Why ‘Little House on the Prairie’ Star Alison Arngrim Wore a Tuxedo on Her Wedding Day

Little House on the Prairie star Alison Arngrim has been married to her second husband since 1993. Here’s why she decided to wear a tuxedo on her wedding day.

How Alison Arngrim met her second husband

Alison Arngrim wears a tuxedo at her wedding.
Alison Arngrim and Bob Schoonover | Paul Harris/Getty Images

Arngrim met her second husband, Bob Schoonover, while she was volunteering at an AIDS hotline. She says he was the director of the Southern California AIDS Hotline, and she had volunteered there in 1986. In her book, Confessions of a Prairie B****, Arngrim says she found it “refreshing” that Schoonover didn’t know who she was. He had no idea she played Nellie Oleson on Little House on the Prairie. Arngrim says he “hadn’t the slightest idea” who she was and he “didn’t care” even after people told him.

Arngrim described Schoonover as “unusual.” At a time when people feared AIDS and tried to distance themselves from the disease, he stepped up and offered to help those who were affected. Arngrim says Schoonover was the first straight man to work at the AIDS Project Los Angeles.

Schoonover and Arngrim became close friends and spent a lot of time together since they often spoke on the same panels. She says they were often with each other, so a volunteer began calling her “the ever lovely Mrs. Schoonover.” Arngrim was married and Schoonover was in a relationship, so they didn’t date at the time. However, once she ended her marriage and Schoonover ended his relationship, they began dating. Arngrim and Schoonover began dating in March 1993 and were married by November of that year.

Why Alison Arngrim wore a tuxedo on her wedding day

Arngrim says Schoonover told her he was going to wear a tuxedo to their wedding. She says this surprised the people who knew him well because he usually wore jeans and a T-Shirt. Arngrim says she told him this wasn’t necessary because the wedding would be held during the daytime in their friend’s backyard. She also told him that tuxedos were typically reserved for large weddings.

Arngrim let her husband-to-be know that she would not wear a wedding gown because this was her second marriage. She preferred to do something a little different. She says Schoonover wasn’t convinced about why he shouldn’t wear a tuxedo. This was his first marriage, and he wanted to dress up for the occasion. Arngrim asked Schoonover what she should wear, and he suggested a tuxedo.

Arngrim took Schoonover’s suggestion. She also decided to go barefoot since it was a garden wedding. Schoonover suggested that she paint her toenails black to match her suit, so she also had black toenails. The matron of honor and the best man also wore tuxedos and had black toenails.

Alison Arngrim’s ‘Little House on the Prairie’ wardrobe

One outfit Arngrim didn’t have control over was her costume for Little House on the Prairie. In her book, she describes the heavy dresses she had to wear. It was difficult for her to wear the Nellie Oleson costume when scenes were filmed outdoors in the heat. She writes about her first day of filming and how she was so hot in her outfit that she passed out.

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