(Closed) Cutting costs

posted 5 years ago in Money
Post # 2
Member
1883 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

-A lower-cost venue (if you can find one that includes things like centerpieces and chair covers in the price that is even better)

-Make your bouquets (go to Walmart/Dollar Tree for cheap faux flowers) and don’t use real flowers for decor either

-Food is a huge part of the budget, so you may want to do buffet-style. Pasta and a basic salad can be more cost effective

-Have the wedding ceremony outside (sounds off, but not much is more beautiful than nature and you may not need to decorate

-Look for affordable cakes. If you do a non-standard cake or cupcakes it may be cheaper

-Plan it all yourself. Coordinators cost money and you can plan it alone.

-Skip the limo. We got married at a hotel (where we were stayed the night of the wedding). If you can have the wedding and reception in one place, you won’t need transportation for you or your guests.

-Get an affordable dress. My dress was purchased at the end of spring over 2 years in advance. So, it was on final clearance and came with an undergarment for $230. Same goes for shoes and accessories. My birdcage mini-veil was bought on clearance for less than $20.

-Cut down on your guest list. We had a total of 50 people. It was just right. I can’t imagine planning for 100+ people.

Post # 3
Member
177 posts
Blushing bee

You already have the hall rented, but getting married in the morning or afternoon and on a Friday or Sunday will save you the most money. The priciest time frame to rent a venue is Saturday evening. 

Cut down the guest list. You not only save on catering, but also decor (fewer tables, fewer centerpieces).  I would recommend cutting children first, then plus ones. (This is controversial, so proceed carefully.)

Do your own hair and makeup.

Small bridal party.  Each additional person needs hair/makeup, a bouquet/bout, and a gift.

 

Post # 4
Member
1238 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2017 - The Lodge at Little Seneca Creek

We have a budget of $10k. We’re just over that at $10,500, but I’m not complaining! Here are ways we cut costs:

  • Guest list is only relatives and close friends (inviting 90 people, expecting 50-75), and the wedding party is just our family (my sister and her Fiance, and his sister, her husband, and their two kids)
  • Venue is owned by the county parks and rec, and we’re getting married on a Friday, rather than a Saturday
  • Used our friends whenever possible (officiant is a friend, photographer is a friend of a friend, cake baker is a co-worker’s sister, borrowing lanterns from a friend for part of our centerpieces)
  • Having BBQ for dinner, which comes out to $15/person
  • Bought my wedding dress from Tradesy for $200 (with alterations costing $300–ugh! but at least it’s cheaper than most dresses)
  • Sent e-Save the Dates through Paperless Post for free
  • Ordered our invitations on Cyber Monday for 35% off and free shipping
  • Using flowers that are in season and not having elaborate bouquets or centerpieces
  • Considered not having favors but found heart-shaped flower seed things for $25 for 75
  • Purchased shoes, undergarments, and other accessories on sale (and nothing too elaborate)
  • Will be doing my own hair and make-up
  • Going on a short “mini-moon” for the long weekend after our wedding and will be saving up for a larger honeymoon a few months afterward

We chose not to have a wedding planner, videographer, additional lighting/photo booth, a special getaway car, ceremony programs, a lot of ceremony decor (since we’ll be getting married outside), and welcome baskets.

Post # 5
Member
19 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: September 2017

I Grouponed our invites (weddingpaperdivas) and are having guests rsvp through a website to save a bit on cards and stamps. I also grouponed our engagement photos for $40. We aren’t doing favors and have gotten a lot of our big decor pieces (doors/mirrors/etc) from a Habitat REstore for $15. Costco flowers are sold in bulk and just need to be arranged. 

Post # 6
Member
521 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2017 - Lake Louise Canada

-Forget real flowers, you can make centerpieces with candles etc for waaaaay less

-we did online rsvps instead of cards and saved $50

-forget favors, most people dont even take them

-do your own makeup/hair

-wear shoes you already own. If your dress is full length they’ll hardly be seen

-consider simulants instead of diamonds in wedding bands

-wear a white everyday dress or bridesmaid dress instead of one marketed as bridal

-the biggest saver is less guests because almost all costs are associated with quantity of people

Post # 7
Member
612 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2018

I’m doing all save the dates/invites/rsvps online instead of paper. Luckily for me one of my bridesmaids is a graphic designer, and she offered to design them, then I’m just emailing them off and having RSVPs through the website. Has worked really well so far. 

So on that note… I echo pp who said use friends – you might be surprised what resources you find amongst your guests and most people are happy to help as their wedding gift to you.

Also, I cut a lot of costs by using vendors who are new to the business. They don’t have as many reviews or experience, but a lot of them are really eager to get their businesses off the ground and provide top work. You can find a lot of photographers and entertainers (DJs/musicians/etc) in this category. My baker just started her cake business and operates out of her mom’s kitchen – her costs are low – but her designs are as amazing a something much higher end! Actually, she worked as a pastry chef at the 4 seasons before setting off on her own haha…

I would start by maybe putting out a call on facebook? You never know whose a friend of a friend…

Post # 8
Member
880 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

We did invites through Sam’s Club. Costco also has really nice ones for similar price ($17/25 invites).

Flowers are from a grocery store and we shopped around for cakes. I would have done a grocery store cake as well but found an awesome inexpensive bakery.

You don’t need much decor. Modest centerpieces are more than enough. Don’t fall into Pinterest traps. Also, no need for favors or other such things.

Do your own hair and makeup. Wear shoes you own or buy ones that you will most def wear again.

And yes, cut the guest list. It’s the easiest way to save costs.

Post # 9
Member
9436 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

Cutting your guest list is one of the most effective ways to save money. Less people means less expensive.

Florals are a good place to save. You can do non-floral centerpieces and skip any type of floral decor for the ceremony.

Have a smaller wedding party or none at all. Less bridesmaids and groomsmen means less bouquets/boutonnieres.

Use an ipod instead of a DJ

Skip favors (totally unnecessary)

Skip programs (totally unnecessary)

Skip menus, signs, and guestbooks

Time of day can be a real money saver – if you do a early afternoon wedding you can save a lot on food by not needing to serve a full meal or even a brunch wedding in the morning can be less expensive than dinner.

You can order invites from VistaPrint or another inexpensive alternative.

Skip Save-the-Dates – you can always spread your date by word of mouth

If you are comfortable with it, you can always do your own hair and make-up

Have a family member or friend officiate the wedding

Buy a used dress or look at bridesmaids or prom dresses that come in white

Skip having a videographer

We found our photographer on thumbtack for a great deal

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