Most weddings involve shoes. Julie and Francis’ wedding was not most weddings.
For starters, it was especially significant to me. (It’s always about me, right?) Julie and I have been friends since high school, so watching her promise to love Francis for all eternity made me cry even more than it normally does.
But even if I didn’t know the amazing couple before they hired me to photograph their wedding, I would have been over the moon about this celebration. The theme was “colors,” and guests were encouraged to wear their brightest. There was pizza and kombucha. Somebody brought a dog. I was beside myself with happiness.
And then there’s the matter about the shoes. Julie and Francis were married on a rainy day. Lots of brides would worry about their heels sinking into the grass outside or the hems of their skirts becoming damp and dirty. But Julie is a creative problem solver, so she just took off her shoes. Can’t get them dirty if you aren’t wearing them, right?
The entire bridal party and most of the guests followed suit. Instead of picking gingerly through puddles in silky sandals, they splashed. It was incredibly fun. And when we came inside for the ceremony in the lovely All Souls Interfaith Gathering, nobody really bothered to put them back on.
So in the middle of this wonderful meeting of barefoot hippies in the brightest clothes they could find, an officiant with hot-pink hair married two of my favorite people. Each partner was escorted down the aisle by their parents. They both wore white; their feet were bare; they read their own vows. At the end, they flung a bowl of beautiful, brightly-colored flower petals into the air, and we danced.