We're all for traditional weddings, but love unexpected elements too -- those cool, unique surprises that make the wedding reflect the couple's style and personality. In this week's "Pop the Question," we asked some of our favorite wedding pros about the coolest, most untraditional things they've seen at a wedding. Here's to inspiration! Michele Hatty Fritz, Meant to Be Calligraphy: "Dear friends of mine started their wedding with a three-act play about how they met/dated/got engaged. Best wedding ever."
Amie Otto, Amie Otto Photography: "The bride and groom's friends were in a band and they played 'The Time Warp' from The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The entire bridal party and many of the guests danced and acted out the whole thing. The first and only time I have seen that and it was very, very fun!"
Allison Barnhill, Allison Barnhill Designs: "I can't pick just one. I love when brides and grooms think 'outside of the box' and do something meaningful to them, even if it isn't standard wedding practice! (1) The bride and groom were married on St. Patrick's Day and the bride wore a green dress! They also incorporated four-leaf clovers into all of the wedding stationery. (2) One couple decided to buck the traditional wedding cake and had an ice cream sundae bar instead! Who doesn't love ice cream?!?! (3) Although I think including your pets in the ceremony is becoming more mainstream, I have had one client have a 'Best Dog' on their ceremony program. Man's best friend should be included in your big day!"
Katya Shterenberg, StoryMotion Studios: "At a recent wedding a couple requested that guests reply “creatively” to their wedding invitation. There were so many great drawings, graphics, etc. that really showed off people’s personalities and their relationship with the couple. The couple framed each reply and had it displayed during cocktail hour. They actually assigned a number to each reply and people had a chance to vote for their favorite one. The winner got a prize!"
Rev. Carleen Burns, With This Ring Wedding Ceremonies: "On July 4th, in the backyard of the bride's family home, Kelli & Neil said their vows next to a lovely waterfall and Koi pond. The couple had a Fish Releasing unity as part of their ceremony, too. I love including unique pieces like this one that I wrote especially for them! June 30th was a wonderful, wedding filled afternoon of firsts! I first went to the lovely Spring Grove Park for the nuptials of Gina & Corey. They were the first couple I presided over to include the Foot Washing Unity. What a lovely gesture and so significant. I am sure their guests would have wanted to have their feet in that cool water, too! Next, I went to the Yacht Basin Conference Center to officiate the ceremony of Liz & Kelly. What a great story these two had, and I loved that as they got about halfway down the aisle after the ceremony, he swept her up in his arms and carried her out! Several years ago, I had a very casual ceremony at an inland lake. The bride's family had vacationed there every year since children. She used to go out to the sandbar as a child and play, and sometimes that play involved 'getting married.' We went out that day by pontoon boat, dropped anchor at the sandbar where the couple, their two witnesses and I jumped out into knee deep water, and I married them on the sandbar!"
Ashley Riddle, Up Do's for I Do's: "This was a bride of ours just a few weeks ago. As I was doing the hair for the bridal party, the girls kept talking about a dance they were going to do. My inner cheerleader was dying to see it since I wasn't going to be at the reception, so I put down the bobby pins and hairspray, we pushed furniture aside and the girls did a round of practice. They were adorable and I was so excited at this unique and creative idea. It was certainly a first for any of my clients. Anyways, within days, their videos were posted to YouTube and I was so excited to see it turned out exactly as planned and that a single hair didn't fall out of place while the girls broke it down! Super exciting!"
...And, here's a quick explanation from Ashley's bride, Megan: "Greg and I always knew we wanted our reception to be a fun dance party for our guests so I wanted to make sure that happened. My dad and I had also talked about doing something silly for the father-daughter dance, but I didn’t want to take away from that special moment. That was how the idea of kicking off the dance party with a flash-mob dance featuring my father began…
I’ve attached the email I sent out to my friends inviting them to take part in the surprise dance which I later added everyone’s names into so they knew their entrance times. The email I sent out included links to several different views of the choreography so everyone could see it from the front and the back. I coach the All Pro all star cheerleading and dance program so we taught some of our athletes the dance and used them as an example on the video. They had a lot of fun being 'in' on the secret.
We ended up with 30 lovely ladies participating along with one brave man – my dad! The 30 dancers were broken up into six different entrances. The only people who knew about the dance were those who were actually dancing, so this meant it was a surprise to everyone…even my new hubby! The gals participating included friends and family from 'both sides of the aisle.'"
Megan was kind enough to share a video -- be sure to check out her dad's entrance around the 2:20 mark!