Operation Sequin: Nelle + Matt's magical bike proposal party | offbeat Washington DC wedding photography

Prepare for sparkly-eyed, super-awesome-rainbows-neon-glitter amazingness. Because that is what I have in store for you today. This post is SO freaking overdue, and in the almost YEAR since this amazing day last April, Nelle has become a close friend, I've come to admire and love her fiance Matt, and this amazing day was featured in Catalyst Wed Co!  I can't wait for these two to tie the knot... they are simply put, the very. best. kindest. humans. ever. So what did this magical day look like? Read on...

While Nelle was getting down on one knee at home to ask Matt formally to marry her, 150+ of their closest friends were gathering (the result of months of planning on Nelle's part) at nearby Lincoln Park on Capitol Hill in DC. Nelle + Matt are a part of the amazing DC bike community, and they (and non-bicycle friends) gathered from near and far to dress in 4 tubs of sparkly, besequined costumes that Nelle's mom had been thrifting for months. People were decorated. Bikes were decorated. Family was decorated. A sound system appeared. Babies appeared. I got to wear a pink tutu. It. Was. Amazing.

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Then, about 45 minutes in... we got the call! Nelle + Matt (and a few close friends) were on their way to the park, on a cover-story celebratory bike ride around the neighborhood. Matt didn't know it... but this was WAY more than a neighborhood ride, and their first stop? US!

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Surprise!

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Champagne double-surprise!

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Triple-surprise! Matt's family was waiting, hidden among the friends, to be amazing well-wishers, too.

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A quick costume change for the couple to make them appropriately sparkly, and then it was time to get back on their tandem bike (and for the rest of us to get on our bikes) and ride!

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As we got to the First Street NE protected bike lane in NoMa, we picked up a SECOND wave of sparkly happy friends, who'd been tasked with making a cheer tunnel for us. FRIENDS ARE AMAZING.

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Met Branch Trail bike engagement

We continued up the Met Branch Trail to R Street, where Matt's friends from Mapbox awaited us with cowbell. Always more cowbell.

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On we rode to our final destination... everyone's favorite bicyclist dive bar. Seriously, how can you not love this place? 

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Once we were all assembled, Nelle's surprises for Matt kicked into another, higher gear. First, there was a pinata full of ring pops...

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... and the most amazing public declaration of intention, and a second chance for Matt to say "YES!" to Nelle. (Which of course he did.)

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And then there were confetti canons!

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And turns out, because they'd known this was coming for a long while, Matt had a ring for Nelle, too. YOU GUYS.

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We came back from some quick portraits...

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... to a mariachi band. What proposal is complete without one? New. Bar. Set.

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Inside and outside for the rest of the night, there was bedazzling, and toasting, and dancing, and mostly... happiness.

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So freaking much happiness.

So much thanks and kudos to Matt Ha for second shooting, and Kian for the amazing videography. Friends of Nelle + Matt can find the complete proposal gallery here.