*First and foremost, only 80 guests were invited, and clearly not all of them will come.
*One venue for both ceremony and recepetion, and they aren’t charging any rental fees for the use of space, linens, centerpieces, etc. – just food and drink (which is enough, trust me).
*On that note, cash bar. Call me tacky, but I really don’t need to (a) spend a wad of money I don’t have and (b) encourage my best friend to get drunk and tell stories from college that didn’t happen or are extremely exaggerated.
*Also, an hors d’oeurves buffet instead of a sit-down meal. The food price per head is about the same, but there’s no serving staff to pay, place cards to make…
*… And no favors.
*DIY Save-the-Date cards, made of solid-color vellum paper and designed by me in Print Shop, and mailed in discontinued (i.e. discounted!) envelopes ordered from the same paper place.
*DIY Invitation kit bought online for ~ $50 (includes invitations, vellum sleeves to dress it up, envelopes, and RSVP cards and envelopes), including shipping.
*No programs. Instead, I’m going to have a list of bridal party members, musical selections, special thanks to photog, cake designer, etc. in an 8×10 frame by my guest book – so all the guests can see and read it, and I don’t need to kill more trees or pick up left-behind, wasted programs afterward.
*Free wedding website to keep information up to date (like, notifying everyone that the venue has changed ownership and names since I printed the invites… and it’s too fancy for the ill-behaved brats, so don’t bring them, especially since they’re not invited anyway). Also has our menu, local attractions, accomodations info, etc. on it, instead of killing more trees and spending more on postage to mail out a thousand pieces of paper/cardstock.
*DIY flowers ordered in a bulk wedding package online. (Haven’t done this yet, obviously, but Mom and I have been practicing our bouquet-making skills with fakes. lol)
*Non-professional photographer, a friend of mine from college who works in digital media/photography for his job. His work is excellent, and much cheaper than a pro. Plus I know he’ll be fun to work with!
*Non-pro cake… well, sort of. She works in a restaurant bakery, but not a specialty boutique or anything. She did my sister’s cake and a friend’s cake, and they were excellent.
*No tux rentals. The guys will all be wearing charcoal grey suits and white shirts they already own. (Actually, my FI needs to buy each, but he could use them for work anyway.) We’ll be supplying the ties as part of the groomsmen’s gifts.
*My dress was discontinued, so I purchased the sample for a good deal and was also given a discount on the alterations. That wasn’t planned, but a happy, money-saving accident nonetheless. 🙂
*Miscellaneous other crafty-type projects for decorative and personal touches. For example, I’m going to use wishing well cards as a guest book alternative (not to beg for money), so I’m decorating a little basket to put them in that will also double as a card box.
*Probably my best buy: 50 Rat Pack love songs on iTunes for $5.95. That will play for almost 3 hours, which is exactly the length of our reception. 🙂