Carly & Mike's elephant-themed wedding at the museum

By on Apr 23rd
Some shots with the animals before the reception

Photos by Jennifer Roper

The Offbeat Bride: Carly, Health Economist (and Tribesmaid)

Her offbeat partner: Mike, Music Copyright and Publishing Agent

Date and location of wedding: Natural History Museum, Los Angeles, CA — October 12, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Mike Googled "unique wedding venue Los Angeles" and the OffBeat Bride blog post of another Tribesmaid's wedding at the Natural History Museum came up, so Mike suggested we check it out. We saw about seven other venues but absolutely fell in love with the museum and the dinosaurs — perfect for our geekdom, my science background, and the fact that we believe in evolution/are not religious.

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Time Warping, happy dads, and much celebrating with Liz Daley Events — the Virginia DJ who doesn't suck

By on Apr 22nd

We call this one "Liz and the Marine." (Photo by David Bestpitch)

Liz Daley (pictured above) calls herself a Wedding Entertainment Director — what does that mean? Well, that's her fancy title for "a DJ who doesn't suck." If that's exactly what you're searching for in the Virginia area, then you'll want to learn more about our sponsor Liz Daley Events, because she's more than just "a DJ who doesn't suck." Liz is the total package when it comes to wedding entertainment, and all that it entails.

Hell, even if you're not looking for a DJ, or you're not on the East Coast, you're going to want to keep scrolling just for the awesome photos of dancing dads…

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Who the hell cares: important lessons from partners who aren't as interested in wedding planning

Guestpost by Ursikai on Apr 22nd
Awkward Family Photo Session-5644

"Omg, what do you think about my dress, and the flowers, and my hair." "Um… what?" Photo by Photo Madly

My future husband and I are nearing the six-month mark until our wedding, and planning and preparations are ramping up. One detail that's been plaguing me ever since I bought my dress has been figuring out what I'm going to do with the length. It's a beautiful, full-length gown, absolutely outstanding as it is. But I've always loved the idea of a tea-length gown. So cute and flirty. Slightly offbeat, while still looking vintage and chic. So much easier to dance in.

So I go back and forth, back and forth, on this decision. The past six weeks or so, I was gung-ho about getting it shortened. Then, one night, I was telling my partner about how I was once again reconsidering. While I listed out the pros and cons of leaving my dress full-length, I could see his eyes begin to glaze over. "Mm-hmm," he said as I talked, stifling a yawn.

Which was when I realized: Who the hell cares?

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Jay & Pepe's rural crafty New Zealand wedding

By on Apr 22nd
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Photos by Paul Petch

The Offbeat Bride: Jay, Student/Academic

Her offbeat partner: Pepe, Artist

Date and location of wedding: Woodbridge Gardens and Coatesville Settlers Hall, Coatesville, Auckland, New Zealand — March 1, 2014

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We wanted everyone to have fun and not have anything be too formal or stuffy. We told people to wear whatever they felt comfortable in, and that children were welcome for the whole shebang (which made the whole day 100 times more amusing!).

We had a bunch of lawn games to keep guests entertained. We put so much work into the whole day, relying very little on traditional wedding vendors, and a whole lot more on our friends and family to really make the day special.

We had a major goal of keeping costs down, so I hand-made the bridal party's bouquets using paper kusudama flowers, and made the boutonnieres as well. I also made a bunch of extra flowers for our centrepieces.

I sourced second-hand jars, and Pepe and I spent many an hour wrapping them with lace and twine. I drank far too much soda, allowing us to avoid buying pre-made twine wrapped bottles for the centrepieces (although, that may have worked out cheaper, considering how much soda I drank!).

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How do you deal with potentially homophobic guests at your gay-friendly wedding?

By on Apr 21st
Our Adorable Cake Topper

Cake topper photo By Christy of Carpe Diem Photography

My future husband and I were recently trying to pare down the guest list again (for the 3000th time) and decided to eliminate some non-essential people that we feel have acted homophobic in the past. I like these people, but I don't want any guest at my wedding to feel uncomfortable because some drunk guy in the corner is having a hard time with LGBTQ people dancing and making merriment together.

It's not that I think these bad-belief people would cause a scene, but I would be heartbroken if one of them said something as a side comment that was overheard by one of my friends, or if I overheard something like that — because I would be angry, and sad, and possibly throwing things.

So the homophobic-tendency people are off the list, and I can live with that — but what if this happens anyway, because I missed someone on the list with views I didn't know about?

I know I can't control the moral judgements of all of my guests, but I am not sure what to do if this situation arises at the wedding. I hope I am being anxious for no reason, but I guess I want to have a plan if this really happens. Ordinarily, when I hear someone say something homophobic, I respond. I get that I will likely be too busy to notice, but it would crush me to hear about it later.

Has anyone else ever had a problem like this happen to them? How did you handle it? Do you have family that is prejudiced, and how did you handle knowing about their issues, and reconciling that with your wedding guests? -delicateflower

This is an important issue — we all want ALL our guests to feel comfortable, avoid awkwardness, and enjoy the wedding. Previously, we've addressed the concept of actively supporting marriage equality at your wedding. But now it's time to have a conversation about curbing homophobic discussions amongst your guests.

We decided to ask two of the Offbeat Bride Tribe's moderators to weigh in. First let's hear from moderator SparksinKY who has some awesome suggestions from an ally perspective…

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You must behold this Harry Potter wedding, complete with exploding Goblet of Fire

By on Apr 21st

Harry Potter fans, sit up and take notice! Joshua and Meredith had an amazingly themed-out wedding paying homage to the Boy Who Lived. The colors were Hogwarts houses (that would be red for Gryffindor, yellow for Hufflepuff, blue for Ravenclaw, and green for Slytherin, of course), the cake pops were Golden Snitches, Meredith wore a time turner, and the guestbook was nothing less than The Monster Book of Monsters. Guests got wands as favors, Hedwig stood guard over the programs, and Joshua and Meredith said their vows over an exploding Goblet of Fire while a Snape-look-alike presided over all. No, really: their officiant wore a wig and everything. That's dedication to a theme, yo.

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Emma & Richard's theater-meets-adorable-baby wedding

By on Apr 21st
Waving to guests

Photos by George Hixson

The Offbeat Bride: Emma, writer/editor

Her offbeat partner: Richard, software developer

Date and location of wedding: Alley Theatre, Houston, Texas — November 30, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: Richard likes to call himself a song and dance man, and I like to write, so we wanted a wedding that merged both those themes but didn't break the bank. He has tons of talented friends and connections, so we involved friends and family as much as we could. We held it at the Alley Theatre, the local Houston theatre downtown.

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How Boulder's Carrie Swails Photography can keep your wedding budget in check AND give you stunning photos

By on Apr 18th

daynaandjason-18Remember this sweet couple from the amphitheater wedding in Colorado with gratuitous dog adorableness? Their photographer Carrie Swails is our fabulous sponsor, and I can't wait to gush about this fellow nerd and offbeat wedding-lover.

Carrie is a Boulder wedding photographer whose pricing is as non-traditional as her wedding couples (more on that later). When she's not taking photos of awesome Offbeat Brides and grooms, she's geeking out over Doctor Who and Lord of the Rings. But let's collectively geek out over Carrie's amazing wedding photography — trees! fields! gorgeous backdrops! These photos are making me fall in love with Colorado all over again…

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Amazing shoes from Charlotte Olympia that most of us can't afford (but all of us can enjoy!)

By on Apr 18th

Betty and VeronicaGenerally when I do these shoe posts, I make a point to provide a range of pricing options, from $30 pleather flats that might start falling apart after one wear, all the way up to "Holy shit, those shoes cost more than my entire catering budget!"

Last week, a reader wrote in to very specifically request a post about Charlotte Olympia's line of shoes.

I took one look at had three responses:

  1. HOLY SHIT AMAZING
  2. HOLY SHIT SO MANY KITTY-FACED SHOES!
  3. HOLY SHIT OFFBEAT BRIDES ARE GOING TO BE VERY UNHAPPY ABOUT THESE PRICES.

These shoes start at about $500, so really for most of us this will be a fun virtual shopping post.

(Although the Random Bonus Shoes are only $30, so YAY!)

For those of you who find these shoes accessible, we demand many many photos of you wearing them on your wedding day.

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