Tag: Sparkle

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle

Dave and Dan say the vibe of their May 2019 wedding in Vancouver, Canada is best described by the dress code written on the back of their invitation: “Semi-formal/garden party, a hint of sparkle is encouraged!”

With one from Canada and the other from Australia, the couple focused the weekend on bringing their loved ones together. They had approximately 90 guests from out of town, and so they had several parties leading up to the big day to maximize their time together.

Dave and Dan decided to walk down the aisle at the same time from opposite sides, meeting in the middle.

“After the ceremony, we then walked down the centre aisle together, holding hands,” they say.
“We really liked the symbolism of this, and how egalitarian it was; guests commented how much that detail impacted them!”

What advice would you give to engaged LGBTQ+ couples?

Take the time to make the day your own celebration. In planning out the details of the day, we found so many wedding customs have very traditional aspects. Instead, we were able to take an extra step back and completely reimagine parts of our day that felt just right for who we are as a couple. We fought really hard to get the ceremony we wanted. Instead of giving in to having a religious ceremony in order to use a space like a church (even if it was affirming!), or having a marriage commissioner we didn’t know run the whole ceremony, we made our own hybrid model.

We wanted the official, legal part of the ceremony to be in front of everyone and not at another time. But, in our province, the only choice is a religious officiant or someone from a select list of civil celebrants. Luckily, we found an accommodating marriage commissioner who worked with our custom arrangement to co-officiate with our friend, Peter Fitch, and the two of them switched back and forth —fairly seamlessly—weaving together a beautiful (& legally binding) ceremony!

What advice do you have for vendors and venues working with LGBTQ+ couples?

Keep in mind that LGBTQ+ couples have a range of ways they can identify, especially when it comes to gender identity; only having “Bride & Groom” on forms is so passé!

What challenges did you face as an LGBTQ+ couple planning your wedding?

Some family members on one side chose not to attend for religious reasons, and that was difficult to come to terms with. When the time came, joy won the day and we were thrilled to be surrounded by more than one hundred of our friends and family who enthusiastically celebrated our marriage with us.

Did you encounter any pleasant surprises as an LGBTQ+ couple planning your wedding?

In a strange way, planning our wedding as an LGBTQ+ couple brought with it a sense of greater significance, given the history of our community and how hard fought our very right to marry was (Australia hadn’t even legalized gay marriage when we got engaged). For the straight world, weddings have become less commonplace, but for us the very act of getting married publicly felt like a triumph as well as a celebration, and this added an emotional resonance to the day that I don’t think we’d quite expected. For a lot of our guests (and even one of us!) it was their first time experiencing a gay wedding, and the idea of chosen family was something that permeated throughout the whole event. We were particularly grateful for the guidance of many of our vendors.

Sparkly Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Canadian garden wedding with a hint of sparkle | Shannon-May Photography | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Search our directory of LGBTQ+ inclusive vendors.

FEATURED VENDORS

Photographer: Shannon-May Photography

Ceremony Venue: Rose Garden, at the University of British Columbia.

Reception Venue: Sage Bistro at University of British Columbia

Florist: DIY flowers from Costco ; Boutonnières from Divine Vines

Day of Coordinators: Rosey & Ishita from A Stylish Event

DJ: DJ Josephine from Airwaves Music

Invitations: Self designed through Zazzle

Attire: Custom tailoring by Surmesur 

Jewelry: Klepner’s Jewellery, Melbourne 

Videographer: Paul Cameron Productions

Cake: Jenny Bakes

Officiants: Peter Fitch (longtime friend) and BC Marriage Commissioner, Kelly Ip

Magical Mermicorns Sparkle in Fin-tastic New Early Reader Series

Magical Mermicorns Sparkle in Fin-tastic New Early Reader Series

A mermicorn is half mermaid and half unicorn—and the mermicorns in a new early reader series by a genderqueer author just might bring a little sparkle into young readers’ lives.

Mermicorn Island

The first book in the series, Search for the Sparkle, by Jason June and illustrated by Lisa Manuzak Wiley (Scholastic), centers on Lucky the mermicorn, a peppy fellow who lives in an undersea world of magic but has yet to find his “sparkle,” his special magic. When he finds a treasure chest full of glittery seashells, with a message to “Share the sparkle,” he wonders if that could be the key to finding his talent. Throw in three undersea friends, oceans of sea-related puns (things are “mer-mazing,” “fin-credible,” and “fin-tastic”), and a hunt for Poseidon’s magical trident, and you have a fun and joyful story just perfect for readers stepping into early chapter books.

The second book, Narwhal Adventure, continues the story of Lucky and the gang as Lucky helps his friend Ruby enter a special baking competition. Their new friend Nelia the Narwhal wants to help, too. An accident with a magic seashell might lead to disaster, however, unless the three of them and their friends can find a clever solution.

On first glance, there’s nothing overtly LGBTQ in these books, although the sparkly aesthetic conveys a definite flamboyant queer vibe. And Lucky, who likes to draw and appreciates when his mane has “just the right swirl,” feels at the very least somewhat gender creative. Jason June describes himself on his website as “a genderqueer writer mermaid,” so that vibe seems deliberate. His author biography at the end of these books notes, too, that when he “finally gets that mermaid tail, he hopes it’s covered in pink scales”—a subtle but positive message about gender creativity and the colors we wear. The third book in the series, Too Many Dolphins, promises more queer inclusion and will feature gay dolphin dads. It and a fourth book are due out later this year.

Early reader titles rarely get the recognition of either picture books or middle grade ones. Jason June brings a verve to these stories, however, that makes them a delight to read. Readers LGBTQ and not will also appreciate the series’ messages of finding oneself and supporting one’s friends. (And I’m going to add this series to the other LGBTQ-inclusive kids’ books that I think would make great television shows.) Maybe I’m just a sucker for fish puns, or maybe I feel the need to immerse myself in an upbeat, magical world right now—but if you or your kids feel the same, check them out. There are very, very few LGBTQ-inclusive early reader books, and these not only help fill that gap, but do so with fun and whimsy.