You’ve gotten engaged, starting dabbling in wedding planning and meeting with vendors, then all tires come to a screeching halt when you begin realizing what everything costs. Weddings are expensive! *The national average cost of a wedding is $33,931. So why not get a little creative and save some money? Below are a few ideas to help you save money on your wedding. You’re welcome! :o)
Cake: Not a huge cake fan? I actually hear this quite often. Opting for a small cake for cake-cutting purposes only and having sheet cakes cut and served to guests can save hundreds. The sheet cakes are kept in the catering kitchen, out of view of guests and are not decorated. This makes them easier to cut and portion out.
Something Borrowed: Make it special by borrowing jewelry, veil, shoes. Borrowing those higher dollar items can help you save big and makes your “something borrowed” super special.
Cut non-essentials: Anything that’s not essential to making wedding day, well, wedding day. If it’s an “extra”, cut it! Examples – favors, full bar, etc.
Wedding Planner: Yes, a wedding planner will be an additional expense to the budget, but they can also save you money by negotiating prices with vendors – or better yet they already know awesome vendors that are within your budget. Oh, and they’ll they’ll eliminate any stress you may have by managing your budget, planning your wedding and… well…doing all of the things.
Photography: Photos are your wedding day memories. Easy ways to help reduce this cost – opt for digital images versus a printed album. Another thought is to hire a newbie wanting to build their portfolio. There are a lot of talented folks out there willing to shoot a wedding at a fraction of the cost of a vetted professional. Just make sure you’ve seen their work and it’s something you love.
Programs: Printing can be expensive. Rather than printing 100+ programs, consider having one larger program printed and framed. If you place this near the ceremony entrance your guests will have the ability to read through it prior to heading in.
Floral: Another big expense. Flowers are gorgeous, but if they aren’t a top priority in your budget, consider repurposing ceremony arrangements in the reception space and using bridesmaid’s bouquets as table decor. For the guys – a pocket square can take place of a boutonnière. Greenery is also a great option to add size to arrangements at a minimal cost. One of my favorite options is to have a few statement arrangements in the areas of the venue where guests will congregate versus having small arrangements throughout the space that guests pass on by.
Maiden Wedding | Photograph by Amy Ellis Photo
Combine food and favors: Offer guests late night food or snacks as the guest favor! If you’ve ever been a guest at a wedding, you’ll agree this is a perfect way to send your guests off happily into the night. A few ideas – milk and cookies, s’mores, popcorn, grilled cheese… the options are limitless.
Concord Wedding | Photography by Marni Pictures
Venue: Booking your wedding during off-peak wedding season can save big money. Also consider a Friday or a Sunday wedding since those days are typically less expensive than a Saturday. Another tip – reuse chairs rented for ceremony, at the reception.
Bar: Save thousands by offering a signature cocktail during cocktail hour only and having only beer and wine served at the reception.
Concord Wedding | Photograph by Marni Pictures
My last tip: For those of you really wanting a Photo Booth, create your own polaroid station with props and plenty of film. Have guests leave photos in a book that you can later thumb through in the days following the wedding.
Cleveland Wedding | Photograph by Megan Travis Photography