It was a beautiful Spring Day in Virginia. The weather was perfect, the wildfire smoke had cleared, and Liz and Paul were getting married! We arrived in the relaxed and quiet energy Liz and Paul have radiated since our first meeting at their engagement session last fall. Liz and the ladies of her bridal party were preparing with hair and makeup from Susan Lim Makeup artist while the groom and his groomsmen were exploring the grounds, scouting for beverages, providing the lovely ladies lunch, and relaxing with some games of pool, while Hannah from Terry Kaye Events was making sure things were on schedule and everyone and everything was as it should be.
Liz and Paul shared their story with me at their engagement session last fall so it was lovely to hear their story again from the perspectives of their family and friends at their Great Marsh wedding June 10, 2023. Their story began serendipitously pre-pandemic. Paul was attending a college roommate’s wedding in D.C. when he matched with Liz on a dating app. They began a causal exchange of texts and phone calls before meeting for their first date.
Serendipity ensues for their first date. They agreed to “meet in the middle” for a Baltimore Orioles game. Paul chose Peter’s Pour House for their first meeting because of its convenience to Camden Yard. He had no idea this was the same bar where Liz’s parents met in the 70s. The signs were GOOD!
A cardinal perched in a tree behind Liz and her father for their first look. We would later learn in her father’s toast the cardinal was one of Liz’s mother’s favorite birds, continuing the good signs. During Liz and Paul’s first look and throughout couples’ portraits, wedding party portraits, and family formals they maintained their cool and relaxed nature which emanates through their family and friends. Liz is stunning in her Suzanne Neville gown from Zoyas Atelier and Paul is dapper in both look as well as demeanor. The wedding party and family are all equally lovely, handsome, and comfortable. Liz will say in her vows to Paul that she is “quite shy and extremely cautious, but in our earliest conversations, before we’d met, you made me feel comfortable and at ease.” It is evident that Paul does indeed make her feel this way! Liz appears both comfortable and at ease in Paul’s arms as they engage in their first wedding day embrace.
Paul states in their story from the engagement session that at the game he “loved how we could just sit together taking in the day without feeling the need to fill every empty space in the conversation or impress each other.” In Paul’s vows to Liz, he refers to one of their earliest meetings walking around the lower East Side when Liz asked if he knew where they were going or if he was “still falling apart.” He says, “you knew exactly what to say to disarm me, to tease me, yet at the same time assure me that everything was going to be ok.” It couldn’t be clearer that Liz is all the assurance Paul needs to know that everything is going to be ok.
The ceremony site of the South Courtyard was decorated with beautiful blooms of pinks and white peonies, roses and more. The aroma of florals from Leroy French Flowers saturated the sprawling courtyard where Liz and Paul exchanged vows echoing one another with every word. Paul tells Liz “You make me happy just to be. I promise always to be right where you need me, to cheer you when succeed, to catch you when you stumble. To keep making you laugh and keep laughing with you. To be your rock, your shield, your everlasting love” Liz resounding Paul’s promises in her own words she says “You’ve always made me feel safe and loved-whether in the midst of a global pandemic, navigating an unfamiliar city, or just sitting at home and watching Jeopardy. I feel secure knowing I have a partner to face all life’s joys and challenges with. Someone to anchor me and be my home. I promise to cherish every moment we have together, whether it’s a once in a lifetime experience or an everyday moment. To laugh with you during happy times and struggle with you during difficult times. To always be in your corner and work hand in hand with you as we build our life together. Most of all I promise to love and choose you every day.” This couple is so synchronized in love, being, comfort, and security.
After a lovely kiss to finalize the ceremony Liz and Paul were married and back down the aisle together to the North Courtyard to complete the newlywed portraits. The steps of the Georgian Mansion provided the perfect backdrop for “the very lovely Liz,” the groom, and their closest friends and family.
The refurbished barn and patio were a sight to behold. The place settings and florals made the barn’s interior shine. The guests enjoyed cocktail hour with Liz and Paul’s signature cocktails “the D.C. Gin Rickie” and “the N.Y.C. Manhattan” while Liz and Paul took advantage of the gorgeous sprawling grounds of Great Marsh.
Dinner from Serendipity Catering was served, and the reception festivities kicked off. Liz’s father offered a toast where he recounted his own meeting with Liz’s mother, who is no longer with us, many years ago at Peter’s Pour House. He also reported that his meeting of Paul was graced with “a cardinal perched in a nearby tree, had to be a good sign.” Liz’s maid of honor and high school friend, Sunny’s toast restated Paul’s account of Liz’s “dependability, capacity to offer care and comfort are beyond measure” and siting that “Paul’s an attorney and a Bears fan so we know he’s emotionally resilient.” While Paul’s best man and childhood friend, David shared some funny text exchanges from their friend group where Paul was often speaking of “the very lovely Liz.” The first dances were beautiful, and the dance floor was on fire. Nate Clancey with “I’m the DJ” kept the energy up as Liz and Paul were whisked away for their golden hour portraits. Liz got more comfortable as the dance floor cooled down to allow for the cutting of the cake from Signature Sweets by Amanda.
All day and night Liz and Paul were a joy! Their synchronicity was palpable, their love undeniable, and their wedding FABULOUS!
Congratulations Liz and Paul! Keep scrolling for highlights from their amazing day!
And thank you to these wonderful wedding professionals who helped make their day so lovely:
Photographer: Lieb Photographic | Venue: Great Marsh | Catering: Serendipity Catering | Floral Design: LeRoy French Flowers | Planning/Coordination: Terry Kaye Events | DJ: I’m the DJ | Cake Artist/Baker: Signature Sweets by Amanda |Hair and Make Up Artist: Susan Lim Makeup | Wedding Gown Designer: Suzanne Neville | Bridal Boutique: Zoyas Atelier | Veil: Lovely Bride D.C. | Rings & earrings: Ascot Diamonds | Shoes: Bella Belle Shoes | Groom’s Attire: Knot Standard | Groomsmen Attire: The Black Tux | Videographer: White Flair Productions | Invitation Suite: Halo Designs Shop | Transportation: RMA World Wide
Michelle with Lieb Photographic is a Northern Virginia Wedding Photographer, a Charlottesville Wedding Photographer and photographs destinations worldwide. To see more weddings and engagement sessions at the Great Marsh Estate, view the Great Marsh Estate Venue page.
If you’d like to explore some of my favorite wedding venues in the Virginia and Washington D.C. areas, view the Wedding Venues page.