Photos by Elizabeth Smart Photography

The offbeat partners: Mandy & Douglas

Date and location of wedding: Pine Rose Cabins, Twin Peaks, CA — April 29, 2013

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: We made practically everything to save on the budget ($7,000) from coffee filter roses to all the attire. I made my reception dress, Doug's suit and vest, my sister's dress, my mother's dress, both the matron of awesome and the best ladies' matching outfits, and various other costumes. Then we asked all of our guests to dress in their best masquerade attire, and almost everybody did!


Tell us about the ceremony: We each picked one best friend to stand with us, and I had my son escort me down the aisle since my father and I are not on speaking terms. We did a handfasting, a ring warming, and a Quaich ceremony to put in the Scottish traditions that I value. We also wrote our own vows to each other and kept them a secret. It turns out we both ended up talking about how I always hog the bed!


Our biggest challenge: My biggest challenge was time for the DIY projects. Doug cut and made all 600 roses for the centerpieces, and then we spent days hand-painting them all, curling them, and finally assembling them all. I made my bouquet days before the wedding because I forgot all about it, but luckily Doug's mother and a few friends donated brooches for my bouquet. There was so much sewing for the handmade outfits that I was sewing up until four hours before the wedding! I'm just glad I finished.


My funniest moment: The funniest moment was when the coordinator came up to tell me that my escort, my two and a half-year-old son, Zen, was asleep, and that my stepdad and Doug's father were both willing to walk me down the aisle instead. I told her, “No, I want my son. Wake him up.” Her face was priceless. He was fine though. He got up and walked me down the aisle after all.

Also, if you write your own ceremony, be sure to include the part about everybody being seated after the bride comes down the aisle. I forgot to write that, and our officiant, a close friend, forgot as well, and everybody stood for about 10 minutes before our coordinator suggested that the guests all sit down!


What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? I learned to go with the flow where tradition was concerned. For instance, I originally didn't want to wear a veil. But then Doug's mother offered her veil, and it meant so much to me to use something that was so full of history. I instantly changed my mind! Sometimes you just find that certain traditions end up being just right for you.


Care to share a few vendor/shopping links?

Enough talk — show me the wedding inspo!

Meet our fave wedding vendors

Comments on A forest masquerade handmade wedding

  1. What a beautiful dress- and beautiful details! I love that your son got to walk you down the aisle! Congrats to you both.

  2. LOVE the theme and the shade of purple. and at the risk of sounding a bit creepy, the couple is HOT 🙂

  3. I love what you said “go with the flow with traditions” because some might wind up being right for you! I wish that family would also do that because I think it’s true! Some traditions are going to be just fine for you while others you are going to want to not use, and I think if brides/grooms as well as their families could respect that there would be quite a few less arguments….At least in my house anyway haha 🙂

  4. oh hey I recognize that venue! I got married there as well!! Love your bouquet and all the handmade flowers! I can’t imagine making 600 roses!!! Beautful wedding and congratulations, you look so happy in all the photos!!!

    was Linda your coordinator?

  5. So many ideas here are to my taste! Thank you for sharing. The venue is TO DIE for. Helped me narrow in on ‘what i think I want’ to ‘what i want!’

  6. It’s great how they weren’t afraid of bold, rich colors. A lot of people shy away and go all pastel, but the bolds really worked in this wedding. I especially loved that bouquet!

  7. Mandy!!!!! You would be on here!!!! Lol 🙂 ur wedding was beautiful Gorgeous dresses!

Comments are closed.