Post # 62
@mhackney21: I’m telling you, do a potluck wedding! You go from $3500 to practically nothing in no time at all. And because it’s on your parent’s property, you have the freedom to do this without it being out of place (or having to contend with the rules of your venue). This would also work perfectly since most people, as you say, are local. It sounds like they’re already super excited about your wedding, and would probably be thrilled to contribute in this way.
Post # 63
I know you say your friends would freak out without alcohol (I know mine would, hahah), how about suggesting a BYOB? I don’t know if that would be considered tacky (I am brand new to all this wedding stuff), but I wouldn’t consider it a huge issue to ask everyone to bring whatever they would like to drink.
ETA: Wow, everyone beat me to the punch, hahah.
Post # 64
@teaadntoast: I agree with this.
Post # 65
@tranquility: Exactly! Like people have said above, do a potluck, BYOB type event. You have to seriously check whatever idea you had for your wedding at the door, too. It’s all about practicality now.
If your friends are truly your friends, they will come sweeping in to help make your day as perfect as possible. DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP!
Post # 66
“Our friends would freak out if we didn’t serve beer and wine.”
So catering to 350 friends trumps your financial well being? With maxed out credit and pay day loans already taken out, you should not be feeding 350 people and buying them drinks, no matter how cheap the caterer is.
It sounds like you needed money before you even started paying the vendors, in light of the loan and credit situation.
My thinking: Drive to Dallas. Check David Ramsey and Suzie Orman audio books out of the library and listen to them on the trip.
Post # 67
@ddw: My thoughts exactly.
I know it must be terribly stressful and disappointing to plan your perfect wedding and then have this come up, but you’re going to have to make some concessions to pull this off. Just because you’re having to make concessions, though, doesn’t mean it won’t still be FABULOUS! People won’t care if there’s ipod music instead of a live band (actually, based on the weddings I’ve been to, I actually prefer ipod music…but that’s just me). They won’t care whether you’re eating catered BBQ or grandma’s special mac n cheese. They’re there to celebrate you and your new husband. Period. Your friends and family sound wonderful and I’m 100% SURE they’d prefer for you to enter into your new marriage with a little less debt (and a lot less stress) than having you bend over backwards to try to cling onto your vision of what your dream wedding looks like.
Post # 68
Whoa..that’s a truckload of people. I think it would have been less expensive to do a private ceremony in California and then do a reception out in Dallas. That’s just me though. I would say return your shoes and get some less expensive ones. And get rid of alcohol! It is not a necessity. DO NOT TAKE OUT MORE LOANS! Sorry for yelling, but you definitely should not be more in debt over something that is for one day. The marriage is what counts – not the wedding. Instead of doing cupcakes, do sheet cakes in the back – no one will notice! If you haven’t bought your plane tickets yet, try to find red-eye flights, or fly on an off-day. Try http://www.hotwire.com, they have good airfare prices.
I understand that you want all 400 people to celebrate with you, but if you can’t afford it, then you can’t afford it. That’s the bottom line. If it gets down to the wire, and you still can’t afford it, you may need to postpone the reception util you have the money. A lot of vendors will still let you keep your contract if you explain to them that you need to change the date. That’s not unheard of. You can still get married, but just celebrate at a later date. I think your family and friends will understand, and your credit and wallet will love you for it.
Post # 69
I would also cancel plans for your FI’s suit and nix the plane tickets and drive to Dallas. I understand your thinking behind having a band, but you can’t afford it. Do you know anyone in a band who would be willing to play your wedding for free? You can still do an Ipod reception and rent speakers.
I would check all your contracts and find out if you can cancel some of the stuff that you have paid for already and get some money back (if not all).
If you can’t cancel the caterer or don’t want to do a potluck, I would get rid of the tables/linens/silverware rentals and try to beg tables and linens from friends and family. The silverware is tricky for 350 so you could (and I would only do this if you are still going to cover food) ask everyone to bring their own plates and cutlery. See if it’s cheaper to buy mixed matched plate sets from the Goodwill and then sell them on Craigslist after the wedding.
Do not take out more loans for this wedding.
Post # 70
@teaadntoast: i agree with you!
you want to come up with the money but don’t borrow more. interests are ridiculous and you don’t want to keep putting yourself into MORE debt! come up with the money by earning it! like PP says, side jobs, babysitting, dog walking, garage sales, sell things you don’t need on e-bay, etc. work out payment plan with remaining vendors, but i really would disagree with borrowing more money, especially from places that would charge ridiculous interest rates. good luck!
Post # 71
I would never recommend anyone take out a loan to pay off a wedding but in your case, I think that is your only option since so much is already done. I would suggest you either do that, or like others said, work out a payment plan with the vendors you owe. Hopefully, monetary gifts you receive back at the wedding can cover the cost you couldn’t pay.
Post # 72
Please Please dont spend 1000 on alcohol when you are broke, cause you think your friends will talk about you. You have no money and can’t get a loan; alcohol is no longer a priority. Come on.
Post # 73
i’m very sorry to hear of your struggles. your wedding and planning should be some stresses and struggles but all in all should be one of the happiest times of your life. i do agree with sandy the poet in the the most important thing is that you and your soon to be hubby are happy on “your” day
definitly don’t do payday loans. getting deeper in debt will just give you more stress later and postponing the inevidable… those bills will have to be paid to and that won’t make ur day any better.
if it helps have it byob or dry rather than you providing it. it will help with costs and i’m sure they would understand. good luck to you both
Post # 74
It seems like you aren’t willing to cut the alcohol or the band. The caterer is pretty cheap so I doubt it would go any lower. The best thing i think you can do now is what PP suggested and look into selling things and both of you getting a second job. You haven’t offered any response to these suggestions, is it something you would consider? Really with the amount of debt you have I would continue a second job after the wedding to pay it off.
Post # 75
Here’s an article about a $5,000 wedding for 125 people. It can be done! They might have some useful tips for you.
Post # 76
I agree with PP who suggest a potluck–or maybe you could do a compromise. See what kind of main dishes your caterer can provide for $1000 or $1500, and ask 40 or so of your gigantic network of friends and family to bring sides as their gifts to you. You could also ask a few people to bring cases of wine or beer as their gifts to cut down on booze costs.
It’s not clear from your post whether you’re currently working. Is there any way you could increase your hours, pick up a part time job, or make some money babysitting, mowing lawns, etc?
Some more minor things that might help:
Is it possible to cancel the plates and silverware rentals and get a refund? You could go with disposables instead (unless you were doing that already).
Do you have any living costs you can forego for a while? I.e., cancel cable; reduce internet service; get rid of your landline if you have one, etc.? And is there a way to cut back on your grocery bill?
Finally, do you have anything of value you could sell on craigslist or something? Maybe one of you has a guitar lying around that you never play or something of that nature?