A Modern, Irish-Inspired Wedding at W Washington DC Hotel in Washington, DC

In a city filled with history, Maura McGraw (27 and a logistics officer) and Jim Prial (26 and an infantry officer) went with a more modern approach f

In a city filled with history, Maura McGraw (27 and a logistics officer) and Jim Prial (26 and an infantry officer) went with a more modern approach for their wedding at the contemporary W Washington DC Hotel in Washington, DC. With enough space to fit 200 guests, Maura and James envisioned one big party that celebrated their Irish heritage and reflected their relationship as a whole. It began with the bright green and white invitations, accented with their family crest design that symbolized the start of a new life together. The ceremony took place at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle, with an ornate interior that needed little additional decorating. Maura walked down the aisle to the sound of bagpipes playing "Highland Cathedral" while wearing her ivory strapless dress designed by Peter Langner. As Maura and Jim exited the church, they were greeted by the groomsmen dressed in military uniforms, forming a traditional "Saber Arch." Inside the dim reception space with purple uplighting, dining tables in all shapes and sizes had centerpieces of moss and blooms. Instead of a traditional cake, they served an array of Georgetown Cupcakes (Maura's favorite), ranging from cherry blossom cheesecake to birthday cake and red velvet flavors. Putting all the other details aside, we loved the one-of-a-kind escort card hedge wall displaying shot glasses with each guest's name written in calligraphy. They were put to good use with Irish whiskey shots before sitting down for dinner. See more modern details that reflected Maura and Jim as a couple, below.

Bright green and white invitations reflected Maura and Jim's Irish heritage through the custom-made family crest designed just for them. They sent the invites with stamps that depicted military history and Washington, DC, at large.
Maura picked out a glamorous pair of silver stilettos embellished in sparkles. These Jimmy Choo shoes gave Maura’s look an extra shimmer and shine.
After the ceremony, Maura styled her hair into an elegant side ponytail for the rest of the evening. Her hair had a stylish crystal clip woven into the long curls.
Maura held an elegant bouquet filled with ivory garden roses, purple stock and lisianthus, mixed with lush fern and hypericum berries. The flowers had a gold silk ribbon wrapped around its stems.
The personalized coat of arms representing Maura and Jim accented the front pages of the white programs, designed with watercolors by Winifred Paper.
The ceremony took place inside the historic Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in the heart of Washington, DC. Other than the two large urns of white cherry blossoms, the ornate interior of the church needed no additional decor.
"There were a total of five bridesmaids, all of Maura’s sisters," the couple says. "She selected a convertible tulle gown by Jenny Yoo that allowed the girls to show off their personalities by tying each dress in a different way. Maura gave each a delicate Irish bracelet that they wore on the wedding day."
The bridesmaids held purple bouquets filled with rich purple roses, stock and lisianthus, plus accents of fern and hypericum berries. The flower arrangements matched the bridesmaid dresses wonderfully.
"Maura’s ring was a traditional Irish Claddagh," the couple says. "The design features two hands clasping a diamond heart. The elements of this ring correspond with the qualities of love, friendship and loyalty."
Jim swept Maura into his arms for a kiss as his groomsmen—and fellow military friends—created a saber arch.
The ballroom reception embodied the modern style Maura and Jim had envisioned. Gold and silver linens covered various dining tables. The main wooden table stood out with a combination of moss, fern and blooms draped down the middle.
“A custom hedge wall from Amaryllis featured individual shelves, which displayed shot glasses with each name in calligraphy from Laura Hooper Calligraphy,” the couple says. “After finding their shot glass, guests made their way to the Irish whisky tasting bar cart for a shot.”
Each dining table had a gold laser-cut number spelled out in cursive, placed in the middle of lush centerpieces filled with roses, fern and other greenery. Glowing white candles perched on top of glass stands surrounded the displays.
“The groom and groomsmen were all military, ranging from the Marines to Army, so they all wore their military dress uniforms,” the couple says. “Nothing looks better then a man in uniform.”
Each guest had gold and white dinnerware set at their seats, with a small mini-terrarium bowl filled with purple blooms and moss accents. The place setting rested on top of silver linens covering the table, while others had gold tablecloths.
A combination of fern and moss speckled with purple blooms draped down the middle of long dining tables. White candles perched on top of glass stands added an extra touch of elegance to the display.
Guests lounged on luxurious furniture during the cocktail hour and reception. Amaryllis provided cream-colored couches and chairs with green pillows, and elegant tables decorated with hedge platforms and purple roses.
Maura knew she found the gown of her dreams when she tried on the ivory strapless Peter Langner  dress. The strapless dress had a bodice accented in tiny crystals and beads, and a ball gown skirt that flared out in style.
A tall gold stand displayed a large assortment of Georgetown Cupcakes, Maura's all-time favorite dessert. They picked out four flavors for guests to choose from: cherry blossom cheesecake, chocolate ganache, birthday cake and red velvet.
A gold elegant stand next to gold votive candles displayed cherry blossom cheesecake cupcakes made by Georgetown Cupcakes, among many other flavors served for dessert.
Maura picked out a lovely tulle veil to wear during the ceremony, clipped into her hairstyle. In this shot, Maura wrapped the veil around both her and Jim as they shared an intimate moment.