Kristina & Matthew’s steampunk and science bookish wedding

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 | Photography by Matt Norris

We've got our noses stuck in the book of love with this week's theme: bookish weddings! Turn the page — I mean, scroll down — for literature-loving fun.


The Offbeat Bride: Kristina, Children's Librarian

Her offbeat partner: Matthew, High School Chemistry Teacher and Technical Director

Date and location of wedding: Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation in Waltham, MA — October 7, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We discussed our first month of dating that our ideal wedding would be steampunk. And we never really discussed the venue, it was just… a no brainer. We had dates there, Waltham is a steampunk City, and the museum is awesome. We wanted to have a party that would highlight my book geekiness and his science/gaming geekiness, so we combined the elements of librarianship (books on tables, book page roses, card catalog drawers and guest book) with his geek (game library and lab equipment on the guest tables and the chemistry set for the unity cocktail).

Gothic Table

Airship Pirates

Nautical Centerpiece

Harry Potter Table Centerpiece


Early on I had my maid of honor create a monogram for the wedding and also create our Kraken-attacking-airship postcard save the dates. And from there the Kraken infiltrated our wedding! So we threw in some stripes (wedding party corsets, invitations), some purple (flowers, tablecloths, game cards, pashminas, and ties) and we had a theme! we asked our guests to come dressed up, and about 85% of them came dressed in costume.



Down time before the ceremony

Tell us about the ceremony:
My father walked me down the aisle, and Matt's mom walked him down the aisle, too. We wrote our vows and my favorite part of Matt's vows follows:

I promise to make you dinner if you promise to clean the dishes. I promise to do the laundry if you clean the dishes. I promise to clean the litter box if you clean the dishes. Really, I just don't like cleaning dishes, and I'll do whatever you want if you just clean the dishes. But I promise that I will do the dishes if you want me to.


We asked one of my close friends to officiate the ceremony and she wrote some beautiful passages that combined love and science and perfectly complemented our “quote readings.” We pulled five shorter quotes that we typed up on the manual typewriter and wrapped around a spool with ribbon and gears. The response to all readings was “So say we all,” Battlestar Galactica's version of “Amen,” and we both ended our vows like Ben Wyatt and Leslie Knope on Parks and Recreation: “I love you and I like you.”

Unity Cocktail

We then concocted a unity cocktail and we and our parents poured ingredients from test tubes into a carafe that belonged to my great-grandmother, who passed away a few weeks before the wedding.



Rocket Dog


My favorite moment:
Instead of a bouquet toss, we decided to have a couples dance, and the couple married longest would dance the longest. We knew it would be Matt's parents, so we gave her my handmade brooch bouquet to which she had donated several sentimental pieces.

Our last two songs were “Sweet Caroline” and “Rainbow Connection.” We're from Boston, so I love the Red Sox and Fenway Park, and I wanted to scream “so good! so good! so good!” with my Boston friends and family. The last two songs ended up being a huge interlocked circle of the remaining guests with swaying and singing and crying. The end of “Rainbow Connection” had me and my maid of honor/best friend twirling around each other, with our skirts billowing in the center of the circle, surrounded by my favorite people in the world.

Most Memorable Moment

My funniest moment:
We planned to have our wedding party take a shot with us right before the ceremony to calm nerves and get psyched. One of my bridesmaids took up the task with gusto. While I was talking with my DJ, I saw her pouring some Coke into Dixie cups and half thought to myself, “How thoughtful. She is also pouring chasers!”

When my maids of honor finally arrived with only moments to spare, we gathered around and raised our very full Dixie Cups (you know, the ones that are 4 oz. rather than the standard 1 oz shot) and toasted happiness and friendship and all that. And then we tipped them back. The universal groan of disgust and “I'm going to be sick” was caught on camera. My sweet bridesmaid filled our cups with 151 and dash of Coke.


Another moment came during the unity cocktail ceremony. Jess, our friend and officiant, filled our bridal glasses, and as she did I whispered for her to just finish the rest. So she did with more glory than I could have ever imagined. She poured the last sips into her mouth, then both shook the bottle and tapped the last few drops into her mouth. It was amazing.

The Cake is a Lie

Guest Book 3

Punch Card Holder

What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?
Delegate to others, plan to finish all your DIY projects, both small and large, at least two months before the wedding, and stay organized from the beginning. Keep a spreadsheet of everything, keep all receipts and contracts together so that you don't have to search around for it. But seriously. You can't over-organize. I actually created a master schedule and mail-merged it to create individual schedules for the vendors, wedding party, and people helping. Everyone knew what to do, where to go and got the appropriate tips, checks, and thank-yous because everyone had their own folder.

Picc and Violin Duel

First Dance

Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?

Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!

fashion: Sock Dreams
fashion: Cyberoptix Tie Lab
entertainment: Emperor Norton's Stationary Marching Band
fashion: Clockwork Couture

Meet our fave wedding vendors

Comments on Kristina & Matthew’s steampunk and science bookish wedding

  1. The details are AMAZING! I especially love the dog’s steampunk jet pack.

    The dishes vow is also great. 🙂

  2. The Cake Was a Lie! My wife and I were so busy running around meeting our guests that I actually didn’t get to have one of the cupcakes. It’s okay though, our baker has promised that she’ll come visit us and bake us a special batch 🙂

  3. Super creative, looks like a fun wedding. The dog wins best-dressed, in my opinion! ;-D

  4. Would there be any way to learn more about your experiences with the Charles River Museum? It is one of our top venue choices?

  5. I’m getting married there! If my wedding is half as fun as yours looks, I know I’ll love it.

  6. Ha! I know that violinist! Awesome band, and awesome-looking wedding! Hooray!

  7. I love that band! Saw them at the Peabody-Essex steampunk night. Looks like it was an awesome day!

  8. I love it! My fiance & I also live in Boston and attend the steampunk festival at the museum every year. I’d never thought of it as a wedding venue before, but of course, it really is a perfect spot for that occasion! So many great details you put together. Happy marriage!

  9. Hi Kristina! This is Lindsay from Caliypsoe. I’m in love with your beautiful wedding and am so happy I could contribute a piece to your special day. =) You looked stunning! Many congratulations to you and Matthew!

  10. These photos gave me a wedding epiphany: No matter what my centerpieces look like or what I finally do for my dress, I want my wedding to be as fun as this one looks. The details are GREAT, but it’s the incredible playful smiles that I want most of all.

    Thank you!!

  11. I followed this wedding from when it was still being constructed in their blog, right to the end. It’s such an inspiration to see this wedding finally unfold, so much inspiration was given and so many realisations on what a wedding really is to the people involved! =)

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