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5 Personalized Groomsmen Gifts

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When you choose your groomsmen, you’re picking the guys who have been with you through thick and thin. They’re your bros, your best buds, your friends and family. When you ask them to stand up there with you on the day, you’re bestowing on them both an honor and a responsibility. Show them how much you appreciate their support with a thoughtful groomsmen gift. Here are a few cool gifts you can personalize to make them extra-special.

Engraved Craft Beer Growler

The great part of the craft beer boom is that there are tons of great microbreweries in any major metropolitan area. And plenty of them sell beer in not just cans and bottles, but 64-oz growlers as well. You can buy each of your groomsmen a growler at your local microbrewery, and then customize the bottle with a home etching kit. Add a monogram, your wedding dates, whatever you’d like. Most microbreweries will give discounts for bringing back a growler to be refilled, so it’s the gift that keeps on giving.

Cooler Backpack Chair

A customized portable camp chair makes a cool groomsmen gift. A backpack would make a great gift as well, and so would a beer cooler. So triple your coolness with this combo–it’s a backpack that includes a cooler that holds a case of beer, and unfolds into a camp chair. It’s perfect for tailgating and/or camping, and is guaranteed to be a gift that gets used.

Engraved Copper Mug

The Moscow Mule is the trendy drink of the moment, and it’s not hard to see why; it’s got the mint twist of a mojito with a bite of ginger and the refreshing coolness of crushed ice. When it’s served in a copper mug, it’s pure summer magic. If you’re planning on making the Moscow Mule your wedding cocktail, let your groomsmen drink them in style from monogrammed copper mugs.

Personalized Barbeque Tools

Sure, your groomsmen probably already have a set of barbeque tools; but a really nice monogrammed kit like will beat whatever they picked up at Home Depot or Wal-Mart. It’s the kind of thoughtful gift that gets used–even the groomsmen who don’t drink or don’t smoke cigars can enjoy an afternoon spent grilling up a feast. They’ll think of you every lazy summer day they use your gift.

Personalized Duffel Bag

If your groomsmen regularly hit the gym, they probably have the same smelly nylon bag they’ve been using for years. Help them upgrade with a personalized duffel that will stand up to a lifetime of trips to the gym and weekend vacation getaways. It’s practical and stylish, guaranteed to get a thumbs-up from your wedding party.

Your groomsmen are putting in the time and effort to make your wedding day the best it can be. Show them how much you appreciate them with a thoughtful groomsmen gift that will serve them for years to come. So think beyond the basic flasks and cigars and hit them with one of the above suggestions. They’ll thank you for it.

Omelet Station

The Perfect Wedding Reception Brunch

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While there’s a lot to be said for an afternoon wedding, a cocktail hour, and a dinner reception where you can dance the night away, there’s something about a brunch wedding that’s very appealing. For one, your guests don’t have to commit their entire social schedule to your wedding–they can still keep their options open for the evening. It’s also great for the bride and groom to do the wedding and reception with enough time and energy left to get a start on the honeymoon.

Oh, and there’s one more reason why the brunch reception is great–the best food in the world is served at brunch. Here’s a brief overview of all the awesome edibles you can offer your guests at a brunch reception:

Mimosas

Let’s face it: nobody really likes champagne. We all drink it because it’s what you’re supposed to drink when you’re celebrating, but when was the last time you thought, “man I could really go for some champagne right now?” It’s never happened. But a mimosa, on the other hand, takes the champagne and adds the tang of fruit juice, a little energy-boosting vitamin C, and cuts the cloying nature of champagne while leaving the fizz. Mimosas are just an objectively superior way to drink champagne.

Bloody Mary’s with Tons of Fixings

As with breakfast food in general, there are two schools of thought for the perfect breakfast cocktail: sweet and savory. Those on the sweet side of things have mimosas, but the savory folks get god’s own cocktail, the Bloody Mary. Since making a Mary is an intensely personal experience, we recommend having a Bloody Mary bar instead of just serving generic versions. Lay out some olives, cheese cubes, pepperoni, bacon strips, celery, cocktail onions, different mixes, tomato juice, Worcestershire, soy, and an array of hot sauces and watch your guests go to town.

Omelet Station

You know what’s better than a couple of fresh eggs in the morning? A bunch of things mixed in with those fresh eggs and served up piping-hot and folded over. Let guests pick a few meats, veggies, and cheeses to go in their omelet and have each one cooked fresh on the spot. That way, if they don’t’ like what they’ve been served, your guests have no one to blame but themselves.

Biscuits and gravy

There are people who won’t eat biscuits and gravy because they feel like it’s just eating soggy bread. Those people are wrong. It’s eating bread that’s been topped with the delicious mixture of salt and fat that is sausage gravy, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with loving that. Besides, when it is done right, the biscuits are cooked enough that the gravy doesn’t really soak the biscuit (or to go the extra mile, each biscuit half has a sausage patty on top for protection before the gravy’s applied. Any way you serve it, though, biscuits and gravy are the South’s best-kept secret. Discover the deliciousness for yourself.

Waffle bar

You can do pancakes if you’re not into the whole 3-dimensional thing, but waffles work better for a bar-type setting because they have the nooks and crannies to hold whatever craziness your guests pile on top. We recommend setting out plenty of fresh fruits and berries, a hazelnut spread, peanut butter, whipped cream, maple syrup, flavored syrup, and maybe even ice cream (for starters). Let your guests make a ridiculous concoction they normally wouldn’t even eat for dessert, and they’ll be singing your praises for days.

Planning the perfect reception brunch is easy, because breakfast food is the best food. And hey, who says you can’t have a breakfast-for-dinner theme for an evening reception? Just try and tell me your guests wouldn’t be thrilled to roll up to dinner and find donuts and omelets awaiting them instead of steak and chicken. Just make sure you have some high quality natural soap for your guests after they eat; breakfast food tends to be a bit greasier than other types of food.

Rehearsal Dinner Ideas

5 Great Rehearsal Dinner Ideas

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The rehearsal dinner is more than a fun night out after the wedding rehearsal. It’s an opportunity for all of the disparate social circles involved in the wedding party to meet and get to know each other for the first time, as well as an opportunity for everyone involved in the wedding to relax and blow off some steam. Rehearsal dinners have traditionally been a simple sit-down dinner. But you don’t need to be beholden to tradition on this one–as long as there’s some food and a relaxing atmosphere, your rehearsal dinner can be whatever you make of it. Here are some ideas:

A Backyard Barbeque

If you (or your parents or in-laws) have a nice big backyard, you can’t beat a backyard barbeque for creating a good, relaxing getting-to-know-you atmosphere. Stock up on lawn chairs, paper plates, summer beer, and watermelon. You can do the traditional hot dogs and hamburgers, or go for broke with racks of ribs. Either way, you can end the evening with a bonfire for marshmallow roasting and fireside chatting.

Family-Style Restaurant

Who says the rehearsal dinner has to be at the fanciest restaurant in town? We’d rather chow down at a family-style place where you can all share dishes together. Italian and Chinese restaurants are good go-tos for family-style dining. Or, if you’re in a bigger metropolitan area, you might have a good Indian place as well. Either way, a family atmosphere is good for breaking the ice between folks who haven’t met, and breaking bread with old friends.

Activity-Based

Sometimes the rehearsal dinner isn’t about the meal itself–instead, you can focus on a fun group activity and make the food secondary. If you have enough attendees, you can do a pick-up softball game in a local park before having a picnic dinner. Or go for a night out bowling with a bar-food dinner. You could also get everyone in touch with their inner child with mini-golf or arcade night out. Activities are great for getting everyone talking and enjoying each other’s’ company.

Rehearsal Brunch

For that matter, who said the rehearsal dinner has to be a dinner? Schedule your wedding rehearsal earlier in the day and end it with a dynamite brunch. Think pancakes, waffles, Bloody Mary bar, mimosas, and the whole nine yards. Your wedding party will appreciate having their evening free, and everyone gets to bond over breakfast food (which is, as Ron Swanson observed, the best food).

Formal Dinner

The traditional formula is to have a casual rehearsal dinner and a more formal wedding dinner. But that assumes your wedding is formal–if you have a more casual wedding planned, you can have a little fun with a formal rehearsal dinner. Since there are fewer attendees than at your wedding, you can go a little more upscale on the choice of restaurant. Let your guests feel a little fancy and pampered–they’ve earned it!

Whether you go for a casual backyard barbeque or a formal sit-down dinner, your rehearsal dinner is a time for your wedding party to get to know each other and unwind before the big day. As long as there’s good food and good conversation, you can count it a success.

Name Change

Four Pieces of Wedding Advice to Ignore

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There’s something about a wedding that brings out people’s inner guidance counselor. The minute you announce you’re planning a wedding, you’re going to hear a lot more opinions than you’d rather have to consider. On this blog, we talk a lot about doing what you want for your wedding and not feeling beholden to tradition. The same goes for these bits of advice. If someone insists on any of these bits of “wisdom,” just smile graciously and nod, then ignore the advice completely.

“You have to take your husband’s name.”

You see, someone has to change their name when you get married, because married couples always have the same last name. So why would you keep the name of a man you didn’t choose instead of the one you chose yourself? If you don’t change your name, that means you’re not committed to the relationship. And think of the children!  But also,

“You have to keep your own name.”

Changing your name to your husband’s is a disgusting relic of the patriarchal past. It’s just erasing your identity and establishing yourself as your husband’s property. If he really loves you, he won’t want to subjugate you like that. You can’t be a feminist/modern woman/empowered individual if you take your husband’s name.

Let’s get one thing straight: regardless of the history of taking names or not taking names, this one comes down to a decision between you and your husband. It has nothing to do with feminism or property or who loves whom. We know several couples where the husband has taken the wife’s last name, and several who have created a new name for their new family. It’s your decision, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

“You can’t wear a white dress unless you ‘deserve’ to.”

You’re bound to hear this from some of your older relatives, and we suggest you laugh it off. It’s bad enough to suddenly have Grandma and Aunt Gertie develop an interest in your sex life, without having them suggest that your wedding dress is subject to arcane purity rules. They’re just colors; wear that blindingly white dress if you’d like, or make it yellow or red or violet or whatever makes you happy.

“The father of the bride should pay for everything.”

It used to be that the bride’s parents picked up the whole tab for the wedding. But now that people are getting married later in life, after they’ve had a chance to get out in the world and get established, that old chestnut makes less and less sense. If your parents are broke and you’re doing okay, definitely pick up the tab. Split it between you and your partner and ignore everyone else and you won’t have to feel beholden to take other people’s advice about what your wedding should be.

We get it; a lot of people have really strong feelings about how a wedding should go. But it’s your turn now, and you get to decide how you feel about these old chestnuts and how you’d like to proceed. Aunt Gertie and Grandma will get over it if you ignore their advice, and you’ll have the wedding you want to have.

Engraved Wood Wedding Invitation

Six Creative Wedding Invitations

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Wedding invitations can take a bite out of your budget, but they’re essential for letting guests know all the particulars of your big day. Even though they’re mostly utilitarian, with a little creativity and effort, they can be a work of art as well. A creative wedding invitation can show your couple’s personality, introduce your wedding theme, or just make an impression your guests won’t forget. Here are six invitations that really pop.

Storybook Invitation

If you’re planning on having a fairy-tale wedding, introduce the theme with a storybook invitation. Think about the style of beautiful old books: those oversized, illustrated first letters, bookplate fonts, page numbers. Don’t forget the “Once upon a time” tale of how you met. You can continue the theme into your wedding program, too–style it like a table of contents to the book of your relationship.

Wedding Wheel

If you’re looking for a non-traditional way to organize your wedding information, wedding wheels are a neat idea. Basically you print the details around a circular piece of paper, then overlay it with another piece that has a window cut into it. When the guests line up the arrow on the top piece to, say, the word “When,” the date and time of the wedding appear in the window. It’s a great way to present the information, and saves on paper, too–instead of a booklet full of inserts, all the details are on one page.

Handkerchief Invitation

Here’s a fun and functional idea–print the wedding map, time and date on a handkerchief you can fold and put in an envelope. Your guests will get all the information they need, and will be encouraged to bring it along to the ceremony for those sniffle-worthy wedding moments.

Cootie Catcher

Some kids called these folded-paper games “cootie catchers” and some called them “fortune tellers.” Either way, they make an adorable choice for a wedding invitation. There are templates online you can fill out, print, and fold to make an invitation your guests can play with all though the ceremony.

Engraved Wood

They don’t come cheap, but these engraved wood invitations are sure to make an impression on your guests. Make sure to keep one to frame and hang in the house; they’re definitely miniature works of art. Perfect for a rustic or country wedding.

Chocolate Bar

Here’s an option that looks great, is delicious, and is something you can do at home. Just start with any chocolate bar that’s wrapped in foil with a paper wrapping on top. Carefully peel off the paper, measure it, and make a template in a word processor to design a new wrapper. You can put pictures of the happy couple on the outside, then all the wedding details on the inside.

Wedding invitations are a necessary expense for wedding planning, but they don’t have to be boring just because they serve a purpose. Have some fun with the design and create something that really expresses who you and your partner are as a couple. If you get creative with the design and materials, you’ll make something your guests aren’t likely to lose and forget before the big day.

Game-of-Thrones-Wedding-Theme

Four Nerdy Wedding Themes

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Let’s face it: nerds are cool. Superhero movies dominate the multiplex, Star Wars and Star Trek both got a reboot, everyone plays video games, and Game of Thrones is one of the most popular television shows in history. It’s a good time to be a geek. So as you’re planning your wedding, don’t be afraid to let that freak flag fly. There are plenty of ways to integrate your nerdy obsessions (hopefully ones you and your partner share) into your wedding. Here are four fun and nerdy wedding themes to consider:

Video Game

You don’t have to put the bride in a pink dress and the groom in blue overalls to have a video game wedding theme. Just make the invitations look like the starting screen of a fighting game, with the message “Player 2 Has Joined The Game!” Carry the theme through in your decorations–perhaps enlist some of your younger relatives (or friends’ kids) to make sprites out of perler beads to use as part of the bouquet. Have consoles hooked up to projectors for some reception rounds of Super Smash Bros. Then end the party with a piñata shaped like one of Mario’s coin blocks.

Star Trek

What better wish could you have for a wedding couple but “live long and prosper?” Now, we’re not suggesting you get married in full Starfleet regalia, but you can definitely dress the bridesmaids in solid-color red and blue sheath dresses that are visually reminiscent of Starfleet uniforms. In the same way, outfit the groomsmen in solid primary-color shirts. Just keep a close eye on the one in the red shirt, to avoid tragedy striking. Make sure to incorporate a Vulcan salute in your vows, and have plenty of Romulan Ale (or UV Wave Runner, which is the right shade of blue) for your guests to quaff.

Star Wars

If you’re looking to go full nerd, there aren’t many things nerdier than a Star Wars-themed wedding. But if you love Star Wars, don’t let a little nerdiness dissuade you. And unlike Star Trek, there isn’t much dignity to preserve for Star Wars, so go ahead and break out the costumes. Have Darth Vader as your officiant. List your honeymoon location as “Coruscant.” Make an Ewok your ring bearer. There are no wrong answers in Star Wars–oh, wait. Except Jar-Jar. Please don’t incorporate Jar-Jar into your wedding in any capacity.

Game of Thrones

Sure, the actual Game of Thrones TV show hasn’t had that great of luck with weddings–it seems like every time the wedding bell rings, bad things happen. You don’t have to pile up a body count at your wedding, though. You can just take fashion and color cues from the show and leave the violence behind. And consult the official recipe book for some truly fabulous reception meal ideas.

Nerds are the new cool kids, so if you have nerdy inclinations, why not indulge them on your wedding day? You’ll have a memorable ceremony that’ll be fun for everyone, and you’ll end up with some really great pictures to show your grandkids.

wedding guestbook

Alternatives to the Guestbook

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The wedding guestbook is one of those old traditions that everyone agrees you have to have, but which doesn’t really serve a unique purpose. If you look at it from a neutral point of view, isn’t it odd that your wedding has the same guestbook you see at a funeral, a bed & breakfast, or an office building? If you’d like to do something a little more unique for your wedding, here are some guestbook alternatives that encourage your guests to be a little more creative, and that create something you’ll enjoy looking at for years to come.

Video Booth

Most wedding receptions these days have a photo booth. The first couple of times we encountered one it was innovative and fun; now it just seems weird if the reception doesn’t have one. But you can go to the next level, and replace that guestbook, if you set up a video-recording guestbook booth. Just set up your space, have someone man the camera, and give each guests thirty seconds to leave a message. You’ll get a mix of advice, jokes, and memories that will be worth watching on every anniversary.

Jenga

If your game night always includes a round or two of Jenga, have your guests help make a custom wedding set. Encourage your guests to write their names and a piece of advice for the wedding couple on one of the wooden blocks–provide fine-tipped ballpoint pens or permanent markers to make sure the words don’t rub off. Now whenever you play the game you can read your guests’ well-wishes and remember your special day.

Platter

Let’s face it; unless you have a table leg that needs leveling, a guestbook isn’t a particularly useful artifact. Instead of a book, buy a plain (unglazed) serving platter from a craft or home store and some permanent markers. We recommend oil-based paint Sharpies to make sure the colors survive the baking process. After your guests sign the platter, take it home and bake it for a half an hour at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Baking it sets the marker so it won’t wash off (you should still keep it out of the dishwasher, though). It’ll be the perfect dish to serve your anniversary dinners on.

Fingerprints

Don’t just get your guests’ signatures: book ‘em! Grab a stretched canvas and brightly-colored stamp pads at your local craft store. Then encourage your guests to leave a fingerprint with a signature underneath. By the end of the reception, you’ll have a colorful memento suitable for framing.

Advice Cards

It’s all well and good to ask your guests to provide some advice when they sign the guestbook, but without guidance, many folks end up at a loss for words. Help them by making cards with questions on them. The guests can pick which card to sign and which piece of advice to give. For example, the card could say, “best place to spend an anniversary,” or “best way to end an argument.” Your guests are far more likely to give good advice if you give them a topic to start with.

The traditional wedding guestbook is a good way to get a record of who was at your ceremony, but it doesn’t do much else. Try any of the above ideas to create a work of art or a memento that you’ll want to revisit again and again.

Grooms: 5 Don’ts for the Wedding Day

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GroomGentlemen, this is it! It’s the big day, the one you’ve been waiting for. All the planning (which you’ve hopefully been a helpful part of) has finally paid off, and you’re about to say “I do” to the one you love. Before you walk down that aisle, though, here are a few more words of advice to consider that will make your wedding day the best it can be. Specifically, avoid these common pitfalls for grooms:

Don’t Be Late for the Ceremony

Not to stereotype, but punctuality is frequently not a guy’s strong suit. Even if you’re usually an on-time guy, there are enough moving pieces in a wedding that you might roll up a few minutes late. But grooms trust me on this: the very last thing a bride (or a bridesmaid, or the bride’s mother) wants to worry about on the wedding day is whether the groom’s showing up or not. Even five minutes of wondering will seem like an eternity. So you should plan to be there at least a half-hour early and already dressed and ready to go for the wedding.

Don’t Get Hammered at the Reception

Did you know more than half of newly married couples don’t consummate the wedding on their wedding night? And that for most of the couples that didn’t make it happen, it’s because the groom was too drunk? Look, we know the reception’s a party, but it’s not a frat party. Get a good buzz going and nurse it throughout the evening, sure. But if you’re throwing up behind a dumpster in back of the venue, it’s going to diminish the chances of having a memorable wedding night. The goal is to make memories, not drown them.

Don’t Neglect the Bride at the Reception

We’ve been to too many weddings where we never saw the bride and groom in the same place after the cake-cutting. Sure, you want to spend time with your best buds, and you want to be a good host to all the guests. But make sure you take some time to check in with your new bride every now and again. She just got married; she’s got a glow going, and you don’t want to extinguish it by ignoring her. This one’s really important, grooms, so please follow this advice.

Don’t Forget to Hug Your Parents

This is a huge day for you, and nobody’s saying it’s not your day. But take a minute to think about it from your parents’ perspective. They took care of you for eighteen years while you grew up and figured yourself out, and the wedding day is kind of the end of a journey for them. It’s bittersweet watching your child getting ready to start a family of their own. Make sure they know how much you love them, especially on this day.

Don’t Neglect the Dance Floor

Even if dancing isn’t your thing, part of your duties as a groom is to make sure the party gets started. Enlist a few bold groomsmen to help pack that dance floor and show everyone how it’s done. If you can’t dance, don’t sweat it. You’re a married man now and no longer just a groom; you’ve got nothing to prove. Your bride already knows if you can’t dance and she married you anyway.

And above all else, don’t sweat the idea that everything is going to change now that you’re married. Weddings are great fun, but marriages are incredibly awesome, too. Here’s hoping yours lasts a lifetime.

5 Crazy Places to Tie the Knot

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Roller Coaster WeddingSure, a church wedding can be absolutely gorgeous. A beach wedding is fantastic. Even a trip to the justice of the peace has its appeal. But don’t you think all of those traditional options are just a little bit…dull? A little too safe? If the idea of having absolutely no risk of death or injury on your wedding day just doesn’t excite you, perhaps one of these extremely crazy ideas will fit the bill. After all, I’m sure you can hold a great reception in the Emergency Room.

Skydiving

If you and your significant other are really into adrenaline, Las Vegas Extreme Skydiving has the dream wedding for you. In fact, there are three ways to tie the knot: you can get married on the ground and go skydiving afterward; you can skydive first and get married at the drop zone; or for the most adventurous, say your vows as you get up to altitude in the plane, and take the leap into your new life together as the preacher pronounces you husband and wife. Though there is the risk that after you’ve gone through free-fall together, no other experience will quite measure up.

Underwater

If you want to make sure there won’t be a dry eye in the house–or a dry anything, really–break out the SCUBA gear and go for an underwater wedding. Plenty of resorts across the world offer the ability to do the whole ceremony underwater, complete with a soggy minister. You can get married near a reef, near a sunken ship, or in shark-infested waters for an extra kick. Granted, you’ll have to write your “I Do’s” on a slate–there’s no talking in the fathoms below–but it’s definitely a way to have a memorable ceremony.

On a Roller Coaster

For a safer adrenaline rush, trade in the music of a string quartet for the click-clack of cars on a track. Instead of a reading from Scripture or a bit of poetry, how about excited screams? A roller coaster wedding gives you the opportunity to have an outdoor wedding that’s truly unforgettable. They’ll even take your wedding photo at the bottom of one of the drops! It’ll really prepare you for the ups and downs of marriage.

Near an Active Volcano

If the thought of a beach wedding seems too tame for you, take a trip to Hawaii’s National Parks and get married next to a live volcano. A mere $150 will get you a permit to hold a wedding in the park. You’ll need to keep the wedding party small, and you’ll have to do a lot of clean-up afterward, but how many people can say they said their vows next to a genuine natural wonder?

In the Sky

If you’d like a sky wedding, but skydiving doesn’t really appeal to you, Marriage in the Sky can hook you up–literally. They’ll bring in a crane, attach a platform with plenty of safety features, and hoist it 150 feet into the air. They even have an aisle to walk down! You can have your reception 15 stories off the ground, too–they’ll add a second platform with dinner service or to hold a string quartet. The only thing they can’t do, apparently, is add a dance floor.

If you want to test that whole “‘’til death do we part” bit of your wedding vow as quickly as possible, there are plenty of high-adrenaline wedding options for you. Just make sure you get your SCUBA certification, skydiving license, or theme park admission before the day of the wedding. And if you’re asking your best man and maid of honor to go twenty feet underwater or 150 feet in the air, consider splurging on those wedding party gifts.

Truly Unusual Wedding Themes

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Test Tube Wedding FavorsThe wonderful thing about a modern wedding is it really can be anything you and your spouse want it to be–provided you can agree on what that is. Since you’re the grown-ups now, you get to decide what a wedding should look like. It can be as whimsical, nerdy, or quirky as you’d like. After all, you’re already going to be dressing up like you never would in your day-to-day life. Why not take it to the next level? Here are a few truly unusual wedding themes for the most adventurous couples.

Day of the Dead

A Halloween wedding theme might be too out there, except for the most dedicated Goth kids or heavy metal musician. But for a November wedding a Day of the Dead theme can make for a lovely wedding day. Centerpieces and bouquets can use marigolds, the traditional flower. Esqueletos, figurines of skeletons dressed in formal wear, would make fantastic cake toppers. Bright colors are a must, from the cake to the delicate cut-paper banners. Let guests decorate their own marzipan sugar skulls at the table while they wait for dinner. Day of the Dead is a celebration of life–and so is your wedding.

Harry Potter

Even though it makes us feel old to say this, folks who are getting married now most likely grew up with the Harry Potter books and films. You can bring that theme into your wedding just a little or go all the way–your save-the-dates can be themed as invitations to Hogwarts, the wedding program as the Marauder’s Map, the bride and groom in robes. Your wedding colors can be the colors of your favorite Hogwarts house, and the bridal party will have to get at least one picture where you’re all riding brooms. Bonus points if you can get a trained owl to drop off the rings.

1950’s

Poodle skirts, pompadours, and the threat of nuclear annihilation–what’s not to love about the 50’s? Put your bridesmaids in poodle skirts and the groomsmen in leather jackets. Have a soda jerk in a paper hat serve malts at the reception. Dance the night away at a sock hop reception to the sounds of early rock n’ roll and swing music. Just feel free to avoid the meat-based Jell-O dishes that were popular in that era, they really don’t need a place in your 50’s era wedding theme.

Science!

If you and your partner are inclined toward the scientific world, make science (especially mad science) your wedding theme. You can put the officiant in a lab coat, serve drinks at the reception in Erlenmeyer flasks and test tubes, and style your program as a scientific journal. If you can find a few working Jacob’s Ladders to serve as table centerpieces, that would really take your science wedding theme to the next level.

Some of your older wedding guests might find these suggestions a little too playful for such a solemn day. But you can have just as much heartfelt sentiment dressed in a wizard’s robe or a poodle skirt as you would in a froofy dress or a rented tuxedo. Follow your shared passions to come up with the wedding theme that’s just right for you.