Robots and aliens have invaded weddings this week! It's making me want to break it down in a binary solo. Today we've got Darth Vader in LEGO form, a robot card box, and tons of pinwheels.

Card robot

The Offbeat Bride: Sam, Genetic Counselor

Her offbeat partner: Eric, Structural Engineer

Date and location of wedding: River Ridge Golf Club, Raleigh, NC — May 19, 2012

Our offbeat wedding at a glance: One of my surprises to Eric and his groomsmen were their Star Wars LEGO boutonnieres. Eric LOVES LEGOs, and I knew he didn't want to wear flowers. I ordered Darth Vader for Eric, Obi Wan for my stepdad (who walked me down the aisle), and Stormtroopers for everyone else. We DIYed a lot of projects. The only thing we got from a florist was my bouquet, as all the other flowers were mostly done by my dear friend Kathryn, with some help from family and friends. We also had some fun favors for our guests: candy, sunglasses, and glow sticks!

Pre wedding, again

LEGO Stormtrooper Boutonnieres


The surprise - Mr. and Mrs. Wuf

I decided to book Mr. and Mrs. Wuf, the North Carolina State mascots (our alma mater), to make an appearance at our wedding. After Eric's dance with his mom, our emcee told Eric I had a surprise for him, and seeing the look on his face was so great!

Music is very important to me, and our DJ mentioned he wasn't much of a talker, so I decided to hire an emcee from a message board. He was FABULOUS. One of my favorite things he did for us was to say something funny about each member of our bridal party as they walked in, but as if he was a sports announcer. He also announced our tables for dinner like they were on The Price is Right.

My lady friends


Tell us about the ceremony: Our grandparents and parents came in to Penguin Café Orchestra, the wedding party walked down to “Do You Realize??” by the Flaming Lips, I walked down to a Celtic version of Canon in D, and our recessional was to “Home” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes. This version of Canon in D comes from the band Tradisfaction, who is based out of Dublin. I saw them with my dad in August of 2009, and so that song means a lot to me.

Rylen striking a pose

My stepdad gave me away. My talented sister made a sign for our ring bearer Rylen to carry. One side said “Here Comes the Bride” and the other said, “Happily Ever After.” He worked that sign like a boss! We had two readings from two of my best friends: “A Lovely Love Story” by Edward Monkton, which definitely reflects our relationship. Our second reading was about love in general, and how it is a feeling. I chose this one because I started tearing up when I read it, and I usually only cry over sappy things with animals:

To love very much is to love inadequately: We love — That is all. Love cannot be modified without being nullified. Love is a short word but it contains everything. Love means the body, the soul, the life, the entire being. We feel love as we feel the warmth of our blood, we breathe love as we breathe the air, we hold it in ourselves as we hold our thoughts. Nothing more exists for us. Love is not a word. It is a wordless state indicated by four letters.
– Guy De Maupassant

The kiss

Our pastor, Eric's uncle, tied in something that Eric loves: Lord of the Rings. He also chose a verse that fit very well with us, and was about not boasting and basically getting over yourself when you're in love. I cried… A LOT. We spent a long time dating long distance, so walking down the aisle, and standing in front of Eric just hit me hard. And I have a bad habit of putting my hand up to my face when I cry, so I kept putting my bouquet in front of my face.

Our doggy, Gambit

Our biggest challenge: Not giving a shit about what other people thought was the biggest challenge. Obviously, I had to give a shit about what some people thought because this wasn't just my wedding, but I just got to a point where I stopped being self-conscious about things. One thing that I had a really hard time with was my dress, which got some surprised reactions because it was tea-length. I also was pretty worried about some of the more traditional family members who might be disappointed in our choices. But I know they all love me, and supported our decisions in the end, which is awesome.

Our first time seeing each other

My favorite moment: Our first look was really emotional. One of the clearest moments I have of our wedding is him turning around, and I am so glad that we were able to do that with just our photographer.

Mother daughter dance

My mother/daughter dance to “Party in the U.S.A.” — we both secretly love that song. We also invited everyone to join in about halfway through because, really, how can you deny anyone's right to dance to Miley?

Our cake

We also had a special cake topper: a 1979 Precious Moments cake topper that we borrowed from my dad's girlfriend. It had been the one she and her late husband had used, and they had a pretty special relationship. I was glad we could honor that.

Magic City workin' it

My funniest moment: I also didn't want anyone feeling singled out by the bouquet toss at the reception, so we had a dance-off to win a pinwheel with $20 attached to it instead. It turned out to be hilarious!

Pinwheel escort cards


All of our faves

My advice for Offbeat Brides: I deeply regret not taking the time to get a couple of special photographs taken, because I was being pulled in different directions. My roommate from college (and one of my best friends) wanted a picture with us and her parents, but I asked if we could hold on for a second since someone was calling me to be somewhere for one of the events. It also happened with a group picture with some other close friends. feel terrible that my guests didn't get the photos they wanted, because I kept letting myself being pulled into different places. So I recommend taking advantage of those opportunities as soon as they present themselves.

Little did I know, they had choreographed a dance

What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding? That the ultimate theme of any wedding should be the love you have for each other, and whatever and whoever you love. One of my favorite questions someone asked me was, “So, what do robots and dinosaurs have to do with pinwheels?” My answer, “Nothing, really.” And that's totally fine!

No party is complete without glow sticks

Our glow stick exit

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Comments on Sam & Eric’s pinwheels, robots, and Star Wars wedding

  1. The dance-off idea is amazing! I can only imagine how fun that would be. Details please! How did you or the crowd decide a winner?

  2. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE EVERYTHING!!! <— excited yelling capslock!
    So happy to see some dancers rockin' it. Party in the USA is a personal joke song with our group of friends and is on our 'must play' list! Every detail is legit, and I am all about it!

  3. Oh my goodness, there are so many wonderful things in this post! I adore the photo of your bridal party, so many amazing shades of green! What a super idea for the $20 attached to a pinwheel, haha I might have to borrow this idea.

  4. I’m so glad I found this post! It was a blast and an honor to emcee this wedding. They were an amazing couple and the whole reception was loads of fun. Also, thanks, Samantha, for the compliments!

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