This week we're celebrating the tea-length, the mini, and the cocktail — that's right, it's short dress week! We're showcasing brides who dare to bare their gams in shorter dresses.
The Offbeat Bride: Kim, biologist (and Offbeat Bride Member)
Her offbeat partner: Chris, math nerd
Date and location of wedding: Bel Air, MD — October 20, 2013
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We took many traditions and put our own twist on them. I tried on a few long dresses, but that only helped reinforce that I wanted a tea-length/short gown. I had gazed at one too many on Offbeat Bride and really liked the more vintage styled dresses, especially with a pop of color under it with bright shoes! And it was a wonderful thing to not need assistance when I had to go to the bathroom.
We also passed on having real flowers. Chris is a big comic book fan and had given me a box of comic books that I could use for crafts. I turned them into origami flowers that I used both for my bouquet and for the table decorations. I was able to get a hold of some laboratory glassware and used them as the other half of our table decorations. I felt that it was a good fusion of the two of us.
We used action figures for the guys' boutonnieres and had them pair it with a comic t-shirts underneath. I made fabric corsages for both of our mothers and other special people in the wedding or close to us. I had two variations of the fabric flowers that I wore. One was part of my birdcage veil and another one attached to a clip and was used afterwards in my hair.
For me and my female attendants, I had chemical compound necklaces for us all to wear (science dork!). I wore serotonin (happiness), and my attendants had chocolate, caffeine, and dopamine, and these all matched up well with their personalities.
Chris had used a fortune cookie to propose, so we thought it was only be fitting that we use that for our wedding favors. We purchased small take-out boxes and filled them with various quotes that shared our view on love. I also recruited my artist father to create the tree that we used for our guest book. We used a large craft pumpkin carved with our initials as our card box. I also hand-painted our wedding toppers, complete with our cats.
I recruited my niece as my flower girl. I found a great dress for her that mimicked mine and came complete with a matching dress for a doll. I took her to Build-A-Bear workshop to make her “Ring Bear.” The lady at Build-A-Bear had us put two hearts in it, one for her and one for me, so that she have a keepsake from the day.
Tell us about the ceremony:
We followed a fairly traditional format with our own spin. The groom and the groomsmen entered to “Thor, Son Of Odin” from the Thor soundtrack. I came into Beethoven's “Pathetique” sonata (second movement: Adagio Cantabile). We also chose the theme song from Indiana Jones as our recessional.
We had our sisters do readings by Shel Silverstein's “My Rules” and Neil Gaiman's “This Poem.” We also honored our parents with pumpkins that had their initials carved into them. We had them sitting by the arch where the ceremony was performed. My father thought that the “R” and the “M” stood for Rockfield Manor and not their last names!
Our biggest challenge:
My mom was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer late last summer, and we weren't sure how her health would be in time for our wedding, or if she'd even be there. It was a struggle trying to balance being there for her, doing many craft projects, and wishing, hoping, and praying that she would be there for the wedding. It was rough not knowing if I could plan on her being there. Two of her friends really stepped up to help out and acted as my day-of coordinators, in addition to putting all of the last-minute touches on my craft projects.
The week before the wedding, my mom had a CT scan that came back clean. We were all in shock and elated when we heard the news. She was in great spirits and was able to bask in her full “mother of the bride” duties. She celebrated after the wedding by finishing a bottle of champagne solo and losing her glasses. Having my mom there and in good health was one of the most important parts of my wedding.
My favorite moment:
I loved the mix of the serious and the silly with which we tried to infuse the wedding. I also was very thankful that we decided to go with a sweetheart table. It gave us a chance to be with one another after the ceremony and not feel like we were neglecting our guests. And as much as I hate to admit it, I am glad that we did a receiving line. It was a great chance to greet everyone. The reception part went by so quickly that I don't think I would have had a chance to mingle with everyone.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?
We did our best to represent who we are, and tried not to get lost in the fussiness that can accompany weddings — like convincing my mom that we really didn't need cocktail napkins with our names on them, or that an open seating arrangement could work. We listed off the things that were most important to both of us and tried to honor those things (causal venue with outdoor option and good food).
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Photography: Photos by Carlotta
- Wine and Liquor: Friendship Wine and Liquor
- Dress: J&B Bridals
- Invites: VistaPrint
- Catering: Hunt Valley Catering
- Wedding Favor Fortune Cookies: Good Fortune Cookies
- Shoes: Gabriella Rocha from Zappos
- DJ: Friendly Entertainment
- Bride's necklace: Made With Molecules
- Pashmina wraps: Anna Mae Patterns
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!