Sara & Patrick's Gluten-free, Art Glass, Outdoor Adventure

March 11 |

She taught us how to not get ripped off at antique shops. Then how to make a floral head wreath. After just about dying for her amazing wedding details, it's finally here: longtime OBT member iLiveinmyLab's full wedding story. – Becca

Group photo of the Ceremony
Photos by Ivan Farr

The offbeat bride: Sara, graduate student and food scientist (and Tribe member)

Her offbeat partner: Patrick, architecture graduate student

Location & date of wedding: Barr Mansion, Austin, Texas — May 22, 2010

What made our wedding offbeat: When we started wedding planning, we had a few things that we absolutely knew we wanted: the focus to be on our relationship with each other and our family; gluten-free food; almost everything to be reusable; and an art glass theme.

Gluten-Free Carrot Cake!Food was a huge deal to us. Both of us have celiac disease and live a gluten-free lifestyle because of it. Our motto when it came to food was, "If we can't eat it, it should not be at our wedding," and we took this VERY seriously.

We used to volunteer at an art glass museum, which is where the idea of art glass-themed decorations came from.

One of the big things that we took upon ourselves was to have as much as possible be reusable — all of the glass decorations we collected will be reused in family members' homes or yards, we let our bridal party choose their outfits, and we specifically chose Barr Mansion for their environmentally responsible practices and "green" facilities.

droopy green stuff1We had all sorts of little hidden symbols throughout our decorations. The steampunk tie pin Patrick wore was a Christmas present a few years ago, the glass hair pin in my hair was purchased when Patrick studied abroad, I walked down the aisle to the "Inner Light" orchestral suite from Star Trek (I'm a huge fan), and instead of throwing a traditional bouquet, I threw a pink plush stuffed animal cow (I raise cattle, and thought this would be more appropriate).

30 Seconds

Gluten-Free Chocolate CakeOur biggest challenge: It never ceased to amaze me how offended people would get at the thought of an entirely gluten-free wedding. Because of Barr Mansion's Certified Organic kitchens we were not able to bring in any other products (like gluten-free bread) and there was no way to bake safe gluten-free products in their kitchen.

Our simple fix to this was have a wedding with no bread, and then just bring the cakes the morning of the wedding. Rita at The Little Aussie Bakery made absolutely gorgeous cakes (they were EXACTLY what I was hoping for) that tasted delicious! We also worked for several months with Barr Mansion to make sure that all of the ingredients they used were gluten-free. In the end, we had a fantastic meal and we appreciate all the effort they put towards creating wonderful food for us!
Mirror Mirror on the Wall

"To Go" BoxesMy favorite moment: Getting to visit and celebrate with all of our long-lost family members and close friends. We wanted it to be a celebration of our relationship, not a specific moment of "Oh, look: you're married now!" and we feel like we succeeded.

The Captain is Here

Wedding Toastees!My funniest moment: My co-worker Constance fighting for the plush pink cow! Constance is a visiting scholar/intern from Africa and this was the first wedding she had been to while she was here. It was so much fun watching her get the pink cow!

Tossing the Cow

Sign in table arrangementMy advice for offbeat brides: Do not let drama consume you. If someone in your life is trying to cause chaos related to your wedding, just shut them off for a few days to let things calm down. Try not to make rash angry decisions and instead be the bigger person by attempting to resolve the situation peacefully — this is super hard but it's worth it in the end.

If you're going to do something odd or unusual, don't tell anyone. People will try to create drama and make a big deal of the simplest things, but when it comes to the wedding day they'll think everything went wonderfully and was absolutely gorgeous.

Chaplain Larry performing the ceremony

Outside the Glass BallroomWhat was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? We learned how to filter out negativity in our lives and focus on the positive things that were going on around us. Chaos happens to everyone; the key is to focus on the good things in life and what makes you happy.

Our Classic Ride

Glass Aisle DecorationsCare to share a few vendor/shopping links?

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!

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They ♥ OBB; we ♥ themThis post features Offbeat Vendors! Check out their vendor listing to see how they cater to Offbeat Brides:
  1. Major love! And I know it's obvs by now, but AHHH! WAI CHING!!! One of the most beautiful wedding gowns EVAR.

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  2. That dress is -gorgeous- by the way! And yay for gluten-free. I don't have celiac's, but I do have a fibromyalgia/arthritis related intolerance, so it's nice to see that gluten-free can also look amazing and taste awesome!

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  3. The music you walked down the aisle to, is that the song that Picard played on the Resican(sp) flute in later episodes? If so, how lovely! If not, I'm sure it was still lovely!

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  4. I like the advice about simply not telling anyone if you're planning on doing something odd. For example, I'm not planning on showing the inlaws the invitations until they get theirs in the mail ;)

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  5. I love seeing this, we are doing a gf wedding, I am the only one with celiac, so some people have had a hard time understanding, but I don't feel like getting sick from our wedding. This gives me a lot of confidence going forward with everything. Thanks, it was beautiful.

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  6. It´s been a while since I don´t have the urge to come to the site just to watch the porn. And, OMFG… it was worth every click. The gown, the hair, the venue, the colors, the glass work, the flowers, they were all combined into one big masterpiece! Congrats to the person who imagined it!
    Happy life U2!

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  7. It's crazy to me that anyone would get offended (?!) about a gluten-free wedding. I don't even understand what that would mean! "I take it as a personal affront that there will be no crusty rolls!" WTF?

    Anyway, anyone who would demand that you serve food that you can't eat at your own wedding is being ridiculous. This wedding looks absolutely wonderful and gorgeous. Congrats!

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  8. oh my gosh this dress is to die for. I absolutely love everything about this wedding :)

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  9. Your flowers are still the most memorable thing I've ever seen on Offbeat Bride and my favorite flower arrangement ever. Love them!!

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  10. What the?!?! People were actually offended that you didn't want to pay for, and risk eating food, that would make you ill?! I'm gluten intolerant and we just didn't tell anyone until after the fact that everything was gluten free except the white and strawberry cake (because I only wanted the chocolate :) ). I have run into an awful lot of "Well, but you won't like die if you eat it, will you? So you could if you wanted to?" Yeah, I really WANT to swell up like a balloon and spend a few hours rolling around in pain, don't you?!

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  11. All your dress are belong to me.

    Please. Gimme.

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  12. and I now know what dress designer I am going to pick!!!!

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  13. Beautiful. Love that version Waiching created for you.

    Also I definetly learned this lesson from my wedding too:
    "If you're going to do something odd or unusual, don't tell anyone. People will try to create drama and make a big deal of the simplest things, but when it comes to the wedding day they'll think everything went wonderfully and was absolutely gorgeous"
    it's exactly what happened for us. I probably even backed off on some things I should have just pushed on, because in the end everyone loved everything and said it was the most fun wedding they had been too.

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  14. oh my god it's the cakes!! I've found them on flickr months ago and drooled over them so much that they went straight to my wedding inspirations folder, haha. They look so absolutely yummy and pretty.

    I love this wedding. Very pretty :)

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  15. I have been a HUUUUGE fan of this dress and the hair ribbons for such a long time I'm glad to finally know more about the beautiful wedding it featured in!

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  16. Hmmm… let's see if I can leave a comment today (YAY it finally worked! Last week when I tried to reply to questions it just got angry at me and would not post!)

    Just wanted to say thanks everyone for all of the wonderful comments and if you have any more questions about how we pulled off our menu being naturally gluten-free or even just random decoration-ness feel free to bug me on my OBB profile or find me on Twitter, I do check both pretty regularly! Also, yes it is very unfortunate that people had their panties in such a twist about gluten-free, but it's actually a pretty common thing at least in more "Food Conservative" areas where alternative diets are not as readily accepted by the general population. The key is to stick to your guns and be firm with your "I want ___(blank – could be allergen or even diets for more personal reasons)_____ free." and don't let people guilt you, it's your wedding, the food should be something that you get to enjoy!

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  17. Beautiful wedding!
    I notice that you have a vicar performig the ceremony but it is outdoors. Various people have told me that it is impossible to do that because ministers/vicars are registered to a church for the ceremony and can't do it anywhere else. How did you manage to make that happen?

    (of course I am in the UK and it could be that the laws are different)

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    • We had Chaplain Larry Todd perform our ceremony. He was a military chaplain and is not affiliated with a particular church or chapel, the money that he receives for performing wedding ceremonies goes to support the Central Texas Crisis Chaplains ( a non-profit charity – their website can be found here http://www.austinweddingchaplains.com/index.html ). In the United States, depending upon the denomination a ceremony can be performed anywhere (indoors or outdoors as well as off church property), thus it is not as problematic having outdoors ceremonies here.

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  18. I can relate to the food aspect. My FH and I each have some sort of food restriction (he's allergic to mushrooms and I don't eat pork or shellfish). For our wedding day, we have the same philosophy. We want to be able to go up to any dish in the room and take a bite. For the reception a few months later we're being far more laid-back though. After all, it is a potluck. :)

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  19. Congratulations!
    I love all the details, and love for sure your hair!

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