The offbeat bride: Heather, Publicist and Fashion Historian (and OBT member “HeatherVaughan“)
Her offbeat partner: Jacob, Geologist (artist and DJ)
Location & date of wedding: Alvarado Park, Richmond, CA — 09/19/2009
What made our wedding offbeat: We definitely had an unusual theme — Vintage 1930s (a la “The Thin Man” series), But we also had an all-vegetarian lunch-time reception outdoors in a park with no electricity — meaning we weren't going to do some things that weren't as important to us, like dancing late into the night (we had to be out by six). We tried to focus on what WAS important to us which, as it turned out, was spending as much time with the family and friends present as possible. The people made it offbeat — their attitudes and attire included!
We tried our best to do as much ourselves, or with the help of friends, as possible. Why? Because we were doing one thing very traditionally — hiring a caterer. And that eats up your budget for most other things. But food is important to us, especially having delicious vegetarian food.
My dress was entirely unique and very much me, but it also meant adjusting some expectations.
The ceremony was completely unique, with a few traditional elements. We didn't have any bridesmaids or groomsmen (but instead had over twenty “ambassadors of love”). We cheered for the California Golden Bears (who were playing that day) in the middle of our ceremony. We had a ring-warming pre-ceremony and acknowledged it during the ceremony; and we said different vows to each other, because we are after all individuals.
Our biggest challenge: My biggest challenge was figuring out how to deal with the things for which I didn't have any inspiration — like centerpieces or flower arranging. Don't get me wrong, I knew the “feeling” I wanted, but I had no idea how to convey those feelings. As it turned out, all I had to do was meet with or talk to my ambassadors who had those skills, and magically the problem would get solved (loved my flower and my centerpieces!).
The other major challenge was dealing with last minute changes. Specifically, my grandmother fell and broke her arm a week before the wedding and we had to scramble to find someone to video the wedding so she could see it the next day. As luck would have it, one of our guests came through for us and did a beautiful job.
My favorite moment: Crying during the second-to-last line of my vows, and hearing everyone start to cry along with me. The emotion of that moment was just so strong.
My offbeat advice: If you feel you can trust your caterer, let them lead you through some things. Especially if they have over twenty years experience (like ours did). These folks are professionals and will have good advice for you.
Leave some things open-ended and unplanned — this allows for some flexibility if things need to change. We didn't plan exactly where everything was going to be set up and just gave our Day-Of Coordinator the ability to adjust as needed.
Oh yeah… GET A DAY-OF COORDINATOR! They so rule, and really allow you to focus on having a good time. I just asked a very good, responsible family friend to do it and she was great!
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Dress: Theresa LaQuey
- Caterer: TrumpetVine
- Cake: Masse's
- Photography: Norbert von der Groeben
- Ceremony Music: San Francisco Conservatory of Music On the Go
- Reception Music: Eric & Suzi Thompson
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn:
For this one, you're going to have to head over to Flickr!