WOW Your Guests And Have A Perfect Day With A LOW Wedding Budget
Your friends and relatives will ask you afterwards how you managed to pull off such a lovely wedding on such a small budget. You can direct them here!
Plan to fail if you fail to plan
Wedding Planners and Organizers
OR .. you can start making savings right now and print off a FREE wedding planner checklist such as that provided by Martha Stewart. This is a very comprehensive wedding planning checklist that is available as a PDF doc. It includes a wedding timeline, budget planner, guest checklist, photography planner, music planner, flower planner and reception seating planner.
Set the Budget and then Set Budget Priorities
- Wedding Insurance
- Venue incl. catering, entertainment, drinks, toast, decorations, flowers, favors
- Wedding Cake
- Ceremony (officiant, church booking etc. incl. flowers)
- Bride and Groom wear /jewelry/underwear/shoes
- Bridal Party, Groomsmen wear
- Flowers (button holes, brides boquet, bridal party boquets).
- Table and Room Decorations
- Invitations - 100 invites from $33 HERE!
- Save The Dates
- RSVPs and other stationery as desired
- Hair, Makeup, Nails
- Bridal party, Groomsmen thank you gifts
- Overnight Hotel
This will give you an idea of what is left re all those other things and it is on those other things that you need to focus your energies re making savings. That's not to say you can't still make savings on your dress and venue, you can! But the most creativity will come from the items for which you have the least cash available.
- Bridal Shower Chic
- Bridal Party Gifts
- Newlywed Gifts
- Gift Favor Tags
- Invitations - 100 invites from $33 HERE!
Beautiful Wedding Dress On A Small Budget
If going this route ensure you allow a small budget in case you need alterations and give yourself a LOT of time to hunt down the perfect dress.
There are lots of Facebook groups and eBay lists etc. as well as Charity, Thrift stores that sell wonderful pre-loved wedding gowns.
Most importantly ensure your measurements as provided to them are spot on.
Borrow - sometimes a family member or friend has a wedding dress that they are happy to loan you with no cost to you other than specialist cleaning afterwards.
Make it Yourself - if you have the skill why not? I saw a beautiful wedding gown recently a bride crocheted! It was stunning. Many of us don't have those skills however, but if you do ... worth considering and what a wonderful sentimental keepsake that would make.
Buy a Prom Dress Instead - many prom dresses look a lot like wedding gowns and they're much cheaper.
Making Savings On The Bridal Party
Bridesmaids, Maids of Honor, Mother Of the Bride, Groomsmen, Bestman, Father of the bride, Flower girls ...
Wow it's an endless list with a LOT of expenses re outfits, shoes, grooming, hair and makeup for the ladies and gifts afterwards. The best way to keep costs down in this regard is to keep your bridal party small to non-existent. This may however NOT be possible if you have a large family who and friends list who want to be part of the special day. So what to do? Explain to your bridal party you're on a budget and so plan to keep things simple but elegant.
Ask them if they'd consider wearing something in the color scheme you're planning so they can take their place in the Bridal Party but explain that you can't purchase their outfits for them. If you're not dictating what they wear (outside of color theme) then this request is NOT unreasonable as they'd generally be buying something to wear to your wedding in any case. if they can't do this, they themselves are opting out of the bridal party and so that takes care of the 'we want to be in it' ordeal!!
You can also make savings on occasion buying pre-loved bridal party outfits but you then of course have the difficulty of finding a set that fits your bridal party!
How to Save Money On Wedding Flowers
How To Have A Low Budget Wedding Reception
Obviously you can only do this if you have the space! If you're planning a garden wedding reception, this will incur costs as you have to prepare for good and bad weather and that means shelter, possible heating and waterproofing. Unless of course you've also got room indoors! A garden wedding reception with a BBQ is a great way to save money and super fun and relaxed.
Book a local community hall, pub, church room
There are many places within most communities that have room hire services for weddings and they're not expensive especially if you agree to provide the decorations yourself.
To avoid the cost of hiring a room, you could make an arrangement with your local bar and food landlord to make a space for you, which they'll be happy to do with all that lovely trade coming their way. Then the guests can pay for their own food and drinks.
If you do this you can make massive savings on wedding venues. If the time, day of the week and the month of the year are less popular for weddings, you can sometimes save as much as 50% on the cost. Make sure you check their terms when booking and that any fee quoted is the same when the date swings by!!
How To Save Money On Wedding Photography
Friend/Family - this is of course the cheapest solution to wedding photography and videography however be aware that this person won't want to spend all their time (despite the fact its your day) taking photos and they may not take the photos you want them to take, so even if you do rely on a friend or family member re this DO try to have an element of organization agreed with them before hand, re what group pics you want and where they need to be when etc. And don't forget them in your thank you speeches and re gifts!
Have a Facebook Page - Create a page for all your guests to upload the wedding photos they took of your day, you will definitely have some there that are wonderful, unexpected and worthy of a place in the wedding album. You can pick your favorites, save them and upload to a site like SnapFish for cheap printing!
Book a student photographer, qualified new in business, out of season - all these will offer cheaper photographer rates than for seasoned professionals, established in business and of course will be cheaper off-peak.
How To Save Money On Wedding Catering
- Keep your guest list small
- Have a Buffet rather than a pre-set meal
- Do your own catering and rope in friends and family with culinary skills to help!
How To Keep Your Guest List Small
Exclude +1's and children that aren't in the bridal party - harsh but this keeps costs down catering for people you don't know and may in fact not attend.
How To Save Money On Wedding Music
- Record your favorite wedding songs and dance music and play it via your venues music device.
- Hire a local band who want the exposure and are happy to offer a reduced price.
- Recruit talented friends and family to do a stint.
- Have a karaoke!
How To Save Money On Wedding Cars
Save Money By Being A DIY Bride
You don't need to be crafty yourself, you can recruit helpful friends and family members to assist! A great way for enlisting your crafty friends to help with DIY wedding projects is to host a crafting party rather like a wedding shower but with a twist. Invite your friends, prepare the space, provide wedding crafting materials, a work space and refreshments (no alcohol, you don't want wonky fixings or spilled drinks!).
If you're a fan of rustic and shabby chic themes, you can source eclectic vases from thrift stores. On the subject of thrift stores, for a tea party vintage theme you can buy some very cheap pretty china from charity shops which you can use to make cake stands (dinner plates for this) and centerpieces using teacups filled with candy / flowers or turn the teacup into a home-made candle holder - fill with a wick and wax. Amazon also have a wide range of popular craft materials for making your own table decorations as well as books full of inspirational ideas.