The offbeat bride: Meghan, Pure Romance Consultant (and Tribesmaid)
Her offbeat partner: Kristian, Corporate Compliance Manager
Date and location of wedding: Rock Quarry Garden, Greenville, SC — September 2, 2012
What made our wedding offbeat: Kristian and I are both very careful with money, and we knew we wanted to support as many of our friends and their businesses as we could with our wedding. We prioritized where we would not skimp on quality (photos, food, drinks) and where we could cut back (ceremony, decor, cake, attire) and started calling our friends for quotes! Because we were married on a Sunday, we saved a ton of money just by being almost all our vendors' second wedding that weekend.
It was important to us to celebrate and show off our town of Greenville, SC, since not many of our friends had been here before, so we went all out with welcome bags, having our rehearsal dinner at a local afterschool program we volunteer for, and coordinating many weekend activities (bar crawls, brewery tours, walking tours of the city). Instead of a favor table, we picked local organizations our guests could vote on to have a donation made in their name!
A graphic designer friend donated her skills to help us with our paper suite, and we probably only spent about $200 for paper and ink. Instead of traditional flowers, I made all our flowers using scrapbook paper, flower punches and floral wire. These were used for corsages, boutonnieres, my bouquet, and the centerpieces.
I was excited to use a family heirloom for my dress, and had my mother's blessing to re-work it to my liking. My mother, grandmother, and great-aunt all wore this dress on their wedding days, but the ivory had darkened to yellow, and I'm not much for white or yellow. A good friend who is a costumer in Chicago offered her skills to make it a dove grey. Another special touch was added when my best friend's mom gave me her dress as well. We included the lace as accents. Two dresses, four women, and almost 70 years of history all went into my dress. I loved it.
I also loved our musical instrument send-off. We ordered some instruments online, and I surprised Kristian with vuvuzelas. There's a great photo of my 93-year-old grandma killing it with that thing!
Tell us about the ceremony:
We included elements important to us, including a ring warming ceremony, unity cocktail, hand-binding, and a reading of “A Lovely Love Story” by Edward Monkton. We also had two friends sing us down the aisle to “Fields of Gold” (Eva Cassidy-style), and then send us off with Hall & Oates' “You Make My Dreams,” an inside joke for the two of us.
We worked with our two officiants to have our ceremony reflect our relationship and we're so thankful for their guidance and flexibility. One of the most important aspects of our ceremony were nixing the small mentions of “wife” and “bride.” As a liberal feminist, it was very important to me to be announced by just our first names and as equal partners.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? Don't be afraid to say “No.” I've never really had a problem with this before, but my desire to be nice and polite kept sneaking up on me. It was our money and our wedding, so when a few vendors didn't want to play by our rules, we dropped them and went with folks who would.
My funniest moment:
Kristian attempted to do the splits on the dance floor. I had to remind him that we had a week's honeymoon to look forward to and I planned to use it for its intended purpose!
My favorite moment: When a surprise storm hit just as I was supposed to start my photos, it put us all in a panic. Talking to Kristian and having him assure me that he'd crawl through mud to marry me was so special. Seeing my mom's reaction to the dress was pretty fantastic, too.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Coordinator: Christine Faust Events
- Photographer: Story Photographers
- Videographer: Complete Music Video DJ
- Photo booth: Oh Snap!
- Food: Good Life Catering
- Drinks: Liquid Catering
- DJ: Paul Hoke of Upstate Swing
- Getaway vehicle: Reedy River Rickshaw
- Guest shuttle: Main Street Trolley
- Paper Suite: Mimia Johnson
- Hair: Jennifer Compton
- Makeup: LaBella by Jessica Bagwell
- Ceremony: Rock Quarry Garden
- Reception: Huguenot Mill at The Peace Center
- Ceremony music: Peartree Music Company
- Rentals: Upstate Wedding & Event Services and CB Events
- Honeymoon: Victoria House, San Pedro, Belize
Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!