JAN 20, 2022
VEERAH Brides: Becky Altman
This VEERAH Bride went for a vegan and sustainable elopement that’s one for the books. Not to mention, her badass vegan bridal look in our Mulan pumps.
Times have changed, and so have weddings. Due to the pandemic, we’ve seen brides shift from huge gatherings to more intimate ones. Nevertheless, couples have gotten more creative without breaking the bank. Case in point? VEERAH Bride Becky Altman and her groom, Bryan McQuaid. The cool couple opted for an elopement, and a vegan, sustainable one at that. We chatted with Becky and learned about her experience as a vegan bride. Up-and-coming brides, take notes!
Congratulations on recently getting married! Most brides in the “new normal” had to postpone their original wedding dates. Did you also have to move your date, or did it push through as planned?
We actually did the reverse of most couples. We had a larger, more traditional wedding planned for fall 2021, but decided to scrap it and elope in March.
Can you share how you came up with your wedding theme? What were your inspirations?
We didn’t really have an official wedding theme, as much as we had a commitment to ourselves. We are pretty simple and direct people, both in relationships and style. Originally, I wanted to have this gorgeous sustainable, vegan wedding. But as I started to get more into planning, the more the focus started to get off of us. We had been thinking about eloping at the courthouse from the start, but felt like it would be too impersonal. With a little innovation, we were able to create a very special, intimate day that reflected who we are as a couple. We are both private people, and having a day of moments that were just ours felt right.
Bryan and Becky skipped having a traditional wedding for a more solemn elopement.
From serious to candid real quick.
“Deciding to elope definitely reinforced that we are a team and this was truly a day for us,” says Becky.
What was the most memorable part of the planning process?
Honestly, it was realizing how expensive and busy a traditional wedding would be. Planning was incredibly stressful until we decided to elope. As soon as that pressure was off, we realized we could do whatever we wanted.
The couple with their guests of honor.
What were your non-negotiables for the wedding?
It was extremely important to have a vegan, sustainable wedding. I’ve been vegan for 22 years, and I planned it so all of our food, drinks, decorations, and clothing were vegan. We originally planned for a wedding at Eden Hall, a sustainable farming campus of Chatham University, my alma mater. They grow all their own produce, and we could even choose what we wanted for the wedding. They had packages where it was all glass and cloth for table settings.
We came to realize that weddings, even when planned to be more sustainable, can create a lot of waste. We decided instead to get a gorgeous loft ten minutes from our home, do a very small (three guests) self-uniting ceremony, and get takeout from Apteka, a vegan Polish restaurant. I made our wedding cake, and did my own makeup. Everything was chill and simple, and we were relaxing in a hot tub by nine that night.
Yup, Becky did her own makeup!
Bryan getting ready to be a groom.
We noticed cool, personal touches to your wedding looks, like your leather jacket (you also went for our Mulan pumps in Deepsea Blue!) and Bryan’s Vans sneakers. Were your final outfits a surprise to each other, or did one help the other style-wise?
Bryan didn’t see any of my outfits before our ceremony. The jacket is actually faux leather, and it just happened to be the jacket I had with me before we ran out to get pictures with our photographer. In retrospect, I really appreciate the strong Buffy vibe (movie, not show) the outfit had. I was adamant about getting blue heels for the wedding. I was so excited to find Veerah—fierce style, vegan, sustainable, and woman-owned.
Let’s talk about your dress, or rather, separates! What made you say "yes to the dress?"
I wore the Jenny Yoo Collette top and Clarke skirt. It was the only outfit that felt like me. It was simple and clean. I knew I’d be able to move confidently in both.
Any tips for eco-conscious brides?
Shop local. Look for florists that grow locally. Have a plant-based menu. Consider renting your dress, or getting one secondhand.
Becky acted as her own pastry chef for the big day by making their wedding cake. How awesome, right?
Brian looking excited to taste his wife’s creation.
Serving some for their guests too.
Time for a toast!
Finally, what are you most looking forward to in this new chapter as a wife? Any goals you’d like to achieve in the coming year?
Honestly, I’d never wanted to get married before Bryan, so it’s weird to think of being a wife. Nothing feels different in our relationship. We are equal partners who support each other and care for each other through it all. Part of that partnership is working towards opening our own farmed animal sanctuary in the next few years. We are currently in the planning stages and extremely excited to be able to do this as a team. We are in the process of buying a bigger house and some land to start our farmed animal microsanctuary. We can’t wait to meet our first rescues!
More stunning photos of the couple. Congratulations again, Becky and Bryan!
If this couple’s wedding doesn’t make you consider eloping, we don’t know what would. As Becky put it, “With a little innovation, we were able to create a very special, intimate day that reflected who we are as a couple.” Not only does their vegan wedding create a lasting impact of true love, but it also shows a ton of personality. We hope you enjoyed reading through Becky and Bryan’s story as much as we did. Until the next VEERAH Brides feature, Warriors!
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