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A crunchy wedding

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
DH and I have never been married in the Church.

Being religious now, we feel the need to have our vows "validated" (Church term, not mine).

We are planning to have a ceremony at the Church this year on our 7th anniversary - in December.

Originally, we planned a big old to-do with the standard American stuff (white dress, flowers, photographer, reception with a first dance, etc.)

Now, we are realizing that money would be better put toward a downpayment for a home - and that it is not what is important about having the ceremony. Family has suggested a restaurant dinner after the ceremony - so that we can celebrate without the expense (they all want to pay for themselves). So, I'm not sure what's going to happen with the whole reception thing.

That aside - I want it to be more WHO we are and what we embrace in our lives. We are vegetarians, Christians, cloth-diapering, co-sleeping, breastfeeding, recycling, wannabe minimalists.

How can we incorporate this into a wedding ceremony?
So far, I know I want to use recycled paper products for the invitations and the wildflower seed embedded paper, especially.

What can I make, if possible - what should I wear, what should we do?

Thanks for ANY and all advice!!!
post #2 of 34
for me, crunchy = outside. you can always have your preacher, priest, whoever preside over an outdoor wedding. i've been to some fabulous outdoor weddings: on one they set up on some friend's land, lit bunches of candles in sand, and had an amazing potluck dinner and drum circle afterwards. some people camped out that night on the land. in another, it was in a friend's backyard under a canopy. all the families from her church brought over food for the reception (these friends are also xan and they incorporated washing each other's feet into the ceremony.)
it's entirely possible to keep it low key, have people from the church help out, and have a great ceremony. what my friends wore: one found a really cool pink flowy dress at a thrift shop. the other, a seamstress, made a beautiful hippy dress for herself and her daughter. i found a nontraditional wedding dress (simple simple simple) at a thrift shop too.
just some ideas! good luck and congrats, whatever you do! , christi
post #3 of 34
Make your own dress if you can, or buy a second hand one. A friend of mine had an idea of doing a patchwork dress, all of the scraps being from other things- things her mother and sisters had made, baby clothes form her kids, etc, each piece was meaningful.
Instead of an expensive and stuffy sit down dinner- what about a potluck in the park, or a backyard?
For the place gifts, we bought seeds and small terra cotta pots, I started the seeds a few weeks before the wedding so that they were starting to sprout. I tied each pot with raffia and attatched a small hand made tag that said "As our love grows and blooms- so may this gift"
Instead of a DJ, have musician friends be the entertainment. If you don't have any, see if there is a local community or high school or college band that woudl be willing to perform for a small fee.
Use flowers from friends and families gardens, and write your own vows.
Good luck- and be sure to tell us all about it!
post #4 of 34
Nothing says crunchy like an outdoor wedding. Perhaps some vegitarian treats for everyone to try. We had dh brother playing classical guitar (he is a professional composer and guitarist - it was way cool) outside while people milled about. real flowers. Also I think the idea of going out to a nice resteraunt where everyone pays thier own (and chips in for the bride and groom.) is definitely the way to go.

Oh yeah - at BIL and SIL wedding the bouquet was made of herbs and they used it to make thier first meal as a married couple.

My dd wants us to "get maried again" so that she can come to the wedding. I think that would be fun.
post #5 of 34
Our wedding was a little "crunchy," even though there were a lot of traditional elements.

1. We held it outside - we couldn't have had a prettier location and outside felt right for us. Neither of us are attached to any church, even though we did have a minister perform the interfaith ceremony.

2. Music - We are huge bluegrass fans, and has a fiddle and a banjo be our ceremony instruments. They played a bluegrass and traditional music for the processional/recessional.

3. Ceremony - We had a Nerudareadings and a friend composed a song for us. This made it so special. We also combined Jewish and Christian elements and the two of us with the minister pretty much "wrote" the ceremony.

I like all the other ideas. I would just personalize the wedding as much as possible. It will be even more special that way!
post #6 of 34
I had an outdoor crunchy wedding.

We were married at the Fairgrounds near where I grew up. (It's a beautiful spot on a lake with these huge pine trees.) I wore a simple white bridal gown which was my favorite of ALL the dresses I tried on but only cost me about $150. I made a beaded crown thing for my hair and went barefoot. DH bought a plain black suit. My bridesmaids each wore a black dress of their choosing and bright colored thong sandals (my wedding "colors" were shades of the sunset: red, orange, pink, yellow...). The groomsmen wore a black suit of their choosing and skate shoes. Our invitations said "BYOLC: Bring your own lawn chair" so everyone brought their own chair and we had just sort of outlined where they should sit. We hired students of my violin teacher for about $200, a violinist, a violist and a cellist, all in high school, but they did a great job. A lady I know who makes cakes out of her home made our cake and we served that with lemonade and fresh fruit. My dad is a musician so I have a large "family" of musicians and I invited them all to bring their instruments so after the ceremony they had a little jam session. I had a lady from town who does photography as a hobby take 6 rolls of film and then she gave them to me to have developed and reproduced as I chose. For favors I made origami lilies (my favorite flower) in the sunset shades and had them "planted in huge terra cotta pots for guests to pick. Our wedding was very inexpensive, but very *us* and we had a great time!!! A lot of people who were there have told my parents and ILs since that it was the coolest wedding they'd been to because it was so relaxed and fun.

ETA: jerawo: Our musician friends and family play bluegrass so that's what the jam session was. I love bluegrass!
post #7 of 34
Our wedding was pretty cruchy!

It was held outdoors, at a good friends' (the pastor's) home. They have a lot of land, and the ceremony was held right up at the lake, and there were beautiful trees and flowers. The best thing about having our wedding outdoors was the birds, butterflys, dragonflys, and other wild life.

I wore a really "me" rennissance (sp?) dress. It was white, which I wasn't crazy about, but I was 8 months pregnant so I think that made the statement we were looking for. I got a really great deal on the dress, too.
I wore my hair up, in a french braid that wraped around my head (ok, that sounds weird,) and baby's breath in my hair. My jewlry was great, too, but it would take all night talking about that!

Dh wore black pants and a renn'ish white shirt, and a full length black velvet cape! He looked so amazing!

Our maid of honor and I went to my favorite "hippy" shoppe and picked out the most beautiful deep purple (her favorite colour) embordered (sp) dress. I think it only cost about $40

The best man just wore black pants, white shirt, black tie.

We didn't want to have chairs, so, we didn't! I figured, that if I could stand there, 8 months pregnant, so could they!

My SIL (brother's wife) did the flowers for me, she's such a sweetie!

My brother (my family are all excellent musicians) played guitar for the ceremony, my other brother played a special song for us. (Good riddince, by greenday) It was so moving!

We just had a simple cake and punch reception there. The cake was made by a good friend of the family, and the punch my little sisters and mother made.

Dh's brother played a little guitar during the reception. His father, sat in hiw car and listened to the baseball game But that issue needs a thread of it's own!

I loved our wedding, but if I were doing it again I would elope. The stress was unbarable!
post #8 of 34
Thread Starter 
Originally posted by Mariposa
for me, crunchy = outside. you can always have your preacher, priest, whoever preside over an outdoor wedding.
I agree - crunchy=outside...but, sadly, the Catholic religion requires that all marriages take place inside the Church. : As if God's natural wonders aren't majestic enough???

Edited to add:
I think it is going to me a small evening ceremony and we'd like to incorporate the kids in the ceremony. If all goes as planned, I'll be around 5-6 months pregnant, too.

But, I'd like your help. Mothering is SO who I am today - I want to incorporate some of MDC into the ceremony. I was thinking that some of you crafty mamas could come up with something.

If you have an idea that's cost prohibitive for you, but you'd like to contribute () I could probably pay for the supplies.

Paper making? Candle making? Bead making? Dried flower garland headbands for the girls? Gosh - I don't know??? It would mean SOOO much to me to have you here in spirit!!!!

Thank you!
post #9 of 34
Go find ^Weddings from the Heart^ by Daphne Rose Kingma. I used this as a key resource in writing DH's and my definitely-crunchy wedding. It's great for people planning weddings in non-traditional situations.

In addition to some of what's already been mentioned (outdoor wedding, inexpensive/casual clothing, elaborately braided hair rather than veil/headdress, hiring local musicians) ... a dear friend of mine donated his time to arrange all our flowers, which we bought in bulk from a local farmer who regularly sells at our farmer's market! Our centerpieces were arranged in clay pots (which I was originally supposed to get back for future planting, but which we ended up giving as gifts to some key guests) ... our only attendants were DH's youngest nieces (we had no children between us), and I asked their crafty mom to dress them in anything blue and yellow (she made them adorable matching dresses) ...

gotta go for now, but if i think of more, i'll post it later.

post #10 of 34
I had a second, very small, wedding for religious reasons. We had very little money, and a bridal gown was totally out of the question. Instead I splurged on a beautiful, simple, silk, Eileen Fisher outfit in a green so pale it was almost white, that I loved and would wear again (and I did, many times, until it had stains not even a dry cleaner could get out). I had always drooled over her clothes but could never afford buy her clothes normally, so this was a treat for me.

We're thinking of somehow renewing our vows once again because we are actually no longer religious, and the whole reason we got married in the first place was for religious reasons. I feel a need to reaffirm that we love each other, even without the religion. I would do the same thing for a dress this time -- buy something I couldn't normally afford but that I could wear over again.
post #11 of 34
Thread Starter 
What beautiful, clean lines!!!
Her work is SPECTACULAR!!! I it!!!
Thank you all for the tips!
post #12 of 34
My daughter was married last summer. It was fairly crunchey and very inexpensive (about $4000 when all was said and done)

She had an outside ceremony and her bridesmaids wore off the rack regular dresses.

We ordered party platters, hired two women to help us serve and clean up, had her friend bartend and DJ.

We were told the food was the best wedding food ever and the ceremony was a little mixture of fun and elegent.

Here are some pics http://www.shutterfly.com/osi.jsp?i=...21b30680c6e4cd

post #13 of 34
those are beautiful pictures!

momschooling, I would love to make a wedding album for you. I cover photo albums in fabric, I promise to make it beautiful for you.

I would love to renew our vows, this year (in June) will be our 5th anniversary, hard to believe it's been that long. Our wedding was small and cheap, we had no money

for our reception we had a backyard BBQ, which is totally our style. If I had to do it over again I would do it in a park, wear a beautiful flowing dress and be barefoot. I would have wild flowers for my bouquet, and release butterflies instead of have bird seed thrown for us.

Ah, to dream
post #14 of 34
I have been thinking about you a lot the last few days. I woudl love to conntribute something to your wedding, and I am fairly crafty, but I just can't think of anything yet.
post #15 of 34
Thread Starter 

I am just absolutely beaming!!!

You all are such s for offering so many wonderful ideas and kind words.

And, for all of you who would like to make something, I cannot tell you how much that truly touches me!!!

Maybe I'm just feeling hormonal but, - this means SO much!!!!!
post #16 of 34
For our wedding, we did it on the cheap but quite frankly, even if we had lots of money I would have done it the same way.
The night before the wedding, my sisters and I got together at Mom's house and we made most of the food. It was a great time for us to visit and goof around while making all of the family favorites. Grandma baked Italian cookies. We stripped Mom's garden and lilac trees, and even stopped along the way to cut branches from interesting flowering trees along the road for the decorations. There were flowers everywhere, very informal, though I must confess that I am a floral designer so I had an edge. We had the ceremony and reception at a state park and Dad rented the pavilion for us (all stone and half timber, beautiful). Even if you have to have the ceremony inside, maby the reception could be outdoors at a park.
We collected old vases from our relatives and the thrift store and just stuffed them with a wild mix of flowers and set them all over the picnic tables.
Didn't do party favors or any of that, I thought that the people were coming to see the wedding and have a good time at the reception and the nicest momento we could give them was a really good time.
I guess we didn't really focus on any wedding "things", we wanted the attention to be focused on family and friends, good food and wine (being near a ton of wineries made that tasty and cheap).
post #17 of 34
Our wedding was very simply and inexpensive. We wanted the aspect to be on the sacramental aspect of the marriage, - not all the "frill" and such.

I wore the same wedding dress which was worn by my mother and my grandmother.

We were married in the Catholic church on 12/30/2000. We didn't pay a cent for church decorations since the church was already decorated beautifully for Christmas.

My bridesmaid (sister) just wore a nice dress, as did my flower girls. The flower girl's mother (my aunt) maid those dresses.

Our best man just wore a nice suit.

DH just wore a nice suit

The ushers just wore nice suites.

Afterwards, we had a reception in the Knights of Columbus Hall which we rented for $100. The reception was a potluck dinner. Everyone brought a dish.

We didn't have a band, but we did play some music from CD's.

We spend a little bit on decorating the Knights of Columbus Hall (I don't know how much).

It was WONDERFUL. We didn't agonize over who to invite, who we could afford to invite, etc. We just invited everyone. It was a wonderful celebration with our family and friends.

We didn't have any of the frills. No limo, no professional photographer (FIL took pictures, he was a decent photographer)

The scenery was beautiful. It just happened to snow about 2 inches on that day.

Everyone said it was a wonderful wedding becuase it was holy and focused on the sacrament and the marriage, not just one big production for one big day.
post #18 of 34

Me, too!

We had a totally crunchy wedding. We didn't have to, but it was very "us". We had pizza and rootbeer floats, and a giant chocolate cake! Dh rented a costume, his brother married us (wearing his glitter-gold disco boots!) and I splurged on a handmade Italian Renaissance wedding dress ($350). So the whole thing was probably under $400. There were about 35 people and they all stood in a circle around us as we married. We wouldn't have had it any other way!!!

A couple of snapshots
post #19 of 34
Thread Starter 
Gorgeous Uber!!!!!

Who made your beautiful head garland????
post #20 of 34
We had a very inexpensive church wedding. I looked all over and bought an off white dress off the rack somewhere for about $80.00, and it was beautiful and flowy. Dh wore a black suit. His best man wore black slacks and white shirt and black tie and my maid of honor picked a dress of her choosing. I had a dear friend that does photography as a hobbie take the photos and we developed them. My best friend sung and another friend payed the piano. We invited close family and friends. We had simple flowers done by a friend of ours who just made very unique wild flower bouquets. And our reception was a buffet. We bought the ingrediants then paided my sis in laws mom a little extra to prepare it etc, since she loves to cook. The only thing I would have done different is maybe have someone play music at reception. We were quite happy with it.
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