Post # 1
I am a recent college graduate in my first job. My fiance is in almost the same boat, so we are both living at home and planning to move into an apartment within a few weeks. We just got engaged, and I am so happy. However, I am starting to realize that it is going to be damn near impossible to afford a wedding.
We both want a nice wedding with our family and friends. It doesn’t have to be a lavish affair or anything like that. I want to wear a pretty dress and throw a party. Basically, I’m getting married regardless of how expensive the day turns out to be, and that’s what I want, but I also want have…a wedding. I don’t want to have a “low key” courthouse type of thing, either. Fiance definitely wants a wedding as well, with a nice reception.
We are planning to get married in an off-month (the date next to my name on here is incorrect), on an off day, etc. I don’t need a thousand dollar dress, but I do want a wedding dress (they aren’t ALL so expensive). Still though, the more I think about it, the less excited I feel because I feel like there is no way in hell we will ever be able to afford this. I’ve thought about putting off moving out, but even the money I would save that way probably wouldn’t be even be substantial enough to make a real difference.
My parents can’t afford it, and FI’s could, but I don’t even think I’d want them to pay for it (they are kind of uppity). As it stands, I have to pay for it alone, and I don’t know how I’m ever supposed to do it. Are there any other “budget brides” who feel hopeless?
Post # 3
@2impatient: What kind of budget do you think you’d be on? In my area I could’ve had a decent wedding with over 100 guests for under $1000, although it would mean quite a few sacrifices- no photog, no DJ, paper flowers, thrift store dress, cake and punch instead of full meal etc. Our reception venue is $175 at a bowling alley hall so cheap stuff IS out there. But if you want more than that then yes, you might have to save up- but deals are still very possible.
Post # 4
@galloway111: I don’t even know. I literally JUST got engaged, and we have a year. I’ve just started looking around and… meh
Post # 5
I am literally in the EXACT same boat! And seriously, most nights I’m more bummed than excited. Then only way I cheer myself up is to remind myself that even if I can’t have all the wonderful things I want that I will still wake up his wife. 🙂 Also, I try to think back at past weddings I’ve been too…there’s a few things that stand out here and there, but not much overall…so I keep in mind the few things that would make the day great for ME and realize the kind of chairs I rent aren’t so important. Feel free to PM me and I’ll fill you in on a few of the ways I’ve saved money and where I’ve (will be) purchasing from. Hopefully I can cheer you up 🙂 And yes…a lot of times I feel completely hopeless
Post # 6
@2impatient: what about continuing to live at home for a little longer to help save up money for the wedding?
Post # 7
I would look into used dresses. Theyre often 50-75% off, and if you do your homework its definately worth it. Most of the dresses are professionally cleaned and preserved so they look brand new.
Post # 8
Here’s a recap of a wedding I saw a few weeks ago with an under $1500 budget which will maybe help. Her wedding was absolutely gorgeous. It can be done! If I had to do it all over again, I’d do something more like she did and save a ton of money:
Post # 9
@pinkshoes: I kind mentioned it briefly in my original post, but I won’t save much. Rent would be an added expense, yes, but comparatively I spend close to that on gas right now because my commute is so much longer. We aren’t moving into a luxury apartment or anything by any means.
Post # 10
A wedding in a park or backyard can be so beautiful. Do you know anyone with a yard that you could ask? Any colleagues, profs, church members, friends, relatives? People are usually happy to help if they are asked.
An afternoon wedding with iced tea, lemonade, punch cookies and cake would be lovely.
The Limited has their $99 dress sale on now- some are only $59.
David’s Bridal does the same thing- some dresses are even less. You could also buy a white prom dress for much less than a wedding dress.
Keep the focus on having the marriage you want.
Post # 11
My best advice is to talk to people. We’re trying to be money-conscious and have found just by talking to people we have saved so much money.
We found a girl who just started doing wedding cakes and who is looking to build her portfolio, and we touched base with a chef we know at a local restaurant who will cater for $20 a head.
You’d be surprised at how much you can save by just asking around. Try asking friends or family if they know anyone.
Also, we live in a beachfront community, and though we are not going this route, getting married on the beach is free. Maybe there are some beautiful spots where you are where you wouldn’t have to pay a rental fee…
Anyway, good luck with everything!
Post # 12
It goes w/out saying that weddings are expensive. If you want something awesome, though, you have to be willing to put in the work for it (assuming mom & dad can’t foot the bill). Props for not letting his parents pay for it if you think they’ll hold it over your head. Paying for it on your own will be gratifying!
You have so many options. Firstly, move the date back. What’s the harm in waiting another 6 months-a year to get married? You can save some serious cash in that amount of time. Maybe you could get a part-time job on the side? Talk to anyone w/any photographer connections, caterer connections, etc. There are a lot of corners that can be cut w/out sacrificing fun (having a signature drink, as opposed to open bar, choosing a charming venue that doesn’t need much decoration, making the decorations, etc.). The best weddings I’ve been to have had a lot of DIY elements. Just think about the most important things & put your money into those.
It’s easy to feel sorry for yourself when you see how ridiculously priced everything wedding-related is, but don’t get discouraged! Save, save, save. My SO & I are well on our way to being able to afford a $25k wedding in a couple of years. Sure, we have to skimp on a few things, but we’re totally prepared if it means our wedding is super fun for our friends & family.
Best of luck!
Post # 13
First step: come up with a budget!!
And from there, let your creativity flow!! Look around on the wedding bee! Many ladies have tons of ideas on where to save money (tips/advice, DIY projects, etc) and in a sense…throwing a kick ass wedding with a small budget can give quite a sense of accomplishment 😛 It’s not all about the money! more money doesn’t equal better wedding!
Don’t be bummed by your budget, ultimately, it’s a celebration of the love between your and your Fiance, and that will show on your wedding day no matter what! 😀
Post # 14
I also just feel bad because like…FI’s parents apparently want to contribute now, but they are talking about buying things that I hadn’t even THOUGHT about, or would have thought was necessary. Not be ungrateful, but just because something is “traditional” doesn’t mean we need it. ESPECIALLY when the money could be put to something that is actually necessary. But regardless, it’s nice of them. I just don’t want to deal with people asking me if my parents “aren’t happy” that I’m getting married, etc because they aren’t paying. Um how many ways do I have to say WE’RE POOR?
Post # 15
How much of a budget is “budget”?
You cannot plan in the abstract. You need to either figure out how much money you can spend and plan around that or figure out how much it would cost to have the wedding you want and push it back until you can save that much money.
Just getting worked up is not going to help, I am a big believer in spreadsheets and lists and that they can bring focus in the chaos.
Post # 16
- Wedding: August 2013 - An amazing non-profit retreat
I’m in your boat. Got engaged in August and likely won’t get married until 2014. We’re aiming for March. It is a downer some days, but my fiance and I have compromised on a ton of things to help keep our budget down so what helps me is knowing that we are on the same page about wanting a nice, but not lavish, wedding.
There are some suprising deals/discounts out there if you just search a bit. Good luck!