The offbeat bride: Danielle, Community Organizer
Her offbeat partner: Davey, Bicycle Advocate
Date and location of wedding: Georgetown Ballroom, Seattle, WA — July 12, 2008
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: When we decided to have a wedding, we really wanted it to be about our community as well as our commitment. We have so many talented friends, so we had them contribute their talents as much as possible. Friends made our wedding invitations, the cake, even our rings! We had friends DJ, take pictures, play music, and cater the event (all vegan). Some did it for free and some we paid, but it was important to us to have our friends and community play a big part in our celebration.
We had a bike parade too. My husband is a bicycle advocate and doesn't drive, so it was really important to him to get to our wedding by bike. The fact that so many of our guests joined us warmed our hearts!
We also made a wedding zine! A friend brought a bunch of arts and crafts supplies and guests made drawings and collages with special messages for us. We also had a little contest asking people to draw the story of how we met. Everyone who submitted a drawing got a free piece of cake at our wedding.
The wedding space itself was so funky and unique. There are old signs hanging everywhere and beautiful lanterns hanging from the ceiling. We didn't need to decorate it much at all, which kept our costs down. My favorite thing though was the giant neon sign that spelled out "Jolly Roger" above us as we were married. We had two bands — a jazzy trio and then a radical marching band — and a DJ friend finished up the night by DJing a couple of sets.
My dress was vintage that I found in a thrift store for $15. I paid $100 to alter it and made it short, but it still had beautiful vintage lace and a million buttons up the back.
Tell us about the ceremony: We asked my best friend to officiate the wedding. She is queer and we thought it unfair that she could marry us but wasn't allowed to legally marry her partner. So we made sure to bring it up and acknowledge that everyone should have the right to marry regardless of their gender and the gender of their chosen partner. It was important for us to identify our privilege in this situation. We talked about our commitment to social justice and community as well. Our officiant told the story of how we met and we recited our own vows.
Our biggest challenge: We live in Seattle, but all of our family is on the East Coast. We have a lot of family over there, too. We didn't want to just invite a few people and ask them to pay a lot of money for airfare and hotel. We also didn't want to just do it on the East Coast and not have any of our friends come. So we ended up having just our immediate family and friends come to our Seattle wedding, and then we had a reception back East. It was the best of both worlds.
My favorite moment: During the ceremony we wanted to do something meaningful to show that everyone there was involved in our love and relationship. So we thought of an idea to show that we were all connected. We got sprigs of lavender and tied string around them and placed them on everyone's seat. During the ceremony we asked everyone to tie the string to the neighbor next to them and then we placed the string around us so everyone in the room was connected as we said our vows.
Another aspect I loved was our cake topper. When we got engaged, my partner gave me an engagement spokecard. On it was an early 20th century image of a couple resting in the woods after a bike ride. He created the same image out of Shrinky Dink material for our cake topper!
A Month of Mixbooks:
As part of our partnership with Mixbook, this couple has been given a free wedding photo book to show off their wedding photos. We'll be featuring some of these Offbeat Bride Mixbooks in a few weeks!
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? We weren't anticipating any disasters but there were a couple of unanticipated snags that took us by surprise on the day.
It was a very hot day in Seattle and it turned out our wedding cake had melted. I had no idea until I saw the cake was a couple of layers smaller than expected. But my friend who made the cake was able to save it and it was still delicious.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Photography: Robin Stein
- Venue: Georgetown Ballroom
- Brass band: Yellow Hat Band
- Cake: Sugarcrash Vegan Bakery
- Wedding dress alterations: Pretty Parlor
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!