(Closed) Will DIY actually save me money?

posted 8 years ago in DIY
Post # 3
1313 posts
Bumble bee

Do you have any friends or family members you could borrow from? I am using my step-mom’s equipment for everything 🙂

Post # 4
18644 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

I’m sure that you can get some of those used either on the Classifieds here or Craigslist.  That can help save a lot.  I didn’t really DIY much but I know for me, that I ended up spending a lot of money on things that I didn’t even end up using!

Post # 5
1982 posts
Buzzing bee

I think it depends. For me–yes, because of what I wanted and what I have the knowledge to do, you know?

Like, for example, my Save-The-Date Cards. I had to go buy the paper cutter (It was $13 on sale at Michaels, woo!) but I know I’ll use it again and again to cut cards, crop pics and to finish my paper goods now.

Now, I preface this by saying–I did already own fun scrapbook scissors, a myriad of adhesives, cardstock, a cricut, photoshop and illustrator, etc–but there are cheap deals to be had that don’t involve you spending more than you necessarily would and ways around not having those things.

PM me if you want more details.

Post # 6
1956 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010 - Tannery Pond at the Darrow School

You hit the nail on the head when you mentioned having to invest in all the crafting tools…For me, DIY (while fun) has not really saved me hardly any money at all, since I had virtually nothing when I started (not really the crafting type before getting engaged!)

Honestly, I am disappointed by how little money I’ve saved going the DIY route but it does make everything more personal and I’m way more invested in projects, so that’s an unexpected benefit, I suppose…

In short, if you don’t have the tools, it probably won’t save you a lot of money but it’s still fun!

Post # 7
829 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2010

Go to Michaels use their coupons 40-50% off. You can get your tools for practically nothing!

Post # 8
1288 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2010 - Indiana Memorial Union

I think there’s a tendency to not pay yourself for your time DIYing. There’s a major opportunity cost here, so if your spare time is really precious, maybe you don’t want to spend it DIYing poms pom, even if it saves you $20, you know?

There are some things I’m outright buying because I don’t want to spend the time making, but there are other things that I’ve definitely enjoyed doing. I loved doing my invites, but I could’ve gotten a complete set from Hello Lucky for cheaper 🙂

Post # 9
1060 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2010 - Anela Garden Chapel & Japanese Cultural Center, Honolulu

DIY can be cost effective..if you pick and choose your battles. However, I like to think that the purchase of tools not only becomes an investment on future projects, but also double as an “entertainment” purchase as well, since you’ll be devoting time to the machines, picking up new skills, and maybe even bonding with your Fiance if he’s going to help out with the process. While not monetary benefits, it’s still a benefit. The trade-off being the amount of stress a complicated DIY project can be..heh. 

Post # 10
1465 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

If you are naturally a crafty person, it might. If you aren’t, then you may end up spending more money in the end by going the DIY route. You also have to factor in your time as well.

Post # 11
1251 posts
Bumble bee

You can always just work in the room at Archivers or any local scrapbooking story. They normally have many of these tools on hand for you to borrow.

You could definatly buy Invites for cheaper than the DIY that many people do. It all depends what kind of look you are going for.

I helped another bride in my city Gocco her invites, and there is no way in the world that she could have bought invites like them. We Gocco’d them, then put clear embossing power on the design while it was still wet, then hit it with the embossing gun. So the lettering was raised and glossy. They are pretty bad-a$s and really look like they cost thousands.

I am planning on Goccoing mine on Vintage Hankerchiefs. a la Bird and Banner

Post # 12
304 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

As a grad student, my time is worth nothing.  🙂

I am DIY-ing a lot, and I am planning to sell some supplies (like my goccos–yes, I have 2) after the wedding. 

If you have the time and are willing to spend time to save money, then you can save a substantial amount of money.  However, I’m not going to lie to you, I had to make 20 separate trips to Michaels to get all the candles and paper I needed because I used a 40% off coupon for each one.  I was really annoyed at the end. (PS, they do have 40% off entire purchases of candles coupons every so often.  Of course that one came after I bought almost all of my candles…) 

I think the stuff most people save money on for DIY is flowers and maybe invitations.  It really depends what you want for invitations though.  Flowers is something that you need to commit to since you arrange them so close to the wedding.  OR, you save money doing DIY alternatives to more expensive stuff.  Like tissue paper pomanders instead of real flower pomanders.

The other thing is READ YOUR QUOTES CAREFULLY.  My caterer is charging me a ridiculous sum of money for paper napkins.  I’m so annoyed that I’m providing my own.  They’re charging me double the rate I could get online.  It ends up saving me about $50, and while that’s not a lot in comparison to the whole wedding, it’s all the little things that add up that matter!


Post # 13
2398 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

I found that DIY was cost-effective less in the sense of actual savings than in allowing me to purchase items in small bursts.  For instance, our invites probably would’ve cost the same amount had we ordered them with the belly band, feather end envelope liners instead of making those things – but I didn’t have the money up front.  What I did have was X amount out of several paychecks to buy craft paper and scissors, ribbon, peacock feathers, etc.  I got the invited I wanted, but didn’t have to spend as much time waiting as I would’ve if I’d had to save up for a lump sum payment.

Post # 14
2280 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

From what I’ve gathered about DIY weddings, the trick is to use what you have (friends or tools or decorative stuff) and invest more time than money. For example, I’d like to do a backyard reception, and since my dad has most of the equipment I need, I will save a lot more money doing that than compared to, say, replacing flowers centerpieces with glass and candle centerpieces, which I would still need to pay for.

So my advice, I guess, is not to concentrate on crafts so much as looking for cost-effective services.

Post # 15
655 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

I think it requires some research. It sucks, but it helps you know what you would be spending versus what what it will cost to diy. Then see if there are groups of things that you will be using again and again.

For example, I bought a paper cutter and a ton of Paper Source paper and did end up using these things again and again–invitations, placecards, table numbers, leftovers for menus, scraps for 1000 paper cranes and guest book. I had also recently invested in a very nice printer, which helped make things look high quality. I didn’t save a ton on my invites (still ended up being $2.50/per person or so) but the supplies from that trickled into all of these other projects that ended up being nearly free by using the leftovers.

I was going to DIY my flowers and it turned out that it was cheaper to get the bouts, corsages, and bouquets done by a professional and order orchids for the tables from fiftyflowers.com. If I’d tried to do my own bouquets, etc., I wouldn’t have saved any money.

Pom poms are a pain in the behind, but I’m still glad I found cheap ways to diy rather than buy them. I did save money, but they tok longer than I thought!

Post # 16
655 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

Oh, and I never factored in the cost of my mistakes upfront. So I’d often end up making a 2nd trip back to a store and spending $15 more on a projects because of my errors. Definitely include diy errors in your budget when you’re comparing prices!

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