A growing number of couples are getting creative with their wedding details, choosing themed weddings and unusual touches to express their personalities. That’s exactly what Audrey Moore and Jesse Lumen set out to do when they got married on Dec. 30, 2018, in Los Angeles: The bride asked her guests to wear their own wedding dresses to her big day.
And it wasn’t only their guests who enjoyed their quirky nuptials. After the groom shared images of the bride and some of her friends all wearing wedding dresses for the occasion, the internet got a glimpse into their special day.
‘We’re Both Really Creative’
Moore, an actress who has appeared in shows like “Better Call Saul” and “Godless,” and Lumen, a writer, knew they’d never have a traditional wedding.
“We’re both really creative,” Moore told Huffington Post. “We don’t take things too seriously. We like to celebrate love and our friends and our family and just having a good time in general. So our main goal was to create a wedding we would want to go to.’
An Unforgettable Wedding
The couple planned a seriously unconventional celebration with tons of funny twists to ensure it would be a wedding their guests would never forget. Every aspect was different than the norm.
But one, in particular, captured the world’s attention: the attire of the female guests. Moore suggested that they bring their own wedding dresses out of storage to wear again on her big day.
Dresses Get A Second Chance To Shine
“I really loved the idea of all of the girls having the opportunity to wear these dresses again,” Moore told Huffington Post. Her idea stemmed from her sadness over the fact that people would never see many of her friends’ beautiful wedding gowns ever again. She even dared them to “upstage” her.
“I love everybody to celebrate how magical they are and I think at the end of the day I really just want magic, princess fun time as a grown-up,” she added.
Is She Serious?
Naturally, some of Moore’s friends didn’t take her seriously at first.
“A few of my friends were a bit worried I was playing a practical joke on them so they reached out to each other to make sure they weren’t going to be the only other person at the wedding besides me in a wedding dress,” Moore said in an interview with People.
When they realized her suggestion was genuine, it didn’t take long for them all to get on board.
Moore Always Plays Dress-Up
Another reason for Moore’s unusual dress code suggestion was that her job as an actress gives her the chance to “play dress up all the time.” Unlike many brides, she didn’t feel like her wedding day was her “one day where I got to be in my special gown.”
But while she didn’t care about her dress being the most beautiful dress on the day, she still stood out from the crowd in blue.
Saving Wedding Guests Some Money
The couple was also aware that weddings can put a lot of financial pressure on people getting married — and their guests. According to a 2018 survey, the average wedding cost in the US is $33,391, while another survey revealed that just attending a wedding can cost an average of almost $400 to more than $1,000.
Moore and Lumen didn’t want their wedding to be a financial burden for their guests, who were mostly working actors or involved in the film and television industry in other ways. So they told everyone to wear whatever they wanted, including costumes they had from past jobs.
‘Frozen’-Inspired Bridal Look
While Moore’s custom-made gown was being created, she was reminded of a certain Disney character — Elsa from “Frozen.” So, in the spirit of joining in with the guests who chose to wear costumes to the wedding, the bride donned a few choice accessories, including a blonde hairpiece and a light-up cape, to enhance the Disney princess effect.
White Tuxedo Hoodies
It wasn’t just the female guests who went non-traditional with their wedding attire; Lumen and his groomsmen wore white tuxedo hoodies rather than regular tuxes. How fun does this wedding look?
A Mad Libs Officiant
The dress code was only one of the unusual aspects of Moore and Lumen’s wedding. Moore walked down the aisle to the “Game of Thrones” theme song, and the officiant performed the ceremony in the style of Mad Libs, inviting guests to fill in the blanks in his speech.
The typical floral decorations were also replaced with piñatas, and retro arcade games were available for entertainment.
A Simple Wedding Registry
When it came to the wedding registry, the couple kept it super simple. It consisted of only two items! Guests were invited to contribute to either the new mattress that the pair needed or the Instant Pot they wanted.
A Sweet Walk Down The Aisle
One of the most surprising, sweetest parts of the wedding was the walk down the aisle, which the bride and groom did together.
“My father passed away when I was 22 and I then decided I would have my grandmother walk me down the aisle one day, but then my grandmother passed away. Then I thought, well, I’ll have my brother walk me down the aisle, and my brother passed away,” Moore told Huffington Post. “That was part of why we wanted to keep the wedding so fun and silly. Given all of what happened, I didn’t want it to feel heavy.”
A Wedding That Suits The Couple
All these little touches were important to the couple, as they wanted their wedding to genuinely reflect their personalities and their relationship. Based on the photos, it looks like they achieved the fun, joyful event that they were hoping for.
Guests In Wedding Dresses Goes Viral
After the big day, Lumen shared a photo of his wife and some of the female guests on Reddit, where it went viral.
“We thought it was sad that most women only get to wear their wedding dress once, so we invited all the women coming to our non-traditional wedding to wear their old wedding dresses again!” he wrote on the social news aggregation site.
The Bride’s Blue Dress Was A Standout
Thousands of comments followed Lumen’s original post, and Moore soon joined the discussion, writing, “OP WIFE here! Truth be told my main goal was to make the top page of Reddit because marriage is nice but internet points last a life time.”
She added that her guests were concerned about upstaging her by wearing their wedding dresses, but she soon put their minds at ease.
“I knew I was wearing blue but kept it a secret from everyone except my dressmaker, and my hair and makeup artist,” she wrote. “I’d been to almost all their weddings and knew they’d be in white. Plus I’m 5’10. In heels I was 6’1. I told them, ‘I DARE you to upstage me.'”
Some Dresses Were Borrowed
Naturally, Reddit users had lots of questions about the wedding dresses, and the newlyweds were happy to share more details.
“Some women borrowed wedding dresses from their mothers or other family members,” revealed Lumen on Reddit. “If they didn’t have a wedding dress or didn’t want to wear one, we asked people to wear black and white or a costume!”
Others Were Rentals
If people wanted to wear a wedding dress but didn’t have one of their own, or couldn’t borrow one, they didn’t have to miss out on the bridalwear fun.
“A couple people in the bridal party rented wedding dresses,” said Lumen on Reddit. “We live in LA so there are a lot of costume rental places that have lots of options and they will tailor it for you.”
Dresses Should Be Worn More Than Once
On Reddit, Moore went into more detail about why they decided to ask guests to wear their wedding dresses.
“Our friends spent such incredible money on their dresses and never wear them again and I would hear them frequently say how sad they were that they don’t get to wear it every year,” she wrote. “My one friend and her husband wear their wedding outfits every year on their anniversary and go to dinner. We live in LA so walking into a restaurant in your wedding dress barely gets noticed.”
Moore Plans To Wear Her Dress Again And Again
As for Moore’s own wedding dress, which she designed herself, there’s no danger of it gathering dust in the back of her closet.
“I told my seamstress I’m so excited to dress up as Elsa and Cinderella for every costume event till it turns to threads,” she wrote on Reddit. “She was a bit horrified by the thought of her dress being worn to costume events but she’s used to me by now.”
What Their Husbands Think
One Reddit poster suggested that any wedding guests who couldn’t fit into their wedding dresses would need to be comforted by their husbands for “several weeks.” But Moore responded to say her friends’ husbands were the opposite.
“One friend texted me: ‘my husband just found out I’m wearing my wedding dress to your wedding and he burst out laughing and said ‘WHAT?'” she wrote.
Her Cousin Wore Her Mom’s Old Dress
A few eagle-eyed Reddit posters pointed out that one guest (on the far left of the photo) looked a little young to be married already, and they were absolutely right. But her marital status didn’t stop her from joining in.
“She’s my little cousin and you’re right — she’s wearing her mom’s old wedding dress!” wrote Moore.
Everything Should Be Fun, Not Formal
One of the couple’s main concerns was that their nuptials weren’t too formal. so every element, from the dress code to the decorations, was based on fun.
“We wanted to put a lot of ourselves into the wedding since most weddings we go to feel really formal which isn’t our style,” wrote Lumen on Reddit.
The White Tuxedo Hoodies Are So Practical
Many people had positive comments about the white tuxedo hoodies worn by the groom and his groomsmen, pointing out how comfortable and practical they were. Lumen was quick to agree, writing on Reddit, “My groomsmen were so happy. Cheap, comfortable, and they still wear them in their daily lives (as do I!)”
“I met him in a white hoodie and I somehow always pictured him in a white hoodie when we got married. In fact, my favorite thing for him to wear is a hoodie,” Moore told Today. “So when we discovered that they made tux-print hoodies in white, it seemed perfect.”
The Mothers Of The Bride And Groom Were Chic
The mothers of the bride and groom made a stylish entrance — not in wedding dresses or costumes, but in elegant black and white outfits. They looked similar but not identical, ensuring they stood out from the rest of the party as two very important people while also showing off their own personal style.
Reddit Users Share Their Memorable Wedding Stories
The unique wedding has been a conversation starter about dress codes at nuptials, with many Reddit users sharing their own experiences.
“I was in one of the weddings where the bride literally said wear a floor-length black dress and black shoes,” wrote one. “So we all did and our gifts were these wildly patterned wrap/scarves and silver stud earrings. That matched her dress perfectly. AKA she wore a tie-dyed wedding dress and we all wore black dresses with wraps of the same fabric. It was amazing!”
Wear What You Want
Another poster revealed that when she was a maid of honor for her best friend from high school, she could wear whatever she wanted.
“It was great because nobody had to spend an ungodly amount on a dress and we all looked great because it was our own clothing so it actually fit us and we liked it,” she wrote. Another user said if she ever got married, she was going to make her friends wear the dresses they made her wear to their weddings.
Celebrating The Couple
The Reddit response to this type of wedding was overwhelmingly positive.”I really love this idea. It seems a great way to not only celebrate a couple, but celebrate marriage and couple-hood as well,” wrote one person.
Lumen replied that that was their hope and revealed that they also “had a projector playing a montage of the wedding pictures of all the guests who were married.”
Wearing A Wedding Dress Wasn’t Mandatory
The couple stressed on Reddit that while many of the women who attended the wedding chose to wear their wedding dresses, even getting them re-fitted for the occasion, it “certainly wasn’t mandatory” to wear wedding dresses if they didn’t want to or couldn’t.
Some Guests Wore Amazing Costumes
The guests who didn’t wear a wedding dress or a black and white outfit opted for some truly weird and wonderful fancy dress. Costumes worn by the guests included Duffman (the mascot and spokesman for the Duff Beer company in “The Simpsons”), Spider-Pig (also from “The Simpsons”), a mermaid, Spock, a burrito and Max from “Where the Wild Things Are.”
Why You Never See The Most Unique Weddings
A former wedding videographer, who has filmed and edited “well over 100 weddings,” praised Moore and Lumen for hosting “the coolest, most unique” wedding they’d ever seen. However, another Reddit user pointed out that non-traditional couples probably don’t hire the typical wedding industry professionals like videographers, wedding planners and caterers.
“You never get to see the cool unique weddings because those people are spending the money on renting arcade equipment or setting up a grand tournament rather than hiring a videographer,” they wrote.
Semi-Annual Brunch In Your Wedding Attire? Why Not!
During a Reddit discussion, inspired by Lumen’s original post, about the fact that wedding dresses usually only get worn once, one user revealed he and his wife didn’t live by this rule.
“About twice a year I make her put on the dress, I put on the suit I wore, and then we have a big brunch with lots of champagne in our front yard,” he wrote. If their wedding is anything to go by, it seems pretty likely that Moore and Lumen will do something similar.