hanging out after the ceremony

The Offbeat Bride: Keli, Office Manager (and Tribesmaid)

Her offbeat partner: James, Logistics Broker

Date and location of wedding: Butterfly Pavilion, Westminster, CO — 02/02/2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: James and I met playing Final Fantasy XI, an online game, so video games are a large part of our lives. We decided to base our theme on Fallout 3, our favorite post-apocalyptic game set in the radiated ruins of the 1940s.

Center pieces

guests wore fancy hats

We started telling non-gamer guests that our theme was the 1940s since it's a little more understandable. We also suggested wearing fancy hats, and from there it escalated to full attire. Then a whole mish-mash of themes started to pop-up from gothic Victorian to 1920s. James wore a steampunk jacket, and we got his best men long cut tuxes with top hats, white gloves, and canes. I wore my mom's dress from when she married my dad.

waiting around for the ceremony

bird cage veil

bridesmaid bouquet

My family helped out a lot with doing DIY, cooking, and decorating. My aunts used to own a flower shop so they put together all of the corsages, a few boutonnieres, bridesmaids bouquets, and the centerpieces. My cousins, aunts, and uncles also made the appetizers, decorated the reception area, ushered people at the ceremony, and generally ran the entire operation smoothly.

Turrets guard the cake

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We decided we wanted a video game-themed cake. We cycled through a lot of ideas, but eventually chose to go with Portal. We thought it would be cool to have the cake pops look like the different personality cores from Portal 1 and 2. We requested chocolate mini cakes in the shape of the actual portal cake. The main cake was in the shape of the companion cube and it sat on the top tier of the cupcake rack. The baker also decorated the stand and cake pops holder to look like the testing facility floor!

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garter belt

One of my best friends knitted me a garter belt. I didn't want to throw it, or spend money on a fake one, so we skipped the whole “throwing things at people” part.

stand up comedy!

We aren't really dancing types, so our reception had no dancing. We were having a hard time coming up with other activities, though. My mom and dad suggested stand-up comedy. My dad has a friend named Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald, a veterinarian who also does stand-up comedy. My dad talked to Dr. Kevin about it, and he agreed to come! During the reception, Dr. Kevin did a whole set tailored to our interests including a joke about a Boston terrier.

James walking down the aisle

Tell us about the ceremony: The ceremony was held inside the conservatory of the butterfly pavilion. This is where all the butterflies are kept and are allowed to fly freely. Even at night there were big moths flying around landing on people during the ceremony.



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James' groomsmen/woman were his sister, brother-in-law, and a friend from elementary school.

Keli walking down the aisle

[clickylinks slug=have-both-your-dads-give-you-away]I have both a dad and a stepdad, so it was decided that they would walk me down the aisle together. When we got to the front, the pastor asked who was giving me away. My stepdad said “He does,” and pointed to my dad, then my dad said “He does too,” and pointed to my stepdad.


We wanted something to represent how we met, so for the processional song, we chose the piano version of “The Grand Duchy of Jueno” from Final Fantasy XI.

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We had a fairly traditional Christian ceremony with traditional vows. I did ask the pastor to read “The Day The Saucers Came” by Neil Gaiman. When I found this poem on Offbeat Bride, I said “THIS!” It was perfect because we both like Neil Gaiman, and the poem encompassed everything we enjoy together.

ring exchange

After our pastor announced us “sir and madame,” we high-fived and walked out to “Waltz for the Moon” from Final Fantasy VIII.

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Our biggest challenge: We were told that it gets very dark in the conservatory at night. There were a few spotlights, but that was pretty much it. This of course affected the pictures, being able to see, and something I didn't even think about: it would probably scare the kids. Our photographer did the best he could with the lighting available, and we handed out LED paper lanterns to guests so there could be some light in the audience. When it came time for the flower girl and ring bearer to walk down the aisle, they were not having it. Luckily, their mom (James' groomsgirl) had not walked too far before I called her back to help (drag) them out.


My favorite moment: We were really happy that some of James' family was able to fly out for the wedding. It was important to us because we are both very close to our families and we knew they would get along well together.

I wasn't sure if my uncle was going to make it to the wedding. He had two major surgeries and one was only two days beforehand. So I had to try really hard not to cry as I was walking down the aisle and saw him standing with everyone else.

head butted

My funniest moment: James and I were taking pictures and I accidentally head-butted him in the forehead! He had a bump in the middle of his head for a while after.

jumping pictures

Was there anything you were sure was going to be a total disaster that unexpectedly turned out great? I printed the wrong date on our save-the-dates! Luckily, I had only hand-delivered about half of them, so the other half had date change stickers on them. Then on my actual wedding invitations, I forgot to include what time the ceremony started. It's surprising that everyone made it on the right day and the right time.


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Comments on Keli & James’ video games comedy and butterflies wedding

  1. Yay, I love hearing stories of folks meeting playing FFXI! Some of my best friendships began there. Your wedding looks gorgeous; kudos on the Portal cake!

  2. Ahhh I love when weddings pop up and I know the venues/vendors! The Butterfly Pavillion is so unusual and gorgeous, and what a neat idea for a place to hold your wedding. Did you have any guests get nervous about being around so many butterflies at once?

    I took my guy to Clockwork Couture to get him a suit too — they are the nicest folks ever. You both look lovely.


  3. This wedding is awesome! But I started laughing so hard at the moths everywhere – my fiance is very afraid of butterflies, and I was just picturing his reaction.

  4. OMG, does anybody remember Dr. Fitzgerald from Emergency Vets on Animal Planet a long time ago, or is that just me?!

  5. My husband to be and I also met in FFXI! How magical! I love that you walked down the aisle to Jeuno’s theme.

  6. I love this post!

    My fiance and I have been together through FFXI. On top of it we were college sweethearts- it was FATE that we both were playing on the same server together back in ’04 AND attended the same school. Our wedding cake Topper are our FFXI characters. Here is a photo and the artist who made it: http://rowlandcooney.deviantart.com/art/Final-Fantasy-XI-Wedding-Cake-Topper-310719802?q=gallery%3Arowlandcooney%2F10323268&qo=32

    We are getting married next year. We are using the theme to Hall of the Gods.. from the same game… (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIy1JA7qDpg) as we walk down the altar. When we rekindled our relationship and met back in person, we did SKY together on the first day.

    Congratulations to the original poster.

  7. This is freaking amazing!! Beautiful wedding and I love fallout 3 too! Seriously, I have spent well over a hundred hours playing that game. LOVE the Portal cake!! Apparently the cake wasn’t a lie after all! I really love everything about this wedding, including the standup comedian and the fancy vintage dress.

  8. Dr. Fitzgerald from Emergency Vets! Yea!! Made my day!!! Oh, and the moths, love the moths.

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