(Closed) your best “cost cutting” tips

posted 11 years ago in Money
Post # 3
Member
64 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2007

Sounds like you’ve got most of the money saving stuff covered! I would say that other brides will be a good resource for cheap supplies for centerpieces, etc.

I think another good way to save $ is to either make the favors or skip them altogether…I don’t think I’ve ever gotten a wedding favor that I really cared that much about, you know? Seems like such a waste of $ sometimes.

DIY definitely saves a lot of money, as long as you use less expensive supplies, etc. If you’ve got all of that done and have only spent $400 you are basically the master of planning a wedding on a budget! 🙂

Are you having a photographer? One of the things I did was put an ad on Craig’s list for someone looking to build their portfolio…was hoping to negotiate someone cheap. I got a ton of responses, but decided not to go that route in the end. But that’s an idea if you want to try to save $ on photography. I was also thinking of putting an ad up at Newhouse on the SU campus or something like that to see if I could hire a student to do some cheap photography for the day.

 Good luck!

Post # 5
Member
84 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2007 - Ceremony at a cement and stained glass cathedral and reception at a boutique hotel ballroom

potted flowers for centerpieces! my friend did this and it looked fantastic. she repotted the plants in some cute aluminum pots.

i once helped host a graduation event with hors d’oeurves (sp?) all from costco and it worked out great. only thing is… it’s a LOT of preparation. not sure if you want to do that the day/days before.

Post # 6
Member
158 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2007 - The Wellington House in Fayetteville, NY

For the table linens… you could consider going to local thrift shops and getting mismathched printed bed sheets.  I’m not sure if that is your style or not, but I saw that done by the woman who wrote Offbeat Bride.  She said it only cost an average of $2 per sheet.

Here are her pictures from Flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ariel/66049296/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ariel/66049899/in/set-1424934/

As far as food goes… I just catered a party for my job and it was about $900 for h’or deourves for 150 people.  You should be able to find someone to cater for 70 for less than $1,000.  What city are you in?

Also, we had an After Party where we had a cookout style kind of thing.  We got all of the food from a Restaurant Supply store and we fed about 100 people for less than $500.  You could probably make it a little classier than we did too.  Like instead of grilling hotdogs, grill Italian sausage.  Do meat kabobs instead of burgers, etc.

Hope that helps. GL 🙂

Post # 8
Member
32 posts
Newbee

Try getting your dress from ebay! You can go to a store and find one you like, then before you buy from the store, try looking on ebay. Also try to find a dress out of the new Isaac Mizrahi lineup at Target — many are $100-200. Or do a non-white dress you can wear again.

Post # 9
Member
158 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2007 - The Wellington House in Fayetteville, NY

BlushNot,

My wedding was in Syracuse too! How ’bout that? I’m from Utica, but my parents live in Syracuse now so we did it there.

What venue are you using?

Also, if you are going to go with potted plants/flowers… we got a mix of potted herbs and some flowers for $100 from a greenhouse in Phoenix, NY (near Baldwinsville) and it was enough for 18 tables plus some for the guest book table, gift table, etc.

I might actually know someone who does some cheap catering.  Also, do you have a cake yet?  Our cake was pretty cheap.

Post # 11
Member
158 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2007 - The Wellington House in Fayetteville, NY

Ooooh I loved Arrowhead Lodge.  That was one of the places that we looked at, but it was a little too small for us.  It will be absolutley gorgeous there in the winter.  Good choice!

I can’t remember the name of the greenhouse (it was just the owner’s last name) because it was hard to pronounce.   They might have stuff there during the winter other than pointsettas…I’m not sure.  It might be worth checking.  The man who owns it is REALLY nice and helpful. 

We actually were referred to that greenhouse by our cake baker.  Her name is Terry Lynn Schmidt.  She works at the Ginger Snap bakery in Phoenix, but she also does her own stuff on the side… and actually I believe she does catering too.  She doesn’t have a website, but if you are interested I can give you her phone number.

Our wedding was in August at St. Matthew’s in E. Syracuse and our reception was at the Wellington House (which SUCKED).  I have yet to blog about our wedding day, but eventually I’ll get around to it.

Wedding life if great so far!

p.s. Do you ever use the Upstate NY Knot message board? It can be pretty helpful sometimes, though I think most brides on there tend to more traditional than on Wedding Bee.

Post # 12
Member
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

This is just a small tip but might be useful for some.  If you plan on using rose petals as decor on tables or for a petal aisle, ask your florist if they’ll throw in the petals for free.  Some will, you’re spending enough money with them as it is and they will only give you petals from roses they were unable to sell anyway, so it’s not as though it’s costing them a profit.

Our florist said she would let us have the roses for petals at 25% off, so we (politely) told her to go fly a kite.  Buy your garbage at 75% of retail price?  No thank you. 

My mom is going to hit up a few local grocery stores starting 5 or 6 days before the wedding and collect rose petals from roses they can’t sell.  We should be able to get enough to use for a petal aisle AND sprinkled on all the tables.  All for free!  Just make sure you check ahead of time if this can be done; it works best if you have been frequenting the same grocer for a long time and they know you.

Post # 13
Member
151 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2007

I am trying to be cost effective with my wedding.

I am getting two photographers for $500.  Both my brother-in-law and future sister-in-law are photographers, but I felt like it would take away from the day to have them have to work.  So my future SIL is getting two of her friends to do it, $250 a piece, and it’s a way for them to build their portfolio.
We are going to do cake centerpieces.  I am not sure yet if it is going to be cost cutting, but I think it wil be cool!  We aren’t going to stress out about them all looking the same.  We have four wedding colors, so any of those colors will do.  There are some grocery stores that sell mini cakes for pretty cheap, and they look amazing.  I might do that for all the centerpieces (that way there can be an assortment of cakes) and also throw in some cheesecakes, pies, and cupcakes (FUNFETTI!)  We will have our wedding cake made by a florist, but I think for the centerpiece cakes, they will be more DIY.

Post # 14
Member
151 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2007

I thought of a better idea for the cake centerpieces!

A while ago my fiance’s cousin (and one of my BMs) was joking about how she’d make us a tie-dyed wedding cake.  
I thought it would be really cool/cheaper/more meaningful to have different friends and family provide cakes.
And then put a sign like "This Whatever kind of cake was provided by This person"
I like it!

Post # 15
Member
64 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2007

Before going with our caterer, we entertained the idea of getting stuff at Sam’s Club and paying a friend to get everything heated up and organized (as you know, I’m using Arrowhead Lodge too). That could be a possibility if you know of someone who would be up for it and would do it for a reasonable cost. My quote about the caterer I’m using was a little off too…we are having a cocktail hour with hor d’oeuvres, so that bumps the price per person up a couple of bucks. For stations (pasta, meat carving, salad, ethnic) it would be $13.95 per person…and who knows, might be able to negotiate a little cheaper since it’s off season? He catered my mom’s highschool reunion at the Arrowhead, which is how we got his name. Like I said in my PM to you, I’ll let you know how it goes, but he was the best deal we found. We are renting the linens from him: 77.50 for white linens and orange cloth napkins. Let me know if you want his info!

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