This fashion designer bride and her artist groom were married at The Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls, NY. They wanted a budget-friendly, DIY wedding and so did as much as they could themselves. Their good friend, Greg Barris, a stand up comedian who was already ordained, preferred their ceremony. The bride designed and made her own dress, but the DIY didn’t stop there!
“We decided to take our time planning the wedding”, explained Jeanette. “I am a fashion stylist, and Dima is an artist so we knew our wedding would be very creative. We also knew that we didn’t really have any money for a wedding, so we knew we would be making most of the stuff ourselves. We also knew we didn’t want anything too traditional. We couldn’t afford any of the venues we looked at in NYC and Brooklyn, and my family really wanted the wedding in Buffalo, so we compromised, and decided to have it in Niagara Falls, NY. We figured it was close enough for my family, and still a fun destination for our New York friends.”
“We found The Rapids Theatre online, and before we even looked at it in person, we knew it was the one”, she continued. “It is a huge Rock n Roll venue, but has the look of an elegant theatre. It used to be a movie theatre in the 1920s, and the owners have restored all of the original architecture. It was the perfect venue for us, because we knew we wanted to have a rock show, and the owners said it was okay to have our dog, Glitter, be the ring bearer! The staff was amazing, they loved all of our ideas, and everything ran really smoothly on our special day.”
“The inspiration for our wedding themes was a hodge podge of my love of Japanese kawaii, Disney princesses, unicorns, and polka dots mixed with the styling of my husband’s art and our mutual love of superheroes! I know it sounds like a lot of themes being thrown together, but somehow it all worked! I think our wedding was very unique because it was a night full of art, love, and magic. Everywhere you looked was a visual representation of our creative collaborative endeavours, and we performed a rock show at our own wedding! Nothing at our wedding was cookie cutter, we diy-ed and customized every little detail to represent us. We made all of our own décor, including the heart with wings alter, three tiered tea cup centrepieces, handmade napkins, rainbow ribbon wands, photo booth signage, glittery animal name cards, guestbook, and much much more.”
“Some of our DIY included 100 rainbow ribbon wands, all the stationery, 3-tiered centrepieces made from vintage tea cups and saucers, spray painted and glittered animal name cards, hand painted dollar store frames and the ‘alter’ which Dima cut out and hand painted himself. My Mom and my Aunt Pat hand made 100 bow shaped napkins, I made the groomsmen ties and bridesman bowtie and Dima hand painted a pair of converse sneakers to wear. I also made my dress, all the bouquets and boutonnières and my veil/ bow headpiece!”
“In terms of my dress, I found this vintage prom dress from the 1970s and completely took it apart and added to things to it. I knew it would be the perfect skeleton for the dress I wanted to create, because it was white with little flocked pink polka dots. I wanted something very Disney princess but also modern and Rock n Roll! My biggest dress inspiration was a cross between Gwen Stefani’s dress, and Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face. So I added flocked polka dot tulle puffy sleeves, created a heart shaped cut out corset back, and dip dyed some tulle hot pink to add to the bottom. It took about a year to create. My dress was completely original, and I saved a ton of money!!!”
“Our favorite part of the wedding was the ceremony”, she continued, “but we also really loved performing for our friends and family! And everyone LOVED it! I was worried about some of the older relatives, thinking it might be too loud, but the ones that I was worried about, ended up being the ones that loved it the most! They said that they felt rejuvenated. Some said our love was contagious and they couldn’t stop smiling.”
“The only thing I would do differently would be to not worry about it all as much as I did”, Jeanette concluded. “I had many a sleepless night over my dress, song choices, any silly little detail that in the end didn’t really matter. You are so elated in those moments that you are not even thinking about any of the little details.”