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Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Haunted Mansion Wedding



My friends Jason and Melissa met at our haunt club, got engaged on Halloween at their yard haunt, and had a Haunted Mansion-themed wedding...in a cemetery! They've generously given me permission to post some pictures, and I think you'll be amazed at their creativity and artistic skills, as the vast majority of the decor was hand-made by the bride and groom, and their families and friends.

Before the wedding, the couple mailed "Save the Date" notices to guests. These notices were very similar to the Save the Dates sent out by Disneyland for the celebration of the Haunted Mansion's 40th Anniversary. The couple's colorful tri-fold wedding invitations depicted the unique gate at the Haunted Mansion in Florida, complete with it's ironwork bat. The invitations also featured the iconic Haunted Mansion plaque with the words "The Haunted Ghostly Wedding of Melissa and Jason" and invited guests to wear period costumes (but discouraged any gore.)

The wedding took place at Forest Lawn Cemetery, in Glendale, California- or more precisely, in a chapel located on the cemetery's grounds. The chapel was a reconstruction of an ancient stone church in Scotland, complete with Gothic arches. Purple and white floral arrangements made by the bride decorated the pews.The bride wore a traditional white wedding gown, and the groom wore a silver-buttoned black tailcoat over a purple jaquard vest. The flower girls wore white dresses with purple ribbon sashes, and the groomsmen wore black with purple buttonieres. Here's the happy couple with their guests- and fellow haunters- Amy and Chris in their Victorian garb:
The groom and some groomsmen had cast large plaques which then hung on homemade styrofoam-based pillars just outside of the reception area at a local hotel.

The bride's mother Diane- also a haunter- made a fanciful cake based on the version of the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland, Anaheim, California. The zombie-looking cake topper was placed on the "lawn" to it's left, and was a standard (although humorous) one repainted with green faces and hands. The homemade place card holders featured the three Hitchhiking Ghosts.
The guests' dining tables at the reception were round with a purple tablecloth topped with a matching one of black lace layered over it. Chairs were slipcovered in white with a large black sash tied around the chairbacks. Melissa made purple floral centerpieces surrounding candelabras for each table, while Jason and his friends cut 2"thick styrofoam into the shape of  the Hitchhiking Ghosts from the Mansion . These were painted, made to stand, and used as directional signs to point the way to the reception.





Melissa and Jason sat on a dais at a table with candelabras and small tombstones randomly placed. The pennant bunting along the front was modeled after bunting seen under a coffin in the Mansion, in the scene where boney hands inside a coffin try to push open the coffin lid. The portable backdrop behind the Bride and Groom's Table was designed with homemade purple Haunted Mansion-style wallpaper and copies of Haunted Mansion art work, including a "Tomb Sweet Tomb" stitched sampler.


Other props from the Mansion were simulated with the help of friends, including the bat-topped stanchions, and a full set of changing portraits that morphed from normal to creepy. An animated "guy-in-the-brick-wall" and the "deaf man with horn", nearly identical to those seen in the graveyard portion of the Haunted Mansion ride, were borrowed from a friend (James of The Haunted Mansion Northside blog) who sculpted them and uses them in his own haunt.





Guests were given white gift boxes tied with black ribbon and topped with a cardstock version of their Haunted Ghostly Wedding plaque. Inside? Special souvenir M&M candies emblazoned with the couple's names on one side and the motif from the Haunted Mansion's wallpaper on the other, as well as chocolate tombstones and ghosts.  For additional fun, the wedding party danced in sync to Michael Jackson's Thriller. Then the newlyweds departed in a historic automobile and headed for their honeymoon in France, where they visited Phantom Manor, the version of the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland Paris.



Jason and Melissa are now proud parents; their baby boy was born just 2 weeks ago.

Oh, and the baby's name? He is Ramsley... named after the butler in the 2003 Haunted Mansion movie!
Congratulations, Melissa and Jason! 

27 comments:

  1. *GASP!* That is so freaking cool!!!!!! I'm insanely jealous!

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  2. I love, love, love, LOVE this!!!!!

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  3. TOTALLY FREAKIN AWESOME! And congrats on the baby, he is wonderful!

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  4. Okay, that is just about the coolest thing I have ever seen!! Thanks for sharing this.

    Cheers!

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  5. Thanks for sharing - this is just awesome!

    I posted a few pictures and a link over on my blog.

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  6. Fabulous, with a side order of wonderful.

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  7. Glad everyone is enjoying this post! I'm proud of the way Melissa and Jason executed this fun idea. And knowing they were overlapping this with creating their walk-through haunt (which has a completely different theme every year and is all hand-made, too) at the *same time* makes me even more impressed! By the way, Jason says the 3 large green styrofoam hitchhiking ghosts are available for a reasonable price. Contact me if interested and I'll forward your note to him.

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  8. That is the coolest wedding EVER!!!!!!

    They should enter it to Offbeatbride.com!!!!

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  9. Any idea where they got the candelabras? I'm having a similarly themed wedding this Halloween and am trying to stay on a budget. Thanks for any info!!

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  10. Rockerchick835, congratulations on your impending nuptials. Target carried the candelabras for a few years, but doesn't carry them any more. There are similar ones on eBay if you search for "3 light candelabras." You might also try calling a few party/catering rental places, as some of them have candelabras available for rent.

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  11. Hi there! This is simply BONE CHILLING! Do they still have the hitchhiking ghosts?! And would they care to divulge how they created the plaques? I just got engaged 2 weeks ago and oddly enough this wedding already sounds like what my fiance and I have planned, not to mention we're Haunted Mansion fanatics in Southern California too. Any help or advice they could give would be GREATLY appreciated! Thanks :)

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  12. Omg Kitten I agree I love this set up and it would serve our Til Death Do Us Part Theme I cantwait to see you walking down that Isle

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  13. I sent an email with your questions to Jason on 5-1-11. No reply yet but if I hear anything I'll post it.

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  14. I just today heard back about the hitchhiking ghosts. I was told they are life-size and are $500 for the set of 3, or $200 each. Sorry for the delayed response, but apparantly Jay had switched email accounts and wasn't checking the old one.

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  15. Hello! Great post, you have some very cool friends! I have some questions for you regarding some of the "props" they used. Is there a way I can contact you privately? Please let me know the best way to reach you. Thank you!

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  16. @Anonymous: You can drop me a line at thegardenofevil@yahoo.com and I'll try to answer.

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  17. I found a place where you can get the Haunted Mansion wallpaper its a 6ft x 6ft repeatable fabric you can hang on the wall plus they have the Tomb Sweet Tomb and other stuff too. http://www.cafepress.com/mansionmarket

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  18. @Anonymous: Thanks for sharing- that should help a few people out!

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  19. Do you know where they got the plaque made? Many thanks!

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  20. if you want a plaque that says the traditional "The Haunted Mansion", you can sometimes get those off of eBay. And then you could mold and cast off of that one to make a personalized one.

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  21. Wow our wedding is sure getting around thanks to this post. Thanks for putting this up and for everyone's comments. It was a lot of fun to put together and to explain to the wedding professionals :)

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  22. Can you tell me where they had the save the dates and invitations made?

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  23. @Anonymous, I just confirmed it: Melissa and Jay designed and printed the invitations and Save The Dates on their own computer. Their talent just never stops, does it?!

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  24. Hi
    Thank you for this post. I have some little questions but I don't want to disturb the comments with all my questions. So do you have a mail where I can ask you this questions?
    Thank you in advance.

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  25. Anonymous, see the comment dated Oct 15 2011.

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