How offbeat weddings make it easier to find awesome vendors #Features#industry insiders#wedding industry August 15 2013 | Guest post by Hewey Photo by Mike Allebach Sometimes it's all too easy to focus on the negatives of wedding vendors and the Wedding Industrial Complex in general. Brides are supposed to skip into dress shops with their best friends and cry when they find THE dress. Grooms, well they're just supposed to let the good lady have her way because it's her day that "she's been planning since she was a girl." But then there are people like us. We don't look like the people in those magazines, or on those blogs. The weddings we're planning don't resemble those weddings either. We like to do things a bit different, because, well, we're a bit different ourselves. And 99% of the time we're freaking proud to go against the grain. But sometimes, well, you just feel like a freak. And approaching vendors for your kick-ass wedding can be one of those times. You might want to have a TARDIS on each reception table. Or you might want a geologically accurate Grand Canyon wedding cake. Or you might want a life-sized unicorn that sneezes glitter and pees lemonade. Let's face it, a lot of those traditional vendors just aren't going to get it. However, I see this as a positive. It actually makes the job of finding great vendors much much easier. It's like we've got an in-built filter to sort out the wheat from the chaff. Because you know almost instantly what a vendor is going to be like to work with when they look you in the eye and reply, "A unicorn that sneezes glitter and pees lemonade — that's freaking awesome!" You know immediately that you've found the right person for the job. And since you're getting married, you should recognise that one special person can make all the difference. Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Hewey I’m an offbeat groom from Australia. I swear too much, drink bourbon, listen to blues, and love our 1962 station wagon. I love history, but hate being dictated by tradition. I have no time for gender stereotypes, and I’m loving taking the lead in planning our wedding. Most importantly I’m just stoked to have found an awesome girl to share the ride with. PREVIOUS Faye & Mike's pagan LARPing gamer nerds wedding NEXT Is it okay to go off-registry for my friends' wedding gift? Show/Hide comments [ 10 ] I knew I had found the right dress shop when I walked in and said, "I'm not a bride, I'm a Unicorn." The saleslady gasped out loud with joy and immediately said, "I LOVE Unicorns! We HAVE Unicorn Dresses!" I bought my dress that day. Reply …where is this unicorn dress shop of which you speak? Reply Amen! Finding someone who's willing to help make your version of fun and/or crazy happen is worth their weight in gold Reply I totally get this! We're booking a bagpiper for our wedding – his stage name is Caledonian Cowboy. I got a callback today from another bagpiper 'Keith'. This was a business call to a prospective customer. He told me how important he found it to be polite to wedding guests. He also asked who I was considering booking with. I said a guy called Caledonian Cowboy. This guy incredulously spluttered in reply-'Caledonian Cowboy?! What an asshole to give himself a name like that!' Wow. I was totally shocked. At least our cowboy man has some originality, Keith. And manners. ! Reply Lets face it, a bagpiper with a name like the 'Caledonian Cowboy' isn't going to worry too much about keeping to tradition, so nice find. And it was great that you saw Keith's true nature before booking him. I'd love to hear how the Cowboy works out 🙂 Reply This has been so absolutely true for us! Our officiant was an immediate connection, while the first caterer we spoke with looked at us like aliens. It's been our amazing vendors that have really helped keep everything low stress for us so far! Reply So true! It's consistently an anxiety-producing moment for me when the shopkeeper says, "So, what type of style are you after?", and I reply, "A gigantic poofy red and orange sparkly dress for my wedding". The reaction of the shopkeeper at that time determines whether I stay to try things on, or whether I leave with my tail between my legs, slightly embarrassed. I've found some super awesome shopkeepers who are SO STOKED to be able to be creative and do something different then their normal thing. Reply I was looking at shoes in two different shoe shops. I picked out emerald green ones and said they were for my wedding. Both of the ladies said "Wow, it'll be awesome to have that pop of colour!". I replied "My dress is THAT colour" and pointed to royal blue shoes. One said "OMG THAT'S SO AMAZING I WANT TO BE AT YOUR WEDDING!!!". The other said "Oh… really? I love green but I don't know if I'd have it as my WEDDING dress….." Guess which one I went with? Reply That's how we determined that we would be using our bakery for the cake. The fancy places looked at me like I was crazy and told me that they would charge extra for 'changing their designs'. It was to the point that I was looking at getting some cake pans and making it myself, since what I want isn't difficult. On a whim, I walked into a bakery across the street from my bank and said, "I'm getting married. Do you do wedding cakes?" "Of course." He replied, "Do you have pictures of what you want?" "Yes, approximately. It involves rainbows." "Rainbow swirl cake, rainbow cake layers, or rainbow frosting?" Correct answer. Reply We lucked out for the most part but this was part of how I narrowed down the marriage commissioners. When one woman replied saying it sounded good, I figured that worked. She turned out fantastic because she wanted to fit anything she said with what we were doing, not try to force us to be anything else. Our photographer I already knew was offbeat so that's part of why I contacted him. He had a great time at our wedding and that meant a lot to us to have him staying on after what we'd booked for because he was having a blast. 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. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. 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. 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