Both lovers off Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, Hannah and Derek wanted their Portland wedding to transport their guests to Middle Earth. The theme was a botanical woodland and the day was unique, intimate, and moody, while reflecting their Oregon roots.
“We wanted a wedding fit for hobbits and elves”, began the bride. “We wanted it to reflect our love for fantasy, but also be elegant and not blatantly obvious. In the end, I think it was exactly how we imagined it would be.”
They met on OKCupid and with both of them being card carrying introverts, it was important to them that they both felt their most comfortable on the day. They opted for Hannah’s parent’s back garden as the venue. “We wanted to keep the ceremony short and sweet”, Hannah continued. “I came from the deck and walked through the garden to Derek. I walked down the aisle on my own to Iron & Wine’s cover of Time After Time. We had done a first look and photos before, so he wasn’t totally surprised seeing me, though he is a softy and cried. Our officiant went through his speech, which included a quote from Bilbo Baggins. We saved our vows for the honeymoon, as we both have a hard time talking in front of crowds. After kissing and being announced we exited to the song All I Want is You by Barry Louis Polisar.”
Rebecca and Will wanted to suffuse their whole wedding day with rich colours to create a feast for the senses! The three main colours they chose were rich orange, ultramarine blue and a bright claret. They decided on a church wedding ceremony and their reception has held at Will’s childhood home.
“We know everyone says this, but we wanted our wedding style to reflect us,” began Rebecca. “I think we both knew it was always going to be quite theatrical and sumptuous as we both perform in concert and opera. Food, colour and music were our theme! So long as all three elements were vibrant and the best quality we could manage, we knew we’d be happy.”
As Rebecca wore a blue wedding dress, her ‘something blue’ was herself! “I was never a fan of white and as a singer, I wanted any wedding dress to be able to be used for recitals after the wedding. We found the silk, which is shot with two shades of blue, in India. I then found a local tailor to make it up in a 1950s pattern that I’d found on eBay. My dress actually ripped 10 minutes before I was due at church! Luckily we had a needle and thread and the tear was minor, but at the time it felt like the world was going to implode. I also felt so awful leaving Will hanging at the altar…Even though it was only for 15 minutes!”
Danielle and R.J. wanted an outdoor wedding which was casual and fun for everyone involved. The day ended with the whole wedding party and most of their friends jumping into the creek! It was unplanned and a great ending to the perfect day.
“Having an outdoor wedding was important to us from the beginning as we are both much more comfortable being outside,” explained Danielle. “We took some inspiration from the black hole of Pinterest but honestly it’s nearly impossible to replicate something you see online and in the end why would you want to? Since the ceremony and reception were both outside, we wanted the lighting to be the main decoration. That is where the luminaries, lanterns and disco ball came in. Any excuse for a disco ball, really!”
Their ceremony was emotional and, of course, included their puppy. “My dad walked me down the aisle to George Harrison singing If Not For You. George is our favourite Beatle. R.J.’s best man was holding our pup, Tyson, through the whole ceremony. Our officiant, Steve, has known us both for years and after greeting everyone he talked a little bit about us and the natural progression of our love… There was much crying. Then he read two passages that R.J. and I picked out. The first being from The Velveteen Rabbit and the second a paragraph from The Amber Spyglass. R.J. and I have a hard time being the centre of attention, even on our wedding day, so we decided to save our vows for our honeymoon. Steve later sent me a transcript of the ceremony and at the end he had written, ‘By the power of Grayskull, I now pronounce you married.’ It was his own personal challenge not to say that out loud!”