The Offbeat Bride: Sariah, actor/student
Her offbeat partner: Josh, trade's helper
Date and location of wedding: Tybee Island Lighthouse, Tybee Island, GA — September 8, 2012
Our offbeat wedding at a glance: The wedding started out as a one-day affair, but quickly turned into a weekend party. Most of our guests came in from out-of-town and I am so thankful that we got to spend so much time with them. We had a rehearsal dinner/cook-out party the night before. Then we had the wedding, with the bars and beach afterward. And then lunch dates the next morning. It was a great, non-stop celebration with the people that meant the most to us.
We chose Tybee Island because we went there the first night we met. It's a beautiful island, and we wouldn't have had our wedding anywhere else. We were lucky enough to find the Lighthouse where we could have the ceremony and the reception. And there was so much natural beauty on the island that we barely needed to decorate.
We collected wine bottles from everyone we knew for a year to make our centerpieces. My bridesmaids filled them with sand that morning and we spent a few days before the wedding tea-staining the paper for the “messages in a bottle.” I made my bouquet and my bridesmaids' flowers over many episodes of Buffy. Our friends and family all came together with their crafting abilities, help, and advice. It was a wedding made by a village.
Our catering was a delicious “brinner” (breakfast for dinner) of bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits, spinach, egg, and cheese biscuits, hash browns, fresh fruit, and water and sweet tea. It was a dry wedding, and our reception turned into turned into a glow stick dance party under the stars. Everyone had glow sticks on all night.
After the reception, we all went back to the hotel and changed. Then we went out to the bars on the island and hung out on the beach and the pier with our friends until around 2:00 in the morning. The next morning we saw everyone off and got to grab lunch with some friends before starting our honeymoon. I still can't believe how much time we actually got to spend with all of our guests.
Tell us about the ceremony: We kept the ceremony short, sweet, and secular. Our officiant was a good friend that was already ordained online. I loved having a friend that had helped us grow together and was so close to both of us be the one to stand with us and help us make our family. Our sister-in-law read from Plato's Symposium, and our officiant read the ceremony out of a copy of “The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.” We wrote our own vows and had officiant-led vows. I loved having the two sets of vows because we were able to get creative and express how we felt about each other, but also have that tradition and shared promises that so many weddings before us had.
My brother is only 10 years old and I really wanted to include him in the ceremony. We didn't have a flower girl or a ring bearer, but my brother held onto Josh's ring in a plastic Pokeball.
Josh didn't write his vows, but instead chose to improvise them. I chose to write my vows down and keep them tucked in my dress for safe keeping. I didn't think through to the part where I would be pulling a piece of paper out of my cleavage. There's a section of my vows that I still say to Josh all the time and really show the type of people we are: “You're the Ash to my Misty, the Link to my Zelda, the Tuxedo Mask to my Sailor Moon, and the Lily to my Marshall.”
Our biggest challenge: Finances were a huge challenge for us. Our families couldn't contribute much, and we knew going into it that we would be paying for just about everything ourselves. We quickly cut out all unnecessary traditions and expenses and focused on the bare minimum: food, location, and places to sit. Luckily, we have a huge group of talented and supportive people who really made the day come together. We didn't have to spend money we didn't have. We stuck with our budget (okay, so we went over a little bit) and had a weekend of fun, love, and community.
My favorite moment: After the ceremony and our freak rain storm, a beautiful rainbow appeared right by the Lighthouse. The rain and some vendor difficulties really cut into picture time for the two of us, but this glorious rainbow made for some sweet photos.
One of my favorite moments of the wedding weekend was the night before the wedding. I insisted on Josh and I sleeping in separate locations, so I stayed the night in the hotel we had blocked off for our friends and family. Josh and most of his groomsmen stayed at our house the night before, and I don't even want to know what shenanigans went down that night. But I loved going two doors down to hang out with my aunt and cousins, smoking cigarettes and drinking on the beach with my dad, and sharing a hotel room with four of my closest friends. They say you should get a good night's rest the night before, but we may have stayed up until 4:00 a.m. WORTH IT!
My funniest moment: The ceremony had just started, and here comes this white cat down the aisle like he owns the place. He sat down on a chair next to one of Josh's cousins and watched the entire ceremony. He then stayed for the reception, also in a chair at a table. The cat was also included in the glow stick dance party. I still don't know where that cat came from, but he was a great unexpected guest.
My advice for Offbeat Brides: Don't feel bad if sometimes the planning gets to be too much. It's overwhelming. There's a lot to do and a lot of people and a lot of changes. It's okay to have a moment. Don't feel guilty about it. Take a breath or a shot or a good cry. You'll feel so much better.
Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?
- Catering: Thrive, A Carry Out Cafe
- Photography: Sean and Sue McCarthy
- Dress: Forever Yours
- Alterations: Bridal Mart
- Tent, table, and chair rental: Classic Party Rentals
- Day-of coordinator and videographer: Lauren Leasure
- Cake: Cake It Away!
- Venue: The Tybee Island Lighthouse
Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!
Comments on Sariah & Josh’s rainbow glow stick island wedding
You guys take the best pictures! Love all the laughter. 🙂 The rainbow colors look like so much fun too. Congrats!
OMG LOVE IT!
What a gorgeous location. And Brinner! I love it, we’re doing that for our reception too. 😀
So delicious and so much more affordable!
That corset-lacing picture is fantastic!
It made me laugh out loud at work. I totally know that feeling. 😀
The cat crashing your wedding is awesome!
What a great wedding – thank you so much for sharing the rainbow. 🙂
If you’ve gotta have a wedding crasher, it should be a cat. They own the world, anyway.
My heart aches for a vacation to Tybee. DREAMS!
Wedding brinner for ze win! Your’s looks amazing.
The cat story is one of the best things in all of history.
Last photo by the lighthouse is my favorite. Lovely color contrast and gives a real sense of the place.
Love this, complete with the rainbow in the first shot!
LOVE your centerpiece idea… and might be a great way to utilize the boozers in my family!
It really is! You’re already paying to drink the booze, might as well utilize the pretty bottles too!
The bride on the beach pics made me drool and melt all at the same time! Gorgeous all around! Happy forevers 🙂
Thanks so much, everybody! I’m just thrilled that we were able to share our wedding! It wouldn’t have been so awesome without Offbeat Bride!!
OMG THAT’S MY CAT! Macky how did you get to Tybee Island without me???
Ok not really — but that cat looks like just like him! I never thought I’d see another white cat with apricot markings like mine has.
There’s so much happiness and laughter in those photos; I was literally grinning from ear to ear while looking at them. I love the paper flowers and the pokeball ringbox especially! What a gorgeous wedding. Congrats!
ha, these are awesome!
Was your friend/officiant only ordained online?
The cat! Lol that cat is the best wedding crasher!
Yes, I agreed. Even they do the same thing at my marriage.
My parents retired to Tybee Island after falling in love visiting me at SCAD.
This wedding is still talked about she says. You’ll hear ‘rainbow wedding’ around town. It also goes to any colorful SCADies who get married out there.
I’ll be back there in May to see them 🙂
That’s so sweet to hear. I still live here and I haven’t heard anyone talk about my rainbow wedding, but I do live two islands over so it could be that! I hope it can be good inspiration for any like-minded individuals living in Savannah.
Several years later update:
Although the marriage did not last (we were divorced almost 2 years ago), it was still a beautiful wedding. I won’t be asking OBB to take this page down with hopes that it can still be good rainbow inspiration.
I’m so sorry to hear that! You’re right, though, it will always be a gorgeous wedding. <3
me and my wife had are wedding the same day we never knew there was a bug for real called love bugs and that they love white we both was in it lol sorry it didn’t last
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