Dana and Sheldon's handmade extravaganza of fun wedding

By on Nov. 23rd

Dude, they had a barbeque fountain! I am now completley obsessed with this idea and must find a way to have one someday. Also, there are cows! And a puppy! Aaaand Dana embroidered her Save the Dates, handmade fabric flower bouts and corsages, and made napkins out of vintage sheets. They, also, built their own dance floor. That's some serious DIY action. For realz. – Becca

The offbeat bride: Dana, library professional and crafty diva

Her offbeat partner: Sheldon, librarian

Location & date of wedding: At my parent's ranch, Indianola, OK — September 18, 2010

What made our wedding offbeat: Our wedding was an all-out handmade affair. We did everything ourselves, I even made my own wedding dress. Since we went DIY we saved a ton and had a dream wedding for under $6000.

First Dance :)

They built their own dance floor.

Our wedding party was very untraditional having two guys and a gal on each side. My best friends are two gay men and they had to be in my wedding and everyone respected that.

We, also, not only had kids at our wedding, but we went out of the way to make them feel like honored guests by having a kids activity center and kids-only dance at the reception.

Kissing in the field

The scenery was gorgeous

Quilt covered hay bales as ceremony seating = some serious awesomeness.

Tell us about the ceremony: We had a non-religious ceremony (because we hate being preached at when we attend weddings), but we're both spiritual people so it was important for us to have someone bless our marriage. Since my husband is Native American (Chickasaw), we asked his uncle to say a blessing for us. He shared a traditional Chickasaw blessing in Navajo (because he doesn't speak Chickasaw) and it meant so much to us.
DIY Photobooth

DIY Photobooth

Love LettersOur biggest challenge: I am really good with visual details, but I'm not detail-oriented when it comes to planning the big picture. This posed some problems. Because we didn't have a wedding planner, it was up to me to figure out every single detail of the wedding weekend and tell that to someone else before the wedding so people weren't bothering me the day of. Thankfully, I have friends that helped me focus my ideas and write a timeline and list of everyone's duties. We still had a few flubs here and there, but they didn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

Getting Married on the ranchMy favorite moment: Getting to have my best friends be a part of my wedding party meant the world to me. I will also never forget taking photos at sunset with my new husband — getting to have that alone time (even if the photographer was there) right after the wedding was wonderful. It was especially fun because the cattle came out to be a part of the shoot.

My funniest moment: Me snorting really loudly as I walked down the aisle still gives me the giggles. And the kids only dance at the reception was a hoot! The kids were having a blast and all the parents were on the sidelines making sure no one got too close to the tiki torches we had around the dance floor.

Barbecue FountainWas there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? My family made all of the food for the reception and I was sure that we wouldn't have enough. We also had a barbeque fountain and I was terrified that we would get a huge gust of wind covering all of our guests with sauce. Everything was great though. We had plenty of food and everyone thought the barbeque sauce fountain was awesome. [Intern's note: Because it is the awesome thing evar!!!]

Our mini-us cake toppersMy advice for offbeat brides: If you have an idea, go for it! Find a way to make it happen. We desperately wanted to do as much as we could ourselves and it all worked out. Don't be hindered by insecurities and use every favor and resource you possibly can. Don't be afraid to ask for help from friends that know what they're doing; from our experience, people really want to help in any way they can so just ask.

Our "looking sassy" photoWhat was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? While everyone will tell you it's your day, it really isn't. You're planning a wedding for more people than yourself and while it's important to have the things that you want, you still need to think about your guests and all the people that are making the day possible. We continued to tell ourselves that our wedding was really for everyone else (otherwise we would have eloped) and that really helped us not only make the day awesome for ourselves, but everyone else felt special too.

Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
Since I made a lot of our wedding decor we didn't have many vendors.

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!