The Offbeat Bride: Michele, full-time student
Her offbeat partner: Douglas, software engineer
Date and location of wedding: Willie Green's Organic Farm, Monroe, WA — July 28, 2012
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We really wanted a fairy forest theme, but dang it, we also love Mexican food, so we had both! My brother built the arbor under which we held the ceremony. Our moms and my sister-in-law created custom fairy houses and woodland forest candles for decorating. We also used river rock for a guest book, and now we get to see those every day in our home.
We did our best to stick to a budget, but we found out that it really adds up quickly. We figured we were never doing this again, and we mostly just wanted to throw an amazing party, so it was worth it.
Tell us about the ceremony: The ceremony was supposed to have a bamboo grove as the backdrop, but the venue built a large gazebo a month before the wedding and blocked the bamboo grove. Thankfully, my brother's arbor with flowers all over it saved the day. It ended up meaning much more to us that way.
We didn't want a religious ceremony, so we had a handfasting with the officiant using a Lord of the Rings collector's edition instead of a religious text. Douglas and I spent hours creating our handfasting cords, which our 11-year-old son carried out for us. Our 8-year-old son carried the rings. They were both so nervous that they were shaking!
I wanted 15 minutes of bride and groom time right after the ceremony. Our guests respected our time and they seemed to enjoy the party without us for a little while.
My favorite moment: I loved spending the rest of the afternoon after the ceremony visiting, dancing, eating, and hitting the piñata with family and friends. Having everyone we loved together for a party on a wonderful summer day, to celebrate our love, was amazing.
My funniest moment: Our officiant was a mutual friend of ours for many years. We trusted him to write the entire vows section. But during the ceremony Timm asked us both a long and convoluted question (that I can't remember now) to which we honestly did not know the right answer. We stood there looking at him and he finally said “Well, are you going to answer?” We looked at each other and said, “We don't know what the right answer is!” Everyone was laughing. Timm did let us know that the correct answer was “yes!”
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great?
By the time the wedding day arrived, we'd worked out all the kinks… or I should say our wedding coordinators had: Kelli and Brenda from Shindig Events! We didn't end up having the amount of power we were told we would have at the venue, but that just meant we didn't end up getting to use our bubble machine. It wasn't really a disaster, just a bummer.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: Find a non-traditional wedding coordinator, if you can afford it. And ask your friends and family for ideas, if you are coming up short. Our most non-traditional elements came from asking family and friends. That's how we got our fairy woodland candles, fairy houses, and beautiful arbor (that now sits in our yard!). I just sent photos and gave them a general idea of what I wanted.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Corset and skirt: Starkers Corsetry
- Fascinator: Unveiled Bridal Designs
- Photographer: Wallflower Photography
- Coordinator: Shindig Events
- Makeup: VAIN
- Shoes: Fluevog
- Groom's jacket: Metro Clothing Co.
- Bouquet: Bash and Bloom
- Bartenders: The Invisible Hostess
- Cupcakes: Cake Envy
- DJ: Music Masters
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!
planners: Shindig Events
dresses: Starkers Corsetry
music: Music Masters