Planning a Wedding on a Budget
How To Plan a Wedding on a Low Budget
So, you are engaged!!! Well, let me be one of the first to say congrats. You are taking the next step in both of y'all's lives. Now comes the part that most brides look forward to: planning the wedding. Well, planning a wedding is a lot of work, but it can be fun, too. However, in order to keep from going overboard, you need to make a budget. This is something that I did not do in the beginning, so I have no idea how much I actually spent on my wedding in June 2017. First step is to set a date. Make sure it is far enough out so you not only have time to plan the ceremony and reception, but by setting the date out several months, it also gives family members or friends that do not live close to plan their trip ahead of time.
Once you have your date set, it is time to find your wedding colors. Personally, I used Tiffany blue and black. For those that do not know Tiffany blue, it is also called robin egg blue. I chose these colors because the blue color had the perfect amount of blue and green, making it a beautiful turquoise color. And any color looks good with black (hahaha). So, talk to your SO and see what colors you would like to use.
The next step is for the bride to find her dress. The way I did this was by doing research. I looked around and settled on a mermaid or trumpet-style dress. So, I knew the style I wanted, now I just had to find it. I set up an appointment with David's Bridal to try on dresses and found the one I wanted. My dress cost me around $350. My advice would be to take a look at the discontinued styles from the year before. Not only will they be just a beautiful, but they will also be a lot cheaper than a dress from that particular season. Needless to say, if you are on a tight budget, you do not want to be spending $1000 on a dress you will wear one time.
Bridesmaids dresses can be difficult. Some people will ask for their bridesmaids' opinions on the dress, while others will set a certain style and length. Either way is fine, as long as you are not turning into a Bridezilla. NO one wants to deal with that person. I did my research here as well. I found the perfect bridesmaids dresses on a website based in California, but the dresses were handmade in China. These dresses could come in a set standard size or they could be custom made. I bought a grand total of 5 dresses and requested express shipping. Grand total, I paid $500 all together for all 5 dresses. Not bad considering the dresses we picked could be worn on other occasions other than just a wedding.
The venue is the last major part of any wedding. If you are on a tight budget, look into venues that offer more in a ceremony. I used a local wedding chapel that took care of almost everything. We paid $950 for the venue and it covered the preacher, two bouquets, two boutonnieres, video, pictures, music, the unity ceremony, and more. For the reception, I looked into local hotels that had a ballroom and rented one for the day. To rent one was $200, but the room was huge and was plenty big enough to set up tables and have a dance area.
The rest of the wedding is small stuff. Flowers, ring bearer, flower girl, guest list, food, drinks, etc. I would suggest using fake flowers for the bouquets and boutonnieres. Not only will you save a lot of money, but you can buy fake flowers in a bulk so you have plenty to use for everything. I would also suggest making them yourself, and using the flowers left over for center pieces. I used Pinterest for the ideas on center pieces, bouquets, and boutonnieres. It was cheaper than having a flower shop provide flowers and everyone got to keep their bouquets without having to worry about them dying.
For my flower girl and my ring bearer, I bought their outfits at Walmart. Even though I hate Walmart, it was the best place to buy their outfits because it was cheaper than buying them from David's Bridal or any other wedding place. I also bought my husbands suit from Walmart along with the ring he would use in the ceremony.
A lot of people think they have to go all out when it comes to the rings as well. Studies have proven that the more you spend on the ring, the less likely the marriage is to last. This is because the higher the cost of the ring can not only put you into debt, but it tends to show that the person is more concerned with things rather than the real meaning of marriage. My wedding set cost $68 at Walmart and it is the one I wanted. I could not be happier with my set; even though the diamonds are not real, it looks real. I have gotten so many compliments on my set it is unreal. It looks real without the price tag of real diamonds.
When it comes to the food, I relied on friends and family to help. I served finger foods and bought containers for the drinks, like the ones you see at a birthday party or church function. This allowed me to feed everyone a snack without ruining any dinner plans they had for after. I also had a friend make my cake. I bought the stencil used on the sides and bought everything needed. I even made my own topper. Using DIY projects for a wedding not only saves money, but it makes you feel good knowing that no one will ever have to exact same one.
Planning a wedding on a budget is hard. Granted, there is nothing wrong with eloping and having a ceremony later. But, if your family insists on a ceremony, or you want a ceremony, it can be done on a budget. It is hard and requires a lot of research, but if you have the determination, it can be done.