The offbeat bride: Ann, Reservations Agent, Dork, and Sewing Superhero (and OBT member “Ann Verleg“)

Her offbeat partner: Sean, Kitchen Manager, Dork and Ann's personal Chef

Location & date of wedding: St. Andrews on the Square Kamloops, British Columbia Canada — October 31st, 2009 Halloween

What made our wedding offbeat: Our quest was to make our wedding hilariously fun and heartfelt. Everything was about us and our weird and wonderful imagination. We had a Viking themed ceremony that included a sword ceremony and dowry exchange, a dorktastic photo shoot in the park and at the comic book store where we met, a reception complete with beard contest and a pajama party/gift opening at breakfast.

Our invitations stated that costumes were mandatory *GASP!* Several of our guests even grew beards to truly fit our Viking theme, so we threw in a beard contest complete with trophies. Because we don't know when to quit, we also had some farthest traveled trophies, several dance competitions, and best costume prizes.

My mother and I sewed a lot of costumes. We had about eighty guests/attendants/vendors all together and a good 75% had costumes on that we had sewn.

The event that every guest truly enjoyed was the battle for the buffet! Every table had to choose a leader of there clan. That person had to make the sound and motion of the animal their table was named after in order to get the attention of the MC and answer a trivia question. If they answered the question correctly they could proceed to the throne room for a photo and then continue on to the buffet. If they did not partake in the photo they would be thrown into the great pit of Carkoon and be eaten by the all powerful Sarlacc. Sounds fun huh?

My favorite moment: There are too many special moments to list. How about when I tripped on my dress and landed on my back and crushed my crown into the back of my head? The room went silent and I started to laugh, I just got up and kept dancing, crushed crown and all.

Another would be after dinner when we opened a present from my Dutch family. It was a painting by my grandfather of Odin's Ravens. I never knew that the painting even existed; neither did my parents until there trip back to Holland this spring. My mom spotted it in my aunt's basement and she schemed to get it to Canada, without my knowledge.

Sean also has a few favorite moments. When the boys did their photo shoot before the ceremony they did an “Abby Road” themed photo. While trying to take it they backed up traffic seven cars deep. Apparently no one was brave enough to ask them to move, no honking horns or one fingered salutes. I guess they were afraid to be asked “WHAT'S IN YOUR WALLET?” Vikings are intimidating ya know?

Sean was in awe when he saw me for the first time that day walking down the aisle to the Imperial March. Rumor has it that he also enjoyed the wedding night. And yes, as his friend Cooper said during dinner “The deflector shield is (umm was) fully operational.”

The Whole Gang

My offbeat advice: Save, save and save some more. We saved enough money that we sold our tin can (mobile home) and bought/moved into a duplex two months before our big day. A little hectic yes, but also totally awesome!

I *love* this picture!

Let everyone know in advance of your epic wedding ideas. You don't need to tell them everything, but it will help some of your guests absorb and understand your vision. It will also inspire people to help and give you useful advice. They might also scour every thrift store in you province until they find a blow horn for $5.00 at the Sally Ann, or drive all the way to Viking Alberta to send you a reply card with a picture of themselves in front of the town sign.

If you plan on lots of DIY give yourself time… We gave ourselves two years, and we still bought a few items. Time really helps the budget.

Buy or make your attendants clothes. They will love you looooooong time!

Use your network of friends to save big! Church, reception, food and beverage, flowers, DJ, cake, costumes for the bridal party and guests and our photos were all done by friends and family. Yes! Friends CAN take awesome photos and they don't charge you the biggest chunk of your wedding budget.

Sean's advice: Wear clean underwear. And get as much done as early as possible (even if you have two years), something always pops up last minute.

Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?:

  • I can't say enough about shopping in thrift stores, discount shops, garage sales, eBay and etsy!
  • Where we met: High Octane Comics
  • Our Ceremony/Vows (from a fellow offbeat bride… Who knew?): WeddingSkulls
  • Grooms Armor (Made in Canada): Le Troll aux Trousses
  • Some guests found this website helpful for an inexpensive costume in a wide range of sizes: Holy Clothing
  • Flowers were by my Maid of Honour, but she works at Art Knapps
  • All of our guests stayed at The Ramada Inn Kamloops (Where Sean works) With rooms for $50.00 per night you can't complain.
  • Bridesmaid Dresses (Yes we broke down and bought them) Pearsons Renaissance Shoppe

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