both my husband and I changed our last names

The offbeat bride: Kat, Craftsperson

Her offbeat groom: Kurt, Computer Engineer

Location & date of wedding: Ottawa, ON (Canada), married at the Army Officer's Mess. June 23rd, 2007

What made our wedding offbeat: Our wedding seemed fairly traditional on the surface — it was held at a popular local venue for formal events, the bride wore an off-white wedding gown and the groom wore black tails. The offbeat part of the wedding was in the little details. Both my husband and I changed our last names. I had a maid of honour, two bridesmaids, and a bridesman in my party. Our cake topper was a Lego couple that I put together myself from diverse pieces I'd ordered online.

What wedding day would be complete without a trip to Timmy's?Instead of biblical or poetry readings as part of our ceremony we quoted sci-fi novels. Despite wearing a fairly traditional off-white wedding dress, I wore sparkly red flats for the day and then switched to black high-heeled Mary Janes for the dancing. We took a trip to a Tim Horton's coffee shop in the middle of our wedding day in all of our wedding finery. My uncle took our formal photos at the same place (and sometimes in the same poses) that my husband's parents' wedding photographs were taken.

Our “first dance” dance wasn't the first one of the evening and it wasn't exactly to a traditional wedding song (“The Gravity of Love” by Enigma). My father and I did the traditional father-daughter dance, but when it came time for my husband and his mother to dance it was to Strongbad Techno.

Cake TopperOur biggest challenge: Our biggest challenge was compromise. We each had our own ideas of how our wedding should be — I'm more “out there” while he's more traditional — and we had to find middle ground where we were both happy. Figuring out which ideas were essential to us and which ones we were willing to let go was a difficult process. Then, when we had it all figured out between the two of us, we had to bring family and friends into the planning process! Everyone has their own preconceived notions of how a wedding should be, and it can be very difficult to convince that your wedding is your decision without alienating people. In the end, though, it all worked out. There was no unnecessary drama on the big day and I'm still friends with all of the people that I was friends with before the wedding.

firstdance.jpgMy favorite moment: My favorite moment was the first dance. Nobody but our parents, the DJ, and the photographer knew that my husband and I had been taking dance lessons. It was a well-known fact that to those who had known us from high school that my husband did not dance. Ever. So whirling around the room to Enigma and ending the dance with one heck of a dip was great fun! There's a big part of me that enjoys going contrary to other peoples' expectations. That and the dance was very romantic.

My BridesmaidsMy offbeat advice: Listen when other people make their suggestions. When you don't agree, try to be nice about rejecting their ideas — drama and infighting are two things that can ruin an otherwise wonderful wedding. Remember, this may be YOUR wedding, but you want to have relationships with these people afterwards!

Enough talk — show me the wedding porn: Tux, tails, and sci-fi vows!

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Comments on Kat’s Ottawa wedding was all about the offbeat details

  1. Now that’s hot. I love the wedding pix and the details. So much fun. What a great balance between offbeat and traditional. The whole wedding is just full of personality.

  2. Hey love the fact that you both changed your name! Me and my fiance are thinking about doing that too. Can I ask how you guys came to a decision on a last name? And also- how you told his family without them freaking out?

  3. We’re planning on doing very similar things! I’m looking into the lego topper, and what Canadian bride DOESN’T visit Tim’s in all her finery?! Love it! The pictures are fab!

  4. Wow, I didn’t even know this was up here! I was one of the bridesmaids (the short one!), so I can answer a couple of the questions.

    The bridesmaids dresses were made by a friend of the bride’s family. They were gorgeous and so comfortable.

    The groom had a hyphenated last name, but Kat wasn’t keen on being “Mrs. Name-Name”. The two of them decided to use only one of his names. I don’t believe his family minded, since they were still using his father’s name, but I don’t know exactly how they broached the topic.

    Sorry I’m replying so late, but I clearly haven’t checked this site in far too long!

    (Also, the picture from the Timmy’s is mine! 😉 We got some great looks walking in there, dressed to the nines!)

  5. I need to know how the food was, and how it worked with the lay out? My fiance and i have our reception booked there for oct 2010!, i have been there many times as my father is a member, but usually only for mothers day brunch, or for drinks in the evening? food good? service? did it look pretty????

  6. I would love to know which readings you used! I'm thinking of doing something similar but it'll probably be from fantasy novels. It looks like a great wedding!

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