(Closed) How do I afford this?

posted 9 years ago in Beehive
Post # 3
1514 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

A lot of it is about saving the money, could you postpone the wedding to make it nicer?  What about making it more intaminte by not inviting as many people?  You could take a different route, have the casual, laid-back affair, I bet you’ll have lots of friends thinking "geez, why didn’t we do that, why did we stress so much over our elaborate one"? 
It’s hard to measure up to other people’s weddings, even when you have the same finances and things available to you, just like there are no two snowflakes alike, there are no two weddings alike.
Do what you and your fiance can afford, have the day of your dreams, and don’t worry about what your friends have/had.

Post # 4
14183 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

Sit down with your Fiance and hash out what you are comfortable spending, even if it’s $1,000 or $500. Then, come back and we’ll give you lots of ideas!

My friends parents are throwing money at them. Mine are not! And, my venue aside, I think I’ve managed to pull together a really nice wedding by doing so much of it myself. If i only had $1,000 to work with, I would have made it work! 

You’ve come to the right place, stick around


Post # 5
303 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Girl you sound like you are in a tough spot! I kind of went through a similar train of thought at the beginning of our wedding planning. The main thing is that its YOUR wedding and not your well-to-do friends’ wedding, so maybe try to make it personal rather than elaborate.

We’ve saved a lot of money by asking friends to do certain things, like photography, making food, helping make invitations, decorating, etc. Do you have friends, family or coworkers that would able to do something? It seems like a lot of people are willing to do a little to help!

 My grandma told me right when we got engaged, "Whether you have a fancy wedding or a simple one, at the end of the day you’ll be just as married as the next person." I try to keep that in mind, and think about all the exciting things to come in the years ahead. 🙂

Post # 6
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I second both girls above–sit down with your fiance and definitely work out how much you want to spend…then decide how long it will take you to save for it!  That can help you determine when your wedding should be held.  There are TONS of options for saving money, and you can have a beautiful, meaningful ceremony and reception even if you don’t spend a lot.  And be sure to check out Miss Mary Jane’s posts–she is having a wonderful wedding and celebration for around $1000!

Post # 7
108 posts
Blushing bee

I completely identify with how you feel.  Not to mention every time you turn around, there is another tv show or magazine full of images for beautiful weddings without budget constraints. *Drool*  There are options though… I went the route of pushing back the wedding to give us plenty of time to save.  This was hard, but it’ll give me the event I wanted to have.  The other option is to go the opposite route of your friends.  If you’re trying to throw a lavish sit-down dinner on a meager budget, you might feel like things come up short.  But, if you dial up the fun and have an informal, creative event, you can still create something memorable for little money.  This is a wedding that inspired me:


Either way, I remind myself that in the end I’ll be married!  Why I get so stressed about a party is beyond me. 😉  Good luck!


Post # 8
2765 posts
Sugar bee

Is it an option to do an outdoor bbq at a public park?

My little sister did an outdoor wedding and I was stunned at how inexpensive her budget was… and yet, how nice everything turned out!  It required a lot of work from the families, but if they’re willing to put in the elbow grease… you can have a beautiful wedding on a serious budget!

Post # 9
199 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

You can make it your wedding without spending so much money. I don’t mean to offend anyone and each to their own but I really don’t see why spend $100k in a wedding. We are spending about $12k and so far I can see it will be fantastic. My parents nor his parents are helping, in fact no one is helping us with anything. Don’t worry if you have to wait then wait, it will be all ok.

Post # 10
159 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

Remember, this isn’t about a huge party or fancy flowers…your wedding day is about getting married.  It’s hard when you are on a tight budget to look at all those bridal magazines or go to big fancy weddings but remember at the end of the day you will be married and that is the important part. 

The coolest wedding I ever went to was done on a very small budget.  They had a potluck and had a beautiful ceremony in a park on a sunny afternoon.  Everyone helped and her friends really pitched it.  We even had a softball game in the late afternoon along with other games like water balloon toss.  So much fun!  what a celebration. 

You can totally do this on your own, set a budget and be creative!  Ask for help!  My friend is acutally making our invitations as a gift to us.  Have fun and relax, you’re getting married…how exciting!

Post # 11
2249 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2018

I am sort of in the same position, my parents don’t have 10 or 20 (or 30)k to give me for the wedding so it is just us on our own. we started with a rough budget of 5k and figured out what we could get for that- then we added up all the things we wanted, decided when we wanted it and figured out how much we needed to save to have it. We decided to go with an 18 month engagement to have a little more of the wedding we want- and we also decided not to sign any contracts until we had saved the amount we needed for 3 months (so we could make sure we could actually do it)

do you know anyone who has a backyard you could use? Could you use a local high school and have it be whimsical and cute (think photo session from 13 going on 30)

could you have a courthouse wedding and an awesome party after? there are lots of places you can rent insanely cheap like granges or community centers and then you can spend the money you do have on the good stuff like food or photography or whatever matters to you. Good Luck!

Post # 12
1149 posts
Bumble bee

I agree with the previous posters.    I recently attended a backyard wedding (on a chicken farm!) and it was absolutely lovely.  Lots of DIY, the catering was done as potluck (DELICIOUS!), and I’m telling you, it stood up very well against the incredibly lavish weddings I’ve attended.  

Sit down, crunch the numbers and come back and tell us your budget.   We will help you plan a lovely day for your, Fiance and your loved ones. 

Post # 13
425 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

I had a friend who had a beautiful wedding for only $2,000!  

She used her parents back yard and rented some tents and chairs.  It was a very small intimate wedding.  They had the ceremony at sunset and then had cocktails and finger food after.  They had a small sound system with music from an ipod playing.   I think the guest count was around 50 people.  I didn’t go, but I saw the pics and it looked so beautiful!!  THey used white christmas lights to light up the tent along with tons of candles.  She said she DIY her flowers that she bought the day before the wedding at Sams Club.

She said the most costly part of the wedding was the tent and chair rental. 

Post # 14
2000 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

I definitely agree that you can throw a great wedding on a small budget (I’m trying to do it myself, though maybe some people would think that $5,000 isn’t exactly bare bones). I also agree that the best way to cut down on costs is to cut down on guests. We couldn’t do that, though, and maybe you can’t either.

You spoke of you and your Fiance scraping together some money. Could either of you get a second job until the wedding? Even a little extra cash could go a long way.

Other than that, DIY, think creatively, and don’t be scared to have a more casual affair! You’d be surprised at how many people are psyched to attend a casual wedding!

Post # 15
2271 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I am a middle-aged bride and both of my parents are deceased and my fiance can’t help me as he is renovating his house to sell so we can buy a new one in the near future, So it’s all up to me.

I am pulling the whole wedding off for less than $3000. That includes a semi-formal evening wedding, a simple reception afterwards and a pig roast the next day.

First of all, give yourselves time. There are things you can shop for way in advance. Take your time and compare prices like crazy. I got my print-your-own invites off of eBay for $6.99/box of 40. I also got my wedding boots, bridal purse/bag, and photo album from eBay. I decided to not go with the diamond and pearl earring and necklace set I wanted for $800 and instead got a lovely Swaroski (I think the spelling is wrong) pearl and cyrstal set for $70 that I love way better. Find a venue that is free or low cost – the garden we are getting married at is at the college where I teach and is costing us nothing, whereas my niece spent $3500 just to have hers at Hershey Gardens (and that was just to use the place). We are having an early evening wedding to beat the summer heat but it also spares us the cost of providing a sit-down dinner. We are just having light refreshments and cake immediately afterwards and a pig roast the next day.

Figure out what you REALLY want, there are cost-effective ways to do anything. Compare prices, ask for favors, utilize resources of friends, work, etc. If you give yourself enough time, you can buy stuff a little at a time. I got my silk flowers 2 months ago, my hat and dress 3 months ago, etc. so I would not be overwhelmed by all kinds of expenses at once. Now all I need to pay for is the stamps for the invites and the food for the reception and pig roast. And yes, once you figure out your budget, get back with the bees, we won’t steer you wrong!


Post # 16
96 posts
Worker bee

  You can do a beautiful wedding on a very small budget. My wedding was just under  $3000 for 100 guests. My sister’s wedding which we are currently planning will be the same and we’ve found a caterer ($7 a head for two different meats!) an ameture photographer, $600 for the whole day with engagement pics, a friend is making the cake around $100, the venue for 3 days (a secluded area but a city park with building) for $210, flowers and decorations for the everything should be right around $600. You can order flowers at Samsclub and theflowerexchange.com for very inexpensivly. It just takes a lot of work and a lot of price shopping. Of course a a lot of it is being willing and able, to diy a lot.

  No one knew my wedding was so inexpensive. Everyone was shocked that’s all we spent and hopefully, if I’ve done what I’m thinking I have, my sister’s wedding will be even better for the same amount of money. I’ve learned so much since then!

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