(Closed) What are your best money saving ideas (wedding/everyday)?

posted 7 years ago in Money
Post # 3
Member
3255 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

Wedding:

  • DIY invites, programs, favors, guestbook tree, Save-The-Date Cards. We totally lucked out because my dad is a graphic designer and was able to do all of this for us for FREE.
  • Hired local young photographer with limited experience who was trying to build up his resume. Paid him $400 for the whole night and he gave us all the images to print ourselves (again, so blessed to have my dad to help us out with digital editing!). Total win-win situation for both us and the budding photographer.
  • Bought my dress during an online sale. Got a $500 for $350 with an online coupon code from J. Crew. Had a friend do the alterations!
  • Catering through the grocery store. Had gourmet sandwiches, pasta salad, potato salad, fruit and veggie trays, all for under $1500 for 150 people. 🙂
  • Pie instead of cake. Paid $250 for a variety of pies. People loved it!
  • Had a backyard wedding. Skipped venue rental!
  • Had our best friend officiate. 

 

Every day:

 

  • We shop according to what’s on sale at the grocery store. Even if we’re craving a certain thing, we skip it if it’s not discounted that week.
  • We use Groupon and other coupons when eating out. You would be amazed how many BOGO offers you can find! We also live in a tourist area, so it’s easy to find coupons.
  • Coupons. Sites like smartsource.com and couponmom.com are great. Their selections have been kind of limited lately, though. :/
  • Make sure to turn the lights off and keep the air at a reasonable level.Seem like small things, but they do make a huge diference.
  • Buy generics. When working at a grocery store in college, I learned that most generic store brands are actually made by the name-brand companies. For instance, Lowes Foods bread is actually Sarah Lee bread with a LF label. That blew my mind, so I buy generics a lot!
  • We sell old stuff we don’t use on eBay and wedding stuff on Weddingbee Classifieds. I have made a pretty large return on our wedding stuff!

Post # 4
Member
5993 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2010

for savings have a sealed money box and put your change in there.  we put our aussie $1 and $2 coins in one box, takes about 8 to 12mths to fill it and we had $4k (yes thats thousand).  silver coins in a different money box had about $1300

Post # 6
Member
4803 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

@eloping:  Holy crap!  $4000?!  You just inspired me to start a loonie/toonie jar!!

Post # 7
Member
14495 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

Wedding Related

  • Vistaprint – did this for almost all our paper products and Bridesmaid or Best Man gifts, only paid for the shipping because I signed up for the business offers and not the bridal offers.
  • Catering – also went through a grocery store.  All the HyVees added chefs to their staffs so they made all the gourmet appetizers for half the price that a catering company would have and I got bouquets for our moms and steps plus more for free for using three departments
  • Dollar Tree – with alittle imagination, the web ideas, and some time, I was able to make some really nice things for our wedding.  I also got all but the bouquets flowers from there.  I just cut up their bunches and redid them in floral foam that I also bought there.
  • Officiant – also a friend
  • Alcohol – DIY bar was one of the best decisions we made, all open bar and it was so cheap.  A friend ended up bartending for us as our bartender we hired was a no show.

Non Wedding

  •  
    • Sales – really don’t do more than stock up on sale items that we for sure will use.  Last week I was able to buy small lobsters at $4 each so I bought 10 of them, it’s DHs favorite food so when it goes on sale that cheap we stock up.
    • Dollar Tree – we go through alot of disposable items like metal pans for the grill and paper plates, plastic silverware, and aluminum foil.  Most of these things I get at Dollar Tree.  Magic Erasers are great from there also.  I have also bought a ton of glassware from there.  I used the large wine glasses from there and stuffed them with large cupcakes for a shower that I threw recently.  They were a huge hit and everyone got to take the glasses home and they really loved them.

  • I also put change into jars and stash them away.  The last few years I have completely covered Christmas and several holiday birthdays with just the change from a few months.

Post # 8
Member
3255 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

Stockpiling change in one place is an awesome idea. I actually went through self-checkout today at our grocery store and paid for $40 in groceries in quarters (I didn’t want to put the poor cashier through it- haha) that we had saved over the past month.

Post # 9
Member
955 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Wedding…

We moved the whole wedding 40 minutes north of where we live to a bigger city where things were a lot cheaper.

We bought everything for our centerpieces at thrift store (goodwill, salvation army, and any thrift store we could find) Haggled prices too.

DIY invites and decor. Bought blank folded cards for invites and cut them in half so I had twice as many 🙂 And always use a coupon!

DIY flowers. Loved this cause it was time I got to spend with my mom and sisters I prob would not have had otherwise. And all our flowers were a wedding gift from my sister so that helped out a lot too. So if someone offers don’t be afraid to accept 🙂

Bought thinks off of Ebay. Always looked for free shipping. 

Reselling things we bought…tablecloths, chargers and decor.

Bought my dress while on vacation in a town where things are way cheaper than where I live. And bought during a sale.

Did a lot of research for all the vendors. I didn’t just go with the most popular. I searched and search  for what I thought was affordable and reasonable and was what we wanted. Took a lot of time but was worth it.

Officiant was a friend, so she was free, and was very honored we asked.

Small bridal party, 2 on each side.

I made sure to ask every single vendor for a discount or if we could adjust a package. Becasue we were getting married on a a Thursday and we didn’t need everything they were offering. Had to prioritze things we really wanted vs things we could live without. This saved us a lot.

 We used new vendors that had not been in business very long. I made sure all of them were legit and had a website and photos I could see in person. Our photog and cake baker we 2 that we saved a lot on. And we were very happy with both. (actually found both advertisng specials on craigslist)

We made sure to help our attendants out also. We paid for tux rentals (this was a non-negotiable with DH) and for the girls they wore any long black dress they liked (that I ok’d)

Our Honeymoon was a place we have been wanting to go for awile and was in the US. And we made sure that I could use my employee discount at the hotel which saved us a TON. And we bought the airfare  way in advance to save as well as some of the site seeing tickets, which made them cheaper too.

 ETA… We cut out the rehersal dinner. We had a small wedding party that had all been in weddings before so how difficult is it to walk up an aisle and stand next to your friend. We were too busy with flowers anyway so we ordered pizza in and all the family and friends in the hotel came by the room and chatted and ate.

Post # 10
Member
16 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2013

for an everyday tip, if you have a food lion or a grocery store that often has buy one get one sales like harris teeter os anything i save my coupons until they have one of those sales which if pretty often here because i have both of those stores and they changes sales every week. and say i had a coupon for $6 off a swiffer sweeper, and they were BOGO i could buy 2 for $6. by combining coupons with weekly sales i have saved  alot on grocery!

i have also looked into the art of making paper flowers from tissue paper and silk ones from ribbon. and they look gorgeous and for a backyard affair they would be quite cute in a colorful bouqet in a vase are also very cheap and easy to make

Post # 11
Member
123 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Wedding:

Diy the invites: If I would have gotten the invites that I loved on wedding paper divas I would have spent over $700. Doing them myself (and they look pretty fab) is costing us slightly over $300 if you include the postage.

DIY-ing the the decor: The plan is to order the flowers and put the centerpieces for the reception together ourselves. Same goes for the flowers for the wedding party (which is not all that big). We bough lots of candles really cheap for the tables as well. Also, my dad and I are attempting to come up with a solid plan for hanging paper lanterns and lighting them. The objective is to do this stuff for under $1500. So far so good.

The dress: I got my dress from a girl on oncewed. I had been dreading going to a bridal salon and not being able to afford a dress that I loved. I found the dress I had been oogling online for ages and decide to buy it sight unseen. It needs a few alterations but it’s brand new and looks amazing so I think it was $400 well spent.

Food: After much debate we decided to go with getting a caterer for the reception food. I really wanted to do it all myself since the majority of my working life has been food/ catering related. We opted to get the food that we loved (tacos) which is also one of the cheapest options we going go for. We are also going two apps to go with everything and having three fillings for the tacos (grilled grouper, shredded chicken, and smashed pinto beans). Overall it’s going to be about $18 buck a head.

Drink: We will be doing wine and beer only. We debated having a bartender for awhile and both agreed that it was not necessary. Especially since we don’t have a ton of liquor drinkers attending the wedding. I don’t think anybody is going to miss it. 

Everyday:

Make a weekly menu and stick to it: We budget about $30-$40 a week for the two of us. We cook almost everyday- even if it’s just grilled cheese or omlets. We are not starving and eat really well. On days I know I’m going to be too busy to cook I’ll usually throw something in the crockpot and it’s ready when we get home. My crockpot was one of the best things I’ve ever recieved as a gift.

Food/ Grocery shopping: We eat a lot of grains and veggies. We shop at farmers markets and the local indoor market ( Westside market here in cleveland) where we get all of our dairy and produce. Typically we don’t go to the grocery store unless we are in serious need of non-food products. I ALWAYS use coupons for that kind of stuff and buy when the sales are good. 

Transportation: Both of us try to take the bus or walk as much as we can. Usually, we buy gas every 2 1/2 weeks and even then it’s not on empty simply because we limit the driving we do. We are lucky to live in a city where most everything we need is fairly close. 

Going out: We try to go out at least once a month. With our schedules it’s sometimes hard to make time for a date night. We are sort of food snobs so we try to save the money for a  nice outing at a good restaurant once a month.

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