The Offbeat Bride: Andrea, sound editor (and Offbeat Bride Tribe member)
Her offbeat partner: Chris, community worker
Date and location of wedding: Kortright Centre for Conservation, Woodbridge Ontario , Canada — September 6, 2015
Our offbeat wedding at a glance:
Our wedding was mostly natural with a little bit of geek and an accidental fire theme. The venue was a nature conservatory so it was beautiful enough on it's own that we didn't really feel the need to add much to it. Dinner was in the lovely wood and glass “Glass House” with an open area to the outdoor patio which is where the dance floor was.
We're both huge Battlestar Galactica fans, and spent the first night we met mostly bonding over our mutual love, so naturally it made it's way into our big day. During the ceremony, we had all our friends and family give us their blessing by repeating “so say we all,” our tables were named by ships in the fleet, and the groomsman all had Commander pin cufflinks, while the groom had Admiral's.
Our centrepieces were meant to evoke mini campfires with real wooden wicked candles, we had a late night bonfire/s'mores bar, a fire performer, and even our flowers were coincidentally fiery colours. Our fire performer had extra hula hoops, so our “kissing game” was to throw a paper ball through the hoop (a reference to how we met), and at the end of the night it came down and everyone was trying their hand at hooping.
Tell us about the ceremony:
We always respond to each other by saying “uh huh,” so we had that written into the ceremony instead of “I do.” When it came time for the guests to declare their blessing (“so say we all”), everyone shouted it so surprisingly enthusiastically that we ended up giggling so much.
We each wrote our own vows that we didn't share with each other ahead of time. My vows truthfully started with, “I never expected that getting hit in the face with a ball of paper would be the beginning of the best thing that ever happened to me.” I concluded with, “Let's have a lifetime of beginnings together,” and threw my crumpled up notecards in his face.
We also had a memory box. The night before the wedding, we each wrote a letter to each other, which we put into a wooden chest during the ceremony. On our honeymoon, we bought a bottle of wine to add to the chest, along with a copy of our invitation, wedding program, etc., all to be opened up on our one-year anniversary.
I'm a huge Wizard of Oz fan, so I made my own ruby slippers. I found comfortable pumps and glitterized them. The aisle was lined with yellow rose petals to evoke the yellow brick road, and our recessional music was a two-part ukelele version of “Over the Rainbow” recorded by one of my good friends.
Tell us about your reception:
The dinner was in what they call the Glass House, which is essentially a wood and glass greenhouse with huge open doors leading to the patio/dance floor.
Our seating chart was arranged by “ships in the fleet” and each table had the bird's eye silhouette of a ship from Battlestar Galactica. Our mini campfire centrepieces were DIY with the help of a friend who had a fallen tree in his yard — a slice of wood as a base, with smaller branches arranged in a circle around our custom-made double-wicked candles, which had real wood wicks that make crackling sounds when burned. The same friend/tree provided the place card holders, which we then made our own place cards for.
As a side business, we make jarred food products including various flavours of apple butter. So it only made sense for our favours to be a set of “groom's choice” and “bride's choice” of our fave flavours (cayenne and candied pear, respectively). We made our own custom labels, packaged them, and added thank you tags, which then became part of our table decor.
What was your most important lesson learned?
It's so easy on the day to get caught up talking to all of your guests, so try to do as much as you can together as a couple, otherwise you'll each remember completely different things on your wedding day, and most of your memories won't be together. Even with our rule of “invisible handcuffs” to try to stay together, we kept getting separated so just try to be aware of it and reconvene whenever you can.
A big part of what made the day better for both of us was doing a first look. We got to spend an hour together just being lovey and having photos taken, we were less nervous when it came time for the actual ceremony, and walking down the aisle together was still such a wonderful moment.
• Photographer: Gillian Williamson
• Dress: Best For Bride
• Venue: Kortright Centre for Conservation
• Flowers: Ada's Flowers
• Candles: Daft Craft
• Hurricane Lantern: BoMoLuTra
• Hair comb: Divine Jewelry
• Cufflinks and wedding bands: Alexis Kostuk
• Wedding crossword: Rubiazul
• Wedding favours: Jarred
• Etched wine glasses: Geek Glass
• Mobile hair/makeup: Beauty in Motion