(Closed) intimate, personal and affordable weddings

posted 6 years ago in Money
Post # 3
Member
1811 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@anahappilyeverafter:  I’m not married yet, but I am planning a small wedding on a budget.  To be specific we are having 80 guests on a $10k budget.  I knew that a dress was something very important to me, so I bought my dream dress preowned and only spent $1k!  We found a great venue for our reception that comes out to a little over 3k.  That price includes all the rentals and a buffet of really delicous food.  If you look around you can find really affordable deals!  I promise!

Post # 4
Member
3693 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

We got married at a beautiful Victorian bed and breakfast.  We only invited his parents and my dad.  Afterward, we all went to dinner.  Even with the professional photographer, custom cake, and my dress, I think we spent less than $4,000.

Post # 5
Member
1309 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

We’re having a very intimate wedding and are spending about $2500 on it. It might actually be a little under that. We also didn’t want to spend a huge amount on the wedding and are very comfortable with this arrangement.

We’re inviting 20 of our closest family members. Getting married at our church and then having a nice catered meal with them. We really aren’t pinching pennies at all. Our photographer is a friend of my sisters so we’re getting a great deal. My parents offered to pay for the catering and my dress was only about $150. My FI’s suit was actually more expensive than my dress!

I’m also DIYing a lot of the decor for the reception, but that’s more because I love to craft and I have a very particular look I want for the venue, not because of budget reasons.

 

Post # 6
Member
11272 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2012

we had an intimate wedding with 38 guests.  we spent about $8500 not including our travel expenses, honeymoon or rings.  we got a great deal on the venue, our cake was free (thanks to my favourite aunt), our transportation was free (thanks to my mom’s vintage 1937 car), we did our own music and i did a lot of diy projects. 

the food and bar were important to us so that’s where most of the budget went. 

Post # 7
Member
2725 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

We spent around $8,000 including rings and honeymoon. We eloped to Paris. I planned everything myself. My hair and makeup were DIY. My bouquet was silk DIY. Venue was free. It was very intimate.

Post # 8
Member
5096 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

Our wedding was 55 guests. We aimed to spend $10,000; ended up spending about $11,000 (excluding honeymoon and my DH’s suit, which he needed anyway for an upcoming job interview). Over 50% of that was on catering (food/cake/service/rental of tables, chairs, linens, flatware, china, glassware), which was a priority for us. We had it at my mother’s house – ceremony and drinks in the backyard, food stations and mingling inside once the rain started coming down. It was PERFECT – such a loving, close, supportive atmosphere.

$11,000 still seems like an enormous amount to spend on a single day, and I don’t really consider that a “budget” wedding. But we did cut out a ton of unimportant things, and spend money only where we really wanted to.

Back of my dress, designed and sewn for me by a friend (I paid her, but FAR less than you would normally pay to have a dress like this custom made)

During the ceremony, which DH’s best friend officiated. Another friend of mine sewed our chuppah.

 

Reception scene, in my mom’s living room:

My shimmery invitations, which were designed and printed for me at cost as a gift by a printmaker friend of mine:

Post # 10
Member
296 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

We’re having about 50 guests at a destination wedding at a GA coastal town. Our loose budget was about $4k, we’re ending up at about $5k. We are having the ceremony in a public park overlooking the ocean (only $200 for ceremony space). I am doing my own flowers, the only member of our wedding party is our flower girl, I am doing a lot of the details myself at home. Our reception was the biggest part of our budget, but we managed to do pretty much everything we wanted to do. We are having a cash bar to save money, but giving all our guests one drink ticket.

The main advice I would give is to shop around. I have found amazing deals, but only after searching for a while. The main thing is persistence. Also, be upfront with vendors about your budget, we got some pretty deep discounts from our reception venue, but mainly because I was such a stickler on things. Haggle, but don’t waste your time trying to talk a $10k venue down to $3k, isn’t going to happen. Over all, if you’re smart about it, you don’t have to break the bank. I will not be taking any money out of savings for my wedding, and that was my ultimate goal.

Post # 11
Bee
615 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012 - Mother of the Bride's residence

We’re having a small, 50-person or less wedding in my mom’s backyard. We’re 3/4 months out and I think we’ve spent maybe $2500 so far, including the dress, rings, etc. A lot of stuff is being handled by friends & family which has lowered our costs a TON — my dad is doing the food for free and paid for all of our booze, my mom is doing the flowers, that kind of thing.

If you keep your guest list small you’ll have less decor to make/find/buy, less invitations, less food, less booze…

Post # 12
Member
1697 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

My wedding is definitely a budget wedding but far from small. We paid for everythingourselves and for 203 ppl we’ve spent $20k. I am getting married in SF so my price is insanely under the average spent for the location we picked. We haggled and got a 12k venue for 3K,gave amazing food for about $5 a head, we got one of our caterers to do food at cost and I DIY all my decor including my table linens! The DJ is a friend and the servers are friends of friends. DIY was worth the stress!

Post # 14
Member
4676 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I’m having a very affordable and personal wedding (we will see about intimate, with 170ish guest invited…).  I splerged on my dress ($800!) My mom thought that was a lot, but after being on the boards it is nothing!  I’m DIYing a ton both to keep costs down, and so that I can get my own personal touches on everything.  It is a lot of work, but for a smaller wedding it would be less.  Instead of a traditional reception hall we are having ours in a county park pavillion (which was re-done a few years ago to hold dinners and events).  It is far prettier than any of the more traditional spots in my town.  We are spending around 7000 (including parent contributions) on everything excluding rings and honeymoon.  

Post # 15
Member
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I am having a smaller budget wedding but not sure if 150ish guests would be considered intimate.  My budget is $3000-$5000 for EVERYTHING including honeymoon.  Having a few diy aspects as well to save on cost. My father offered to pay for my dress, which is just $200 and I got another $200 from my grandmother for wedding related things (used for favor boxes and the rings).  My venue is less than $500 and includes chairs and tables for 4 hours.  Haggled with my florist for a great deal and my photographer is only $220 for full coverage.  

 

Post # 16
Member
203 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

We had a small wedding with immediate family and closest friends at DH’s parents’ house–about 40 people for around $3000. We had a lot of food and flowers donated, but we just picked the things that were most important to us. I splurged on my dress ($550 for dress, alterations, and all accessories) and we spent a lot on tux rentals since my brothers were already paying for plane tickets. Otherwise, our biggest expenses were our officiant, photographer, and alcohol (about $400 each). It was beautiful and very special, and I loved it. Here’s the ceremony:


And the reception:

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