How to do a cheap last-minute wedding

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Not everyone can plan a large wedding and take years to pull it all off. Some couples have a change in circumstances that makes for a rapid wedding. Whether a family member got sick, the bride or groom is terminal, or the venue cancelled last minute; you need to know how to pull everything together last-minute. This is true even if you have a week or less to get married. But can you pull it off without having to spend an arm and a leg? It’s possible, and here’s how.

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Go to church. Are you a church-goer? Are you baptized? Simply ask your local preacher, pastor or priest if they are available for a quick ceremony. They often charge a fee of about $100 for officiating, and you get beautiful wedding photos inside a church.

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Ask a friend. Can’t find an officiant last minute? Ask your friend to become one. They can easily get ordained online free of charge. Ideally this will be done at least a few days before the wedding so the friend can register with the clergy and ask overnight shipping of credentials.

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Grocery store. Want a reception afterwards? Even if it’s very small, you can get cupcakes, a cake, and ready-to-serve dishes. You can buy a cooked chicken and fresh veggies, fresh fruit, even pre-packaged veggies and dip.

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Potluck. Invite your friends and ask them to bring their favorite food or beverage. This way everyone is sure to have food to eat.

Backyard. No venue? No problem! Have the wedding in your backyard, front yard, or even a friend’s land. It’s no muss, no fuss, simple and easy.

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Garments. Everyone has been to at least one formal affair in their life, even if it’s just the prom at high school. Bust out formal wear and wear that to your wedding. You can also ask your mother for her wedding gown if you wish to wear it.

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Rings. Go to a jeweler or a pawn shop and buy rings that fit. Or you can buy rings later, some weddings don’t even have the couple exchange rings or wear rings at all.

Photographer. See if local professional photographers are available for your wedding day. Contact every single one and you’re more likely to have at least once positive response. If not, you can have family or friends take photos if there is no other option.

Flowers. You can make a bouquet out of silk flowers at the dollar store, wild flowers in a field close by, or grab your favorite blooms at a florist. The choice is yours!

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Music. The quickest, easiest and cheapest way to have the music you want is just to bring your iPod and possibly speakers, make a playlist and put it on repeat.

 

Cheap Destination Wedding Locations

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You’ve always wanted to get married somewhere exotic, tropical, or unusual. You don’t picture yourself getting wed in the same old country you grew up in, but in a new and exciting location. You look at your budget, and you wonder if you’ll have to wait years before that dream can come true. Well, look no further! Here are the cheapest destination wedding locations when you’re on a budget!

Image result for cuba destination weddingThese are photos of a couple that actually married in Varadero!

Cuba. By far the cheapest destination wedding country, Cuba is rich in culture, beaches and warm weather. Varadero is the city where Be Live Experience Varadero is located, and is listed as the cheapest location to host a destination wedding.

Image result for mexico destination weddingThis couple actually got married in Mexico as a destination wedding!

Mexico. The second-cheapest destination wedding country, Mexico is known for it’s amazing food, dance, music, culture and fun atmosphere. River Maya is the city where BlueBay Grand Esmeralda holds the next-best cheapest location for your destination wedding, and the cheapest in Mexico. Sandos Caracol Eco Resort is also located in River Maya and is breath-taking. In the popular tourist city of Cancun, Occidental Tucancun is a gorgeous venue to have your dream wedding. Also in Cancun, Riu Caribe is a beautiful, family-friendly space to hold your ceremony and reception.

Image result for destination wedding dominican republicThis couple really got married in the Dominican Republic in Punta Cana!

Dominican Republic. A fantastic vacation spot, the Dominican Republic is also very budget-friendly when it comes to vacations, destination weddings as well as honeymoons. Puerto Plata has the majestic Iberostar Costa Dorada where you can count on a dream-worthy wedding that won’t break the bank. Punta Cana has two beautiful locations for your destination wedding: Majestic Colonial Punta Cana¬†which is the most frugal option of the two, as well as Riu Bambu. Both are laced with palm trees and will make you feel like you’re in heaven.

Image result for Jamaica destination wedding sunscape splashReal Sunscape Splash wedding in Montego Bay, Jamaica!

Jamaica. Rich with music culture, Jamaica is the place to be, especially during the popular summer months. Ranking #4 in the cheapest countries to have a destination wedding, Jamaica has two cost-cutting venues that don’t skimp on the luxuries. In Runaway Bay, there is the Jewel Paradise Cove Beach Resort & Spa, Curio Collection by Hilton that is all-inclusive and up to par with anyone’s standards. In Montego Bay, Sunscape Splash Montego Bay will have you marveling at the beauty of the country.

 

Choosing your frugal headpiece

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Sure, you’ve picked what your wedding hairstyle will be. But what will you put on your head? From the traditional veil to other options, here is a list of the most popular choices for brides who want to adorn their heads on their wedding day.

Bridal hairpiece.

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Traditional veil. The history of wedding veils tells us that, in ancient times, the Greeks used it as a way of protecting the bride from evil spirits, while in Medieval times it was worn as a symbol of purity and chastity. The lifting of the veil was often a part of ancient wedding ritual, symbolizing the groom taking possession of the wife, either as lover or as property, or the revelation of the bride by her parents to the groom for his approval.

Veils are the most popular use of adornments for the head of a bride. Mostly due to tradition, brides often opt for this. They also grow up believing it’s just another part of weddings as they see weddings in magazines, tv shows and movies, even their own family’s photo albums. You can get a waist-length simple veil, or you can get one that has a train that trails behind you as you walk. You can have one just with the sheer material, or also have crystals, pearls, lace, and whichever else you’d like included into the design.

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Flower crown. Increasing in popularity, the flower crown, also known as a wreath, stems from many different traditions, so it’s hard to pinpoint it’s true origin. Flower crowns have been worn in ancient Greece, China, Ukraine, America, as well as in the Victorian and Midieval eras. The Greeks wore them in ceremonies that honored the gods, while the Chinese wore them during weddings. It was popularized in Europe in the Victorian era.

Elegant, simple, beautiful; why not wear a beautiful crown of flowers on your wedding day?

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Flower in the hair. We see it often in movies that someone tucks a flower behind their ear into their hair, so why not? Flowers are often used as a “signature piece” for hairstyles used in weddings.

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Headdress. Often used in Celtic handfastings, headdresses can be just another accessory, or have specific meaning. In pagan rituals, the High Priestess and High Priest can wear a headdress to represent their high status and proximity to the Gods and the Goddesses.

Want to feel like a Goddess and like true royalty? Go ahead and adorn your head with jewels.

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Veil headpiece. This is a modern take on the traditional veil and has an elegant feel to it. You can pair it with flowers and attach it to your hair, if it doesn’t come in a headband.

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Tiara. This can be paired with either of the other options. Often the choice at royal weddings, a tiara will make you feel like the princess that you are.

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Versatile comb. Combs with crystals, pearls and diamonds can come in various designs, colors and gemstones to perfectly accessorize the perfect bridal hairstyle. Stick the comb into your strands and voila!

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Have quality music at your wedding for cheap

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Want to save big bucks on your wedding? One way to do so is to find cheaper options on having music for your wedding. Whether it’s for the ceremony, for the reception or both, here are some great tips on how to have quality music at your wedding for cheap.

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iPod and speakers. Load your iPod up with a playlist of your favorite songs. Put it on shuffle or play them one after another in a specific order. Hook the iPod up to speakers so the music can be as loud as you want it to be.

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Hiring a local band. Do you know a local band that hasn’t been signed yet? Maybe they get a few gigs here and there at clubs? Talk to them about being hired to play at your wedding. They will charge way cheaper than any professional bands.

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Hiring music students. Students in the music and arts major can play really well, but can’t demand high prices due to their lack of professional experience. They will gladly take up gigs to add to their resume and charge a fraction of the cost.

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Hiring a beginner deejay. Seen a DJ at a few clubs and bars that’s just starting out, but knows what they’re doing? Talk to them about deejaying at your wedding.

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Hire friends/family. Do you know anyone that is in a band, sings well, plays an instrument well, deejays, or your friends or family knows someone? Hire them on. Even if they’re professional, they may offer you a family/friends discount.

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Hire a school band. Are you into classical music and orchestra? This would be great for hiring a school band. Whether it’s a high school or a college or university band, the price will be way cheaper than what you originally thought!

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Got more tips on how to save money on good music at a wedding? Comment below!

 

Choosing your first dance song

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Do you have no idea which song you should use for your first dance at your wedding reception? Would you like some suggestions on which song to pick for your first dance? Here are some suggestions!

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The song you first danced to as a couple. Maybe you went to a friend’s wedding and had your first dance there. Maybe you danced in a club. Maybe you took dancing lessons together. Maybe you slow-danced in the privacy of your own home. Either way, when in doubt, use the song that you first danced to.

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The song you dubbed “your song”. Couples often find a beautiful song that commemorates their relationship. Often they listen to it together and agree that this song is “their song”.

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The song that describes your relationship best. Have you heard a song that sounded like it was made just for your relationship? Use that song for your first dance! It’ll feel like someone is singing your love story as you dance to it.

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Your favorite song. If you and your significant other have two different favorite songs, you can create a mix of the two songs in one track. People do it often in America’s Got Talent for a song mix to dance to.

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A song to highlight your heritage. Someone from Latin descent may prefer a salsa, tango, foxtrot, samba, etc. song to dance to for their first dance. A Scottish couple may want to pick a Celtic song with bagpipes. An African-American couple may want a song that is significant in their country. A native american couple may want a tribal song. An Asian couple may want a Chinese, Japanese, Korean, etc. song that comes from their home country. Whatever song is culturally significant to you, or even a song like Born This Way for an LGBT couple, feel free to add it to your playlist!

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Their own song. Does one of the members of the couple have a band? Play one of their songs. Even better, have the person with a bad write a song for the couple’s first dance and record it in time for the wedding. The other half of the couple will be so surprised and honored, tears will surely be shed!

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The song that played during the proposal. Did your new husband propose to a certain song? Play it as your first dance song at your wedding. It’ll bring back happy memories and the moment the bride said yes!

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Can’t choose a song? Don’t worry, there are many “firsts” that are used in the wedding. There is the first dance with the couple, the father/daughter dance, mother/son dance, and more.

Frugal Seating Plan: None!

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There is often a bride’s side and a groom’s side at weddings. Families of the groom and friends of the bride are kept at separate tables. Why add the extra costs and keep the families from socializing? Save hundreds on placement cards and seating diagrams for your wedding ceremony as well as the reception by having no seating arrangements.¬†Guests may be expecting a seating plan, so let them know ahead of time that there will be none.

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What can help with a lack of a seating plan is a cute sign letting people know they can choose to sit wherever. Here is how you can make one of these gorgeous signs!

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  • Pick a phrase you’d like to be written on the sign. In this article, 5 different cute phrases are listed of how to let people know there is no seating plan.
  • Gather materials from Michael’s. You can get a chalkboard sign ready to sell, or take palates of wood to paint on with stencils, paint and paintbrushes.
  • Adorn the chalkboard sign accordingly and use stencils to write the message beautifully.
  • Put the stencils on the wood and paint over them in the color of your choice, to write the phrase you have chosen on your beautiful sign.
  • Lean on something at the wedding, like a chair, and voila!

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For the phrase that ends with “bride”, it can be used for lesbian weddings as well and be altered to, “when the bride kisses the bride”. If you are a gay couple, you can create your own phrase with the word “groom” in there twice. Here is an example: “We’re all family in this room, once the groom kisses the groom!”

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At the reception, you can prop the signs up against the cake table, food table, or even stick it on a door if it’s an indoor affair. A simpler way is also to use a stick of wood and nail it to the sign so you can stick it in the earth so it doesn’t move. This may be tricky on very dry or very muddy ground. You could always use wood to prop it on the surface of the ground like a frame on an end table.

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Do you have any tips on how to handle a no seating plan? Do you have a sign that you used that you’d like to share? Comment below!

“Staycation” Local Honeymoon Ideas

Do you plan on having a simple wedding, and want a simple honeymoon to match? Did you have that huge wedding and want an easier honeymoon? Do you have a small budget for your honeymoon?

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What is a staycation? A staycation is when you take a vacation without straying too far from your hometown, saving thousands of dollars. It can be as simple as exploring a neighboring town or shacking up at the nearest city to see the sights.

Bed and Breakfast. Head to your local B&B for some R&R after the big day. The rooms are beautiful, private and quiet. A B&B makes for an ideal secluded getaway.

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Hotel. Pick a hotel in your town or the neighboring one (or in the nearest big city), and choose a room. Pick one with a pool, hot tub, and whatever amenities you’d like.

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Go on a tour. Plenty of cities offer tours of the city and of historical sites. Book one for your honeymoon. If you live by a river or canal, boat tours are often offered as well.

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Camping. Take your newlywed with you to go camping and enjoy some private grounds and activities. If you’re outdoorsy, go in a regular tent. If not, you can bring your own trailer-tent.

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Glamping. Rent an RV, trailer, or mobile home to bring to a campsite. Pick one that has showers, bathrooms, a beach, and activities for you to enjoy. Glamping stands for Glamorous Camping. Often it can include renting a chalet, summer home, cabin, etc for the weekend.

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Backpacking. Hike to the nearest hill or mountain and go backpacking. Explore, be adventurous, and don’t forget your camera.

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Road Trip. Go where the road leads you and get lost together. You can look at a map and find local events you can attend and enjoy.

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What did you do on your frugal honeymoon? Comment below!