How Boulder's Carrie Swails Photography can keep your wedding budget in check AND give you stunning photos

By on Apr 18th

daynaandjason-18Remember this sweet couple from the amphitheater wedding in Colorado with gratuitous dog adorableness? Their photographer Carrie Swails is our fabulous sponsor, and I can't wait to gush about this fellow nerd and offbeat wedding-lover.

Carrie is a Boulder wedding photographer whose pricing is as non-traditional as her wedding couples (more on that later). When she's not taking photos of awesome Offbeat Brides and grooms, she's geeking out over Doctor Who and Lord of the Rings. But let's collectively geek out over Carrie's amazing wedding photography — trees! fields! gorgeous backdrops! These photos are making me fall in love with Colorado all over again…

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Amazing shoes from Charlotte Olympia that most of us can't afford (but all of us can enjoy!)

By on Apr 18th

Betty and VeronicaGenerally when I do these shoe posts, I make a point to provide a range of pricing options, from $30 pleather flats that might start falling apart after one wear, all the way up to "Holy shit, those shoes cost more than my entire catering budget!"

Last week, a reader wrote in to very specifically request a post about Charlotte Olympia's line of shoes.

I took one look at had three responses:

  1. HOLY SHIT AMAZING
  2. HOLY SHIT SO MANY KITTY-FACED SHOES!
  3. HOLY SHIT OFFBEAT BRIDES ARE GOING TO BE VERY UNHAPPY ABOUT THESE PRICES.

These shoes start at about $500, so really for most of us this will be a fun virtual shopping post.

(Although the Random Bonus Shoes are only $30, so YAY!)

For those of you who find these shoes accessible, we demand many many photos of you wearing them on your wedding day.

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Giselle & Alan's pirate handfasting wedding

By on Apr 18th
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Photos by Diane Woodring

The Offbeat Bride: Giselle, Graduate Teaching Assistant (and Tribesmaid)

Her offbeat partner: Alan, Web Developer

Date and location of wedding: Country Cottage & Gardens, Mineral City, OH — August 9, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Alan and I both love the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, and as a costume enthusiast, I've infected Alan with the costuming bug. We love throwing themed parties for Halloween every year, so it just seemed natural that our biggest party would follow suit.

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How to make (and wield!) your own sword bouquet

Guestpost by Renea on Apr 17th

sword bouquet

As a rule, when I get a project in my head, I can't NOT do it. A few days ago, I had an idea for the bridesmaids' bouquets to have a sword hilt for a handle. I just finished the first one, version 1.0, and there are some things I want to tweak and change. But for the most part, this is it! Now, let me show you how I made it so that you, too, can wield your flowers on your wedding day.

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Float down a river of Alaskan wedded love

By on Apr 17th

Fairbanks, Alaska represents with this rustic wedding in Pioneer Park last July. Nick and Kalee kept things simple — the groomsmen wore T-shirts, and the bride went barefoot — but who needs tons of details in a setting as lovely as this? The couple got married under the pines on a beautifully overcast day, accompanied by accordion music, and standing on a river raft that Nick built just for the occasion.

Because, yes, the wedding took to the river after the ceremony — The Chena, to be exact. Even the drum set made it onto one of the DIY rafts and, from the looks of it, successfully stayed afloat until the reception.

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Kari & Chris' artsy red and teal wedding

By on Apr 17th

The Offbeat Bride: Kari, Graphic Designer

Her offbeat partner: Chris, Musician

Date and location of wedding: The Philadelphia Magic Gardens, Philadelphia, PA — November 1, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Our venue was one of our favorite details: The Philadelphia Magic Gardens, a giant art installation space (made of mosaic, mirrors, and recycled materials) by artist Isaiah Zagar. Not only was it incredibly beautiful, but we both felt great knowing the fees we paid to them would go to supporting art and communities in South Philadelphia. We chose not to have a traditional reception venue, but instead had the ceremony and a multi-coursed, Mexican dinner party all in the same outdoor space.

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How I'm using my wedding website to explain my mixed-faith wedding to dubious family members

Guestpost by spaceviking on Apr 16th

Remember when Alison and Matt were married by an Icelandic Asatru priestess?

Recently I tackled our wedsite's FAQ page. I pulled up this post and started filling out whatever I know (or can reasonably guess) right this minute, and then added a section to cover what is arguably the most important bit of information regarding our wedding day.

This page will be how 80% of my (very Catholic) family will have the "Surprise! I've converted to a different religion!" news broken to them, so it's important. I think I've covered all the serious points and details clearly, addressed concerns respectfully, and peppered in enough humor, so it's not a total srs bns snore-fest that has a completely different tone from the rest of the FAQs. Plus, I'm hoping I really nailed "polite but firm."

Overall, it turned out a ton better than I anticipated, so I figured I'd share the wording we used, in case someone was in a similar situation and wanted some wording ideas…

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Super-low-key, super-urban, rooftop wedding in Brooklyn

By on Apr 16th

Kelly and Steve married each other on the roof of their apartment building in Brooklyn last August, complete with a jaw-dropping sunset for a background. Only a few close loved ones attended this super-small, super-low-key, super-urban affair — which also included their dog. Throw in a few twinkle lights around the balcony after dark, and hello magical urban-evening rooftop.

All of this is beautiful, of course, but it's the couple's style that's really gasp-worthy. Kelly's long, grey dress. Steve's Johnny Cash, Man in Black look. The hot pink shoes. The Beatles hair. The RAINBOW hair. Kid you not: pastel pink, purple, blue, blonde rainbow. With braids. And sparkles. It's like everything a My Little Pony tail should be, and I want it.

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Ally & James' crafty country bike-themed wedding

By on Apr 16th
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Photos by Emily Irish

The Offbeat Bride: Ally, Youth Counselor

Her offbeat partner: James, Student

Date and location of wedding: Family Cottage in Rose Lake, MI and Ally's childhood backyard in St. Johns, MI — August 23, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: James and I have been best friends since we were 11, but didn't start dating until our 20s. We decided to get married to publicly promise to everyone we know that we wanted to be together forever, and we wanted their support.

We initially asked for support and advice, and this turned into some strong opinions for which we weren't prepared. We got very far from who we were as a couple and individuals, so we stopped asking for suggestions and planned the rest on our own. We wanted to save money, have fresh veggie meals, and enjoy time spent with rarely-seen friends and family.

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