The offbeat bride: Valery, Student
Her offbeat partner: Jon, Student
Date and location of wedding: Stokely Event Center, Tulsa, OK — October 7, 2011
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Once we saw Stokely Event Center, we fell in love with it! It was perfect for us and seemed like it would be perfect for everyone else as well. Since we decided we didn't want any alcohol (for cost and personal reasons), we were concerned with people "not having as much fun." This venue had the perfect setting for a fun night: neon lights, a shuffleboard, pinball games, skee ball, etc.
Our centerpieces were all different little things we love like owls, zebras, a pug statue (in honor of our pug, Snorlax!), a roll of film, cameras, etc. along with engagement pictures in frames I made with buttons on them.
We also decided we didn't want to have dinner. We wanted to have a full-on desert and candy bar! We're both obsessed with sweets. We had cupcakes, cheesecake bites, pies (that my daddy made!), brownies, and all kinds of our favorite candies.
We tried to DIY as much as possible. I made all of the button boutonnieres. Our save-the-dates, invitations, and centerpieces were made from engagement pictures my best friend/maid of honor took. My grandma made all the bouquets with fake flowers and feathers so I could keep it.
One of my bridesmaids sewed buttons on my TOMS shoes. We made our own photo booth. I love photography, so it was an important aspect to include as well. We didn't have to decorate much because the venue is covered in neon signs!
I told my bridesmaids to pick out a black dress to wear and the groomsmen black pants and a white shirt. We bought each girl a necklace and teal hair accessory and the guys' skinny ties!
Tell us about the ceremony: We wanted a short and sweet ceremony. Our good friend and maid of honor's husband, Nick, performed our ceremony. Jon and I both wanted someone we knew and someone who knew God as well. We did a unity cross ceremony and wrote our own vows. Jon's vows made everyone tear up, while mine made everyone laugh. It was a perfect mixture of sweet and funny. The ceremony and reception were in the same place, in the same room. Everyone was already seated at their tables while we were getting married.
Our biggest challenge: Keeping the wedding small. We wanted a small wedding, but we both have big families, so this caused a lot of difficulties. We ended up deciding on only inviting close family and very close friends. If we hadn't talked to them recently, we didn't invite them. It ended up being really nice because the people who care about us most were all there. Our closest friends were all in the wedding party, which was pretty huge for a smaller wedding.
The alcohol issue came up a few times, but it wasn't a huge challenge. Some of our family and friends were a little disappointed that we decided against it. We stuck to our decision, as it was the best for us. We didn't want to have to worry about people getting home or issues going on during the reception!
My favorite moment: Writing our own vows and ceremony. It meant more to me that we said what we actually felt instead of repeating something after someone.
My funniest moment: We had our three nieces and one nephew in the wedding. They were so excited about the candy bar that when they were walking in, two of them walked straight to the candy bar instead of down the aisle! They eventually weaved in and out the tables and made it to the front of the room! It was so cute!
My advice for offbeat brides: Hire a videographer! I regret not hiring one. I thought the most important aspect was a photographer. While I am SO happy with our pictures, I feel like I missed some stuff, like our nieces walking the wrong way.
Take a minute for you and your new partner. Right after we got married, our friends made us plates and we went and sat in a room by ourselves for about five minutes, just to hang out, talk, and be excited together.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Dress: Alfred Angelo
- Hat: Forever 21
- Photography: Alexandra Jordan Photography
- Candy apples: Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!