After 10 wonderful years photographing weddings I have moved on to Maternity, Newborn and Family sessions. I am no longer taking on any weddings as of 2019. Feel free to be inspired by my past wedding couples as you plan your own wedding!

Katie & Cliff | Belmont Country Club Wedding

Belmont Country Club Wedding

Belmont Country Club Wedding

Initial client meetings always leave me a sweaty nervous mess, I’ve never been a super outgoing person.  In fact I used to be accurately described as a wall flower in high school, the girl whose 11th grade English teacher decided to help me get over my fear of public speaking would make me speak to the class every week on a different topic. TORTURE!!!  That had to change when I started my own business, I have to put myself out there over and over again always with the hope that the person I’m meeting will like me and want to work with me!

So what does this have to do with Kate & Cliff and their beautiful wedding?!?! Well at our first Skype meeting I noticed they seemed to be sitting on their couch looking up at me and at that moment I realized I was on their TV!!!!! I gulped and asked how big their tv was and of course it’s like the size of a bill board (not really but in my head that is what I was picturing!!!!). All I could think was thank god I took a few minutes to freshen my makeup and dear lord they are going to see me sweat in HD!!!!!

Luckily they were not put off by my crazy eyes, they were distracted by my photo bombing golden retriever Sam which led to learning that Cliff loves goldens too! So much so that after the wedding they picked out their very own golden retriever puppy!!! Love it!!!

Katie and Cliff were married on a beautiful April day complete with fluffy cherry blossom trees as the perfect backdrop for their portraits. We started off the day at the Belmont Country Club where they were getting ready and having their reception later.  The country club was so beautiful and elegant with a large open staircase in the entry and tons of architectural details throughout. The room the girls were getting ready in though was your very typical conference room with a huge table and lots of chairs. Not really the scene you think of when you think of a bride getting into her wedding dress. So my first job was to scout quickly to find a location with great light and enough space to fit my bride and her bridal party for the important getting into the dress photos! The spot I picked had beautiful windows with lots of light, white walls and floor to bounce that pretty light around and a beautiful vintage couch! So where was this amazing light filled space…… the bathroom! Yes I know it sounds totally crazy but the photos are gorgeous and one of my all time favorite images came from this bathroom backdrop :).

Belmont Country Club loved Katie & Cliff’s wedding so much they shared it with all their future brides on Here Comes the Guide –
Katie + Cliff at Belmont Country Club!







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I'm Melissa

Welcome to my blog! I'm Melissa Arlena a Northern Virginia Newborn Photographer based out of Fredericksburg, Virginia. Sit back, relax and check out my latest work along with tips and advice for preparing for your maternity or newborn session. I'm so excited you are here!

Areas I serve

DC, Alexandria, Falls Church, Arlington, Fairfax, Springfield, Lorton, Woodbridge, Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania & Richmond area.


Maternity and Newborn Photography

I'm a Virginia born and raised photographer, DIYer, and educator sharing life, love and all my latest projects with you!

xoxo, Melissa Arlena

diyer, sailor, mother, dog lover, military wife


based out of Fredericksburg, Virginia