We are Jess and Amanda. After meeting in Istanbul in 2013, we fell for each other over a shared love of cooking and exploring the world. We have settled in D.C. until our work at the State Department takes us overseas.
Amanda proposed in front of the Capitol Reflecting Pool on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. It was a misty night in September after we dined at an awesome restaurant in the city, Pineapple and Pearls.
We married on a similarly misty day in January. It was so chilly outside as we took our photos in front of the Capitol, but our awesome photographer Shawnee Custalow of A Lovely Photo warmed us with her enthusiasm about our special day.
When we started to plan our elopement, we knew that food would be a focal point. Amanda worked as a cook earlier in her life (Jess can personally vouch for the benefits of marrying up). We were ecstatic to host our ceremony at Rose's Luxury in Washington, D.C. We wed in a cozy room on the second floor next to the bar. The staff at Rose's spoiled us, and we wanted to be best friends with everyone because they were so dang cool. Good thing Jess's dress was stretchy...the food was incredible.
Our amazing friend officiated our elopement. She drew cheers from our guests and other diners at the bar when she closed out the ceremony with quite possibly the most mic drop worthy finishing line, "by the power vested in me by the District of Columbia and specifically by Justices Kennedy, Breyer, Sotomayor, Kagan, and Ginsburg, I now pronounce you legally wed."
While we plan to have a bigger ceremony at a later date, our little elopement was an "awesome" (see photo) way to ring in 2017.
Meet Shawnee Custalow of A Lovely Photo: Shawnee is a queer feminist photographer and the creative eyes behind the lens of A Lovely Photo. She likes to genuinely get to know her couples and has been known to bust a move on the dance floor with them on more than one occasion. She strives to capture those in-between fleeting moments of the day that tend to reveal more about a celebration and couple than a stiffly posed portrait ever could.