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The Offbeat Bride: Jolene, Writer
Her offbeat partner: Billy, musician
Date and location of wedding: The Hyeholde, Pittsburgh, PA — April 4, 2015
Our offbeat wedding at a glance:
I've followed Pearl Jam to more than 50 concerts. As fate would have it, I met Billy, the love of my life, as he was joining the nationally touring Pearl Jam tribute band Ten. We fell head-over-heels in love, and suddenly I got to hit the road with my soul mate, taking Pearl Jam tunes from city to city. So, we knew we had to host a rock ‘n' roll wedding for our families and friends. There was lots of rock music, purple glitter, and surprises. We even used a rock concert photographer to capture the energy.
Tell us about the ceremony:
I walked down the aisle to Eddie Vedder's “Longing to Belong.” We thought it was a perfect song for our wedding day because it's about giving yourself to another person, and how beautiful but also terrifying it can be to surrender your heart.
I'd asked my dad to walk me down the aisle, but it turned out I was so excited, I left my dad in the dust! My dad held on to my arm while I nearly ran up to Billy and clasped his hands. I was grinning so hard. I was so excited, I didn't even think about where to stand, and I ended up on what is traditionally the groom's side. My bridesmaids quickly switched sides to stand alongside me. I barely noticed.
Our ceremony was brief and heartfelt. After the ceremony, my friend Suaz gave me the most meaningful compliment of the day. She said, “You looked like you were really present.” It had been my biggest fear that I would glaze over and miss the day in an anxious blur. But I didn’t, and Suaz helped me appreciate that.
Tell us about your reception:
After dinner, we kicked off the reception with Joan Jett's “I Love Rock n' Roll.” My maid of honor passed out blinking LED rings. Guests played in the photo booth or helped themselves at the bar. We hoped people would dance, and they did! The best part was when Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” burst onto the playlist, and our friends flooded the dance floor, mosh-pit style!
I loved our slow dance. The room dissolved when the music started. Billy and I danced to Pearl Jam’s “Future Days,” and to my delight, he sang the words to me while we twirled around. We spun, laughed, and sang right into each other’s grinning faces: “When hurricanes and cyclones raged/When winds turned dirt to dust/When floods they came or tides they raised/Ever closer became us.” It was exhilarating.
I also loved watching my parents have fun. They’re thoughtful, gentle, and unassuming people — but they’re not into weddings. This was nice for me because they never butted into my wedding planning. I expected my parents to have a nice time at my wedding, but I didn’t expect to see them have a blast. And I think they did. I’ll never forget dancing to The Von Bondies with my mom.
- Photographer: Rich Frollini Coda Photography
- Dress: Maggie Sottero's Savannah Marie
- Venue: Hyeholde
- Photo booth: Sweetpix
- Coffee Wedding Favor: Margaret's Fine Imports
Comments on Jolene & Billy rocked their purple glittery rock ‘n’ roll wedding
As someone who listened to my cassette tape of Pearl Jam’s “10” until it wore out… This is amazing.
Thank you! Music can really bring people together!
Seeing our wedding posted today made my day. 🙂 Actually, my week!
Does anyone know the type of flower used in her bouquet? I’d love to be able to use it in mine.
That’s my bouquet! It’s just purple carnations, in memory of my grandmother, who loved them. Best of all it lived for 3 weeks after our wedding. I loved it. 🙂 best wishes on your wedding!
Absolutely adore your choice of purple accents + use of glitter on envelopes, bridesmaids dresses + decor! I wish I had thought to do that! I’m a concert photographer and totally appreciate your rock and roll theme, also! Congratulations!
Thank you Lizzy! That makes me happy! The envelopes were from http://www.envelope-liners.com and we loved them! I think everyone but my father-in-law did. As he put it, “When I opened it I got little metal hickies all over my table.” 😛
This is amazing.
My husband and I actually named one of our tables “Pearl Jam, 10 (Side 1)” Because everyone knows Ten side 1 is the best half album.
I know this is two years after the fact, but: who did Jolene’s gorgeous hair? Friends of mine are having a retro wedding in Pittsburgh and are looking for a stylist.
Thank you. 🙂 Andrew at Studio Booth in Shadyside/East Liberty did my hair. He usually doesn’t do brides but I begged him to do mine because he’s my regular stylist, and he’s really sweet! http://www.studio-booth.com/
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