“The [Wizarding] World is so encompassing, you can get lost in it.”
Meredith Fahey and her husband Joshua Votaw always knew they wanted a book-themed wedding.
So when their first-choice venue — a library — fell through, they opted to host their wedding day at their favorite restaurant in Los Angeles.
It happens to be reminiscent of Hogwarts, not to mention it’s within their budget.
“We are both huge Harry Potter fans. We have enjoyed many midnight screenings of the movies together, as well as reading them out loud to each other, one of our favorite activities,” Meredith told BuzzFeed.
The bride even has a Deathly Hallows tattoo on her shoulder.
The couple met several years ago through a dating website, and one of their first conversations was about Lost.
“We have always enjoyed sharing our geeky loves together, whether it be television or movies,” Meredith said. “Our first date was at Griffith Observatory (yay space!), which is where he ended up proposing to me.”
Meredith and Joshua spent hours and hours discussing how they wanted every detail to be laid out and what parts of the Harry Potter series they wanted to incorporate.
“Our vision was that it would be a wedding that could take place within the Harry Potter universe, which we think added to the classic look, helping us stay clear of the cheesy factor,” Meredith said.<./h2>
They had help creating the bouquets.
Family and friends also helped with the programs, banners, and other accessories.
The bride said she even did a great deal herself, including needle-felting characters like Dobby and Norbert.
She also did the calligraphy on the place cards.
All of the elaborate-looking details in this Harry Potter-themed wedding actually cost the bride and groom the least amount of money.
“We reckon we could probably have an entire Harry Potter room at our apartment if we wanted,” said Meredith.
One of Meredith’s favorite minor wedding details was the “Monster Book of Monsters Guestbook,” which her cousins surprised her with.
She also liked the S.P.E.W. badges that her sister made for the waitstaff, who apparently got a kick out of wearing them.
Having a Snape character officiate was Meredith’s favorite major detail.
“He was one of the restaurant managers and so wonderful to work with,” she told BuzzFeed. “He was really committed to the role.”
“Our friend is a pyrotechnician and was able to coordinate the Goblet of Fire actually exploding when we put our names in it,” Meredith said. “The guests were quite surprised.”
“The walk through the arch of wands was also really sweet.”
Aside from a couple of confused older relatives, all of the guests loved the Harry Potter theme.
“At least 60% of guests showed up in their house colors, or robes, or full costumes,” said Meredith. “The wand favors got lots of use as everyone tried their best spells.”
The most important detail from their Harry Potter wedding was the series’ overarching emphasis on love.
“After losing my grandmother two weeks before the wedding, and my uncle six months prior, we really wanted our friends and family to make the wedding the most loving and lighthearted of events,” Meredith said.
“I think we were successful, judging by the enthusiasm in which the theme was embraced by everyone.”
And an elaborate theme it was.
“The [Wizarding] World is so encompassing, you can get lost in it, and each new reading brings more insight into the characters and world.”
All photos are courtesy of Meredith’s wedding photographer Candice Benjamin. You can check out more of her work on her website.