You are here to learn the best ways of how to have the look of an expensive, elegant wedding but cheap on the wallet. Once you’ve crunched the numbers and established a wedding budget, it’s time to get cracking!
Invitations. Scour the internet to find a blank wedding invitation template until you find the one that you want. Keep in mind your wedding colors and wedding theme if you have one, if not, go with the colors that you and your future husband will wear. Then, copy-paste the image of the blank template onto Microsoft Powerpoint. If you want to do the writing on your computer, just pick a font, word effects, and start typing. If not, look on youtube for tutorials on how to write in a particular style, like calligraphy, cursive or lettering. Print out the blank wedding template and just write on one invitation what you would like it to say in the fancy writing. Then, scan it into your scanner and print out a bunch! Be sure to include you and your intended spouse’s names, the place, date of the wedding, time, attire, and an RSVP by date.
Seating placements. A cheap option is to DIY with paper. You can use paper for seating cards, menus, ceremony programs, table numbers, and more. Make them each of the same, or similar, colors, fonts, and font sizes to make everything match up. You don’t need to be a graphic artist to find the perfect style, just search the web to find the blank templates that you love. You can always forgo this completely, and have a sign up that says “there are no seating arrangements, we’re all family here.” Husbands will always sit with wives, children will always sit with their parents or the other children, and friends will always sit together. This limits the stress that you need to set everyone assigned seats, which is so high-school anyways.
Lend. If you have a list of items that you want and need for your wedding ahead of time, send out a mass-email to your guests and ask if anyone has any of these items. Married friends may have leftover items from their weddings stored in the attic, that they never plan on using again. If they do, ask that they bring them to you as soon as possible if it’s just laying around and they’re not using it. You can even use this as “instead of gifts…” This is also a great way to involve your guests in your ceremony, fulfils the “something borrowed” ‘obligation’ of a wedding, and adds unique, personal touches everywhere in your ceremony and reception. That sentimentality is something that no amount of money could ever buy.
Cut down on the guest list. This is said on nearly every budget wedding website, blog and more; that’s because it’s true. You may be tired of hearing it, and I have mentioned it myself quite a few times in this blog, but it needs to be done. With every guest that you add to your guest list, the price tag on your wedding rises. The more guests are at your wedding, the less and less you will be able to stick to your budget. Instead of extending the invitations to acquaintances, new co-workers, or fourth cousins that you’ve met once ten years ago, don’t invite them. Invite your closest friends and relatives only, this way you will save lots of money and will be able to spend more on the things you really want.
Look in your own home. Rustic-chic, vintage and retro weddings are great themes to include some personal items from your very own home. Pick out those dusty old frames, armoirs, empty dressers, end tables, pretty sofas, stylish love seats, gorgeous arm-chairs, bookcases, chalkboards, antique lamps, and more! Bring them to light and bring them to your wedding reception area and post in pictures with them. This adds a homey touch to your intimate party.
Make it simple. Think like the japanese, who have a few key pieces of furniture in their home and forgo other items to favor spacious rooms. Too many things packed into one room screams disorganized. Simple touches that bring out other details are all it takes to make the room charming. Pastel tones don’t call too much attention to themselves, and go with any other colors.
Recycle. Whether you’re using real flowers from the best florist in the state, or silk flowers from Goodwill; recycle, reuse, and repurpose! After the ceremony, leave your bouquets behind so the employees can place them as centerpieces, chair decorations, and more while you’re out taking wedding photos. Ask the employees to also make use of pew bows, flowers lining the aisle, and anything else they can re-use. Pick your bouquets accordingly, and choose styles and colors of flowers that will suit as floral centerpieces. Already have a centerpiece in mind? The employees can pluck the petals from the flowers and scatter them along the dining tables, the dance floor, even your honeymoon suite to add a soft, romantic touch.
Rings. Don’t break out the thousants on a platinum beauty with a 3 carat rock; go simple with gold or white-gold. You can always go with sterling silver, but it isn’t as resiliant to scratching and wear and tear over the years. Get a solitare ring, or a diamond as your center stone and cubic zirconias as the corner stones. Not into diamonds? Ask to look at your out-of-the-ordinary rings with colored stones like emerald, sapphire, amethyst, jade, opal, pearl and topaz. To save even more money, go for simple bands made of white gold or gold and call it a day.
Accessorize. Don’t rely on mere flowers as decor for the entire ceremony and reception. Don’t forget to check out vases, scented candles, candle holders, bowls, beads, marbles, stones, crystals, and more at your local stores. Most of these can even be found at your local dollar store, goodwill and salvation army. You can even just scour your own garden to find pretty stones to include at the bottom of a transparent vase at your wedding.
Dress for Success. Custom-made and designer gowns skyrocket bridal dresses like you wouldn’t believe. Go to bridal shops and try on pre-made dresses that are on the rack. If this is still too expensive, visit goodwill and the salvation army. Even white prom dresses or Quinceniera, or Sweet Sixteen dresses can be re-purposed into beautiful wedding dresses. Drooling over your mother’s wedding dress, a friend’s, or another family member’s dress? Ask if you can borrow it, or buy it. If it is sold to you, you can make any changes you would like. Go to a dress fitting and a seamstress and ask to make the alterations that you want, whether it’s to change the neckline, hike up the hemline, or change the cut of the sleeves. Remember; if you aren’t the traditional type, your dress doesn’t even have to be white!
Here comes the bride. Have doves released when you enter, butterflies released, confetti or rose petals thrown into the air before you, a commanding song played loud and clear, and whatever else you can think of. Are you a great singer? Sing your way down the aisle with a love song dedicated to your beau, or a lovely tune expressing your eagerness to join in matrimony.
Picture perfect. Stunted in your budget with photography? There are apps in the app store and play store that you can easily download and have your guests download. With quality cameras now integrated into everyone’s phones, have your guests take photographs during the ceremony and reception and upload them to your website. Some apps even give you a special wedding hashtag so you can find them later easier. This way, you can hire a professional photographer for a shorter session than you would’ve had to before hand. Be sure to check out your friends’ cameras before the wedding to make sure that the app is a credible option.
Edible Centerpieces. Place the food in the center of each table in lieu of centerpieces. This is a genuinely eco-friendly option, as there is minimal waste when the reception comes to a close. For ideas, search the terms “Edible wedding centerpieces”, and save the images that are your favorite. Making edible wedding centerpieces are simple and budget-friendly, and a unique way to be creative. You can make the tables full of appetizers before the main course in lieu of your main meal as the centerpiece. Fill a vase with fresh fruit brochettes, cheese brochettes, baguettes, and more! You can add some flower pedals or candles around the food and call it a drool-worthy centerpiece.
Small touches can make a casual dinner look like a formal sit-down affair. Fold the napkins on top of each plate, and even into oragami if at all possible. Lay the silverware on one side of the plate, next to each other so the guests have to pick up the fork or knife and put it on the opposite side of their plate. Staff will often provide this special detail without additionally stacking up the price tag.
Spray it. Go to your local Walmart and buy metallic, grey or silver spray paint to spice up any tray, platter, or container. Douse it in two layers to make sure it doesn’t chip during the reception. Repurpose to use as parts of a centerpiece, or just props you want to match the rest of the decor.
Make custom CDs. Burn CDs and get an old-school CD player and hook it up to some decent speakers. Have a friend know ahead of time the songs, so (s)he can know when it’s time to go change the CDs to keep the music going. Some CDs can hold up to 20 songs.
Lighting. Use candles for a romantic glow, or wick-free flame-free candles from dollar stores or walmart. If you want to add scented candles that warm up the room, Scentsy is the way to go. Otherwise, dollar stores easily provide masses of candles in all shapes, colors and scents.
Go for a walk. Patches of grass that no one owns often has wildflowers grow freely. Pick flowers at the park, search gravel for special stones, check out ponds for shiny rocks. Anything goes, this is your wedding. Find what you can use, and take it home with you!
Venue. A friend’s backyard, a family member’s barn, an acquaintance who owns a restaurant; the possibilities are endless. If you have neither, there are always public parks that charge a license of about $200 maximum to use as a venue. Want a romantic, but classic place to wed? Look up local beaches and see if you can’t rent a private one for your ceremony. If you live in hot places like Florida, Texas or southern California, you can even have your wedding in April or May and still be fine. Off-season bookings are often cheaper.
Dinner time. Hire a food truck, ask friends to make their best dishes, cook up nifty appetizers; anything that will cut the cost. Variety and unique experiences are always things to remember. Want to go traditional? A buffet-style dinner saves on caterers and servers.
Forgo traditional wedding gifts and register for something different. An example is honeymoonwishes, which is a wedding honeymoon registry. This is way more practical than the three blenders and five sets of knives you were going to get anyways. This site gives you a code so guests can logon and make a donation. The money goes straight to a bank account that you choose, all in just a few days! Imaginel the honeymoon of your dreams without spending a dime! You can choose a cheaper vacation spot to make it more likely that you will get all the contributions that you need and that your goal will be easier to meet; Cuba and Thailand are two wonderful examples.