For a city girl preparing to marry an outdoorsman, settling on a celebration site can prove to be a challenge. “The goal was to find a venue that had city sophistication, lots of greenery, and close proximity to Washington, DC,” Simone describes. It wasn’t until the couple visited a charismatic resort with scenic views of the countryside to enjoy a spa day that they found the ideal locale. “As soon as we walked in, we felt like we were at a family member’s home,” says the bride. “It was warm, elegant, and offered lots of outdoor activities… It was the perfect place for us.”
Working alongside Blair Peterson of SoCo Events saved Simone. The bride admits she was incredibly overwhelmed and would have given up on the process without the help and guidance of the esteemed planner. “If it weren’t for Blair, I would have lost my mind,” Simone smiles. “She made everything possible, took care of all the details, and ensured it was all perfect.” The bride says she also relied on her mother and her soon-to-be husband for support in making final decisions on all the details.
A portion of the lace from the Simone’s dress served as the inspiration for a pattern that was designed and printed on clear Lucite wedding invitations. The same romantic motif was incorporated into many aspects of the décor, such as day-of signage and welcome-bag items. It was a lovely detail for the fashionista bride.
Opting to exchange vows on the Grand Lawn, the couple chose a clean cream design, which contrasted beautifully with the vast naturally verdant environment. A simple white stage – accented with vanilla florals and lush foliage – was erected for the vow exchange; whitewashed chairs arranged in the round surrounded the structure. “The circular setup was a fun homage to Kent’s last name, Rounds, and made for an incredibly intimate ceremony for us and our 100 guests,” shares Simone.
The couple’s three Maltese dogs took part in the procession with the help of a precious tuxedo-clad ring bearer who pulled the trio down the aisle in a decorated wagon. A cellist and pianist played Pachelbel’s “Canon in D” as the bride made her grand entrance. Simone was stunning, wearing a beaded lace gown with an illusion back and a stylish full-length cape overlay. She held a romantic bouquet of snowy peonies: “It’s the perfect spring wedding flower!” she exclaims. Bridesmaids wore long, bespoke ivory dresses and carried nosegays in single varieties of roses, mini calla lilies, peonies, hydrangeas, and ranunculuses.
Evening set in and guests were introduced to the reception space, bedecked in a sophisticated white color scheme, accented with lace patterns and metallic elements. The walls of the ballroom were draped in luxurious sheer fabric and made it so the green foliage on the tables popped in contrast. To add depth to the room, the couple opted for a mix of round and rectangular tables. The circular tables were covered in silk champagne tablecloths along with a gorgeous French-lace linen overlay and adorned with tall centerpieces made up of overflowing crème brûlée florals and fresh greenery. Longer tablescapes showcased mirrored tops and eye-catching flower runners that cascaded beautifully over the sides of tables. “They just kissed the floor!” describes the bride of the luscious arrangements.
An unforgettable focal point in the room was the oversized chandelier suspended over the dance floor. “Once again playing off of the last name Rounds, a halo of soft white flowers and textured greens held strands of ivory satin complemented with clusters of crystals,” illustrates the bride. “It was jaw-dropping.” The pièce de résistance was positioned in the perfect area, as revelers danced beneath it on the custom dance floor until the early-morning hours. “Everyone thought the band was the best ever,” says Kent. As an added bonus, Simone’s stepfather sang Adele’s arrangement of “Make You Feel My Love” for the couple’s first dance. “Truly top-shelf,” the groom describes of the moment.
The night concluded on a sweet note, with guests given favors of traditional Italian cookies baked fresh by Simone’s mother, known for her exquisite cooking and baking skills. “They were a huge hit and a great way to end the evening!” remembers the bride.