Brandi & Seena's simple, friend-filled at-home wedding

By on Feb 24th

_MG_0228The Offbeat Bride: Brandi, Admin Assistant/Soon to be full-time nursing student (and OBT member)

Her offbeat partner: Seena, Architect/Awesome Humanoid

Location & date of wedding: Izone – mentor/adopted family's home on Mt. Washington, Los Angeles, CA — 10/11/2008

What made our wedding offbeat: What made our wedding offbeat was it truly reflected us and the life we have at this very moment in time. We stripped it down to what we could accomplish without feeling wrung out, which meant that many of the grandiose DIY projects (I'm not a DIY girl, not quite sure what I was thinking) got trimmed or cut entirely. My husband, the creative one, taught me what it is to edit. What we were left with when the editing was finished was perfect in it's imperfections, it felt like us.

We spent 5k on the day. We fed eighty people with 1k with food from a local Lebanese restaurant (husband is half-Egyptian, it's the closest we could get that was good), provided all the beer and wine ourselves.

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DIY napkin rings with the date 10/11 abstracted in Arabic Script.

A friend designed and printed the invitations at cost and was the photographer for the price of the plane ticket to LA. A budding filmmaker of a friend put together a video memento, just because he wanted to. The ceremony was officiated by our very good theater directing friend. I hired a Day-of Coordinator because, having been married before, I wanted to enjoy and remember this wedding, not work it. Both families pitched in the day before to decorate the house. The house was free, our band friends played for free. We were lucky bitches.

The whole family

Our biggest challenge: Our biggest problem was convincing my mom that it was okay for us to have a wedding. When we called them from London to tell them we were engaged, the first thing out of her mouth was, "So, are you just going to go to the courthouse and get it over with?" Just because it was my second marriage and we had been living together for three-ish years did not mean that we didn't want a celebration. It's his first (hopefully last) marriage, and he's an only child.

We dealt with that problem by just plowing ahead, we were paying for it anyway. My mom came and had a great time. We found out later that her biggest fear was our families not getting along due to her experience with in-laws, but that was completely put to rest by his family. They are amazing and everyone had a great time.

The living room

My favorite moment: The whole day was magical, but 3 moments have really stuck with me:

My husband starting his vows with "Today is just another day." I had no idea where it was going, was a bit shocked and had no idea what would come next. He followed it up with the a depth of feeling and eloquence that blew me away. He's the bestest.

When the band (Dangerous Aliens) started into "The Passenger" by Iggy Pop and everyone got out and danced. We linked arms and danced in a huge circle in the living room of our second LA home. I have no documentation of this moment of our whole family, blood and choice, just a sparkly wonderful memory.

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There's been a running joke that Seena and I are half owners of the house because we take care of it whenever the owners are out of town. We know their kitchen better than they do. After the ceremony, I went up to Andrea (wife half of owning couple) to give her a hug and thank her. The words that left my mouth were: "Thank for opening OUR house, I'm mean YOUR house, YOUR house!" She laughed and said the first description was the right one.

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My advice for other offbeat brides: Think long and hard about having a wedding party, and who you want in it. I asked one of my bridespersons for the wrong reasons, and didn't realize it until it was too late to correct it. We tussled a lot during the planning because she thought I wasn't going the direction she felt was appropriate. I was then reamed after the wedding for not thanking her enough. We don't talk anymore. I asked her because she was the only person here, in Pasadena, who seemed excited to help me out. That's not a good enough reason. Trust your gut, and don't listen when your mom expresses displeasure at uneven sides of the altar. It's okay, really.

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