(Closed) Budget friendly swaps to make? Ideas?

posted 6 years ago in Money
Post # 3
5475 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

We skipped save-the-dates & ceremony programs. 

We had a plated lunch instead of a plated dinner. 

We used word-of-mouth suggestions and acquaintances for photography & DJ services. 

We booked an ‘all inclusive’ venue- meaning we didn’t need to rent chairs, tables, linens, plates, napkins, glasses, utensils, etc. 

Instead of doing traditional centerpieces and a candy bar, we used bowls of candy at each table as the centerpiece (with a few flowers as well, but not a whole bouquet at each of our 23 tables) and used clear baggies with personlized ribbon for guests to take candy as the favor. 

I also bought my dress off the rack at David’s Bridal and took it to a local seamstress for alterations.

We still had a fairly traditional wedding and reception with all our friends and family present to celebrate with us, but it didn’t have to break the bank!

Post # 4
6256 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: March 2014

Don’t go with an all inclusive venue, go with someone who allows you to bring in your own food, alcohol, and cake

Don’t buy fancy invitations, make or partially make your own

Don’t hire a florist. Either arrange bulk flowers yourself, or use non-floral decorations.

Don’t have a bridal party of more than six–for many reasons. Just have a few close friends. Even if you weren’t planning to buy their dresses anyway, you will spend less time/money on their bouquets, less money on gifts, and your sanity.

Post # 5
8444 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

Friday instead of Saturday wedding

DIY’d all invites and use the scraps for programs, signs, etc. instead of paying for each item (save 3-5 hundred)

DIY wholesale fresh flowers instead of using a florist (save 6-9 hundred)

DIY centerpieces out of trash items instead of using flowers (save 3-4 hundred)

DIY boutonniere alternatives instead of using flowers (save 60-100)

All inclusive venue instead of hiring caterers, servers, rentals, transportation, etc. (save $2000 compared to our alternative)

DIY custom cake topper instead or purchasing one/flowers on cake (save 1-2 hundred)


Post # 6
182 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

think outside the box, and be flexible on location. If we’d had our wedding in the city where we live, the venue we would have used was $5000 just for the space, tables and chairs. No linens, no food, no serveware, etc…It was GORGEOUS, but would have limited our wedding so much.

Instead, we looked farther away (about an hour and a half outside of town…this did not affect any of our guests, as everyone lives 2-6 hours away from us anyway), and found a historic home that was used for weddings and events. We got the whole house, tables, chiavari chairs, all linens, silver service, place settings, dishes, glassware, EVERYTHING for $600 from 8am-10pm.

Our entire wedding is just a touch over $5000 now, excluding dress, ering, and honeymoon.

Other ways we saved:

-I DIYed my sash instead of buying the $600 one I fell in love with at the salon

-I DIYed my wooden doll cake topper (I even made the “bride” one a dress and sash to match mine) instead of spending $$$ on etsy for one

-We are only using a florist for my bouquet and the boutonnieres, DIYing the rest (centerpieces, etc…)

Basically, I just did a lot of stuff myself, LOL!!


Post # 7
9548 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Prioritize!!!!! Be open minded. Don’t turn your wedding into a competition. Don’t get sucked into wedding blogs and images.

Post # 8
8041 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2013

@suburbian:  Use up and coming people for things like photography. It’ll be cheaper and they’re right out of school so they should do a good job since they’re trying to build their portfolios.

Do a buffet vs. plated dinner.

Do a rehearsal with only the most necessary people (or skip it).

Skip favors.

Make your own centerpieces.

Get a friend or family member to officiate.

Skip save the dates.

Do your own hair/make-up (same for bridesmaids) .Of course this only works if you don’t go and buy a shitload of products from Sephora 😉

Have fewer bridesmaids.

Decorate the reception venue yourself.

Have a backyard reception.

Cut the guest list. Do you seriously need to invite your tenth cousin twice removed?

Only do flowers for bride’s bouquet and maid of honor’s bouquet.

Have the wedding either off season or not on a Fri/Sat night

Buy a pre-owned wedding dress

Wal-Mart makes wedding cakes that are apparently really good!

Or… my personal favorite.. ELOPE! (Sorry, had to stick it in there).

Post # 9
850 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Do online RSVP to save on paper and stamps

If you buy a used dress, buy one in your size. I thought I was getting a great deal on a dress, but it was two sizes too big, and will cost me about $500 to alter. Oops.

Post # 10
810 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

bumping for later 🙂

Post # 12
8444 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

@suburbian:  These cost me just over $5 each to make (we’re all gamers), I think another bee (msfireflower (sp??) did really cute paper flower boutonnieres.  I’ve also seen ones done with feathers, buttons and beads.

Post # 14
9548 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

If you’re interested in nixing the florist – I’m making all our flowers out of paper! It’s going to take a lot of time but it’s going to be dirt cheap.

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