A few of the most common questions about Offbeat Bride, as cheekily answered by the site's Seattle-based founder, Ariel.

What do you mean by offbeat?

The dictionary defines offbeat as "not conforming to an ordinary type or pattern." To me, offbeat isn't about rebelling or showing the world how weird you are. Rather, it's about questioning all the wedding visions you've been fed and striving to create an event that's an authentic reflection of you and your partner. Offbeat Bride is NOT intended as a judgment against traditional weddings — this site aims to support people all along the spectrum of tradition.

Really, I probably should have used the word "authentic" instead of offbeat.

Why is your site called Offbeat Bride? Why so gendered? Can't you change it?

The simplest answer is that the website launched in 2007 to support the publication of my book, Offbeat Bride: Creative Alternatives for Independent Brides. My book was published by a women's press, and they wanted to be very clear about what they saw as the book's target market. As a first-time author, I had very little control over the name.

I totally understand and agree with all the reasons people might prefer "Offbeat Weddings," but there are numerous business, technical, and legal reasons why Offbeat Bride's name won't be changing at this point — unless someone wants to grant me $10k or so to cover all the fees associated! (By all means, if that's you, email me!)

Regardless, I've 15 years to making Offbeat Bride one of the most inclusive wedding websites on the web — the site caters to all genders and identities, including of course tons of content for grooms, as well as extensive archives dedicated to the weddings of transgender and gender-queer folks.

In conclusion, I see "bride" as is a state of mind, not a set of genitalia.

How can I submit a wedding to be featured?

Check out our submissions page — we've got separate submission processes for couples submitting their weddings vs vendors submitting client weddings.

What's wedding porn, and why do you call it that?

Wedding porn has nothing to do with sex. It's just photos from other people's real weddings that may inspire you in your own wedding planning. I use the term porn as a play on "images that inspire desire," rather than "images of naked people engaged in sexual activities." I wrote more about my appropriation of the word porn over here.

If you're offbeat, why are some of the weddings on your site more traditional?

One of Offbeat Bride's top editorial missions is inclusivity, which means the site celebrates weddings all along the offbeat spectrum, including a few that might appear more traditional. Your wedding and this website are not contests to see who can be embody more "offbeatness."

Our commitment to inclusivity also means that diversity is a top priority — something we're very open about on our submissions page, and have written about going back to 2012. Prioritizing diversity can be uncomfortable, but we've decided it's more important that Offbeat Bride includes couples with a wide variety of ethnic backgrounds, ages, abilities, and identities, than it is that every wedding adhere to some mandate of "offbeat enough." This means that sometimes Offbeat Bride prioritizes sharing a range of weddings, regardless of whether they have more overtly offbeat visible details.

Offbeat Bride readers are encouraged to self-identify. If you're reading Offbeat Bride, then you're offbeat enough. If you've found a happy place here, then you belong here!

Aren't some of the weddings you feature sort of, um, tacky?

Honey, it's not just some of them — they're ALL tacky!

How do you pick which weddings to feature?

Offbeat Bride features weddings that people haven't already seen on other wedding blogs, and that show off the true range of offbeat aesthetics and cultural experiences. Diversity is a priority — not just ethnic/cultural diversity, but also weddings that represent those who are LBGT, disabled, older, and otherwise challenge the mainstream vision of all weddings being about young, white, slender heterosexuals. Here's more about how weddings are selected.

What happened to the Offbeat Bride Tribe?

The Tribe was our forum from 2007 – 2015. For more information, head over here.


Still have a question?

Email me!