The offbeat bride: Jennifer, Web Developer
Her offbeat partner: Dustin, Phlebotomist
Location & date of wedding: Newt Hollow picnic site in Briones Regional Park, Orinda, CA — May 2, 2009
What made our wedding offbeat: Dustin and I met in high school, when I was dating his best friend. Later, I got married and he was dating MY best friend. We lost touch for about ten years (during which time my ex-best friend married my ex-husband), and then one day I found him on myspace. We started emailing, then dating, and finally moved in together. Twenty years after we first met, we finally got engaged.
When I got laid off, our original winery-caterer-family-only ceremony got changed to a potluck BBQ in the park free-for-all. We got a bubble machine, coloring books & crayons, and hula hoops for the kids. (Well, the hula hoops were really for me, but the kids got to use them too). We got a keg from a great friend who's a microbrewer. Instead of gifts, we asked people to bring food, and we ended up with a feast!
We did a sand ceremony to celebrate combining our two families together.
Oh, and I made mini cupcakes (about 300) instead of having a cake. Four different flavors, four different icings, all done in the two days before the wedding.
And now I'm married to my ex-best friend's ex-boyfriend, and my ex-boyfriend's best friend!
Our biggest challenge: Rain! We scheduled our California wedding for the first weekend in May and we had an unusual (for the season) storm come through. Since the wedding and reception were entirely outdoors, this was a problem. We solved it by borrowing a bunch of pop-up tent/canopy things from friends to cover the food, crossing our fingers and hoping for the best. It ended up “blessing” our ceremony (resulting in family coming to hold umbrellas over us during the ceremony!) and then it stopped raining for several hours, giving us plenty of time to party!
My favorite moment: The sand ceremony was lovely, kissing my husband for the first time was magical, but my favorite memory is of me hula hooping in my dress! There's even video of it. 🙂
My advice for offbeat brides: Relax as much as possible on the big day. Accept that you just can't control some things, and give in gracefully when things don't happen according to your vision. Remember that this is really about celebrating your union with your partner, not about food or flowers or how you're dressed or what the weather is like. If you're relaxed and happy, everyone will have a great time and remember it as a beautiful wedding, no matter what went wrong.