wedding on a TIGHT budget?

Codie - posted on 01/19/2011 ( 41 moms have responded )

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i'm planning a wedding in aug of this year. my parents and his are both giving us $1000 to help pay for it but i want to leave as little as possible for us to be responsible for. i plan to use the $2000 from our parents for the big things: booking the church, reception facility, food, alcohol, dj, and hopefully the cake and invites. i got my dress a few months back and we aren't figuring that into the budget. we sat down and estimated that we're at $2750 for things i mentioned previously, which leaves us paying for the wedding bands, license, bouquets, all decorations, wedding favors and gifts for the bridal party, and the photographer. i thought about doing either the ceremy or reception or both outside but since aug is the hottest month of the year here in indiana and i don't like flies or mosquitos, that doesnt seem like a good idea. i have yet to decide on ceremony and receptions venues for fear that i'd later find something cheaper.

i need to be sure that mine and fiance's part is as little as possible bc he just received word that he got a job requiring us to travel often. which means he looses his company vehicle at his current job and we'd have to rent an apartment near the job site. so we'll have to buy a $1500 junker car for him to back and forth to work instead of putting tons of miles on our 09 impala, and we'd also still be responsible for our house payment here in our home town. we got the first time home buyers tax credit and rules say we can't sell or rent the house out for the first 3 years or we have to pay the federal government $8100 back.

we're in a real pickle here and any thought and advice on how to make a CHEAP wedding look like a million bucks are greatly needed! thanks so much :)

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Lisa - posted on 01/19/2011

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I would skip the big party and have a small intimate wedding on a Sunday afternoon and serve a brunch. You don't need a reception hall, dj, alcohol. Ask a friend or relative with a nice camera to take your pictures and buy simple bands that you can update at say your 5 or 10 year anniversary. Flowers can be bought from the farmer's market the day before and you could use the church's reception hall to hold your brunch.

Sam - posted on 01/24/2011

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i was 6 months pregnant when we got married and we planned in 2 days!!!! we spent about $200 maybe a little more but we just had a small gathering in the back yard i made my own bouquet and i made the cake and a friend made all the food
we had probably 5 or 6 people because we did it in such short notice but we planned on doing something bigger in the future when we have more money and more people can come :)

Elle - posted on 01/23/2011

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oh and I forgot skimp on everything if u have to but not your photographer!! they are what remains...invite less guests and have lovely pics to remember ur day

Susan - posted on 01/23/2011

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Girl, we where on a tight budget jsut like you new house and we just had a baby, so basicly we did everything ourselfs anything that my two hands could do i did them, flowerd decorations got the napkins plate and etc. like that at sam's my grandmother and grandfather made the food. bbq and my brother in law played all the music after we paid the photographer we had 100$ left and it went to pay for our house... so you can do it i promise..

Anne - posted on 01/20/2011

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When My husband and I got married , we did it on a week day and it cut the wedding list in half and those who meant the most to us came. So it ended up being family and a couple of friends. Also we had the reception at my sisters work which made it a lil bit cheaper. And for the flowers we ordered the from a veggie shop, the cars we hired where from budget car hire and it was only $300 Nz for two for the day. You can do it. Ask your family and friends if they know anyone who can help you in anyway. My brothers made the cake, my sister did the photos and my mum made the bridesmaids dresses. I think all up it cost us about ten. Which was very cheap as my sisters was about 15. I hope you can make it special without having to compromise to much of what you want :)

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Rachel - posted on 08/27/2012

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I wish you luck. Obviously hand making saves you lots of money. Only the treasured items should be where you make an investment. In my opinion, thd photographer and a good value for the location. Everything else is just disposable or for the rings, upgradeable.

Annie - posted on 01/24/2011

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I had a wedding and reception for $3,000. I can't say that it looked like million dollars, but it was perfect at the time.
!. Make you own invitations. You can do to any office supply store and by blank ones then print them our your self.
2. Some of the best photographers are people that do it one the side. Check out Craigs list.
3. Make your own center pieces. We put together pots of herbs, jars filled with different candy, and made our own candles out of left over wax from candles we burnt in our home. This is also a great way to personalize you reception.
3. Hire a band, we paid $300 to have a blues band play at the reception. We asked them to learn a few songs for the "dances".
4. Do hoarders and cocktail not a full meal.
5. Buy all of you liquor beer and wine, have a few friend alternate bartending. Make sure to put out a tip jar!
Think about how you know. Do you know anyone that bakes, takes photos, caters, etc. See if they will work with you budget.
Keep your flowers simple. Focus on the reception, thats where you will spend most of your day any ways. Oh, we put the bouquets in vases on the head table.
Hope maybe this helps a little, just be creative!
I had a friend that had a pot luck rehearsal dinner.
Good luck and congrats!

Dominique - posted on 01/24/2011

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The way we did our wedding is that we had it in the hall at the local sports and rec centre and then for our meal we had finger food and a tab at the bar. Everyone was happy. For the dresses and suits you keep your eyes out for specials.

Roteavia - posted on 01/23/2011

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i had my wedding on a $2000 budget. i think my dress was the most expensive thing purchased and i got it on sale at davids bridal for like $210. My photographer was a photography student trying to build her portfolio. My mom and aunt catered the food since they are the best cooks in the family. I did my own flowers and decor. The grooms cake was done by the bakery at our grocery store and the main cake was done by my brother nlaws home ec teacher. hair and make up done by cosmetology students. We used our church's fellowship hall for the reception and had no alcohol. All the food and drinks were bought at Sams Club. We had about 200 guest and still had money left over. If you need anymore help or ideas just shoot me an email. ramccowin@yahoo.com

Elle - posted on 01/23/2011

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Ebay!! I had the ebay wedding and everyone loved it! apparently!...
some ideas many British brides are now doing afternoon tea with little cakes and ribbon sandwiches which u can do yourself the night before, bowls of cherries and strawberries in clear glass bowls..get those cute little vintage teacups in second hand / charity stores u know the ones with a saucer etc used to be part of set but not anymore, place a single open rose in them and there u have table pieces and decorations,put tea light candles in others u can buy hundreds of tea lights cheaply on Ebay, .make it vintage ..make it shabby chic..but some material with a floral print of open roses,violets and drape them across tables..hire a hall , use lace panels found in charity shops,go to the flower markest buy your own flowers tie with a satin ribbon, arum lilies are good they are easy to make a bouquet with ,look classy, and last all day I brought mine home from the reception they lasted almost a week, get your bridesmaid to buyy their own dresses perhaps have them choose the same colour but mismatched styles, tell everyone you are having an eco vintage wedding...make jam and put it in little pots if u have afriend with a baby she may donate her baby food jars or fill them with dried lavendar tie with pretty ribbon,u can put even a couple of say sweet pea seeds in them use those as favours ...vintage,whimsical,wonderful
Congrats xxxx

Kylie - posted on 01/22/2011

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hey, i got heaps of idea looking at wedding sites, I made all the invites myself, and found packages for my flowers, and photographer (also my cousin used a professional for the wedding, and disposables on each table for the reception) looking around and make heaps of calls will help because you can bargin people down.

Allie - posted on 01/22/2011

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My wedding reception was in my godparents house/back yard (which is very open and good for large gatherings). It was the best wedding gift I received. We had a small wedding (only about 60 people) so that cut down on cost of food, the cake, and invitations/postage. Also, I got married on December 15th, so the church was decorated with flowers and candles so I didn't have to purchase the decorations in the chapel. Where I live, if you take a pre-marriage counseling course you get a discount on your license I don't know how that works in your state. Another cost cutting idea is to skip alcohol or the dj... instead of a dj you could make 4-5 mix cd's with favorite party/dance songs and just put it in a multi-cd changer stereo.

As for the car/new job situation... you can buy cheap cheap cars at police auctions! I know it sounds crazy but if you're looking for something cheap I'm pretty sure the auctions happen once a month.

Good luck! I'm sure what every you end up doing with be wonderful! And congratulations on the wedding!!!!!!

Claire - posted on 01/22/2011

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for our wedding,instead of friends and family bying gifts for us.they did things for the wedding,one did our wedding cake,one did all the flowers,one of my friends had a nice old fashioned car,and put ribbon and flowers on it and drove me to our wedding,find out if any of your family and friends ahve got any hidden talents and would be willing to do help you out in this way instead of a gift x x hope your day goes well x x

Brandy - posted on 01/22/2011

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we had our wedding at hollow park in ohio it was nice because you have to drive down into the hollow wear it was nice and cool from all of the trees etc, we had the ceremony next to a brook under an arch decorated with tool and flowers just me and my husband no wedding party and we paid the mayor 50 dollars to marry us and it was short and sweet so our guests just stood or sat on the grass. near by there was a covered shelter with picnic tables and counters with electrical outlets etc and bathrooms on the other side as well as a small playground on the other side of the building. the location was free so we used our money to decorate we covered the tables with table cloths candles and small pots of daisies wrapped in tool the rest of the decoration was the beautiful back drop of the trees and the water etc we had a local carry out who does not normallly cater deliver food to bring food that we set out buffet style on the counters in the back. my aunt made our cake because she makes beautiul cakes and my other aunt who does photography took pics. we did not open presents at the wedding and everyone was asked to dress casual, so everyone came casually dressed up lol. it was really nice and relaxed everyone to this day tells me that it was the best wedding theyve ever been to because it was nice but relaxed and our pics turned out beautiful. so this is about what we spent
mayor 50.00
food and drinks 100.00
decorations/flowers 30-40 dollars
cake free
venue free
entertainment free
photoraphy free
total about 200.00 also there were no invitations to buy because we planned our total wedding in less than a week called people up and told them if they were available we were getting married lol so zero stress!

Gina - posted on 01/22/2011

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Our wedding was very inexpensive.. I had already had my dress, tuxes were $80 for 3 of them, we got the church for free, thankfully.. we rented a pavilion in the park near the lake for $50. and though most people find it tacky we had a potluck reception since it was all family and close friends.. but still you can usually find local establishments who don't charge an arm and a leg for their food.. and it all depends on how many guests you have too.. so for the most part I think we had to pay less than $500 for our wedding... Ideas could be if you know people who are very good bakers, can arrange flowers, take photos/videos... Another idea is to print up your own invitations, which can save you hundreds of dollars too...

Heather - posted on 01/22/2011

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Mine was $1500. Go with outdoors a tent rental is cheaper. Scrap the bridal gifts. We gave everyone cameras and got awesome shots that way. Think about what you need versus what you want. You will get there. Alot of websites have do it yourself decorations. Good luck!

Heather - posted on 01/21/2011

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My wedding was ridiculously inexpensive (but tasteful) of course we did not have time to plan the little details (we planned the wedding in 4 days) I wore a white dress I already had, made my own veil, we had the reception at the church which my Aunts "catered" (they have done this for most of my cousin's weddings), the church does not allow alcohol, so that got us out of having to have a bar. Our cake was made my a caterer who works from her home (very low overhead) and she topped it with flowers from the floral shop where we got my bouquet and flowers for the alter. We bought a unity candle, and a guest book, and put disposable cameras on all the tables - we only had a maid of Honor and a Best Man as our Bridal party, which greatly reduced the amount we would have spent on gifts. We did not have time to book a professional photographer which is my one regret, but we still got some really nice pictures just from asking family and friends do send us copies of the pictures they took (most just emailed us the digital files). We also did not have time for invites (we sent out a mass email and made a few phone calls) but we did send out an announcement after the fact. My cousin didn't even use a florist she and her Mom made the arrangements and bouquets the day before her wedding using flowers her Mom had growing in her flower beds, and they were gorgeous - they had arrangements on every table! Her wedding and reception were outside next to a lake, they had 2 huge white canopies, and exchanged their vows on the dock so nature provided all the rest of the ambiance. (They had several campfires in the evening to keep the bugs away, which also helped keep us warm!) There are lots of ways to save money without your wedding looking cheap - my suggestion is make as much of the things you want like favors and decorations yourself, and evaluate carefully what you have to have and what is really not that important.

Renae - posted on 01/21/2011

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Try venues that dont usually do wedding. Go into all the restaurants in town and ask them if they would reserve the restaurant for Sunday lunch for you. They will tell you they dont do weddings, just say, just smile and say "well you serve lunch dont you"? Its just a large booking for lunch! The cost per head will be half of what it is in a "wedding venue".

Also go with a set menu or alternate drop, cheaper even than a buffet as they know exactly how many of each portion to order.

Do your own decs. Prepare your table centres beforehand (search the net and order everything online from asia!), drop them at the restaurant and have the staff put them out when they set the tables.

Make your own cake. Seriously, if you can bake at all, you can make a gorgeous wedding cake. Fondant icing comes in a tub, you just roll it out and lay it over. Add flowers, ribbons and a cake topper and it will look like you paid hundreds. Give it a try, make a small version trial cake and you will be amazed how easy it can be.

Give away cut peices of wedding cake in pretty cake boxes as your favours. Or order chocolates with your names and date printed on them and give out little bags of chocolates (google "customised chocolates" and order them online).

Hire your own chair covers and bows and get some friends to put them on before the ceremony in the morning.

Contact a photography lecturer at a local college and ask if they have a star student who would like some portrait practise. Do a trial run with them to check how the photos turn out before the wedding day.

Look through the phonebook and find a small florist or someone working from home, rather than the typical places to go for wedding bouquets.

Wedding bands - well this is not where you skimp, IMO, you will wear it every day for the rest of your life so you have to get the one you really want!

Hope this helps.

Jennifer - posted on 01/21/2011

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my husband and i had a fabulous wedding and we invited over 100 but only around 30 or so actually showed up. the whole thing was AWESOME, fun and beautiful, and it all cost less than 10k. we were also on a tight budget but didn't want to skimp on the celebration. we had our ceremony and reception in the same place, inside a banquet hall. it really pays to shop around and don't be afraid to barter! for our photographer we called someone who was just getting wedding experience under his belt and so we were able to barter (even easier) with him and to make the package cheaper all we asked for were all photos, both original and edited on disc and mailed to us. it's cheaper and more fun to print and make the album yourself. if i remember correctly that only cost us about $700 but i'm sure you can find cheaper. we even bartered with the officiant, when we said he was over our budget and said 'thanks anyway' he called back a few more times with lower prices over the next couple days. also when choosing a place, make sure that they don't dime and dollar you on every detail like a lot of places do. they'll charge you like 10c per real plate otherwise you get paper, same for cups, silverware, chair covers, sashes, napkins and whatnot. for us the chair covers were extra, the sashes and napkins were not. and they automatically used glass everything and didn't charge extra for being naturally classy. for table center pieces and wedding invitations and favors, my mom and i got all that stuff (and other wedding supplies) from Michael's craft store and put it all together ourselves. we skipped wedding party gifts and instead we paid for the tuxes (got a discount, look for deals!) and the bridesmaid dresses which i got on clearance. the girls also skipped the salon and did their hair and makeup themselves. anyway i can go on forever on all the little ways we saved so much, but instead i'll just send you the photos and let you get your own ideas. :)
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=20...
as for the videographer, we skipped that too and handed a friend of mine the handycam and asked him to have fun filming away (and he did!) we got lots of videos much like this one (and much much better ones):
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?...

anyway i really hope you find this helpful and good luck!

Ashley - posted on 01/21/2011

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our wedding was a amzing and it only cost roughly 500 if that we rented a small hall and did both the wedding and reception there my mom made our flowers by crocheting them and using fake flowers they turned out amazing... i got my dress at a outlet store for 30 dollars we just ordered pizza and salads had people make desserts it was a very lovely day .. i had my brother dj using his laptop ... all these things sound so easy but really when it all came together it was as good as an over the top wedding... we got a kit from walmart to make the invites they looked like we ordered them honestly its not that hard

Kelsie - posted on 01/21/2011

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ok...i didnt read what everyone else has posted but i do have a few suggestions so i am just gonna throw them out there. I got married almost 2 years ago. We were moving out of our home and in with my mother the week of my wedding. Money was tight.

I bought my dress through a Canadian outlet to save money but you said you already have the dress.

Tuxes are expensive...so rent. It really is worth it.

My mom and I made my bouquets. Fake flowers last forever so you have a keepsake and they look beautiful even if you make them months in advance. It is easy to spray a sparkle on or pin jewels into the center of each flower. We bought a foam ball and fake flowers from Walmart and stuffed the ball full and you can't even tell.

We did a cupcake cake from Albertsons. You can order as many cupcakes as you need in whatever color scheme and you can still save the top for the one year tradition. We paid 50 cents a cupcake...the stand was $50 but after the wedding I took it back and got that money refunded.

Our bridal party paid for their own gowns and tux rentals.

We did a BYOB reception. Put it in the invites that snacks will be provided and guests provide their own drinks. You can provide soda and juices but not the alcohol...thats a huge money saveer and everyone has their favorite cocktail.

Our invites were creat your own cards from walgreens. I put our picture on it and all the information and got 200 for like $25.

Each member of my immediate family (aunts, uncles and parents) made food. Instead of a caterer I had home made cookin and PLENTY for everyone. We did pulled pork and rolls, veggies, fruit, a chocolate fountain, 2 or 3 kinds of potatoes, salad bar (lettuce and a few toppings) and pasta with or without chicken. all easy to make and good for bulk cooking.

Make sure your reception venue PROVIDES tables and chairs and table cloths etc. Even if it is a little more it is worth it because that gets expensive. Our venue was an old chapel and we paid $300 for the whole day. We did our ceremony then our wedding party used some elbow grease to get tables out and set up (while we were in the receiving line) and then our reception was in the same place.

Christmas lights are FABULOUS! any color and many different bulb sizes and cheap on the off season....

our centerpieces were dollar store vases filled with dollar store rocks in our color scheme with LED lights from walmart...2 lights for $3...and water with glitter dropped in and food coloring. you could use candles if you wanted and add some fake flowers or greenery....

look online or in magazines and find what you like and then MAKE it. its cheap and alot easier than you think.

good luck! im sure your big day will be awesome! if you need anything else don't be afraid to ask :)

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wedding bands = you can get on ebay for very little money
license = can't help there it is a set amount
bouquets = it will be august, try thrift stores and such for fake flowers, ribbons, etc. and make your own
decorations = again try thrift stores or bargin shops they usually have good deals on bulk items. also try craigslist in your area as some people who can't sell their items will be willing to give them to you at a higher discounted price so with that in mind start at the bottom of the list and work your way current. (the worst they can say is no.
wedding favors = not everyone needs a wedding favor & shouldn't expect one either. For the bridal party try something easier like wrapping candy or jars or little bags with your colors as the ribbons to hold it shut.
gifts for the bridal party = if you insist on doing wedding favors for everyone I would suggest just simple candy in a small pouch and then something different like making coasters with old CD or DVD's that you don't use anymore. Get some of that felt material and cut a bunch of circles in it. (colors don't really matter since you wont see it so again think thrift stores) glue 2 circles to the bottom of each disk and wrap a set of 4 in ribbons in your colors
and the photographer = ok I absolutely LOVE this one. This is the easiest thing in the world! EVERYONE knows someone that takes really good photos almost every time. Ask them if they would be willing to take some photos for you. Then ask EVERYONE to bring their cameras and take lots of pics for you. (barring that you can buy the disposable ones cheap in bulk online and set those out, make sure you get the right ones for the area you will be in though)
I hope this all helps and give you some good ideas or that you can use some of these. Also remember that you CAN reduce the number of people invited. You DON'T have to invite everyone and since you are already supplied in your home you could ask people for cash instead of gifts. make sure to register somewhere and let people know that as well. You can put gift cards on there as well.

good luck and congrats!

Karla - posted on 01/21/2011

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We had fake flowers and they were so nice my sister did the same thing when she got married. The bonus is you can have them ready months in advance so less last minute stuff!
We weren't going to have a cake, nice tradition but didn't want to bother. My sisters boyfriend was a chef and offered to make it so we ended up with one.
We did not give out favors. Never regretted it either! No one seemed to notice.
We made our own invites, you can buy kits at staples or craft places.
We basically sat down with a list and decided what was important to us and meant the most. The we 'cut out all the crap'
We also bought icicle Xmas lights and cheap white sheets to cover the head table. Now we use the lights on our house but they looked great in the hall.
Good luck!

Crystal - posted on 01/21/2011

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You could always do a Morning wedding then A Breakfast(more a brunch). Talk about tradition. Back in the day people got married at the town church and then had a breakfast for the guest. It was normaly banquet style. Keep the flowers simple, yet again look at what they would of done about a 100 or so yrs ago.... I personaly like closer to 2 or 3 hundred. Pictures are a must!! Do not skimp.

Depending on how many people look at doing it in a small intimate setting. Do light colors (yet again referance to the past) and simple flowers and foods.

Candi - posted on 01/21/2011

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oh yeah, my cousin made our cake and for wedding bands, we just bought cheap bands. I didn't get a diamond until 2 yrs later. I didn't even care, but my husband wanted me to have one. for our 2nd anniversary we got new bands too. When it was all said and done, we spent less than $400. We had all the extras, guest book,. big feather pen, cake topper, garter, the whole bit. My dress is hanging in my closet and my daughter swears she will wear it when she gets married. She is only 10 now. Hopefully I can hang onto it a little longer....

Candi - posted on 01/21/2011

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My wedding was the budget wedding. My husband was in the military and we had one free day to get married before going to his next duty station. He was living in VA and I was living in SC. We had 3 weeks before marriage and heading to Alaska! My dress was beautiful and a discontinued style. On sale for $99. Since we got married Dec 21, our church was already decorated. Woohoo! Flowers for me and my 2 bridesmaids was $115. That was disappointing. I could have made them for a lot less and made them look better. My bridesmaids paid for their own dresses $50 each and they were dresses they could wear again. Family members took pictures. I love the candid shots. All the men rented their own tuxes. The reception was finger foods. Nobody should go to a wedding hungry. The pianist, the music, preacher, church, fellowship hall, etc. was all part of the low low budget we had. We ended up getting more $$ as gifts than we spent on the whole wedding. It was beautiful and people thought we spent thousands. Just remember, if you wear a $10,000 dress or blue jeans, you're still married. Marriage doesn't apply to those who spend way too much. Who wants to start off a marriage in debt over a wedding anyway? Finances are the number one reason for divorce...give yourself a headstart and start debt-free!! I didn't do party favors either. People came or not. It didn't matter to me. The only people that mattered most were our parents and each other. We got married in 1996 and our biggest debt to this day os a new van we bought last year. We are frugal..or as I say Cheapskates!!! But we don't do without.

Christine - posted on 01/21/2011

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I spend about 500 for my wedding 75 for my dress and the wedding bands were actually a gift someone gave us as a wedding gift, that was lucky, if you are looking to go that cheap send me a message, not sure how cheap you are looking to go, but it can be done cheap and still be nice. I noticed a lot of people saying no alcohol that is actually one thing we did to cut back on costs and got the sparkling JUICE, Don't be afraid of Thrift stores as you can find some amazing things there , that are not only cheap but can be antique and have more monetary value than if you bought new. We found our wine glasses in a thrift store which we had personalized, and they were so gorgeous compared to the cheap knock offs you find in wedding stores these days. A lot of people are against Thrift stores and they think they beneath them , if that is your point of view than I suggest seeing what the family has to offer in skills such as a family member can be the DJ, or the family can cook the food and it doesn't have to be "redneck "style just because you cook your own food. Also make your own party favor as one person suggested and I really liked her idea as well.

Cyndel - posted on 01/20/2011

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I have a few suggestions,
*We waited for sales and looked for coupons in craft stores for decor.
*We used fake flowers and arranged them ourselves, a little at a time.
* My brides maids each carried one tulip and I carried a lily.
*My brides maid's dresses were sundresses (I was married Aug. 4, 2006), that they could wear again and again, as were all of the shoes.
*My mother and I made the food, except for the cake.
*Mom knew a retired wedding catterer who made the cakes for a major discount. We mostly had to pay for the ingredients.
*The church and fellowship hall were free.
*My brothers band played during the reception, for a reduced price.
*My mom and her two best friends did most of the setting up.
*The Photographer was the only disappointment, she took pretty good pictures, but she didn't listen to me, she was pushy, ignored what i wanted, and had a wierd personality.
*We didn't give favors. I don't believe in bribing guests to come to my wedding lol.
*We had no alcohol.
Other then that it was wonderful.
My wedding cost only $2000.

But don't forget it isn't the first day of marriage that is the most important, it is the last. What will you say about your marriage, your husband on the last day? Aim for a wonderful last day, every day of your marriage!

Nikkole - posted on 01/20/2011

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I agree with having a smaller intamate wedding then when you renew your vows have a big one!! But hey talk about cheap wedding mine was $800 :) i got married when i was 18 and we didn't have much money but our wedding was amazing! I bought my dress at davids bridal for $100.00 and it was beautiful,i bought the flowers the night before and made my own bouquet and the brides maids and guys flowers,food me and close family made everything, my cake i had someone make it,veil i bought a plain one and put little crystal jewels and pearls to match my dress, at the reception i made a video of pictures of us growing up with music then pics of us together,music my friend made a crap ton of cds ad handled that for us! good luck! this is what my dress looked like



http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1...

Kimberly - posted on 01/20/2011

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Some other ideas for keeping thing down in cost are for bridal gifts you can always buys cheap wine glasses and have them ingraved with your guys names and date of wedding for the bridal party. Gifts to guests can be a small photo of the happy couple saying thank you that you can get someone to print from a laptop onto photo paper on the day. Also check out craft shops and make your own invite as this saves heaps and if easier then you think. Have a cash bar if you really want drinking, instead of a dj do a junkbox or even i pod with heaps of songs, do cocktail instead of sit down. and biggest thing to remember out of all of this is that you are marrying the person you love dearly and its YOUR special day so enjoy it and dont worry about what family and friends think you do it how you want to celebrate your love for each other hope you have a great day!!!

Ricky - posted on 01/20/2011

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I cant really help you on much of the wedding but I may be able to help you cake wise.
If there is a culinary school near you, see if you can get a student to make your cake. When 1st starting out we (I graduated pastry school) start out cheap. I started out doing cakes for $2.50 a slice compared to $4-5/slice at bakeries.
If you are brave you can make your own cake, If you can bake and are even slightly artistic making a wedding cake is not that hard and you can get lots of tips on how to make it online.

Kelina - posted on 01/20/2011

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another thing you an do is have an open wedding. Everyone who wants to can come to the wedding but only certain people can come to the reception. Don't bother with booze. have a bottle of champagne or wine on each table(only one!) for the toasts. and I do mea only one bottle on each table, otherwise you wind up with a bunch of open bottles that are 1/2-3/4 full. If you set it up right you can have a potluck wedding. I would have done that but my husband wouldn't let me. You could also get a few friends in on the catering and see if there's any teens whos parents are willing to volunteer them to help out with decorating, cleaning and serving. My whole wedding cost about $3000. We did all the decorations ourselves, had a friend cook the food so all we had to pay was the food cost, paid like $250 to bribe 5 teenagers who set up the food, supervised cleanup of dinner and the reception hall as well as the church, etc. If you don't have any friends with teenagers in your area .look up an organization called young life. see if they're in your area, and have any teens fundraising for camp. For favors we bought a bunch of candy from walmart and tied them up in nets with ribbon. over two hundred favors for like $30. The church hall we rented came with table cloths and silverware. and my sister in law made the cake and took all our pictures so that was free. We also decorated the church by ourselves. doing a wedding on a budget is definitely doable, you just have to be creative. Good luck and congratulations!

Lisa - posted on 01/20/2011

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I think a sunday brunch wedding is extremely classy. In my opinion, weddings are beautiful but they have become more about the dance and party then the true meaning, which is that you are taking very serious vows with someone you love. And if your family doesn't like your decisions, tell them that you will let them have whatever they want but they have to be willing to pay for it!! :)

Lesley - posted on 01/20/2011

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Here are some ideas to keep your budget down. I had a friend who was on an extremely tight budget with an enormous family that had to ALL be invited. Wedding favors: we went to the local craft store (Michael's) and bought chocolate molds (about $3 each) in wedding bells. Bought chocolate in her wedding colors (Amethyst and ivory) and made our own chocolates. Wrapped them up in cute little bags and ribbons. Her guest list was 200 people and this cost us about $30. Flowers: she scoped out the neighborhoods for people that had rose bushes and asked them if we could cut the roses days before the wedding and use them. They were more than happy to accomodate - it saved them the trouble of having to prune the roses themselves. We wrapped them in ribbon that matched the bridesmaids. (cost $8 for the ribbon and a few thorns!). Food: instead of a sit down dinner, we did appetizers. For months we made little hordeurves and froze them. We ended up making so many...that folks ate for hours! We hired some of the bridesmaids older children to heat and serve at the banquet hall. Photographer: We made a deal with a photographer.....he would take the photo's for $200 and just put them on a disk for her. She would do all of her own cropping, etc. As a result she ended up with 3000 photos of the wedding and reception at a fraction of the cost. Center pieces and table coverings: We made all of her center pieces and purchased everything at the crafting store. Tule, flowers, candles, etc and had a get together with the women of the family to asseble. Lots of fun and gabbing. These were given to the wedding party as gifts at the end of the day. (cost $50). The table linens were rented. Another deal was struck. Instead of paying full price, we put down the deposit with understanding that the deposit would be refunded if we had them cleaned, pressed, and returned within a certain time frame. (cost $0). There are tons of ideas that can be done and no one will know that corners were cut. Weddings were meant to be a celebration not bankruptcy for the bride and groom.

Rebecca - posted on 01/20/2011

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You looked gorgeous Emma. Looks like a beautiful day! :-) Love the colour of the bridesmaid dresses.

Rebecca - posted on 01/20/2011

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I completely know what you mean about wanting to live up to family pressures, but you can't really afford it. My biggest tip is: remember it is your day. You could spend $100) or you could spend $1000000000- and you will still have people complain about both. You have to do what suits you and your budget. And real friends would understand that and encourage you in it.



Fake flowers are a huge money saver. Do the invitations yourself, and the name cards for the table. My cousin had a backyard wedding and it was absolutely beautiful. It all has to do with how you do it. Some things she did:

- She had a standard wire arch and used some gorgeous fabric and fairy lights to decorate it.

- She hired some chairs and then just used fold up tables from a few friends and covered them so no one knew they were cheap.

- She did a buffee table for all the food. It was absolutely lovely, and all if it came from her mum, sisters and other family members. They had very basic food but was put together so nicely.

- They had citronella flame torches all around the outside of the yard and garden area which they lit and it kept all mosquitos away.

- There wedding was at 4:00pm and the heat of the day was gone by then.

- They had a wishing well (which they told everyone on the invitation) so everyone gave them money instead of gifts. That helped pay for things also.

- She prepared everything a few weeks before hand. We had big plastic containers with all the table stuff- table cloths, napkins folded in them, all the name tags, all the candles in one and fake flowers in another, etc etc. Then 2 days before we laid them all out in set areas so on the day of the wedding we could easily set everything up.



Here is the website that inspired her and if you would like any more ideas, I have all her check lists and to do lists that I can look over for you. (http://www.younghouselove.com/wedding-al...)



Oh her whole wedding came to around $3000. And nobody knew that except us. People kept asking me what wedding planner we had in because it looked so elegant. She did an awesome job, and they had a perfect day. That is what matters... you and your hubby having a great day.



Good luck

Stifler's - posted on 01/19/2011

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i'm not really sure, my wedding wasn't that cheap. it was reasonably priced but still cost a fair bit. i do have some tips though...

buy shoes you can wear again
ask certain guests if they want to choose you a cake knife and server instead of a wedding present so you don't have to buy one
don't have a cupcake tower, they reek of cheapness. get your grandma to make a nice cake or mum. my mum made ours. including paying for the ingredients.
don't skimp on the photography, it's the only thing you have left of your big day.
2 of my friends got fake flowers from spotlight or ebay and made their own bouquets... much MUCH cheaper than what i paid for bouquets.
hire a decorations company, don't settle for the first one ask what they charge and look around for the cheapest with the best stuff for your money. saves on stress of setting things up the day before.
screw favours, you don't have to reward people for showing up to your wedding. just get chocolates or something for the tables for people to eat.

there's probably more. but i can't think of it all. there's so many things i wish i did and didn't do at our wedding!

Codie - posted on 01/19/2011

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i love this idea! i guess i worry so much about what everyone will think. my family are all about doing things propper and appropriately. how do i cut corners without them looking down on me bc i didnt things the way they think a wedding should be done? i want to cut costs without sacrificing quality. i also spent $450 on my dress so i want to make sure i get my money's worth out of it and that as many of my friends and family get to see me in it. it was refreshing to hear someone else suggestions other than friends. they all told me to have a "redneck wedding" if you watch cmt you know what i'm talking about. i mean litterally a cook out in my back yard. that's not my style or taste, or for that matter, what i would like people to look back and remember about my wedding. if that works for some people more power to them, but the hillbilly thing doesnt work for me lol.
thank you so much for your ideas! :)

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