(Closed) So I can't afford a wedding at all! What do I do?

posted 6 years ago in Money
Post # 31
2010 posts
Buzzing bee

If money is so tight that you guys have noodles sometimes then even the 400 bucks you have would be better suited to be put away for your 8 week old child. Babies aren’t cheap and he/she is still young and will need more things in the next year or so.

Having said that, it’s not my money or my business. If you really have your heart set on a ceremony AND reception then pool your resources, call in all favours and use every contact you have. Is your mum good at baking cakes? Does your grandma know how to sew and can whip up a nice cost-effective dress for you? Do you have an aunt who has nice flowers in her garden and will let you pick them to make yourself a bouquet?

I know it’s rude to expect gifts but if anyone asks what you guys want, perhaps ask one uncle to just buy a slab of soda (bam, drinks are now covered) and another uncle to lend one of his nicest suits and a pair of shoes for your Fiance to wear (bam, throw in one of your dad’s ties and a nice shirt and his outfit is set). You get the point.

Post # 32
1833 posts
Buzzing bee

I can’t, in good conscience, encourage you to save up for a vow renewal/reception later on.  If you are eating Ramen noodles out of necessity and say that even 400.00 is a stretch for a wedding budget, that tells me you have no savings, let alone an emergency fund.  Those things are far more important now that you have a baby.

Please don’t think I am being judgemental by my statement because nothing could be further from the truth.  Way back when, I was a single mom who prayed every Summer (full time daycare costs instead of parttime because of school) that my rent check and daycare check wouldn’t cross paths.  During the Summers I had to pay my daycare bill as late as possible so it had a better chance of not bouncing at the bank.  I truly could not afford both and juggled money every Summer.  We ate hot dogs and mac and cheese a LOT.  I know what it is like to be in your shoes, and I know how things start to look once you are out of those shoes.  A savings account is a MUST when you have a baby and a separate emergency fund is also.

I understand the dream of the wedding (didn’t get mine either) and wanting that experience, but your priorities now are for your baby and the family you now have.  You need to put yourselves on the best financial footing you can.  Go to the courthouse, invite the immediate family, and go back to your house for dinner.  Splurge on a pretty bouquet or a killer cake and call it good.

I don’t think you guys should be asking your parents to pay for anything though.  You already said they can’t afford to help, and if they don’t volunteer anything, don’t put them on the spot.  It is on  you guys to pay for this.

I wish you the best of luck, and I really have walked in your shoes.  Marry the love of your life and build a strong family!

Post # 33
2019 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2016


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Jennavigland:  Any update on what you’re thinking about doing?

Post # 34
2393 posts
Buzzing bee

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Jennavigland:  You can’t have a romantic, fairytale wedding for $400? Of course you can! Do you know someone who has a pretty backyard, or perhaps free use of a club house at an apartment or condo complex?

  • Keep the guest list short.
  • Get your cake at a grocery store bakery.
  • Instead of a DJ, make some romantic music CDs at home with iTunes.
  • Have friends and family take the photos on their camera phones.
  • Splurge on one beautiful bouquet of flowers from the grocery store.
  • Table decorations can be tealight candles in votives from the Dollar Store, and/or pearly silver and gold helium balloons.
  • Go to Ross or Marshall’s for a pretty white cocktail dress and metallic heels.
  • Print your invitations at home.
  • Let the food be catered take-out from your favorite inexpensive restaurant. 
  • The “bar” can be sangria punch made with inexpensive wine.
  • Cheapo Martini & Rossi sparkling wine or Cook’s champagne for the “champagne” toast.

Go for it! 

DH and I chose to elope to the courthouse because we had a lot going on in our lives at the time, what with getting our new home ready and taking care of his mother who was sick. But we made up for it later with a posh honeymoon weekend, when we had more time. We went the whole nine yards with a jacuzzi suite at a luxury hotel, dinner at a chic restaurant, really nice champagne, etc. I bought a brand new negligee set for the occasion. Even though it was belated, it was very romantic and worth the wait. Just an idea.

Post # 35
1406 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

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Jennavigland:  Yeah, everyone wants the fairytale wedding, but if you read the boards here it is clear to see that there is tons of stress and family squabbles associated with weddings. Maybe conisder this a blessing in disguise. You can get married quickly rather than planning for two years.

Many public parks will allow wedding ceremonies. Call around. From there, take everyone to a nice restaurant. Just invite a few people. The trick is to do it quickly and keep it quiet. If relatives and friends know months in advance you are having a wedding, but they are not invited, they get resentful. They take it much better when they hear about it after the fact.

Plenty of used dresses out there for sale.

Big weddings are overrated, and many of those who are having them can’t afford them either. They just do not realize it.

Post # 36
2160 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I had a fairly big fairly expensive wedding, and let me tell you this – the best moment of the whole wedding was seeing my immediate family (parents, siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins) rocking it on the dancefloor, and seeing their shiny eyes when we said ”I do”. Honestly, the rest (flowers, cars, expensive dress etc) is superfluous and it’s not what you will remember.

When I think back to my wedding, I will always remember my husband’s face and the faces of the people I care about.

Wear a second-hand dress, have a backyard pot-luck wedding, put some music on, bake a cake.. and you’ll have an equally amazing time as someone who paid thousands of dollars on something more fancy.

Because it honestly isn’t about the $$, your wedding is about marrying  your husband and being with the people you care about. That’s the only thing that matters.

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