With the holidays upon us, we are focusing on the snowiest and most cheerful parties of the season. Cuddle up with some cocoa and enjoy these winter-themed weddings.
The Offbeat Bride: Allison, Marketing Representative
Her offbeat partner: Jacob, 2nd Lt. in the Air Force
Date and location of wedding: Our home church in rural Pennock, MN — December 31, 2010
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Never before would I have chosen a winter wedding in Minnesota, but that was our timeline because of my husband's military constraints, so a winter wedding it was! I was pretty intimidated by the cold weather. So, I had a white winter coat made and refused to be intimidated by the terrible forecast people kept informing us about. I also wore navy blue boots and hot pink tights.
I didn't want traditional flowers all in the same color and in clutch bouquets, especially being that it was winter and they get really expensive. I chose pomander kissing balls, one in each color for the girls. My florist at MJ Flowers took them even further and just put flowers on the top of the ball and covered the rest in fabric with sewn on jewels in matching colors.
Lastly, our reception was held above a bowling alley, so we were able to take some photos in bowling shoes! We also played a little in the arcade area, because my husband and I play air hockey every chance we get.
Tell us about the ceremony: We wanted it to be Christ-centered rather than so focused on us. We had some congregational hymns as well as music during the unity candle, vow signing, and we (just the two of us) took Communion. We then handed out roses to our mothers and hugged our families.
Our biggest challenge: We didn't have too much time to plan, as we got engaged in September and planned to have the wedding December 31. My handmade invitations ended up being difficult to send in time. It was made more so because Jacob was in pilot training in Mississippi, so I was doing most of it myself. Sometimes you just want someone else's opinion and affirmation that the things you like are actually nice.
Thankfully, I had amazing friends and family who were willing to help with anything, even if it was sitting in the paper store doing all the cutting, or sitting on the living room floor gluing all of it together. Even my dad got in on that action. I learned to ask for help when I needed it and overcome some of that inherent pride.
My favorite moment: That moment when we first saw each other. It was fun to see Jacob and spend some time with him before the wedding.
We took pictures at my home with the bridal party before going to the church, and I loved having that moment in the place I had grown up.
The ceremony was meaningful for both of us. During the unity candle music, Jacob and I signed a document with our wedding vows on it and then had our entire wedding party sign it as well. It's hanging on our wall now to help us remember what we vowed to each other and remind us that we have witnesses that will hold us accountable.
I also loved my dad's speech. He has a hidden talent for public speaking and it made me cry and feel so loved.
My funniest moment: I have these adorable little cousins as my ring bearers, and then their older sister was handing out programs. I had another cousin as the flower girl, who was also adorable. But the two boys and their sister love to dance and sing and happen to know every word to Michael Jackson's "Man In The Mirror." So, we played that one for them at the dance. During it, the whole group circled around the six-year-old boy and watched him dance like Michael.
Towards the end, he did a sliding guitar strum across the dance floor to finish the song and stayed in his pose until the music stopped. It was awesome. Their parents had told them they could stay as long as one of the kids was always dancing. They stayed until the balloon drop at midnight!
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? The weather. We had been receiving reports all week that it was going to be really bad, but the day dawned sunny and even warm for Minnesota in December.
My hair stylists texted me the night before the wedding advising me to have a back up plan for our hair, as they were not sure they would be able to make it out to my home the next morning because of how bad they were forecasting the coming blizzard. They did end up coming, but much earlier than anticipated, while it was still relatively nice out. Thankfully, the snow wasn't too much and it allowed people to stay late and enjoy the reception.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: Don't be afraid of the snow! Even if it is a blizzard, your pictures will be awesome and you're going to get married, which is really the bottom line. Keep in mind what you're doing all of the planning for: to marry the person you love.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? How truly generous people are, and how they really are willing to help if you can humble yourself to ask. We could not have done it without all of the help we received. We don't often give people the credit they deserve and try to expect so little from them, but everyone was happy to help us and everyone was so kind about it.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Dress: POSH Bridal
- Coat: Made by a neighbor, Marilyn, who also did all of the tailoring on my dress, which was done so beautifully.
- Flowers: MJ Flowers in Kerkhoven, MN
- Candles: ColonialCandle.com
- Photography: DnK Photography. We highly recommend them!
- Cake: A gift from a friend, and my grandmother made all of the mini cupcakes on the tables.
- Hair stylists: Hair We Are
- Guys' ties and pocket scarves: SolidColorNeckties.com
- Guys' socks: HappySocks.com
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!