Offbeat partner: Diana, Executive Assistant
Offbeat partner: BJ, Animal Care Tech
Date and location of wedding: Purrington's Cat Lounge in Portland, Oregon — January 8, 2016
Our offbeat wedding at a glance:
We canceled the planning of the big wedding and decided to elope with one friend and an awesome photographer. I suppose there was a cat theme since our reception was held at Purrington's Cat Lounge. We were married by a judge at the courthouse with our photographer and good friend as a witness. We then went to the Lounge where I had rented out all the available time slots.
I made our cake topper from a toy cat and a toy Bigfoot. My husband is a BIG bigfoot fan. We were married on David Bowie's birthday so that was the party soundtrack the lounge chose. It was perfectly paired with the 10-foot Aladdin Sane Cat mural on the wall. We both work at the Oregon Humane Society, so having animals at some part of the day was a must. I am also extremely proud of pulling off a wedding that was 100% us and unique and on a very tiny budget.
Tell us about the ceremony:
We had a simple courthouse wedding. We are not religious. His family is local and mine lives on the opposite coast. We picked a date and then found a judge who could marry us. We got to the courthouse and waited until called into the judge's chambers by her two staff. I wore a vintage, cream color, a-line, silk dress I found at a local boutique that sells new and used clothes for $16. My husband bought slacks and a jacket from a local store called “The Man Shop” that has been in business for 80 years. They also shortened my dress. I carried a large air plant and also pinned a small one on BJ as a boutonniere.
Our judge was very kind and talked with us in advance. She preformed a simple ceremony and ring exchange that she uses often.
Tell us about your reception:
The lounge hosts adoptable cats from a local “Cat Adoption Team.” They serve coffee, tea, cookies, pastries, beer, and wine. It is fairly small with huge murals of awesome space kitties and fun furniture….and CATS. We arrived and the staff was very welcoming. The cafe sells baked goods from Little Red's Bakeshop so I contacted the owner about having a cake made and delivered. We came up with a beautiful small, tall, two-tier chocolate cake completely covered in rainbow sprinkles. I made our cake topper by dressing a toy Bigfoot and a toy cat in some wedding accessories and adding a tiny xoxo banner over it.
We also ordered nachos, hummus, and a couple of other house yummies. We drank champagne and toasted the fun day. The party was just us, our friend, our photographer, plus the staff and cats.
Our boss at the Oregon Humane Society arranged to sponsor two adoptable cats in honor of our wedding and even had them named for us. Both have since been adopted! That was a wonderful surprise especially since we support the animal sheltering community in almost all that we do.
What was your most important lesson learned?
Originally I was planning for a small wedding and reception for about 75 guests. After some a few months of planning I became beyond stressed. Work was busy, life was busy, planning took so much time and opinions. I came to my fiance and said I didn't want it and he said he didn't either. We discussed how we are both a bit introverted and were also stressing about having to be the center of attention for a whole day would be a nightmare. The costs were rising and we decided we would much rather take an awesome honeymoon with that money so we are currently planning for New Zealand next year.
I worried about telling my family. I am 44 years old and I think everyone was very excited to celebrate the day. Once I broke the news, they all were super supportive and thought it was a great decision.
Choosing not to have any family (even local) was a hard one but we wanted to be fair. We asked one friend who we both love and knew would be a fantastic friend, guest, and helper for the day. One thing I decided early was that we were going to get an awesome photographer so we could still share the day with all our friends in family. Our photographer is awesome! He had many unique and creative ideas and made use feel so comfortable.
Don't be afraid to speak your mind. The day should be about the two of you and what make you happy. If that is lots of people or just the two of you, make it meaningful.
- Cake: Little Reds Bakeshop
- Reception: Purringtons Cat Lounge
- Photographer: NoremaC Studios
Comments on A tiny party for humans, cats, and Bigfoot at a CAT LOUNGE
This makes me so so happy! I had a “catchelorette” party the day before my wedding at a cat cafe and it’s one of my favorite memories of the weekend!
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