being romantic

The offbeat bride: Katie, architectural student

Her offbeat partner: Ryan, software developer

Location & date of wedding: Courtyard Restaurant, Ottawa, Canada — April 1, 2010

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We only planned the wedding for two months. We just didn't think we could bear 14 months of planning. I bought a long dress which I then had shortened to just below my knees. (One seamstress said it was the biggest mistake I would ever make.) Because of time and money constraints, we did everything ourselves. We had a candy and cookie bar for favors, huge three-foot balloons everywhere, and elephant wooden signs that I made at school. We also love board games, so we decided to make a few easy party games for guests to do. We made a six-sided puzzle, Mad Libs, Trivial Pursuit-style questions, and personalized Fluxx.

entrance sign

I hate flowers, so for bouquets and boutonnieres I made pinwheels. For table centerpieces, we got yellow fake flowers and popcorn containers from the dollar store. The reception was cocktail-style. My favorite part of the food was the poutine bar!

a little nervous

Tell us about the ceremony: The processional music was an instrumental version of the theme song of the video game Portal and Nine Inch Nails' “Ghosts 13.” The recessional music was the theme song from the A-Team. The signing of the marriage certificate had the theme of The Warriors playing.

the recessional

Here were our vows:

Katie. I promise to you, my best. Whether abroad on one of our adventures, or toiling away at our home, my best. On matters of seriousness or silliness. In building the lives together that we want to live. In times of frustration as much as in times of joyfulness, my best. I promise you all that I have, I promise you my best.

Ryan, I promise that I will always love you, for your faults and strengths and through the bad and good. I will be by your side for whatever life brings, be it wealth and happiness or zombie apocalypse. I will trust that you will always have my back and will always have the best intentions in mind. You are my best friend and my better half. I will always be your player two.

candy and cookie bar

cube puzzle

Our biggest challenge: The biggest challenge was getting it all done in two months. Apparently bridesmaid dresses are supposed to be ordered four months in advance, and wedding dresses six months! We were able to get it all done by working together and committing two days a week to wedding planning.

We also had to do lots of DIY because of the need to get it done so quickly. We were waiting on some things right until the last minute. We got the bridesmaid dresses five days before the wedding, and the rings the morning of!


My favorite moment: At one point of the night, the band started playing a song that brought everyone to the dance floor. For the rest of the band's set, everyone continued dancing. For a guest book, we made one that asked guests to draw pictures of us. My two-year-old niece started drawing mustaches on a lot of the photos and other weird-looking things. There were a lot of cool drawings, but I think hers were the best. And I really loved when the cake was presented.

best MC ever

My funniest moment: Our emcee, Danielle, ended her speech with a wonderful quote, “Love is like peeing your pants. Everyone can see it, but you are the only one who can feel its warmth.”

the wedding party

My advice for offbeat brides: Accept help. I have a hard time giving up responsibility for things. But if I did not allow others to help with cookie baking, sign painting, decorating, etc., it could not have gotten done.

being ourselves

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jewelry: Fabuluster

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Comments on Katie & Ryan’s party games cocktail wedding

  1. “Love is like peeing your pants. Everyone can see it, but you are the only one who can feel its warmth.”
    Love it, the pinwheels, everything really.
    anniversary is April 1st too!

  2. I read “poutine bar” and immediately called my BF. Tell me more.

  3. I love the idea of drawings as a guestbook. It’s always awesome to see yourself in cartoon form. 🙂

  4. Wow! That cake is just jolly. At my wedding, we had a 3-tiered cheese cake. Inject your own personality, I say, if angle food, frilly white just doesn’t describe your union, then why do it? I’m quite fond of red as well. At my husband’s last milestone, I chose another of those non-game party game that doesn’t take much to orchestrate, by is loads of fun: the balloon fortunes game. I could totally see something like this would have worked at this wedding. Here’s this game and many others that work well for a playful engagement party or wedding reception:

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