On Katie Fitzgerald and Steve Kidera's second dating anniversary, the couple enjoyed dinner at a steakhouse and then went to the rooftop at Katie's request to take in the views of the United States capitol and downtown Washington, DC. Little did she know, Steve had been working with the restaurant for months planning the perfect proposal and had already arranged to take her up to the roof to propose overlooking the city. She, of course, said yes. Fifteen months later, the couple celebrated their nuptials with 200 guests at the same rooftop location with catering provided by the restaurant downstairs. "[It] was our dream wedding venue," shares the bride. "The location is truly unique and specific to DC. We wanted something our guests would enjoy and remember!"
Desiring a traditional ceremony, the couple chose to exchange vows at a Roman Catholic church near the reception venue. The bride was resplendent in a strapless gown with a beaded bodice and carried a lush bouquet of vanilla peonies – her favorite flower – fastened with her maternal grandmother's butterfly pin. She also wore her mother's wedding veil, as her sister had the previous year, as well as her paternal grandmother's ring – "like all of the Fitzgerald girls have on their wedding days," adds Katie. Bridesmaids carried ivory bouquets and dressed in floor-length blue gowns with elegant one-shoulder necklines. The groom and his groomsmen were stylish in tuxedos with bow ties and alabaster boutonnieres. Steve's cousin, who is an opera singer, sang Ava Maria during the service.
Following cocktail hour, guests found their seating assignments for the alfresco reception on blue or white escort cards attached to ribbon and secured with miniature bullion clothespins. On the rooftop, a tented structure offering exceptional views of the city skyline and Capitol Hill was decorated with spherical paper lanterns. To fulfill the couple's desire for "simple, but classic and elegant" décor, round tables were draped in either ivory linens or blue patterned styles. China, flatware, centerpieces, and rimmed glassware added a golden touch, which was also seen on the backs of chairs. Centerpieces were kept low, so guests could easily talk amongst themselves, and featured white peonies, hydrangeas, and roses.
As wedding favors, attendees received personalized drink koozies and sunglasses – "being at an outdoor venue, these kept the beers cold and the sun out of our guests' eyes!" shares the couple. A three-layer cake decorated with fresh white peonies and blue ribbon featured a variety of unique flavors: "One layer tasted like a candy bar, one featured raspberry and lemon curd, and one tasted like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich," explains Katie. For the last dance of the night, guests circled the couple during the final dance to Pharell's "Happy." "We are both laid-back, easy-going people who like to have fun, [and] our wedding represented that," shares the bride.
The bride and groom offer this advice to couples desiring a blissful wedding day: "Have the day that you want, and let it represent you as a couple," says Katie. "Don't sweat the small stuff. You might spend months worrying about planning something, and then on the day of the wedding, it's the furthest thing from your mind."