The Offbeat Bride: Giovanna, Radiation Therapist (and Tribesmaid)
Her offbeat partner: Jonathan, Surgical Technician/Photographer/Software Engineer
Date and location of wedding: The Clothier Room, Wynnewood, PA. — October 26, 2013
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We had a video game and Star Wars-themed wedding with tons of color, geeky touches, and costumes. We cut our cake with our buster sword (Final Fantasy 7!). Instead of throwing a bouquet and garter, I threw a 1up mushroom from Super Mario Brothers, and Jonathan threw a foam Minecraft sword!
I saved a ton of money by buying two cheap prom dresses and making all of the decorations and bouquets myself. I made sure both dresses allowed me to show off my large Chrono Trigger-inspired tattoo.
I dressed my five bridesmaids in black dresses with five different color accents. I bought them each a hat/fascinator and made them paper flower bouquets to match. I also bought them spiked bracelets and sunglasses to match, too! My bouquet was rainbow paper flowers with some origami cranes mixed in that Jonathan made for me years ago.
Tell us about the ceremony:
The ceremony was super nerdy, and after we said “I do,” the Final Fantasy fanfare song played (a song that typically plays after you win a battle), and we did a small victory dance.
Humans, Orcs, Dothraki, Asari, Espers, cyborgs: we welcome you all to join us in witnessing the wedding ceremony of Jonny and Giovanna. The great Albus Dumbledore once said, ‘Happiness can be found in even the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light.' Marriage, the Final Frontier… these are the voyages of the awesome couple, Jonny and Giovanna. It's lifelong mission, to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new experiences… to boldly go… where no nerds have gone before.
Now, we're going to engage in the ceremony of light… sabers. It is said that for each of us, there is a candle, a symbol of our own inner light — but that no one can kindle his or her own candle. Each of us needs someone else to kindle it for us. Jonny and Giovanna, please light each other's lightsabers. In your marriage, you will try to bring these lights, the symbols of yourselves, closer and closer to each other, until they become one — one great torch of light, a radiant symbol of love.
With this Nintendo paddle, please perform the Konami code together to get +50 happiness, +50 joy, +50 peace, and +50 harmony.
Jonny, take Giovanna's ring and place it on her finger. Do you promise to be the Mario to her Princess? Do you promise to be the Link to her Zelda? Do you take Giovanna to be your player two forever? (I do.) Giovanna, take Jonny's ring and place it on his finger. Do you promise to be the Aeris to his Cloud? Do you promise to be the Rosa to his Cecil? Do you take Jonny to be your player two forever? (I do.)
Neither one of us is religious, so we had lots of creative freedom to create our wedding ceremony. This was so much fun to come up with. This really represents how we share our love together, and how we plan to share it for the rest of our lives. We tried to incorporate everything that we love that's nerdy: Final Fantasy, Harry Potter, World of Warcraft, Zelda, Mario Brothers, Star Trek, and even Game of Thrones. I'd say it was only about 5-10 minutes long!
Our biggest challenge:
My biggest challenge of that day was eliminating stress. I am usually a nervous/anxious type of person, and even though I spent a year and a half planning this day down to every little detail, things of course go wrong when you plan a huge party that includes over 200 people. I read several blogs and stories that warn brides that there will always be something that doesn't go according to plan, so I tried to mentally prepare myself. I was still the most stressed out in my entire life that day, but only right before people were supposed to show up to the wedding. Right after our tiny/goofy ceremony, I felt SO MUCH better and I fully enjoyed myself.
My favorite moment:
Some of the most meaningful moments of my wedding include: Walking down the aisle with a Stormtrooper. I feel like I didn't really have the greatest father figures in my life, so it was perfect to me that someone from my little fantasy world (that happily distracts me from the troubles of life and the world) would walk me down the aisle.
My best friend and maid of honor, Laurie, gave a hilarious and memorable speech that described how we met online, on Livejournal, in an anime convention community! The first time she drove from North New Jersey down to Philadelphia so we can make costumes, her mother thought I was a guy in a basement preying on young girls. We all got a kick out of that anecdote.
My funniest moment:
The funniest moment of my wedding was when my flower girl, Darth Vader, was throwing flowers up the aisle. The second funniest moment of my wedding was when two very popular adult film stars kissed me on my cheeks for a photo. The third funniest moment was when my 85-year-old grandmother bumped into Darth Vader as he started the procession!
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?
Stay true to yourself. While I was planning this wedding, I had so much criticism from family members about the non-traditional aspects of it, which was pretty much the ENTIRE thing. I'm happy that we paid for it ourselves, so that I didn't have to feel guilty about this.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Makeup: Alayna Rakes
- Hair: Ashley Gadille
- White wedding dress: eBay
- Yellow dress: Jovani style 7450
- Hologram shoes: Forever 21
- DJ: Mike Saga
- Photographer: Sharyn Frenkel Photography
- Uplighting: Marlin Disc Jockeys
- Videographer: Rascal Films
- Venue/catering: The Clothier Room, Finley Catering
- Backup dancer: Molly Jackson
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!