Post # 1
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So – we’re starting to talk about where we might like to have our wedding/reception in the Greater Boston area and apparently had nooo idea how much a wedding costs! We’re thinking late Spring early Summer 2009.
In an ideal world we were hoping for under $6000.. any tips on venues, locations, suppliers? Be honest.. are we totally dreaming?
Luckily I am crafty so I’m hoping to do things like center pieces and potentially my flowers and cake by myself.. but, I’m not even officially engaged yet and I’m feeling overwhelmed! Anything you ladies have to say is appreciated (-:
Post # 3
I wish you really great luck and would love to hear how things turn out!
I’ve found that you can DIY a lot of things, but the real budget breakers are the food and liquor. Wedding dress? Find it online or at a thrift store, used, and find a cheap place to have it altered – I have heard Newton has some good places. Flowers, Music, Photos? Thats what friends and family are for, and if you aren’t too picky, I have seen numerous examples of these being done really well by less than professional people! Its the food and liquor that around the Boston area that seem really hard to get down to low numbers. Any place that isn’t my house seems to require I use their liquor liscence (and therefore their liquor and fees!) and food seems to stay, at the cheapest, around 15-20 per person. My advice would be plan a wedding that falls in the afternoon (so you only have to serve light snacks), don’t invite oodles of people, and keep it real simple!
This place was gorgeous, and you can bring your own liquor (talk about saving money!) but you have to use one of their preferred caterers: http://www.historicnewengland.org/visit/homes/codman.htm, but its a $2000 fee for the venue alone…
Post # 4
Ha – Boston is expensive!!
But you’re not crazy/dreaming — though it really depends on a lot of things especially the number of guests you plan to have. Guest count is something that can really make or break a budget in my mind.
Also if you were thinking of a traditional hotel ballroom/function room – then I’d say yes, you’re probably not going to be able to do it for $6,000 – but if you are very creative you can have an ourdoor ceremony in the Boston Common (free!) and a small catered dinner in a tent, or even just rent out a portion of a restaraunt.
There are plenty of places where you can get supplies in bulk, including flowers at wholesale and the world of "DIY" is endless – as all the Bees have proven.
Post # 5
I have just concluded my own (seemingly endless) Boston venue search. My number one tip is to look on caterer’s websites. Most of them have venue listings, which means that the venue at the very least has outside catering and most likely you can bring your own booze.
Also I can’t say this enough …FRIDAY… you save so much money and I’ve heard that it gives you more leverage with vendors.
I looked in to the Boston Commons and other public property and you can’t have more than 50 people or bring in any chairs or decoration. Maybe it could still work for you and it would be really cool (and really free!) also, unlike other cities you just have to let the park service know that you’re doing it (no permit needed). There are some state parks in New England that have pavilions, which saves you the tent rental and it is a little more unique. But, I had trouble finding ones that allowed liquor… which was a non negotiable for us.
I found a lot of old historic houses that have very reasonable rental rates but they are in the suburbs and a little hard to find.
If your event is smaller then restaurants are a great option too. My wedding will have a minimum of 100 ppl so it was hard to find a decent/cheap restaurant that could accommodate.
Ultimately the best way to keep your budget in check is to find someone you know with a cool house and have your friends and family help as much as possible.