Affordable but Elegant Rehearsal Dinners

Kelly - posted on 11/12/2008 ( 8 moms have responded )

16

10

1

Hi! My 22 year old will be getting married sometime next year. But with the economy the way it is and having had to pay for two kids in college and one in private school, we are tapped out. He is marrying someone from a family that has a bit more money than we do, and I desperately want to make our part of the wedding festivites nice, but affordbable! Any ideas? I'm planning ahead so that I can try to start putting some money away for the big event!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Kelly - posted on 11/18/2008

16

10

1

Yes. I'm hosting the rehearsal dinner. Sorry I wasn't clear about that. And I agree that I don't have to keep up with the Jones's so to speak. Just looking for ideas that are affordable, but elegant for the rehearsal dinner. Food choices, decor, etc. Was hoping someone on here had already hosted a rehearsal dinner and might have some fun ideas.

Kelly - posted on 11/24/2008

16

10

1

Thank you Jill for your ideas! I like the idea of making the most of our location! They haven't actually set a date yet, but I think it may be Fall..or even next Christmas...but I realize the time of year will definitely make a difference in where we decide to have it! I've given so many parties and I think themes are really fun...but wasn't sure if that was appropraite for a rehearsal dinner, but I love the idea of couple's favorite foods or putting the emphasis on where we live. We live in Denver..and so Colorado and outdoors go hand in hand...I guess our region would be best known for it's beef.....and "cowboy" food! Not that Denver is cow country anymore, but the bride's family ahs a cattle ranch in Durango, so it might be fun to use a ranch theme as well. You've got me thinking....and that's what I was looking for! By the way, Virginai Ham and Strawberry trifle sounds amazing right now!!!! Sounds like you like to cook! I do too! Thanks again for your help!

Martha - posted on 11/17/2008

281

738

85

I agree with Chris. I firmly believe that there is something lovely and tasteful that can be done with any budget. Not everyone's celebration has to be the cookie-cutter same thing. Are you hosting a rehearsal dinner or something like that?

8 Comments

View replies by

Trina - posted on 11/24/2008

6

0

0

I just planned my cousins sons rehearsal dinner for his wedding. We had a lovely sit down dinner at a nice resturant. Since we had to travel 4 hours to the brides home town that was easier than trying to plan something where we had to prepare the food. We kept the menu down to two choices that had everyone having to RSVP to make sure they were coming and what there menu choices were. Grilled Chicken or Prime Rib. The food averaged at about $30.00 a head not including desert. Dessert was going to be $6.00 a head so I had our local baker make 100 cupcakes @ $.50 each which was a lot cheeper and I displayed them on a 3 tiered holder. That why everyone got either chocolate or white. I did all the decorating myself in the brides colors of hot pink / black. If they want an open bar that's were your expense is going to be. You can pretty much figure the same cost of the bar per head as the food will be per head. We had 55 people and the food/bar tab was around $3,300.00. We also closed the open bar as soon as dinner was served. I think I spent around $350.00 for decorations. So we averaged around $66.00 a head with decorations. The main thing is keep the head count down. Our's brides mom went alittle overboard inviting local family. Our side had around 15 people (out of town guest) the rest was the brides family from there hometown. My cousin didn't say anything since the groom is her only child. If you can only afford the food part and your son wants an open bar let him swing for that.



My friends son got married in the spring and we had a bar-b-q on there property with also a seafood boil. (There family is in the seafood business). We got large white tents from our local banks, and set them up with the tables decorated in the wedding colors and theam which was teal/brown & beach. Candles in beach sand with sea shells.

Kelly - posted on 11/24/2008

16

10

1

Jen, Wow! Congratulations on being Mother of the Bride!!! 5 months is short, but I've seen it done...just lots of organization and keeping a cool head! : ) Finger foods sounds great too! I love doing appetizers...and getting freinds to help is a great idea! Good luck with your preparations!

[deleted account]

When is the wedding and what part of the country do you live?

I think that season and location can really give you good ideas. You can keep it casual.

In southern Virginia where I live, in May I would do a buffet of Virginia Ham biscuits, Chicken Salad tarts, fresh veggie tray with assorted dips, fresh steamed asparagus, and other seasonally available fruits & veggies, & fresh strawberry trifle.

One could rent a location or host it on your home and spend the $ to have a cleaner come in. We live on a farm, so in May an outdoor buffet around 6 - 8pm is quite lovely if the weather cooperates.

The flowers are blooming, from roses to peonies.

Candles are cheap and you can place them in sand in quart canning jars for a down home effect.

Make the most of your location in your part of the US.



Or, you could draw a theme around the couple's favorite food...

Maybe they love Mexican and you could do a fajita bar, baked chicken enchiladas, etc.

Same with Italian food.



Or perhaps you have the cash to do the rehearsal at their favorite restaurant.

I think you are only limited by your imagination.

You should ask yourself, what is it we are trying to accomplish with this rehearsal dinner...

This is a good time to blend the families and for the bride & groom to spend time with their wedding party. I've seen this accomplished with take out pizza @ the groom's parent's home, at the local Olive garden w/ family & friends, and at the local historic inn with gourmet food, where no expense was spared. All were fun evenings, and the amount spent had nothing to do with the success of the marriages.

Jen - posted on 11/21/2008

23

0

4

I am in similar circumstances - only I am the mother of the bride and the kids have given us 5 months to plan.

For the reception we are serving light finger food - and I will be asking a few friends to help in the preparation of that instead of a gift.

Chris - posted on 11/16/2008

3

10

1

How much can your 22 year old afford? How much can you afford? Those are the only 2 questions that need to be answered. That should set the scale of the wedding and other festivities. Forget about trying to impress the neighbours. I do not understand why parents go into debt, beyond their means so that their children can have a nice wedding....

Tell your son that you are able to give them x amount and what they do with it is their business, but that is your limit. There are so many nice and elegant things that can be done without going into debt.

His in-laws to be should respect the fact that they may be a bit more well off than you and scale things to that budget. You didn't say what your part of the festivities where.

Honest and open is the best policy. Good Luck!

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms