We've got a wedding that takes place on Black Friday! What better way to keep the family from overspending than to tuck them away at your own party all night?
The offbeat bride: Allison, Art Teacher
Her offbeat partner: Richard, Tech Geek/Cable Guy
Date and location of wedding: Mentor United Methodist Church and Windows on the River, Cleveland, Ohio — November 26, 2010
What made our wedding offbeat: When we first told our family and friends that we were going to be married two years to the day we met, we raised some eyebrows. While Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, is not a typical day for a wedding, it was right for us. Our family and friends from out-of-town would be in, and we happily didn't get many negative RSVPs.
It was important for me to start off with a rich color scheme. After some deliberation with the hubs, we chose crimson, chocolate, and gold as our colors. The scheme matched the warm brick of our venue perfectly, and made everything feel cozy and festive. My dress' bodice even had chocolate-colored lace over it, a velvet sash, and a gold brooch.
There were a lot of DIY details. The design for the cake was drawn by me to match my dress and the lovebird motif used on our invitations. The programs were handmade, as was the painting of apples we used instead of a guestbook.
Lastly, we both wanted a photo booth, but renting them was too expensive for us, so Richard decided to DIY. He built the structure out of PVC and hung red shower curtains. We used a laptop with the Sparkbooth software program installed on it, and set a box of props nearby along with small cards guests could take which had the address to our wedsite, where the pictures would be. We got such positive feedback from the photo booth, and only paid for the software!
Tell us about the ceremony: The ceremony was a blur. We got married at the church I grew up in, and the woman who married us was my youth minister. Ever ornery, Richard lovingly referred to her as our “high priestess.”
We wrote our own vows, and that is the only part that I remember with any clarity. The vows, and the end when we were announced as “Mr. and Mrs.” The fact that our minister, whom we've been meeting with for months, stumbled over Richard's infamously difficult-to-pronounce last name made everybody laugh. It was an authentic and happy, unscripted moment.
Our biggest challenge: I was SO extremely anxious. At the rehearsal dinner I ended up getting very sick, and was so worried that I would be ill for my wedding. It turns out that it was a combination of sleeplessness and nerves.
After all of the scheduled events were done (the ceremony, dinner, father and daughter and mother and son dance combo, our first dance) my friends came out onto the dance floor to join us. I felt like such a weight was lifted from my shoulders, and the rest of the night was just a blur of happiness and fun.
My funniest moment: There was a friend of Richard's father's who plays a professional Santa. Richard and I, along with many of our guests, enjoyed sitting on his lap and telling him what we wanted for Christmas!
My advice for offbeat brides: I had awful problems with my anxiety right before the wedding. I thought everyone would be judging me and subsequently my choices. Lots of odd delusions. Just remember that it's your day and if others aren't happy with it then it is their problem, not yours. In the end I, my husband, my family, and friends had such an awesome time that it was worth it.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Invitations: Etsy seller MrsDStahl
- The best cake in Cleveland: Wild Flour Bakery
- Photographer: Ken Blaze. With his photo-documentary style and his ability to capture authentic moments, he was perfect for us..
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!