The offbeat bride: Evangeline, PhD Student
Her offbeat partner: Corey, Field Engineer
Location & date of wedding: On top of the mountain in Monte Sano State Park, Huntsville, Alabama — October 22, 2010
What made our wedding offbeat: We aimed to model our wedding after 10th Century Norse Vikings. I made all the clothes for myself, my groom, and the entire, all-male wedding party. I also wove all the trim work for the clothes.
We had a Viking ship wedding cake and all of the plates and bowls were biodegradable bamboo. The centerpieces were wheat/oat bundles and I carried a wheat bundle for a bouquet. The guest seating was haybales covered with lengths of fabric from my personal stash.
A lot of our guests dressed up and had a blast in their viking/medieval clothes.
Tell us about the ceremony: The ceremony was performed in two languages, English and Icelandic, with a dowry contract negotiation and a bride price exchange. I was NOT cheap!
We had a double sword exchange, ring exchanges, and Corey gave me the ceremonial keys to the household. I gave him a torc, a traditional open-ended neck ring. We fed each other a bite of oatcake and shared a horn of mead during the ceremony.
Because the ceremony was going to be unfamilar to our guests, our wedding program contained information about Norse wedding customs. This included the bride price and dowry, why there were groomsmen and bridesmen, why we were exchanging swords, what the keys represented, and why we were putting our own rings on instead of putting them on each other.
At the end of the ceremony, we stated together:
“We do now proclaim ourselves one in flesh and in spririt, and pledge that from this time on, we will take the responsibilties and exercise the privileges of an independant household in the community of humankind.”
Our biggest challenge: The biggest challenge was getting the wedding party's clothes made. I made everyone else's clothes first and almost ran out of time to make my own! I also burned my arm on the iron pleating my train the morning of the wedding.
But I realized that even if I didn't get everything done for my wedding outfit, I would be the only one who knew it.
My funniest moment: There were three funny moments at our wedding. The first was that no one realized that the big Viking ship in the middle of the hall was the wedding cake. Everyone thought it was a model of some kind. Several of our guests protested the idea of cutting it, but we insisted. It was apple spice cake with caramel filling. Yum! And the groom's cake was dark chocolate with wild berry filling.
The second funny moment was when part of the groom's family showed up wearing Minnesota Vikings jerseys, instead of Norse Viking clothes.
The third funny thing was the last song of the night. We played “Good Night Demonslayer” by Voltaire and we were all singing it as we danced.
My advice for offbeat brides: Enjoy the process of planning. Make sure that you have discussed everything with your partner and get them involved so it is the wedding that both of you want.
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- Photographer: N'Sight Photography
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