Jenne & Alex's Viking belly dancing backyard wedding #Real Weddings: Western US#autumn#backyard#belly-dancing#brides over 40#california#candy buffet#donuts#economical wedding#geeky#interfaith#kilts#outdoor#plus size#red dress#viking January 16 | Offbeat Editors offbeatbride Photos by Jonnie Yoneda The offbeat bride: Jenne, data transcriber Her offbeat partner: Alex, mail sorter Date and location of wedding: Our backyard, Fresno, CA — October 15, 2011 Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Since this wasn't the first wedding for either of us, and we'd both gone the "traditional" route before, we wanted things our way: relaxed, humorous, yummy, pretty, and fun. We also didn't have a fortune to spend. Having catered previous weddings, I didn't want to cook for this one. I invited the best cooks I know to bring their best. I also let people know that while there was no dress code — quirky and colorful (like my friends) was definitely encouraged! Our colors were blues and purples, sparkly, with a few skulls, Vikings, and a Geoff Peterson (Craig Ferguson's robot skeleton sidekick) mock-up that my daughter made. As for my dress, having done white before, I wanted blood-red and fitted, but comfortable. My partner went for a traditional Viking tunic with trim that matched my dress, and suede moccasin boots. Having it in the backyard not only cut down on costs, but meant we could do what we wanted. We are very blessed to know some artistic friends, so we had the best belly dancers in town for the entertainment, one of the best dressmakers who made my dress for a song, one of my co-workers did the photography, and my mother-in-law surprised us with a wedding cake! Since a large number of our friends are ordained ministers, we had our pick of officiants. We also decided on a non-legal ceremony because we didn't want to mix our financial issues, and felt that a relationship is more than a piece of paper, and didn't feel the need for government approval of our relationship. Tell us about the ceremony: We had blessings from both our religions, Christian and Asatru. We wrote most of it, including personal humorous references to each other: "Do you promise to laugh at his corny jokes and keep him supplied with cartoons, donuts, and pineapple juice, the three greatest things on earth?" and "Do you promise to help her not to yell at the children when they drive her crazy, keep her supplied with chocolates and Kleenex when she gets moody, and back off when it's time?" The processional was a song called "Homecoming" that Alex wrote for me after we'd been apart for a time. Our biggest challenge: The weather turned out to be the hottest day on record for October — 91 degrees Fahrenheit and muggy! We just had to make do with that. My favorite moment: When Alex played me up the aisle with the song he wrote. Also when one of my coworkers said a beautiful improvised blessing for myself. My funniest moment: Alex and I were invited up to dance with the belly dancers. I imagine that was a sight to see! My advice for offbeat brides: Do everything you can to relax. Don't worry about being judged and find that happy place within yourself. Also, we were sure our huge selection of music would get everyone up and dancing, but no one danced! We should have gotten a DJ. Have you been married before and if so, what did you do differently? EVERYTHING. I didn't wear white, we only invited people we wanted there, I didn't try to cater it all by myself, we wrote our own vows, and had our own music. Care to share a few vendor/shopping links? Dress: Lakisha Robinson of Amy Echo Fashions Photography: Jonnie Yoneda Invitations: Zazzle.com Decorations: Oriental Trading Company Enough talk — show me the wedding porn! Get your daily dose of Offbeat AWESOME Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo PREVIOUS Find your perfect creative wedding invitations or design your own with The Sweetheart Shout Out NEXT Ruffles, card cages, DIY projects, and some kick-ass save-the-dates Show/Hide comments [ 8 ] Same wedding day! But I was on the other side of the country! Congratulations to you! It looks amazing! I love your dress! AND the belly dancers and your groom and well it's just full of goodness really! Reply my two favourite things: Vikings, and geoff Peterson! Reply I love the dress! It looks like you had a great time. Congratulations Reply Yes!!!! That dress was beautiful. I loved the color! The bride looks wonderful in that dress. Reply Thanks for the congrats!… I really need to add that our custom rings were made by Dragon's Treasure in Fresno, CA! 2 agree Reply aw man! i want geoff peterson! that so rocks! congrats you two! much love! Reply A Fresno wedding? Yay!! I love seeing something happy associated with Fresno out there in the internets. Reply Love the dress!!! Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Participate in this conversation via email No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy. Biz owners & wedding bloggers Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.