Ashleigh & Erika’s Historic Maryland Mill Wedding
Sept. 19, 2015
Ashleigh wasn’t looking for love, but when an unexpected guest, Erika, showed up to a casual dinner with friends, it walked right through her front door—carrying tortillas. A little over two years later, the brides wed in a historic Maryland mill, just outside of Washington, DC, surrounded by close friends and family.
During what she thought would be a small, family brunch, Ashleigh noticed Erika was a bit distracted during the meal—she didn’t even eat the bacon-wrapped hot dog she’d ordered for her! Midway through brunch, Erika started to chat about their relationship. As Erika continued, Ashleigh was totally unaware of what was coming next, but curious as to why she’d picked this time to start a conversation about their relationship.
When Erika got out of her chair, it hit Ashleigh.
“She asked me to be her wife, and I was like ‘Oh my god!’ ‘Oh my god!,’ Ashleigh said. “She had to ask, ‘Is that a yes?’
Of course, it was.
As wedding planning continued with little trouble, the couple hit major snags just a month before their big day.
“Everything just kind of went downhill,” Ashleigh said. Her father, who suffered from Parkinson’s disease, took a turn for the worst, and Ashleigh traveled from the couple’s home in DC to Tennessee to support him. Over the course of the next month, Ashleigh found herself with her father more often then not. He passed away just six days before the couple’s wedding. Though she briefly considered postponing the wedding, after talking with her mother, who said she should stay the course, she decided to host the wedding as planned.
Ashleigh’s sister was slated to officiate the ceremony, but wouldn’t be able to attend the wedding now that she was needed out of state to help plan their father’s funeral. The couple’s friend, Sara, stepped in to officiate with just four days notice. Not only that, but friends helped the couple finish up wedding projects when Ashleigh had to abruptly leave her last-minute crafts and organizing to be with her father.
She chose to honor her father with a photo collage of memories, and by asking her seamstress to stitch a small heart-shaped piece of one of his shirts into the inside of her dress.
The couple and their guests had so much fun at the wedding that they asked their photographer to stay longer! Ultimately, Ashleigh said one of the nicest aspects of the wedding was being surrounded by their friends who love and support them. “There was a very loving atmosphere,” Ashleigh said. “We felt very loved.”