Jessica & Grant's outdoor Victorian winery wedding #Real Weddings: Midwest US#blue dress#brides in glasses#corset#custom dress#fall weddings#forest#illinois#mismatched-bridesmaids#outdoor#plus size#secular#victorian dress Updated Oct 12 2015 (Posted Oct 25 2013) Offbeat Editors Photos by: Hettinger Photography Photos by Hettinger Photography The Offbeat Bride: Jessica, Graphic Designer Her offbeat partner: Grant, Graphic Designer Date and location of wedding: Spirit Knob Winery, Ursa, Illinois, — September 22, 2012 Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We wanted a relaxed, non-fluff kind of wedding. My first priority was getting the perfect cobalt blue Victorian gown made. The bridesmaid's found their own lacy white dresses while the guys wore vests, bow ties, and brown pants from the local farm store. We had cupcakes so there wasn't a cake cutting or any smashing of cake. We had a first dance only and really no structure after that for dancing. The guests knew what to do and got down anyway! Grant and I designed and printed all of the invitations and other stationary ourselves. I used the cobalt blue glass that I'd collected for years as decorations. We chose food that you'd see at a backyard BBQ and made sure there was plenty of wine and beer for our party-crazed friends and family. Tell us about the ceremony: We couldn't find the right officiant, so my bridesmaid, Maggie, stepped up to be our officiant about three months before the wedding. I had actually hoped that it would be a close friend in the end. I was just nervous about asking someone to take on that role. She got online and was ordained within a week. Maggie is one of my dearest friends and an amazing writer and soulful creator. She helped us rewrite the ceremony to fit the values and beliefs we had about marriage and partnership. Her presence and voice as the facilitator of our union was the dearest thing to me. We wrote five lines of vows to read to each other during the ceremony. I had wanted to do a handfasting, but I knew that with us being so nervous about speaking in front of so many people, we opted for a twist on the ceremony to keep it short. We held hands throughout the entire ceremony and as Maggie did a blessing reading, we held each others left hand in our right, palm up. My favorite moment: Grant and I met with Maggie before the wedding in a little spot hidden in the trees at the winery. We were able to sit down and be with one another for the first time all day. I remember sitting there, looking into his eyes, knowing that no matter how the rest of the day went, I'd be his wife at the end. We were both nervous because neither one of us like speaking in front of others but I barely remember anyone around us during the ceremony. Everything seemed such a blur. I don't even remember the celtic band playing behind us on the stage. My funniest moment: After the best man, the groom's brother, and the maid of honor, my sister, made their toasts to us, the groom decided to do a toast as well. He thanked everyone for coming and making our day special. Then he broke out into the story about how we met. Long story short, our first day of meeting involved him telling an embarrassing story to a bartender and me overhearing it. I call it the "What tanning bronzer should not be used for" story. We started chatting after that and here we are six years later. Only a few of our friends and family had heard the real story. I remember the winery being filled with the roar of laughter from our guests. Care to share a few vendor/shopping links? Photography: Hettinger Photography Officiant: Maggie Bishop Venue: Spirit Knob Winery Bride's dress: Sally C. Designs Bride's mini top hat and veil: made by the bride Bride's earrings: It's All Complicated Bride's necklace: Arthlin Bride's lace fingerless gloves: Seamstress by the Sea Bridesmaid's peacock feather hair pins: Church Mouse Creations Bridesmaid's clutches: The Mad Monogram Bridesmaid's blue cameo necklaces: Moriam 87 Enough talk — show me the wedding porn! PREVIOUS Mexican rap and line dancing: how to rock offbeat wedding music without alienating your guests NEXT How many activities am I expected to plan for out-of-town guests? Show/Hide comments [ 7 ] Beautiful!! I love your gown. It is super-flattering on you! Reply Thanks. I've been trying to find a reason to wear it again! Reply Um, around the house? Wherever you want? Lol. Rock that! Reply Not many people can rock a bustle. Congrats bride, you looked fab and classy as heck! Reply Thanks! 🙂 I'm still in awe of it! Reply Where did you have those placemats made? I really want to do something similar, but I don't even know where to start. Reply We made them ourselves. We are both graphic designers. Feel free to email me and maybe we can work something out mrsjessicawerner @ gmail.com Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Sign me up for your offbeat awesomeness newsletter! No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy. Biz owners & wedding bloggers Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.