- Wedding: May 2015 - St Peter\'s Church, East Maitland, and Bella Vista, Newcastle
– Skip the favours. No-one will notice.
– You can use Spotify or Pandora for music, rather than getting a DJ – we did this and it worked really well.
– VistaPrint invites; easy and not expensive.
– Don’t bother with elaborate save the dates; I got a photo of us, put a filter on it, and added text to it then e-mailed it out. Totally free. Also, don’t send Save-The-Date Cards to everyone you think you’re going to invite, in case you have to cut your guest list. Important out-of-town guests were the only ones I sent them to.
– I used silk flowers for bouquets – three bouquets cost me $72 including shipping. And they didn’t die so I could get it sorted early. No-one knew and you’d never tell by looking at our photos.
– Can you negotiate with your photographer to pay less but get a smaller package? Fewer hours, no albums, no second shooter, that kind of thing. We had 2 hours of getting ready photos, ceremony, family and bridal party photos then an hour of the reception. Didn’t need anything else really, I don’t look at our pics and think “I wish she’d been there longer” at all. I got all the edited photos on DVD and printed my own albums.
– I did programs myself (we had a church ceremony so really did need them) using Word and then printed them at the local Officeworks for about 4c each. I didn’t care that they didn’t look super-fancy because everyone leaves them behind anyway.
– Do beer and wine only – full open bar adds loads to your costs. Add a signature cocktail if you want, but restrict it to that.
– Don’t bother with menus, or if you do, do one per table.
– We didn’t do escort cards – I just made up a seating chart, printed it on A3 paper (at work!) then stuck it on a bigger piece of cardboard in our colours. Looked just fine.
– It’s often the small, inexpensive things which make the most impact. I got family wedding photos (great grandparents, grandparents, parents, siblings) and framed them in $1 Ikea frames for display. It looked great and was a real talking point. I re-framed them in collage frames (less wall space taken up!) and now they’re hanging up in our house.
– You don’t need super expensive shoes! Unless you have a short dress, no-one really sees them. Mine were $20 (admittedly reduced from $160, but I wouldn’t have bought them at that price!) and they were perfect.
– Get a small cake for cutting and then sheet cake for the guests. Again, no-one will notice or care. Or skip the cake altogether – my SIL did and I didn’t notice until Mother-In-Law mentioned it over a year later in conversation!