What would Halloween week be without a Dia de los Meurtos wedding? Not a very good one, that's for sure. That's why I'm pleased to bring you Erin and Sam's Dia de los Muertos masquerade ball! This one's got it all… Halloween accoutrements, skull details, costumes, a tarot card reader, even hula-hooping! It's pretty amazing… -Megs


Erin and SamThe offbeat bride: Erin – Admin at the University of Texas

Her offbeat partner: Sam – Organic foods delivery driver for Greenling

Location & date of wedding: Three Points Ranch in Round Mountain, Texas — just an hour outside of Austin, Texas — 10/31/2009

What made our wedding offbeat: We were married by a Justice of the Peace on 9/9/09 and decided on a big party for all of our friends and family on 10/31/09. We had cupcakes, an Indian and Thai themed buffet, Texas beer and wine, tons of delicious food, hula-hooping, wax lips and wax fangs, and everyone looked amazing in their costumes. It was a blast!

Hanging SkullsWe never liked the formality of a big ceremony (of course, that's super cool if that's your thing). I LOVE to plan, so I did all of the little details from custom invites printed frugally, to tons of hand-painted skull decorations, to paper flowers and a bubble smoke machine. I spent a lot of time online finding interesting ways to make things work, such as finding wholesale vases for our centerpieces.

CenterpiecesI made tons of little touches — a sign on the cupcake table to remind people who “be calm and eat cupcakes.” There were favors featuring our invitation design and starring a song that both of us sung together (neither of us are singers, so it was a special treat for everyone).

We decided on a location that represented us — a place called Three Points Ranch in the Texas hill country that was built from sustainable materials with a Texas flair and five gorgeous vintage airstreams, each with a different theme. In one of them we put a tarot-reading friend, who ended up being the most popular part of the wedding!

Papel Picado

Our biggest challenge: We wanted to do so much with decorations and themes and colors and food, but budget, time and ability to get everything together were all big hurdles. We knew one thing — we didn't want to compromise when it came to fun or food, which meant things like decorations had to be creative. With so many ideas and so little time, we had to come to figure out exactly what the night would mean to us. When we finally settled on a theme — Dia De Los Muertos Halloween Masquerade Ball (what a mouthful!)."Austin Powers"

We were able to incorporate a lot of our ideas into the theme without leaving out too much. We were able to save a lot of money by choosing paper flowers, which goes wonderfully with our theme, instead of real ones. We're very lucky to have family and friends who were able to go with the flow and be okay with a wedding event that was a tad out of the ordinary.

Erin and her maskMy advice for offbeat brides: My best advice would be to find the little things that make you happy, and incorporate them into your celebration. I was the most happy knowing that everyone felt special by the little personalized touches. They don't have to be expensive or time-consuming.

We both decided to sing “Tonight You Belong To Me” (the song Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters sang in The Jerk) as the first song on a mixed CD we gave as favors, and everyone loved them even though we're both pretty bad singers. I always say if you're willing to embarrass yourself for your friends and family, then that's real love.

What was the most meaningful moment of your wedding? My husband and I were able to sneak off to the Tarot-reading trailer to get our cards read. She did a long reading just for us, and the cards said all the right things. Even though we were so busy all night talking to so many family members and friends, I was happy to have that moment alone with him.Tarot Reader

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Comments on Erin & Sam’s Dia De Los Muertos, Halloween, masquerade ball wedding

  1. I’ve never seen a smoke bubble machine before–that’s the shiz! And the Frieda Kahlo costume was genius.

    Looks like it was a very fun event!

  2. This was such a great party to be at! Everyone had a ton of fun and Sam and Erin are such a great couple!

  3. I love your dress! You look so gorgeous and are rocking the red and turquoise!
    Also, the pictures of all of your food made me really hungry. Now I have to keep your cupcake sign in mind before I order Indian and Thai take-out.

    • Thanks! I love that dress! The food was amazing, too. I was happy when we had a few leftovers to munch on the next day!

  4. The wedding looks cool. I would have liked to have seen more pictures of the couple though.

  5. Erin, you were rocking that red dress. Which is why I mentioned seeing more pictures. I hope you didn’t take offense. You look beautiful.

  6. Fantastic wedding. I love the bold colors. Looks like everyone had a great time. I wonder what the tarot card said was in store for you both. Congrats on a beautiful wedding.

  7. I am interested in doing wedding customs from all over the world, but am scared about appropriating another culture/traditions.

    How did you two deal with that factor?

    • My husband is 1/4 Mexican, and that’s what ultimately led to us using Dia De Los Muertos themes.

      However, I don’t think it’s disrespectful to take celebratory elements from all sorts of cultures, even those that aren’t your own. It’s your wedding, one of the largest celebrations you will ever have. People all over the world celebrate in different ways, but at the heart of each celebration is a common theme of love and happiness. If your families don’t agree with your choices, I would explain to them that you are merely sharing in some of the beautiful, unique and festive elements of cultures other then your own. Good luck!

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