band would arrive and get into place without anyone seeing them.  The layout of the venue did not make this an easy task.  When the band arrived, Kathleen made sure no one was near the path she wanted the band to use.  Right on time, Kathleen got them in place and then lined the bridal party up for the introductions.  After all of the introductions and prayers, right on cue, the band entered the dinner space and started playing.  Emely and Josh were surprised and visibly very excited.

The rest of the evening was absolutely beautiful.  As evening came, the rest of the reception took place under the stars and night sky.  After the event was finished, and she was thanked many times, Kathleen made her way home.  She was so happy the timing worked out to be able to help another awesome bride and groom begin the rest of their lives together!

Ceremony at Crossroads Church of Nazarene, Reception at Gramercy Mansion, Photography by Bradley Images, Flowers by Maria Martinez, Cake by Yia Yia’s Bakery, Food by Hunt Valley Catering, DJ Sergio Cruz

Posted in Weddings by Wolf's Weddings by Katheen | Leave a comment

Erika and Carlos

After months of planning, Terp alums Erika and Carlos’ wedding day had arrived!  The ceremony was planned to take place at St Jane de Chantal Catholic Church with a reception following at Woodlawn Manor.  The reception site was very picturesque with the cocktail hour on the lawn and dinner and dancing under a tent.

Emily Abril Photography

Emily Abril Photography

When she woke up that morning Kathleen checked the weather one more time.  All week a high chance of rain had been predicted.  The predicted chance of rain had gone down, but rain was still in the forecast.  While Danielle arrived at the church to make sure the ceremony ran smoothly, Kathleen went straight to Woodlawn Manor to help with the set-up.  While keeping an eye on the skies and the weather forecast, Kathleen set-up areas of the venue that would not be affected by any rain.

Emily Abril Photography

Emily Abril Photography

It came time to make a decision.  Stick with plan A or move to plan B?  Kathleen knew how much Erika and Carlos wanted to be able to enjoy the outside portion of their wedding.  The sun began to peek through the clouds and it looked like the rain would continue to hold out.  Kathleen decided to proceed with the original plan for the cocktail hour.

Emily Abril Photography

Emily Abril Photography

After finishing setting up with time to spare, Kathleen did one last sweep to make sure everything was complete.  Shortly after the ceremony ended guests began to show up at Woodlawn Manor.  Kathleen and the catering staff directed guests to the gift table and the bar.   Multiple guests approached Kathleen and told her how gorgeous the venue and decorations were.  The rain held out and the dinner began.  People enjoyed their evening dancing and listening to friends and family reminisce about their memories of the bride and groom.

Emily Abril Photography

Emily Abril Photography

Towards the end of the evening Erika and Carlos decided to go into the Manor to have some time to themselves, to take everything in.  As it approached the time for the final dance of the evening Danielle went to get Erika and Carlos.  Right before leaving the Manor the clouds opened and there was a strong downpour.  Danielle gave Erika her umbrella and the new couple made their way back to the tent.  After many photographs of them under the umbrella in the rain, everyone stood under the tent for the last dance of the evening.  The rain could not have come at a better time!

Ceremony at St Jane de Chantal, Reception at Woodlawn Manor, Catering by Ridgewells, Photographs by Emily Abril Photography, Flowers by 1-800-Flowers, Band leader Hendy Valentino, Cake by Ridgewells

 

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Allison and Adam

While out on a hike one afternoon Adam, a firefighter who fights forest fires out west surprised Allison, an elementary school special education teacher, with a wonderful proposal.  Soon after the excitement had set in, Allison contacted Wolf’s Weddings by Kathleen.  She had seen us in action and was very impressed.  Allison and Adam were ready to begin planning and knew they wanted us to help her out with their special day.

Photograph by David Holloway

Photograph by David Holloway

We came in right away and started mapping things out.  We enjoyed being able to recommend vendors that we had been impressed with in the past and offered advice based on our experiences in the wedding business.

Photograph by David Holloway

Photograph by David Holloway

After about a year of working together Allison and Adam’s wedding day arrived!  Danielle, one member of Wolf’s Weddings by Kathleen, went to the church, Our Lady of Mercy, to make sure everything ran smoothly.  Kathleen headed straight to the reception site, Rockwood Manor, to make sure everything got set-up exactly the way Allison and Adam had hoped for.  With time to spare before the first guest arrived, Kathleen did a walk-thru of the venue to make sure everything was ready for the cocktail hour to begin.

Photograph by David Holloway

Photograph by David Holloway

The guests began to arrive, full of joy after the wonderful ceremony.  They thoroughly enjoyed themselves with the delicious appetizers from Carriage House Inn Catering.  Allison and Adam headed to Great Falls with their photographer, David Holloway, to get some awesome shots.  After a great photo shoot they all arrived at Rockwood Manor just in time for us to welcome guests into the dining room.

Photograph by David Holloway

Photograph by David Holloway

The evening went on without a hitch.  Everyone enjoyed themselves throughout the night.  People wandered around the beautiful grounds dancing, taking pictures in the photo booth and enjoying listening to the music in the gazebo and rocking chairs outside.  We were so glad we were able to help Allison and Adam turn the day of their dreams into a reality.

Photograph by David Holloway

Photograph by David Holloway

Ceremony at Our Lady of Mercy, Reception at Rockwood Manor, Catering by Carriage House Inn, Photographs by David Holloway, Flowers by Kristin Noonan, DJ Jenn Bress, Photobooth by Smilez Photobooth, Cake and Cupcakes by Cakes in Style

Posted in Weddings by Wolf's Weddings by Katheen | Leave a comment

Jamie and Edwin

Usually when clients contact us for the first time it is the bride that we hear from.  One day we got an e-mail from a groom.  This was the first of many aspects of this wedding for Wolf’s Weddings by Kathleen.  We set up a time to meet and I met the groom, Edwin, and his bride-to-be, Jamie.  I enjoyed meeting with them very much and was so happy when they decided to hire us!

A few months after our first meeting, Jamie e-mailed us a website link.  She had set-up their wedding website and wanted to share it with me.  It was so fun getting to learn more about who Jamie and Edwin were as a people and as a couple!

About a month and a half before the wedding Jamie and I met at their reception site, Newton White, to go over wedding details.  From then until the wedding we were in constant communication.  Jamie would ask my advice and let me know about decisions and changes she was thinking of making.

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When the wedding weekend came I arrived early to the rehearsal.  I let the priest know I was there and walked the grounds.  Jamie and Edwin’s bridal party began to show up a little while after.  They were having a traditional Philippine Catholic wedding.  The bridal party was by far the largest we had ever worked with – bride and groom, 4 parents, 8 bridesmaids, 8 groomsmen, 5 flower girls, 1 ring bearer, 1 coin bearer, 1 bible bearer, 12 primary sponsors, 4 secondary sponsors plus parents and grandparents.  Once almost everyone had arrived I got them lined up and ready to practice their procession into the church.  The priest told everyone the order of events throughout the ceremony and then the bridal party practiced the procession.  When the rehearsal was over I went to Edwin’s parent’s house for the rehearsal dinner.  It was great to get the chance to talk to some of their family and friends while trying Philippine food for the first time.

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The day of the wedding came and everyone started arriving at the church.  We made sure everyone in the bridal party had their flowers and got lined up in the back of the church.  The procession began and as the 36 members of the bridal party plus parents and grandparents entered it was time for Jamie to get out of the limo and get ready for her grand entrance.  She looked gorgeous standing there on her father’s arm.  As Jamie made her way to the front of the church I stood in the back and got to see the Philippine traditions of blessings, offering coins, veil ceremony, cord ceremony and candle ceremony for the first time.

The wedding ceremony ended and everyone was full of joy and laughter!  The bridal party got in the limo and went with the photographer, Daniel Garrity, to Old Town Alexandria to take some scenic pictures.  Jamie and Edwin’s reception was scheduled to start a few hours after the ceremony.  My assistant and I arrived at Newton White after the ceremony.  The reception decorations were supposed to be on their way.  As we waited for the decorations to arrive with the bride’s family we made sure all of the vendors were arriving and fulfilling their obligations.  Time went by and the decoration delivery was nowhere to be found.  We were in touch with the bride’s family the whole time and were assured that the decorations would be at Newton White soon.  About an hour before the cocktail hour was scheduled to begin all of the items arrived.  My assistant and I got right to work and quickly set everything up.  The bridal party arrived and Jamie was clearly nervous.  I went right up to her and told her not to worry about a thing – everything would be just the way she wanted, that’s why I was there.  I could visibly see the stress go away as she relaxed.  After working especially quickly my assistant and I had the cocktail area completely set-up before the guests began to arrive.  We completed the finishing touches in the reception room as the guests enjoyed drinks and appetizers.

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With time to spare, the reception room was completely set-up.  We were back on schedule despite the delayed decoration delivery.  We ushered guests into the reception room and lined up the bridal party in the foyer.  They were all welcomed into the room with some fun dancing.  As the last members of the bridal party made their entrance we closed the doors.  With a reopening of the doors, Jamie and Edwin were introduced as husband and wife.  Following their entrance was a surprise to the guests – an entrance by an a cappella group from the University of Maryland.  They sang as Jamie and Edwin danced their first dance.

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The rest of the evening included a Newlywed style game, toasts, more dances, cake cutting, desserts and a garter and bouquet toss.   The dance floor opened and it was filled all night.  Guests had an awesome time dancing and celebrating the marriage of high school sweethearts, Jamie and Edwin.  My assistant and I stood back and commented on how glad we were that we were there to make sure Jamie and Edwin had the wedding day of their dreams!

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Favors

Do we need favors at the wedding?  What are some good suggestions?

A question I often get from brides and grooms is whether or not favors are really necessary.  Favors are one of those things that often get put on the backburner while wedding planning is taking place.  Once all of the big things are done, the bride and groom then begin to think about what they want to do about favors.

Are favors necessary?  No.  Are they a nice gesture?  Yes.  I recommend that you give guests some sort of favor.  It is a way of showing your guests that you appreciate that they took the time to come celebrate this important day with you.  The favor does not have to be anything extravagant.  The old tradition of a favor was a little gift sitting at each plate.  This idea still works very well.  Some nice favors I’ve seen done this way have been a personalized candy bar, mini salt and pepper shakers, a deck of cards, or a wine glass.  A way to pick this item can be by looking at the theme of your wedding or something about the bride and groom or wedding.  For example, if your new last name will be Queen a deck of cards with a picture of the Queen of Hearts and your wedding date is a nice way to remember your anniversary.  If your wedding is at a winery a wine glass is a perfect favor.  And of course, who doesn’t like some candy?

If you don’t like the idea of placing something at the table for each guest, another route can be to make a donation in your guests’ names.  You can think of a charity that is close to your heart, such as cancer research if a loved one could not be at the wedding due to cancer.  A card can then be placed at each setting to let each guest know that a donation was made in their name.

A popular trend right now is photobooths.  They are a fun way to capture wedding day memories.  A great favor that guests will enjoy is a copy of their photo strip.  Most photobooth packages include one extra copy of each picture.  The only problem with this idea is that, if friends go into the booth together, they either have to cut up the picture or only one of them gets to keep it.  Having the package include enough strips for each person in the booth will be sure to make your guests extra happy.

To sum it up:  While it is not necessary to include a favor it is a very nice gesture to thank your guests for coming.  Favors can come in many forms including candy bars, wine glasses, charity donations and photobooth strips.  Whatever you decide to do for your favor, personalize it with your names and wedding date.  That way your guests will appreciate the gesture, and always have a reminder of your big day!

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Vendor Spotlight: Norm Ross, Officiant

When two people get engaged it is an exciting time.  It can also be a very stressful time!  The whirlwind of wedding planning happens soon after saying “YES.”  You have to pick a ceremony and reception site, hire a photographer, DJ, caterer, decide on flowers, menus, cake flavors, etc.  While hiring a wedding planner is a great decision to help with all of your stress, wedding stress is still inevitable.  When you really think about all these things there is truly only one thing that is needed to get married (other than your husband or wife to be) and that’s your officiant.  As long as you have someone to marry the two of you, you can become husband and wife.  I have worked with a number of officiants.  The very first one I ever worked with was Norm Ross.  Since then, it’s been very hard for other officiants to live up to the expectations that I set from working with him.  Norm Ross answered some questions of mine to share with you.

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

What made you decide to become a wedding officiant?

I realized many people were not finding the type of officiant they were hoping for; one who would carefully listen to their hopes and dreams for their own wedding, without imposing all sorts of rules, regulations, standards, and words.  Being an open and caring individual, I knew I could and would enjoy providing this special gift to couples.

What sets you apart from other wedding officiants?

I listen to my couples, helping them plan and have the wedding they want.  I am not bound by church or organizational rules.  The wedding is about the relationship between the couple.

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

What are some of the most unique ceremonies you have seen?

These are some I have done:
-On the beach arriving on sail boats.
-At a farm on horseback.
-Relaxed and comfortable setting with the couple feeling heard and cared for.

What is your favorite part of a wedding ceremony?

The kiss!  This is the final part of the vows and is perhaps the most personal part.

What advice would you give to brides and grooms currently planning
their weddings?

Take your time, discuss and plan what you want in your ceremony.  Meet with the officiant at least a couple of times to explore your options, hopes, and make certain you get what you want.

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

Photograph by Natalie Lane Photography

You can contact Norm Ross at tonormanross@aol.com

Posted in Vendors | 1 Comment

Erin and Mark

The first wedding that Wolf’s Weddings by Kathleen coordinated was an October wedding at Stone Manor.  When we were asked to help out with another October Stone Manor wedding we were very excited!  Just like our first wedding, Erin and Mark’s wedding took place on a gorgeous fall day.

Photograph by Hough Photography

Photograph by Hough Photography

Going into this wedding we knew that we were going to have a lot of work to do to prepare for the reception.  Erin was having a vintage theme and had a specific vision for every detail.  She even had photographs of exactly the way she wanted everything to look, from the gift table to the dessert table.  My assistant and I arrived at Stone Manor hours before the event.  We used Erin’s photographs as a guide to make sure everything was in the right place and turned to exactly the right angle.  When the time came for the cocktail hour to begin, Stone Manor looked like it had traveled back in time.  Everything was so elegant and beautiful with black and pink accents.

Photograph by Hough Photography

Photograph by Hough Photography

The evening went on without a hitch!  Everyone was full of laughter and joy.  Just like our first wedding, Erin and Mark’s wedding day was a huge success!  We wish them a lifetime of happiness and hope to help with many more October weddings at Stone Manor!

Photograph by Hough Photography

Photograph by Hough Photography

Photograph by Hough Photography

Photograph by Hough Photography

Ceremony at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church, Reception at Stone Manor Country Club, Catered by Carriage House, Photography by Hough Photography, DJ Shewsical Musical

Posted in Weddings by Wolf's Weddings by Katheen | Leave a comment

Kim and Mike

While at lunch one weekend we got a call from Kim, a bride looking for a day-of wedding coordinator.  Kim lived in Washington State and was planning on getting married in Maryland.  Laura Cannon, Kim’s matron of honor who is a wedding officiant in the DC/Baltimore area, recommended Kim call me.  I was very happy to help Laura’s friend!

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Daniel McGarrity Photography

As the wedding approached Kim and I kept in touch through phone conversations and over e-mail.  We worked out all of the little details and when the big weekend came we were ready!  On the day of the rehearsal I got to meet the bride and groom in person for the first time.  They were so excited for their wedding and there family was so fun!  After the rehearsal Kim and I did a quick walk-thru of the site and then parted ways.  The day of the wedding came and we were all hoping for good weather.  Parts of the day were planned to be outside and their was a chance of heavy rains predicted in the forecast.   A little over an hour before the ceremony was scheduled to begin a heavy down pour began.  My assistant, Kim’s awesome photographer Daniel McGarrity and I rushed to make sure things were not sitting out in the rain.  We made sure everything was set to be brought back outside if the weather permitted but was ready to take place indoors if needed.  About thirty minutes before the ceremony the rain stopped and the sun came out through the clouds.  Right on time the weather was beautiful and the ceremony began.

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Daniel McGarrity Photography

The rest of the evening went wonderfully.   The guests and bridal party all had a fantastic time in the beautiful space.

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Daniel McGarrity Photography

The groom and his mom began their first dance as her brother and some others sang “Black Bird” behind them.  After the cake cutting, the dance floor opened and guests danced to a variety of classic rock.

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Daniel McGarrity Photography

The end of the evening came and I was so happy that the rain had continued to stay away!  While I was originally not sure how it would be helping with a long distance bride, everything went so well.  I look forward to working with more who are getting married out of state in the future!

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Daniel McGarrity Photography

Ceremony Site, Reception Site and Caterer Milton Ridge, Officiant Tim Mulosmanaj, Photography by Daniel McGarrity Photography, DJ D-Mac and Associates

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Doona and Sean

It was August 11th.  After months of planning, the big weekend had arrived.  After a wonderful rehearsal the bridal party felt great about the day to come.  Everyone was in a fantastic mood as I got to try Korean food for the first time at the rehearsal dinner.  It was great! The evening came to an end and everyone left the rehearsal relaxed and excited.

Photograph by

Photograph by E Jung Wedding Inc

On the day of the wedding the ceremony started without a hitch.  The bride looked gorgeous and the groom was all smiles.  While the bridal party thanked guests in the receiving line I made my way to the reception site to make sure all the final details were in place.  Everything was exactly where the bride wanted it when guests began arriving for the cocktail hour.  We were so happy to see how much everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves throughout the rest of the evening.  From the first dance, to the Korean ceremony, to the cake cutting all was going as planned. The end of the evening came and the dance floor was packed.  Because everyone was having such a great time the DJ decided to play a few extra songs to keep the party going just a little bit longer.  We were so happy to be a part of such a great day for Doona and Sean!

Photograph by

Photograph by E Jung Wedding Inc

Photograph by

Photograph by E Jung Wedding Inc

Photograph by

Photograph by E Jung Wedding Inc

Photograph by

Photograph by E Jung Wedding Inc

Ceremony at Epiphany Catholic Church, Reception at Sheraton Pentagon City Hotel, Photography by E Jung Wedding Inc, DJ Background Solutions Entertainment, Flowers by Grace Lee, Cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcakes

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