We’re excited about this one… you might remember Reenie from her in(ternet)famous comic book-style invitation full of silly goodness. We’ve been waiting to profile her wedding (also full of silly goodness!) in celebration of the New Years! Happy New Years from all of us at Offbeat Bride!
The offbeat bride: Maureen, Retail Goddess (and Tribe member)
Her offbeat partner: Ian, Biology student
Location & date of wedding: The Rhinecliff Hotel in Rhinebeck, NY — January 1, 2010
What made our wedding offbeat: It was really important to Ian and I that our wedding was a really amazing party for all of our friends and family to celebrate with us. It had been a rough few years for us to get to this point and we wanted to be able to party!
It was, also, really important that the wedding was an authentic reflection of us as a couple. We weren’t really sure what that meant going into the planning stages. Turns out that Ian and I like formal dress, “old things,” internet memes, video games, Star Wars and finger foods!
Friends were invaluable in making sure we pulled off the decadent Old Hollywood feel with the infusion of “geek” we were going for on our modest budget. We set the stage with our comic invites (with guest appearances by Link and Zelda, Kanye West, Admiral Ackbar and Shoop de Woop) that were drawn by a friend as a gift.
All of the themes from our invite ended up somehow throughout the wedding. For example, my son wore a pin with Shoop da Woop and Ian, who morphed into Link on our invite, wore a boutonniere that read “Saving the Princess since 1985.”
Another friend baked our cake which actually looked like cake, which was all kinds of peanut butter and chocolate amazing!
Yet another friend volunteered to object mid-ceremony so he and my groom could stage a light saber battle. (As Ian says, “What little boy doesn’t dream of light sabers at their wedding?”)
Ian’s dad donated his extensive liquor collection to our cause and I, with the help of a lot of wine and the support of The Bride Tribe, managed to DIY a lot of the little details.
Tell us about the ceremony: We were officially married a few days earlier, because of forecasted snow that, thankfully, never came. One of the groomsmen officiated our ceremony and was able to speak personally and very heartfelt about our relationship. My husband even managed to spontaneously sneak a “That’s what she said” joke in there.
My favorite moments:
- It was really overwhelming for me to see all of our friends and family in one place looking so happy for us. I have never felt so loved!
- During our first dance, everyone waved the light saber favors lighter style and that was really cool to look out and see!
- Ian is an awesome step dad and has worked really hard to create a family for all of us. The kids were ridiculously excited about this wedding and I loved seeing the love between all of them. We really wanted to signify that we were officially a family, so, after we kissed as husband and wife, we gathered together as a family and all flashed an official “family double thumbs up.”
My funniest moment: During our vows, my five-year-old decided that it was taking too long and demanded, “Just kiss already!”
Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? The light saber duel had potential for distaster due to the narrow aisle. We were afraid one of the bridal party would end up in the fireplace, but our practice paid off and I loved seeing the photos of all the amused faces.
My advice for offbeat brides: I talked about the details of the wedding to every vendor I encountered. Most of them were so intrigued by the offbeat details that they really went above and beyond to accommodate what we wanted and what we could afford. (Tip: light sabers make people smile!)
Use the natural setting of your venue — I did not decorate at all. It had beautiful old wood and high ceilings and still had all the twinkling white Christmas lights up. It didn’t need anything else and we saved on decorations.
I also didn’t get overly involved in the catering details. They ended up matching the menu to what they thought was our personality. We had a fun mini-foods cocktail hour (hot dogs, little burgers, and fish and chips!) and a hearty family-style dinner with locally grown, in-season food.
Go with the flow. I had originally hired an Etsy vendor to do six bouquets as my big splurge. Despite all the rave reviews and beautiful pictures, two weeks before the wedding I still had nothing except a photo of something my daughter could have made. I pouted for a bit, and then I dug down deep and found my inner crafter. I ended up really enjoying making the bouquets and the matching boutteneires. I customized each one for the girl that would be carrying it and added a special brooch to each from my own collection.
Have you been married before and if so, what did you do differently? I have been married before. This time around we focused on what we wanted and discarded the rest. The finances were both a burden and a freedom. Since we paid for it all ourselves, we didn’t have to justify any of our choices.
What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? I should have slept a little more the night before and drank a little less! After all the planning, just try to relax and enjoy the moments of the day. It goes by so fast and, just under two months later, all the details are a little fuzzy.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn!