Kim & Doug's artsy food truck wedding

January 22 |
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Photos by Pete Wagner

The Offbeat Bride: Kim, Material Buyer

Her offbeat partner: Doug, UW Student

Date and location of wedding: EM Fine Art Gallery, Seattle, WA — August 31, 2012

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Doug and I enjoy eating street food and wanted a laid-back atmosphere, so we decided to have a food truck cater our wedding. This led us to hiring Skillet Street Food as our caterer and bartender. The food truck was a silver Airstream that was parked in front of the art gallery where we chose to have our wedding ceremony and reception. They served the food in paper boats and alcohol in jars.

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The art gallery where we chose to have our wedding and ceremony, EM Fine Art Gallery, is a space made for moving around and mingling cocktail-style. We made sure there were some tables and chairs available for guests who wanted to eat sitting down.

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Since I'm a buyer for a living, I like to find deals and ways I can save money. Here are several ways I cut costs:

  • I wore a bridesmaid's dress as my wedding gown
  • We had our wedding ceremony on a Friday night
  • We made sure to choose a venue that allowed us to bring our own alcohol and hire our own caterer
  • We bought our flowers at a local market, Pike Place Market.
  • For decor, my sister and I used empty wine bottles as vases and wrapped ribbon to hide the label.

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Tell us about the ceremony: We had a simple unity candle ceremony. For the wedding party, we had one maid of honor, my sister Krista, one best man, Doug's brother Jeff, and two flower girls. During the processional, we had my mom walk down in a purple traditional Filipino dress with Doug's dad and stepmom. My mom was excited to wear that gown!

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We incorporated "The Hands Ceremony" wording, which a friend of mine found:

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These hands are the hands of your best friend, young and strong, that will work along your side, as together you build your future, as you laugh and cry, and as you share your innermost secrets and dreams.

These hands are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, for a lifetime of happiness.

These hands are the hands that will provide head rubs after a long day or put socks on your feet when you're not feeling well.

These hands are the hands of two driven individuals, but when joined, create an unpenetrable force of love and security.

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Our biggest challenge: The guest list was a huge challenge for us. We were trying to plan a budget wedding in six months. We had to set some hard and fast rules to help control costs, while at the same time make sure everybody we love dearly was invited. One decision we made was to not invite co-workers and children. We allowed children of family members, and we ended up bending the rule for less than a handful of folks.

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My favorite moment: I loved the toasts from our family members. Their words of humor, love, and wisdom really moved us. Additionally, my dad potentially has Multiple Sclerosis, and he's been having a difficult time standing or walking for periods of time. In preparation for our wedding day, he went on a lot of walks to help build up his strength. When the day came, I was really touched when he was able to walk down the aisle with no problem, stand and share a toast without losing his train of thought, and twirl me around during the father/daughter dance. I was so proud of my dad!

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Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? Our wedding wouldn't have happened without the help of close family and friends. My brother-in-law was the DJ and a good friend of ours was the MC. I was afraid that the timing of music and the schedule wasn't going to flow well since they hadn't talked about it before the wedding. There were some mishaps here and there, but in the end, it didn't matter and we didn't care.

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My advice for Offbeat Brides: Pretend you are super glued to your partner and don't leave each other's side. During the wedding, each of you will be pulled in many directions, and it's easy to spend most of the night without each other if you're not careful.

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What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? Have someone outside your circle of friends and family coordinate the day of the wedding. That way they can relax and you leave it to a professional who has done this before.

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Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!

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  1. Where is your dress from? I know it's techinically a bridesmaid's dress but it's perfect!

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    • Thanks Jessica!

      I got it from Moms, Maids and More in Bellevue, WA. The designer is WTOO by Watters and Watters, style # WT0177.

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  2. It's so awesome you had a food truck! We looked at sooooooo many locations in Colorado and just couldn't find anywhere that would allow us to use a food truck as the catering that fit our other specifications.

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    • It was tough for us to find a venue that would allow us to hire our own caterer, let alone, have a parking area for a food truck. Seattle has zoning laws that outline where food trucks can and cannot park. In the areas where they can park, the food truck needs a city permit. I double checked with the caterer to see if they would coordinate the permitting process with the city and they took care of it. We were very lucky to find a venue that could accomodate all of this.

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  3. This is honestly my DREAM wedding! Art gallery, food truck, DIY decorations… I even plan on wearing a bridesmaid dress. You are awesome! How did you find the art gallery and food truck to cater?

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    • Thank you so much!!!

      I found the art gallery through theknot.com. I hopped in a community message board for wedding/reception venues and someone had posted a comment about this art gallery. The person leaving the comment mentioned how flexible the owners were and they didn't have as many restrictions as other wedding venues. After reading it, I contacted the owners right away and scheduled a visit. It was LOVE at first sight ;-)

      For the food truck caterer, a co-worker of mine had used them as his wedding caterer and he raved about them. We decided to check them out one weekend and we ordered chicken and waffles, which was DELISH. Soon after, I scheduled a food tasting and my hubby and I were hooked right away.

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  4. This wedding is lovely! Your dress looks awesome and the whole wedding looks elegant, but fun. Very sweet- the whole thing. And food trucks? Swoon! I am planning on having some at an outdoor bbq I throw in summer to celebrate our wedding since we had it in San Francisco in December. Love this wedding to bits!

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  5. This might be a silly question, but we're looking at doing a food truck for our catering, and are trying to figure out how that works logistically as far as getting everyone fed without a crazy line.

    Did you have a limited menu and send people out in chunks during the reception?

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  6. We worked with our caterer to brainstorm ideas for the logistics of the day. They recommended that we had our officiant make an announcement after the ceremony to proceed upstairs for the cocktail hour and the food truck would be open from 8-10 p.m. outside. That way folks could eat when they feel like it. There was a line that formed at one point, but it wasn't a big deal because folks ended up mingling and talking to each other while in line.

    For our menu, we had pulled pork sandwiches, burgers, fries and 2 different salads to choose from. Hope this helps!

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  7. Hey! I love love LOVE this. I'm doing something really similar, art gallery, food truck, dahlias…. haha I'm still having logistical trouble trying to figure out seating. We're having the ceremony in the same place, but then we will need to flip for the reception. How did you do this? We'll get them out of the ceremony area, move a wall *they slide, super easy* and flip it then. But did you do tables with real seating? or a lounge-y type of situation? I'm so confused and yours looked effortless!

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    • Hi Katie – thank you! It wasn't as seamless as it looked. A few of my guests ended up helping transition the room. It turned out to be fine because it was an intimate wedding with close family and friends anyway. We didn't do the traditional sit down dinner. Since the space is unique we had a mix of unassigned seating and pillars our guests could use to eat. My friends and family were able to flip the room in 15-20 minutes after the ceremony. We made sure all the tables were already set with the linen, burlap, vases so when we it was time to flip, all they had to do was move the chairs out of the way and pull in the tables in and arrange the chairs around the tables. The tables were set in back of the main gallery wing where we had the ceremony so it was a matter of sliding the tables in. We didn't have tables for everyone since it's more of a mingling space. We used pillars as well for folks to set their drinks on or if they wanted to use it to stand and eat. Everyone was intraspersed – guests were either outside in line waiting for food or taking pictures, some were inside already eating and some were upstairs drinking at the bar. All in all it worked out. Hope this helps with ideas.

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  8. Your advice to sticking close to your newly minted spouse is great! I honestly have not heard it before and it's great; one that I've certainly noticed happen at past weddings I've attended. Kudos and congrats!

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