The Offbeat Bride: Kylie, Office Coordinator/Nanny
Her offbeat partner: Muhammad, Director of Marketing
Date and location of wedding: The Secret Garden at the RL Wilson House, Noblesville, IN — June 4, 2016
Our offbeat wedding at a glance:
I wouldn't say our wedding had a particular theme, but it had its share of unique details that were planned by us and executed by our village of family and friends. “Mutual Weirdness” (from the Dr. Seuss quote) was a phrase repeated in the details along with “You Are my Sunshine” showing up in many places.
I wanted citrus colors in yellow, green, or orange. We started with invitations that included a custom illustration of us and our kids in the wedding colors and requested our guests wear the chosen colors on the big day. We incorporated our love of Chuck Taylors, Muhammad's love of LEGO, and my love of flowers while highlighting our silly personalities and commonalities as much as possible.
We decided on serving breakfast for dinner and chose donuts over cake. We selected silly donut tower toppers with animals in bride and groom outfits and used actual citrus fruit as well. We went crazy with the repetition of colors including doing handmade favor jars for the children containing multiple things in our colors including LEGOs and candy.
We selected all of the music to fit the casual, laid back and accepting vibe that we hoped made everyone feel welcome whether they were white, black, Christian, Muslim, or some mix of each like us. While we intended on everything being fully outdoors, the rain insisted otherwise and the tent created an intimate closeness between those we love beyond our wildest dreams making the “You Are My Sunshine" theme fit perfectly.
Tell us about the ceremony:
Because we come from different backgrounds, we chose to keep our ceremony focused on our unique love vs. religion so that each of our families could attend and feel the love without being disappointed. We wrote the ceremony ourselves and it ended up amazing for us. Our wedding party led most of the ceremony. After the attendants each walked down the aisle, the crowd was asked to stand for us both. Then Muhammad (the groom) and his children walked down the aisle together to the song “Only You” by Joshua Radin and I followed with both my parents to Frank Turner’s version of “You are my Sunshine.”
We thanked our parents and skipped the bit about being given away. Our groomsman and maid of honor co-read a children’s book called “Rosie and Michael” that we adjusted some words in to involve our guests and reflect us.
Our co-maid of honor and best lady led the exchange of rings and we exchanged quirky, passion-filled vows we had written ourselves to one another. We also wrote vows to our children and had our guests read what we called the “village vows” from the programs that were a whirlwind combination of serious and silly. Friends of ours performed a song called “Better Together” and we had our own tradition as proof that we would weather life’s storms together holding an umbrella and having our children pour a symbolic, colorful mixture over us. We ended with my new stepdaughter saying “You may now kiss my Daddy.”
Tell us about your reception:
Just as the ceremony ended and the reception was set to begin, the rain let up and the sun shined through. We re-entered the tent to the playful song “All I Want Is You” from the Juno soundtrack.
Guests had begun eating waffles with peanut butter and maple syrup and all our closest friends in green dresses and green Chucks were helping execute the details. We high-fived one another and were too excited to eat aside from a bit of the fruit served in yellow (pineapple), green (grapes), and orange layers. People began to dance and the sun shone as all the kids acquired muddy pant legs playing yard games. Our son led all the kids in The Whip and Nae Nae.
The table décor was a mix of several vases with no two alike that were all the three colors and filled with flowers we selected with our friend who is a florist. The vases were placed upon wood hand sliced by our maid of honor and the programs revealed fun information about our kids, the wedding party, and us (including that we previously had a Muslim ceremony in the groom's parents home).
We had games available to play and pictures to color. Crayons shaped like flowers were also available in citrus colors along with most of the guests' clothing. Our first dance was intimate, while feeding each other donuts was more silly, but each contained a piece of who we are as a couple.
What was your most important lesson learned?
I think each of us takes pride in planning and implementing the biggest day of our lives without a planner and with few hitches on the big day. We intentionally decided not to have video taken to preserve our own visual memories, but the ceremony went so well for us that we have some regret. Let’s be real: I would kill for a video now. Our daughter often hides her emotions and seeing her happy tears during our vows to the kids was something we both wish had been preserved forever.
I have one other small regret. I personally spent so much time making gifts that I occasionally neglected my beautifully blooming partnership with my almost-spouse. I was so focused in on the wedding that our bonding time was often less than we had become accustomed to. I regret anything that caused the love of my life pain, but if there is anything we learned together through this process it was that you can always choose to dance in the rain. As the rain poured down on the biggest day of our life, this belief was solidified and we became a real family in the rain. Citrus colors and rain will always warm my heart.
- Florist: Fleuri Designs
- Venue: RL Wilson House
- Photographer: Molly Connor Photography (Molly's blog post about this wedding!)
- Bolero: Carmel Wedding Studio
- Colorful Details: Lisa McSpadden
- Makeup: Ashley Neu