(Closed) Struggling to justify costs of a wedding

posted 3 years ago in Emotional
Post # 16
9 posts

Do it at a nice free outdoor venue like a state park and check Pinterest for DIY decoration ideas.  We did this and I agree it’s not worth it to spend so much for a single day.  I didn’t even hire a photographer and crowdsourced all our friends photos and used some free app called EventCha to manage it all.

Post # 17
97 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2019

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favflamingo :  I am in the same position. I have many aunties, uncles, cousins and I wanted to elope but he insisted on having a wedding. I have decided to invite immediate family members (as in Mom, dad, siblings) and our closest best friends (people we talk to every couple weeks AT LEAST). If I haven’t talked to you in a year, you have no idea what’s happening with me or my relationship, we don’t text or talk on the phone, then you don’t need to come to my wedding. And if anyone asks why they weren’t invited, I would say that I didn’t invite really anyone. It was a very small wedding/elopement with our immediate family. Cut our wedding from easily being 80-120 people to 30 (including plus ones).  

Post # 18
15 posts

We were initially going to elope, but found it hard to share the moment without family.

 We are having a brief ceremony (like, 30 minutes tops) in a beautiful chapel we were able to rent for less than $1000 for 4 hours!

After that, the reception is less than 2 miles away at a fun restaurant, where we will pay for everyone’s meals (about 100 people including kids). That will cost around $1800-$2000 before tip, and me, fiancé, and Mother-In-Law LOVE the food. 

After the restaurant if people want to go out, we’ll go out. We couldn’t see paying for decorations, DJ, photobooth, and all this other stuff that is just way beyond our budgets. My father passed away, so I didn’t want a “first dance” or anything, we don’t care about the garter or bouquet tradition, and none of that other minutiae like favors matters to us. 

My dress cost $121.00 and my veil was $320.00. I’m pretty sure with everything, the whole event will be under $10,000.00, including rings. I’m having surgeries, I took a huge pay cut with my new job, and we want a house and children soon. It doesn’t make sense to splurge so much. 

Seriously, nix ANYTHING that doesn’t matter to you. We don’t even have a wedding party, because we want our friends to enjoy themselves and we don’t want drama. Our photographer was only $400 (She’s only covering ceremony; we can get phone videos for reception). Our videographer is $475.00. Avoid getting family to do anything; it’s too much stress if they mess it up. 


Enjoy your day, and do it your way. Don’t make your wedding like every other cookie-cutter event just to impress people. Have it reflect the best parts of you and your partner 😀

Post # 19
1011 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

If there are people insisting that you have a lavish wedding, then you can not both have a reasonably priced wedding AND appease these people. You have to pick. And imo, people demanding that you throw them a party in the 5 digets can jump in a lake. 

Figure out your guest list. Only invite people you actually care about. If you don’t care about them then who cares if they’re upset? Family that you interact with and actual friends. I think this alone would keep most people’s costs down. 

Then find a venue that reaches that capacity. If you’re trying to cut costs then don’t use a traditional wedding venue. Don’t spend extra money trying to make chairs look a certain way, have centerpieces, or decorate a banister. You just need a space, an officiant, and food. 

Post # 20
506 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

I’m totally in the same situation.  Immediate family (Aunts, Uncles, 1’st cousins) for both our families brings our guest list to approx 150 people.  What we did was came up with an amount that we were willing to spend ($10K) and told both sets of parents that if they wanted anything more than that they were going to have to come up with the money because we were NOT going to spend any more than $10K.  Both said OK and paid for the things that were important for THEM to have.

What you need to do is set a max amount you are willing to spend.  Then, plan the wedding you want around that amount of money.  Know that food is going to cost the most, so the more people, the more food.  You can decide to make cuts to the guest list or cut costs by being less formal.  Those are basically your options.

For example, my mother knew she wanted a formal reception and to add a lot of extra people to the guest list. So they picked the reception location (gave us a choice of 3 they were willing to pay for and we picked) and are paying for most of that.  My In-Laws were very specific with what they wanted on the invitations and for dessert, so they are paying for that.  If this hadn’t happened, we would have had a small church wedding and then have the reception at a VFW or in the church hall.

Post # 21
1579 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: City, State

If money is the main issue, do you know anyone with a big enough yard/ farm/ home to accommodate the family? 

Other options include having a huge potluck bbq in a park, getting a food truck to cater, etc.  However his family celebrates the holidays or graduations might give you some ideas. 

Even renting a vacation home for the day that has a lot of land may help you create celebration that’s just a way to celebrate love and family. 

Post # 22
332 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2018

Look around at B&Bs or small chapels who might do small events.  Google “intimate venues.”  I got married in 2014 and 2018 (my husband passed 5 months after the 2014 wedding) and I did a wedding for 80 in 2014 for less than 4K, and I did a wedding for 21 in Jan 2018 for less than 2K, including clothing.

In 2014 I just found a venue that did eveything and picked a Sunday night to save money.  Bought a dress online, did a bunch of cost-savings and made it happen.

For the most recent one we just did a little B&B that does wedddings, had the little wedding and ceremony, and then had dinner at a local restaurant.  It was SO lovely and so completely stress free.

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