2862030434 a5c0ea62c5 m alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)The Offbeat Bride: Astrid, Biology Student and Retail Princess (and OBT member “Astrid“)

Her Offbeat Partner: Kyle, Network Analyst and Professional Napper

Location & date of wedding: The Virginia V, Seattle, WA — July 24, 2008

What made our wedding offbeat: Our wedding wasn't super offbeat, but it was authentically us. We left out all the traditions that didn't hold any meaning to us or rubbed us the wrong way. We mutually decided to get married, without a proposal or engagement ring. We had a secular ceremony and we walked down the aisle (“the stairs”) together.2864216179 8fbd45d4ae alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)

There was no veil, no garter, no first dance, no cake cutting, no bouquet toss. What we did keep we did ourselves. Handmade invitations, centerpieces of potted plants; we glazed the pots ourselves! We made our a blurb.com photo guest book out of our baby photos. We wrote our ceremony to fit us as a couple. It was an awesome party.

Our biggest challenge: We were really lucky to have supportive family members. My mother, who sometimes took a while to get on board with my “offbeat” ideas, was totally into making them work.

2868221635 e2ac7afc1e m alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)However, I got a lot of grief from my more casual acquaintances about my lack of proposal and engagement ring. They even questioned the seriousness of our intentions to get married because my finger was bare.

People also had a really hard time with us getting married on a Thursday. There were very few actual scheduling conflicts, as the wedding was at 6:30 and only lasted 3 1/2 hours, but it not being held on a Saturday night seemed to rub a lot of people the wrong way.


My favorite moment: There are so many, but two stick out in my mind.

The first, during the ceremony, looking out at all our friends and family and picking out the faces of my loved ones was really emotional and wonderful.

Later, my husband and I were dancing to Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons “Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You,” and at the chorus everyone on the dance floor spontaneously burst out into song. It completely made my night.

2871478434 40f00f0d3d alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)

My advice to other offbeat brides: Schedule your day wisely. We started getting ready at 11am for our 6:30 wedding, and I couldn't have been happier about it. We finished up all of our formal portraits ahead of schedule, and had about an hour to just hang out at home and eat bagels before we had to get down to the boat. It was super relaxing to have that chill time with my husband and our party before the big show.

Also, get a great photographer. I fell in love with Alex Rubin‘s photography online (I was pretty obsessed, actually), and I'm so glad we decided to go with him, even though it was over our original photo budget. Pictures are one of the few things that last more than one day, so they shouldn't be something you skimp on.

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Comments on Astrid & Kyle’s Seattle Boat Wedding

  1. OMG it's ME! And just in time for our first anniversary on Friday. (!!!)

    I completely forgot what I had written for this so it was exciting to read it this morning.

    Ms. Avery, I got my hair inspiration from Ariel's short wedding hairstyles post.

  2. What a gorgeous wedding! Your dress and the bridesmaid dresses and your hair… soooo pretty!

  3. OMG, that dress is to die for, and the hair adds to the look. Can I ask who makes it? What a beautiful couple.

  4. Astrid, who was your photographer? You mention him as "Alex" but I couldn't find a link or anything — We're getting married next year on Camano, and I'm already shopping Seattle-area photogs 🙂

  5. Oh, Astrid – I feel as if I'm reading about my own wedding review before it even happened! It's lovely to hear that someone else had a not-super-offbeat-but-genuine wedding that was an event to remember – I'll think of it when I start stressing about my own planning.

    And thanks for the tip about getting a good photographer – I think you've finally sold me!

    (PS – that dress is KILLER)

  6. Nadia, the dress is a Maggie Sottero Destinations dress, but you won't even recognize it on her website; it looks just AWFUL on the model.

    amasea, My photographer was Alex Rubin, and you can get to his website from any of my pro pictures on my Flickr. I highly recommend him.

    • Thanks Astrid and honestly you're right about teh model that dress looks so much better on you. You looked gorgeous congrats.

  7. Ahhhh! This is such a blast from the past! This is one of the very first weddings I totally swooned over when I first joined OBT last summer. (Astrid's hair has been hanging out in my inspiration folder ever since.) I still love every detail just as much as I did back then. :o)

  8. It was great working with both you and Kyle. You are my favorite type of client, fun, quirky and INTO photography. I hope you have a very happy anniversary.

    Best regards,

    Alex Rubin

  9. Where did you get your rings!? i like them alot!
    and the boat wedding is amazing! 🙂

    • Our rings are from the Ostling Brooks Möbius collection. We actually had some problems with them telling us a price that was almost double our original quote, but in the end they worked with us and produced us some very beautiful jewelry. We even wrote it into our ceremony!

  10. A boat wedding…how cool is that? Never heard of something this, but it's a great idea. I'm going to suggest it to grooms looking for something different.

    • The boat was the best idea ever. It was gorgeous so we didn't have to decorate, it kept the whole thing short (three and a half hours), but no one could arrive late or leave early, we got to get married by a captain, and it acted as entertainment for our guests, so they didn't have to do dumb stuff like watch us dance and eat cake.
      And hi, how often do you go on a cruise at a wedding?

      • Astrid,

        We have the same dress! It's Maggie Sottero JD8106 for anyone else who is interested. I'll be wearing the dress in my wedding this November. It was such a pleasure to see real pictures of the dress. I saw you on the Maggie website and was dying for larger and more detailed pictures on a real person. You're right – this dress looks so much better in person. You looked absolutely beautiful!

        • Hey! I’m interested in buying this dress . . .any of you gals have one you want to sell? (the jd8106)
          Thanks, Margot
          (margotveranes at yahoo.com)

      • Totally awesome.

        In terms of cost, what was that like, in comparison to a hall or Inn – if you don't mind me asking?

        • I can't remember exactly, but I think we paid a little over $2000 to rent the boat/take the cruise, and another $200 for the captain to marry us. We were able to bring in our own caterer. We did get a very good deal on the rental, though, because the wedding was on a Thursday night, and also because my grandfather is on the boat's board of directors, so it would be a little more for someone else.

        • We looked into having our wedding on the Virginia V, but the cost for rental is $4500, plus extra for the captains ceremony. Astrid got an exceptional deal on this venue.

  11. It's refreshing to see such a change of scenery for a wedding; not many people are brave enough to get married on a yacht. How lovely!

  12. Amasea-I was wondering the same thing-when I clicked on one of the pics that came up in Flickr and this is the description Astrid had By Alex Rubin of Rubin Photography
    <a href="http://www.rubinphotography.com.” target=”_blank”>www.rubinphotography.com. I'm headed that way to check them out.

  13. I love your dress! And on behalf of bridesmaids everywhere can I thank you for choosing something that is flattering and attractive on everyone 🙂


  14. This is beautiful! Thanks for sharing 🙂 May I ask what boat service you guys used? I love the size and I’ve been looking into maybe having a boat wedding but not sure where to look. Being married by the captain is super cool too 🙂

  15. I am looking for this same dress in a size, 2,4 or 6 for my August 2010 wedding in Oregon. Is anybody out there selling it?

  16. Your wedding was beautiful!! I am also going to have a wedding on a boat. Tell me, after the ceremony… what did you do? Isn’t it weird to have the ceremony, walk away, and then walk back right away?!?! hehe I’m just not sure about how to do all that. Could you tell me exactly how it played out for you? Thanks!!!

    • Just saw this comment! We went back up to the top and signed all the paperwork and hugged all the appropriate people and got my bustle done up and then headed to our sweetheart table for dinner while all our guests hit the buffet!

  17. Ohh wow, what a fantastic boat wedding, and your look like princes.

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