Offbeat partner: Katie
Offbeat partner: Marquis
Date and location of wedding: Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA — November 10, 2017
Our offbeat wedding at a glance:
The theme to our wedding was modern, Tuscan black tie. We had champagne taste on a beer and butter budget. We splurged on the picture perfect venue and catering, but everything else you see was DIY. I hand crafted everything from flowers to centerpieces and signs to decor.
Tell us about the ceremony:
Our wedding party entered by walking down the beautiful staircase at the museum leaving my daughter (the flower girl) and myself to be the only ones walking down the center aisle, which was very important to me. My bridal party entered to "One and Only" by Adele.
I entered to "How Long Will I Love You" by Ellie Goulding (which is the most perfect wedding song for anyone looking for one). God and our faith is very important to the both of us. After exchanging vows, my husband and I took communion together privately with the pastor while my sister sang to the guests. We wanted to be sure that communion was the first thing we did as a married couple.
Tell us about your reception:
We had so many different age groups and demographics at the wedding, we wanted to make sure that our reception included music and food for everyone. Our dinner was served buffet-style. We had a lovely, Tuscan-inspired menu that even the pickiest of eaters could enjoy. We served Tuscan chicken, smashed potatoes, as well as a green vegetable blend. We also had a pasta bar for our vegetarian guests complete with different styles of noodles and a selection of sauces. Oh! and don't forget the garlic bread! For our favors/late night snack, we had a cookie bar. The guest could enjoy them at the reception or bag them up for later.
Overall the reception was very laid back. We had casual love songs playing during dinner and we danced the night away afterwards.
What was your most important lesson learned?
My biggest challenge while planning my wedding was how in the world I am going to get the Pinterest wedding of my dreams within my budget. I figured out along the way that my best option was going to be to do things myself. I found an amazing local wholesale place that had just the right flowers for the bouquets. After that I hand crafted all my signs,some using stencils and others were freehand.
I also found a great lighting package resource! Rentmywedding.com offers up lighting packages as well as so much more for literally a third of what any other vendor quoted me. The lights arrived in the mail five days prior to the wedding. All you do is plug them in and BAM — you have amazing lighting! After the wedding you just mail them back. It's as simple as that.
They say every wedding has at least one planning nightmare. Mine happened to be the biggest nightmare for me ever. The store I purchased my dress from went BANKRUPT and closed its doors just eight weeks before my wedding! I had no time to order another dress from a store and I was panicking. I ended up purchasing a dress on Amazon for less than $200 because that was my only option. When it was all said and done, it was actually beautiful. The biggest takeaway from everything was that even when things don't go as planned, at the end of the day the only thing that matters is I got to marry my best friend.