The Blog

Have Your Wedding at the Ballard Locks!

Ballard Locks Rose Garden for Summer WeddingI recently moved across the street from the most amazing location for weddings.  The Carl S. English Botanical Garden at the Ballard Locks.  I invite you to take a look at the pictures on the link provided below and imagine your garden wedding and a picnic on one of the lovely lawns after wards:

This botanical garden is a tribute to the devotion of horticulturist, Carl S. English, Jr.  During the 43 years working for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Carl transformed the barren lawn, left after the construction of the locks, into a garden worthy of serious study.  These lovely grounds are a masterpiece of horticultural splendor, combining the elegant lines and vistas of the romantic English landscape style with the original character of more than 570 species and 1,500 varieties from around the world.  One of Seattle’s best kept secrets is yours to enjoy.  The garden offers color fragrance, and open spaces to awaken your senses all year long.

The Ballard Locks offer four different areas for your wedding ceremony and they are FREE with a reservation.  I have done several weddings so far in the formal garden and rose garden which is reserved for groups of 10 or less.  The other three areas that can be reserved can accommodate up to 50 guests each.  Consider this — my fee to marry you in the gardens $275 and the space is free.  If you want to do a picnic after your ceremony you can keep it as inexpensive (sandwiches and chips) or as extravagant as you wish.  Just remember that there is no alcohol allowed on the grounds.  In addition, there are several fantastic restaurants in the area to enjoy a lovely meal after the ceremony.

Who says weddings have to be expensive?    All in all, you can have a beautiful garden wedding and nice meal for your guests without breaking the bank!  Call me to reserve your garden wedding at the beautiful Carl S. English Botanical Garden!  Please enjoy the following gallery of pictures of the Ballard Locks Botanical Garden!

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Elaine Way-International Wedding Officiant!

So I get a phone call today and when I pick up I can’t hear anything on the line except buzzing — like a bad connection.  When the connection didn’t improve I eventually hung up the phone.  Then they called again  and curiosity getting the best of me, I answered the phone in my usual professional manner, “Hello, this is Elaine”.  The buzzing continued on the other end but suddenly it was paired with a man’s voice.   “Hi, this is Steve” (name replaced to protect the caller’s privacy).  “Hi Steve.” “Uh, you did a wedding for a friend of mine about a month ago and he said I have to call you because me and my fiance are getting married in April.  I’m in South America visiting her — she’s deployed here”.  “What, you are calling from South America?”  “Yes, that’s right.  She’s got a Majic Jack that makes it easy.”    And the discussion progressed from there.

What really wow’d me about that phone call today is that Seattle Wedding Officiants became international!   And it was with someone in the military which I love.  I have done many military weddings and I’m getting to know the kind of young man that goes into the military.  He is bright-eyed, polite, clean-cut, stands up straight — these guys are really amazing!  And it’s consistent whichever part of the military they are in.   For example, I had about 5 who were assigned to submarines.  Facinating, huh?  You bet.  I was in awe of these young men.

I can’t say enough about how excited I am about my business.  The call from South America, getting to know the local military — it’s a great time for Seattle Wedding Officiants and thank you to all of you who have helped!

It’s All About The Dress

I have done very formal weddings at big hotels and I have done small somewhat less formal weddings in the front room of my home with a fire burning in the fireplace. One of the most exciting things for me wherever I’m doing the wedding is the bride’s dress. Whether it’s a formal gown with a long train and lots of beading and lace or a beautiful short dress from a boutique in town, the bride is ALWAYS BEAUTIFUL! What’s up with that? I have never seen an unattractive bride. They always just beam and it’s always such a pleasure to be around that kind of energy. Happy, happy, happy. I love my job! Read more

Did you know?

Did you know that in the state of Washington you can apply for your marriage license via the U.S. postal service? Here is what you do:

Go to: and click on Applying For A Marriage License. Then under How to Apply click on By Mail. On this page you are instructed to download affadavits for you and your fiance, fill out, get notarized and send back to the King County Courthouse with a $64 cashier’s check. In about 4-5 days call the courthouse to make sure they have received your paperwork. The great thing about this method is that the day they receive your paperwork at the courthouse, your 3-day waiting period begins. This is a great alternative for those that are planning on flying in from out of town. Read more

Seattle Wedding Show

I went to my first Seattle Wedding show the weekend of the 15th and WOW! what a show! I was so totally overwhelmed with all that the show had to offer. I tried to move around the convention center in a methodic manner but soon found myself drifting to booths because they looked interesting. If you don’t have a plan, i.e. a list of the type of vendors you want to check out, you end up basically bouncing from one interesting booth to another. I saw beautiful wedding cakes, wedding dresses, caterers, venues, invitations and much, much more. I was exhausted at the end of the day, but I HIGHLY recommend this show because you will walk away with all if not most of the answers to your questions for planning and executing the perfect wedding! Check out the Seattle Wedding Show at: