Carrie & Ryan's bright lights and Cadillacs late night Vegas wedding

By on Dec. 2nd

The offbeat bride: Carrie, Tattoo Artist

Her offbeat partner: Ryan, Tattoo Artist

Date and location of wedding: The Little White Wedding Chapel, Las Vegas, Nevada — October 21, 2011

What made our wedding offbeat: We decided to get married in Vegas which was a pretty big deal since we are from a small town and traditional weddings are all the rage. We also did it completely family-free! Surprisingly, both of our families were completely supportive of this which definitely helped. We chose The Little White Wedding Chapel in Vegas because it had a drive-thru and also cost only $40.

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I wanted it to feel spontaneous. I never imagined myself wanting a traditional white dress, or having a traditional wedding party, so we technically didn't have one. Everyone wore black and white. My dress was black and as short as possible, with some blue suede shoes to honor Elvis.

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Tell us about the ceremony: When we all arrived at the chapel, we ran right in because we were about 10 minutes late. The lady at the front desk was amazingly nice and after some obligatory paper work, she asked us if we wanted to get married in the pink Cadillac. Obviously we did. The civil ceremony was perfect. All of our friends were running around the car taking pictures, crying like maniacs. It was surreal.

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The whole ceremony lasted about 10 minutes,which was perfect since we were married at 11:00 p.m. wanted plenty of time to party in Vegas. We all jumped in to a limo (limos are about as easy to catch in Vegas as a cab, and just as cheap!) and we headed to Fremont Street for some photo ops in Old Vegas. Fremont street was pretty overwhelming. Huge casinos, loud music, and so many people having a great time. It was a fantastic atmosphere.

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After walking around for about an hour, we caught another limo around 1:00 a.m. and headed to dinner.

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Our biggest challenge: Actually, the only challenge was getting ready for the wedding. I have dreadlocks, and since I didn't make a hair appointment, I had no idea what I was going to do with them. But it actually turned out pretty decently. A curling iron and bobby pins went a long way. I would have to say we were pretty blessed that everything came together so well.

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My favorite moment: The most meaningful part of the wedding was having our best friends there with us. It meant a lot to us that they were so willing to drop everything and take the time off to come. It was a great wedding, but also an amazing vacation that we will cherish forever. Not only because of the wedding, but because some of our other friends who had never really met before were able to make new friendships themselves.

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My funniest moment: A lot of funny moments happened throughout the night. We were all crammed into an elevator at the hotel taking pictures and when the doors opened, we tried to include all the people who walked into the elevator too. We also had a boot of liquor with us at all times and tried to include it as best we could.

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What naps happen in Vegas, stay in Vegas

Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? I actually didn't have ANY expectations, which was a great feeling. Other then the ceremony at 11:00 p.m., and dinner at 1:00 a.m., nothing was planned. We wanted the night to be spontaneous and carefree.

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My advice for offbeat brides: A lot of people had different opinions about our decision to get married in Vegas, with no family present. Regardless of opinions, do what you feel is best. Also, don't get too stressed out about everything months in advance. A wedding isn't just one day, but all the days leading up to it, so enjoy every moment!

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Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!