I’m very honored to be featuring today’s wedding for two reasons: one, the bride is a blogger friend (you know, the kind you make on twitter and through blogs but have never actually met) and two, this couple threw a ‘charity wedding’ which I think is an amazingly selfless idea.  What is a charity wedding you ask?  Well, I’ll let Alicia explain it to you and how she planned her wedding, but you can also find more on her blog, The Charity Wedding.

How adorable is this wedding party member!?

My momma walked me down the aisle too, so I loved this shot.

Loving the red shoes at the far right!

I also love that the bridesmaids carried clutches instead of bouquets!

Such a cute idea!

Alicia, you make one beautiful bride!

As strange as it may seem now, I was never one of those people that planned my wedding day long before I was engaged or ogled over wedding details. In fact I had never visited a wedding blog until several months into planning my wedding. All I knew is that I wanted to be married to my best friend and I wanted my friends and family to be there. I had no idea what all went in to planning a wedding and to say I was overwhelmed would have been an understatement. In fact, I had a hard time every starting to plan because I had no idea where to begin. The biggest concern for me was the cost of everything, not so much the money itself, but the fact that I would be spending so much money on myself. Kyle and I wanted our wedding to reflect us as a couple and a huge extravagant party just wasn’t our style. Late one night while Kyle was sleeping and I was thinking about wedding details, I thought ‘what if we could make this wedding about more than just ourselves, what if we created a charity event out of our wedding?’ My complete naivety and lack of knowledge about weddings was a benefit here as I know now it was a completely crazy idea. Which makes the fact that so many vendors supported the idea even more amazing. I ran the idea by Kyle, he went for it and the next day my blog was born and the wedding planning was finally about to begin. We asked vendors to donate all or part of their service and we would donate what we would have spent up to our budget to charity. Not only did we find amazingly talented vendors, they clearly had huge hearts and all of them supported the plan fully with little questions asked on how it would benefit them. Kyle and I made a huge effort to cut costs by making things ourselves, using things we had already, shopping at thrift stores or flat out cutting things out that weren’t necessary. The result was an absolute dream wedding that raised over $6,000 for various charities. We continue to be humbled by the friendships we made, the opportunities we now have because of what we decided to do, and the fact that along the way we inspired others to do more to give back. The biggest reward is the fact that our wedding day lives on in all the lives that were touched by a simple shift of perspective and redirection of funds. Clearly not everyone can have a wedding like ours as wedding vendors need to make a living, but everyone can find small ways to give back through money they are already spending. The feeling you get when all is said and done is completely worth it! 

Caterer:  Sedona Golf Resort
Event Designer:  KD Event Designs
Floral Designer:  Glamorous Occasions
Reception Venue:  Tequa Festival Marketplace
Dress Designer:  Victorian Cowgirl
Cake Designer:  Sedona Sweet Arts