One of the most difficult challenges to wedding planning is finding the right venue. When Iyanna and Seth asked me to serve as their Virginia Wedding Planner I knew that they would find an incredible venue for their wedding.
They booked Regency at Dominion Valley and I got uber excited. This Virginia wedding venue by far is one of the best country clubs I’ve planned a wedding at. Let me show you what took place.
Iyanna and Seth’s relationship began when they met at a mutual friend’s St. Patrick’s day party. After that day they developed a friendship of their own and began seeing each other outside of the group. Eventually, their friendship grew into something more and Seth proposed.
Tell us how you met and all about the proposal.
We met at a mutual friends St. Patrick’s Day house party. Over the next year, we saw each other from time to time whenever that particular group of friends got together. Eventually we exchanged numbers and started seeing each other outside of the group and our friendship grew from there.
On a random Tuesday after work, Seth suggested that we go for a run around the DC monuments instead of going to the gym. After a romantic stroll among the Cherry Blossoms, Seth asked an unsuspecting stranger to take a picture of us (it turned out to be a video). He had apparently been planning and ring shopping for months and I didn’t suspect a thing! There, along the Potomac, where we had shared our first kiss years earlier, Seth got down on one knee and proposed. I was in complete shock and on the video of the proposal, you hear me scream, “WHAT?!” several times before saying yes. When I walked into my house afterwards, I saw that Seth had covered the house with tons of pictures of us over the years and had flowers and champagne waiting to celebrate.
What was wedding shopping like for you?
I knew that I wanted a ball gown; the bigger, the better. Because I am incredibly indecisive, I tried on way too many dresses, but I ultimately decided on an ivory and light gold ball gown with an open back, beautiful lace detailing, a Swarovski crystal belt, and crystal and beaded straps.
Did you incorporate any culture into your wedding?
We found different ways to incorporate our cultures into our wedding. Seth is from Central African Republic and we wanted to make sure that his culture was represented. The men wore African fabric pocket squares and it was a beautiful touch. Seth walked down the aisle with both of his parents to a song sung in his native language. His sister taught me to say the last line of my wedding vows in his native language and it was a big surprise to him during the ceremony. We ended our ceremony by jumping the broom, a nod to my ancestors. At the reception, our guests’ tables were named after different cities that are meaningful to us; where we grew up, places we’ve lived, or where our families are from.
Bridesmaid/Groomsmen gifts: The bridesmaids received wedding day jewelry which was placed in silver boxes that had their names engraved on them.
Favorite item on the menu: Pan seared salmon with cream caper sauce
First dance song: “If” by Davido
What is your best memory from your wedding at Regency at Dominion Valley?
Seth says that the entire day was like a dream. His family is spread across three continents, so it was very special to have so many of them there with us and especially to have his father officiating the ceremony. My father passed away last year, and during the reception, we played a short video of him talking about the importance of family. It meant a lot to me and to my family to acknowledge him and how much he meant to us. The best part of our wedding was how much FUN everyone had. The dance floor STAYED packed! Several people have said it was the best wedding they’ve been to and even months later, people still call us just to tell us how much fun they had.
What is the best wedding advice you can give to engaged couples?
Remember that it is your day! You want your families and your guests to enjoy themselves, but you’ll go crazy trying to please everyone. Do what makes you happy. Our one regret is that we didn’t get a picture with each table before everyone started getting up to dance. I definitely recommend that you do that. The day flies by and you may not get a chance to speak to everyone individually. Be sure to take that moment to speak to each person and make sure you have a picture with each guest.
Regency at Dominion Valley Wedding Vendors:
Wedding Planner and Stylist: Andrew Roby Events
Photographer: a little bit of whimsy photography
Cake: Blue Lace Cakes
Florist: Nosegay Flowers
Rentals: Sammy’s Rentals
Venue: Regency at Dominion Valley
Lighting: Artistic Concepts Group
Bride’s Dress: I Do I Do Wedding Gowns
Makeup: Blush by Makki
Hair: Blowouts Salon
DJ: SGL Productions