To end our elopement week we give you Bridget & Jonathan. Instead of having a huge wedding and inviting all their friends and family, Bridget & Jonathan decided to elope privately and turn it into a film. Afterwards they sent DVD's to their friends and family so that they could share their wedding day with them. How cool?! -Coco

Wedding Florida
The offbeat bride: Bridget – Advertising Copywriter

Her offbeat partner: Jonathan – 16mm Film Teacher

Location & date of wedding: Kansas/Chattanooga, TN/Orlando, FL — March 28, 2008

What made our wedding offbeat: Instead of a tradition wedding we made a little movie: We Like Love. Wedding Kansas

We didn't let our family and friends know what we were doing. To avoid inquiries, we told everyone that we were eloping and that no one was invited.

We filmed everything but our vow exchange ourselves run-and-gun style and, while it isn't without flaws, it was fun and we think it's perfect—sloppy shots, shaky camera and all. We shot footage in three states (his home state, mine and the state where we met) and exchanged vows on a soundstage where my husband teaches filmmaking.

Our close family members got a DVD in the mail, while the remainder of our “guests” received a postcard directing them to our website, where they could watch the video, see our photos and read our wedding journal.
Wedding Kansas
Our biggest challenge: While we were shooting, we had to sneak around a lot to make sure the wedding would remain a surprise. The little white lie came in handy.

A few super wonderful friends who were in-the-know helped us out with equipment, filming, photos, editing, etc. They helped make the painful parts much easier.
Wedding Tennessee
I think a lot of people are genuinely, deeply disappointed in how we did things. I feel a tiny bit bad that they feel that way. But only a tiny bit. Many people say, “Oh, this is OUR wedding, we're doing it our way!” But so few get the opportunity (or make the opportunity) to make that sentiment a reality. We did.

My favorite moment: My husband is a robot; the man does not cry. So when he got a little choked up as we exchanged the vows we wrote, it made the moment even more meaningful. Wedding Kansas

My advice for offbeat brides: Do NOT ask your friends and family what you should do. They will give you 857 different answers and no one is equipped to deal with those kinds of expectations.

You don't have to be or look perfect. But do wear something that makes you feel lovely.

Don't spend so much time taking photos or organizing things that you forget to have a good time.

Remember to spend time with and enjoy your partner that day.

The reality of weddings is this: No one cares about your ceremony as much as you think they do. It's okay to be selfish.

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Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!

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Comments on Bridget & Jonathan’s elopement and short wedding film

  1. I’m sorry to say this, but I would love to see the beautiful babies these two would produce! What a hot couple! What an amazing wedding, well done you two!

    • Aw, you supreme sweetheart! Thank you so much. We have yet to procreate, but here’s hoping they’ll be good-lookin’, smart and ultra-sassy too!

  2. in those first few photos, it almost looked like the bride was wearing those antlers, which would be tremendously cool.

    • Had I thought about it at the time, I would’ve pulled the antlers down and gotten my pose on, because we are a couple of goofs. As it turned out, we loved how that photo looked!

    • You have no idea. He does dishes, scrubs the toilet and tub, fixes stuff that’s broken, makes the bed and pumps my gas. He’s a dreamboat, a tremendous human being, a fantastic friend and I’m still grateful every day.

  3. Wow, gorgeous dress, pics, you! Love the sequence of him helping you with your corseting.

    • Every time I put it on, he graciously helped me and I didn’t even have to ask. Gosh, these are making me tear up!

  4. I don’t usually squee too hard over the clothes, but OMG the dress. It’s PERFECT. Like, just exactly white enough and just exactly not-white enough. The widdle train! The lacing! The BOOTS, woman! How can you not wear those boots EVERY SINGLE DAY?!

    *Sigh* I have a clothes crush.

    • And how! Those boots made my heart stop. And the way the colors in the dress match her hair?! Good lord. Beautiful. Just beautiful. 🙂

    • Thank you, thank you! I’m a Boot, shall I say, “Lady of the Evening”…and that pair is still one of my favorites. I wear the crap out of them to this day. The dress, too, was my dream, I fell in love the second I saw it (it’s a version of The Symphony dress on Chrissy Wai-Ching’s site) and I just made a few tweaks to make it my own. It’s made of raw silk, so it’s comfortable and feather-light. You can’t wear your dress again, so I’m eventually going to make it cocktail length! Recycled fashion awesomeness!

  5. Oh good Lord, I’m tearing up…

    My boyfriend is a film techie and this definitely hit a soft spot with me. The video moved me to tears.

  6. What a simple yet fantastic idea–sure saves feeling embarassed when you’re crying during the exchange of vows. Love the website and the intimacy of it all.

    P.S. I definitely cried during the video

    • Thank you so much. Never be embarrassed to cry, girlfriend! Weep it up! Running mascara and messed up make-up be damned ! 🙂

      The video still makes me cry.

  7. Yep. He still does my ironing. I’m not lazy, he’s just way better at it than I am.

  8. Thank you for sharing this, Bridget. Everything was beautiful, and I cried watching your vows!

    • Again, very humbled by all of your kind words. I’m so glad you all could enjoy it. Love is such a GOOD TIME!

  9. I am a lucky, lucky man. Bridget is an amazing woman and I will iron her dresses, jeans and shirts until she decides that we’re wrinkled enough to stop caring about ironing.

    We had a wonderful time with this project: the secret trips, our dear friends and family that helped, the arguments(believe me!-the heat of the Kansas sun can make one certain bride a little cranky.) and the time we spent together was priceless. I’d do it again and again.

    • Marry me, damn it! I love you like crazy. (Also, you look fetching in that avatar.)

  10. This is beautiful Bridge!…Brought ters to my eyes too….I remember that little girl and always invisioned you on your wedding day!….Thanks for sharing….Love you!

  11. I watched your video and I was very teary-eyed! I totally support and respect how you decided to film your ceremony, and mail the DVD to family and friends. Original, touching & sentimental. This was very special and I found it very inspiring. Congratulations to you both. I loved it.

  12. Absolutely wonderful! I LOVE the song you chose; really gives that warm, fuzzy, silly, but at the same time very profound feeling.

    • It’s a very pretty song. We actually chose it at the last minute, over a Kings of Leon’s “On Call” which was probably more “us” but it just looked like we were trying too hard to be a rock video or something when we put it to the edit, so we nixed it.

  13. FH and I were JUST thinking about doing something like this! I think we will end up doing something similar. 😀
    PS…LOVE the dress/boot combo! SOO CUTE!

  14. I had tears in my eyes watching this video. So beautiful and perfect. Hears hoping an incredible life to you both!

    • Thank you very much, I’m glad you enjoyed it. We are having a delightful time so far…

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