(Closed) Ideas for cutting costs?

posted 6 years ago in Money
Post # 3
14495 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I have a ton of ways

  • I used a 90% off couponcabin.com coupon for vistaprint and got my invites
  • I made my own veil
  • Did my center pieces with dollar tree flowers (I cut the stems apart), silver bowls from thrift stores, and other decor from the 90% off section at Hobby Lobby
  • Found a location that allowed us to bring our own liquor in  (prob our biggest cost saver)
  • Bought my own linens online from favormart.com

I got a ton of compliments on how pretty everything was.  Even last night we were at a family event and all DHs sisters were telling me how pretty it all was.


Post # 4
374 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Here’s what we’re doing:

  • Dinner-Only Reception: No DJ, no large centerpieces, just a small, intimate gathering of around 50 people in a private room at a local restaurant
  • No Save the Dates: they’re expensive to order, plus postage
  • No videographer
  • Simple wedding cake
  • Borrowing ceremony decorations

Overall, we’re not paying to rent a reception venue (or anything to go with it, like linens, chairs, flatware, etc.) or for any decorations for that venue.  In terms of the reception, we’re just paying for the food.

My recommendation is to prioritize.  What’s important to you?  Literally rank ’em and make decisions based on that.  That in and of itself will help to cut costs.

Post # 5
16 posts
  • Wedding: September 2012

Here are some of the things we did:

  • Found venue that let us bring in our own liquor
  • Chose a Sunday (cheaper than Saturdays)
  • Negotiated with the caterer and photographer
  • Bought a sample wedding dress
  • No save the dates
  • No wedding cake
  • Bought flowers at the farmer’s market and made our own centerpieces
  • Resold some of the decorations on Craigslist

I think the biggest ways to cut costs are to invite fewer people and to have a simpler menu.  Definitely think about what is important to you and cut anything that the two of you don’t really care about.


Post # 6
1224 posts
Bumble bee

Not a bride yet, but still a few ideas:

  • Get married during the off-season. A lot of wedding vendors give discounts in their off-season.
  • DIY whatever possible. Self-cater, ipod instead of DJ, do your own bouquets, DIY decorations, invitations, etc. You can pick and choose so you’re not overwhelmed, but do it yourself stuff can often be a lot cheaper than paying someone.
  • Re-use stuff, such as reusing the bridesmaid’s bouquets as centerpieces. Or use candles or something as centerpieces- you can decorate your house with them later. Instead of renting chairs for the ceremony and reception, rent chairs for the ceremony and assign someone to set them up at the reception site (probably only feasible if the ceremony and reception are in the same place). Use favors as centerpieces.  Try to think of ideas that you can repurpose during or after the wedding. 
  • Discuss with your Fiance what is important. Awesome food? A kick-ass DJ? Expensive rings? Dress? Flowers? You may discover you could care less about some things and decide to scrap them or just go cheap on them.
  • Cut the amount of paper you use. Condense the invites to save on postage- skip lace and ties and things that add weight to the envelopes; things like these can double or triple postage costs (not to mention the cost of the invites); once you multiply the postage cost for all guests, it adds up. Instead of individual programs, use a decorated easel. Sometimes these can be found at yardsales or flea markets cheap. Set it up somewhere visible. Honestly, most people don’t save them, They end up in the trash.
  • Be picky about favors. Your coworkers don’t want your wedding portrait or wedding date lying around (after all, would you put up a picture frame with their wedding date in your house?). Try to go for something practical or edible- or skip favors altogether. Try to pick something that, if you and your hubby get stuck with 50 extras nobody wanted, you could find a way to use them.

Post # 7
151 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

@ClassyKate:  Yup…PRIORITIZE. Great advice. You can splurge or scrimp on what is right for you. 

We are splurging on: 

  • Fresh flowers

  • A nice afternoon reception lunch with a menu of 5 items and imported beer and wine

  • Our location is at Big Sur which can be pricey

  • More in-depth counseling sessions because its our second marriage

We scrimped on:

  • Decorations: We are doing mason jars of fresh flowers and simple table runners

  • Invites: I’m an artist and my friend is doing our custom designs for free on her letterpress. Likewise, my closest friends are photgoraphers and are taking pictures for free.

  • Favors: Our whole guest list is 30 people and they are all staying at the same inn. We are doing welcome baskets with homemade cookies, a mix CD and incidentals for the weekend.

  • Our clothes: He is doing a navy suit he already owns with a new spiffy tie. I am doing a dove grey or navy dress, because it’s our second wedding. My price range is $500. My sister is doing my makeup and hair for free. My jewelry is from my grandmother

  • Our honeymoon: We are yurting at Big Sur for a week and doing a night at a spa after. Very simple “glamping.

  • Our guest list: We only invited 30 people for a more intimate destination wedding. 


Post # 8
327 posts
Helper bee

 – DIY as many thing as you can

– buy custom made wedding dresses/bridesmaid dress online (recommended http://www.7foxmall.com)

-no videographer

– ask someone to take pictures during the wedding instead of hiring a photographer

– no dessert and serve cake as dessert

– no expensive cake, home made or bought from supermarket

– limit alcohol choices

– buy secondhand stuff from other brides

– ask for cash/voucher/gidt card instead of gifts if both of you already living together

Post # 9
7992 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

Two most important things are DIY and prioritise.

Prioritise: I wanted everything to look beautiful and for the food to be spectacular.

Solutions: Blow budget on mismatched centrepieces which I will put together myself. Use food as centrepieces. Use supermarket flowers and arrange them myself rather than use a professional.

Blow budget on main course and waitress service during the meal, because it’s the one thing I can’t do myself. If money is left over, also buy starters. If not, make cold starters the day before and serve. I am making my own desserts, wedding cake, and evening buffet (with a little help from friends, family, and FI), because I know I can do a good job.

Remember to play to your strengths… if you “keep sweaters in your stove” like Carrie Bradshaw, don’t try to bake 300 cupcakes to save money! Only DIY things you know you have a pretty good chance of getting right, or you’ll waste money getting it wrong, waste your time, and end up frustrated as well!

Post # 10
1855 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

-get married in off season

-don’t get married on a Saturday. I’m saving literally 9k by having a Sunday wedding.

-consider a sample or replica gown. Dressilyme dresses are like $200 for stunning high quality dresses.

-be picky with your guest list. if you’re happy with a 50 person wedding, that’s a lot cheaper than 100.


Post # 12
2385 posts
Buzzing bee

Also, dont be afraid to negotiate!

Post # 13
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I am saving big with all my vendors.  They are all pretty budget friendlt, so that has helped my budget.

I also got into the DIY attitude and did a few items I knew that not only saved me lots of money but also was fun and easy and pretty.

No professional videographer.  I will ask a friend to take some footae that fi can edit later.

No ceremony musicians.  We’re puttiing together a playlist on our laptop and having a friend play the music for us.

Rehearsal Dinner is being made by my mom and stepdad and we’re hosting it at our home so we’ll save money there.

I got my dress from a local seamstress for like $220 with alterations, cleaning and new crinoline.

Cake from a local family owned mom and pop type bakery for $120 for 4 tiers. 

DIY favors, cocktail hour and alcohol…we’re hoping to bring to keep alcohol costs down by buying at a bulk place where we can get liquor cheaper.

Venue rental is just for the space and includes tables and chairs. We have free reign with how to decorate and what vendors we choose.

Post # 14
8453 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

Don’t be picky about flowers.  We’re doing our own, with flowers that will be in season.  We’re also doing non-floral centerpieces (lace luminaries with just a bit of rose petals surrounding them).  Other things we saved on were DIY invites, guestbook, programs, and thank you cards (designed, cut and assembled by me).  Make sure that when you select invites that you choose letter shaped ones, square will cost you extra in postage.


Post # 15
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

– Made my own flowers

– Did all the invites, place cards, menus, programs myself

– Got all my candles from Michaels with 40% off coupons

– No limo (wasn’t worth $2500 to us)

– Small cake

– No Favors

-Found my dream dress for $1300 (which is still a lot, but still WAY under budget)

Things we didn’t scrimp on: Saturday wedding (with 90% of guests flying in, it would have been super inconvenient to have our wedding on a Friday or Sunday), FOOD, open bar

Post # 16
3697 posts
Sugar bee

Check out Brides Against Breast Cancer to see if they’re having a gown sale event near you ahead of your wedding.

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