five ways to save money when planning a wedding
FIVE WAYS TO SAVE MONEY WHEN PLANNING A WEDDING
>> BY: TANNAH TERRY PHOTOGRAPHY <<
Trust me, I get it! As if planning a wedding isn’t already hard enough, staying within your budget is even harder. Now, I’ve been to more of these things than I can count — and let me tell you there are ways to cut down on costs! annnnd, hello! that means more money in your pocket (cha ching)! Also, because time is money, we are gonna jump right into this thing!
Often times your venue eats up a huge portion of the budget. It is also one of the first things that comes to mind when wanting to save a few bucks in the planning process! When it comes to venues, consider getting married in the “off-season,” when the venue might not be booked as consistently. Or you could thinking about having your wedding on a different day, like Friday or Sunday! I know what you’re thinking, people aren’t gonna come party with us if it isn’t a Saturday. WRONG! I have shot weddings on Fridays and Sundays, and they still had one heck of a party! After all, the people who matter most will be there to celebrate with you whatever the case may be. You could also consider getting married in a relative’s back yard or pasture of some sort. Outdoor ceremonies are usually beautiful and require little to no decor! Speaking of decor, when you are looking for a venue, look for a place that is already pretty! You’ll save more money than you realize when decor is provided, or when a minimal amount is needed. A little bit really can go a long way! Getting married and hosting the reception in the same place is also something to think about, you avoid two venue fees, or transportation costs to and from the different locations. Plus, it will allow for more time to celebrate! Do some simple math and run some numbers, there is not right or wrong, but what is going to be best for you.
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Let’s talk about the dress…the guys attire…oh, and how about the bridesmaid dresses too. Do your research when it comes for shopping for a dress! There are many bridal boutiques that offer unique dresses at affordable prices. However, if you are anything like me, sometimes it just seems so crazy to spend so much on a dress you are gonna be wearing for not even an entire day. Sometimes it can be risky, but there are several places that sell wedding dresses online, some for under two or three hundred dollars! One of the most reputable sites I have heard of is Lulus. Tons of cute “wedding dresses” for your big day! I’ve seen some people have them altered or add belts for their perfect touch. Bridal belts can be expensive. I recently ordered one off amazon and would recommend it to anyone! Great quality. (click here to view) You can also find some super cute bridesmaid dresses on sites like Lulus too! Another thing you can do is to search for “white maxi dresses” and things of that sort! You might be surprised at what you can find. Search around for bridal boutiques having a sample sale, it is also a great way to get a steal on a dress!
If you are going for a more casual look, renting a tux for the guys might not be necessary. However, if you do want that look, check sites like amazon. I was totally surprised when some friends of mine told me they found these amazing suits for the guys on Amazon! I never would have guessed. Plus, it was still cheaper for them to purchase rather than rent. Again, this is just something you will have to research a bit to see what will be best for you — but definitely worth looking into.
The whole thing with having each bridesmaid in a different dress with the same color palette is HUGE right now (I am totally digging it)! Which could be awesome for you with finding good deals! There are so many places to find maxi dresses, so look around and hit up all the sales! Since you won’t need them all to be the same, you can shop different places and don’t have to worry about getting how ever many of the same style! Just make sure you coordinate your colors. Pinterest is (obviously) a wonderful place to look for inspiration on how to go about pulling it off.
Pro Tip on what NOT to do: I highly advise you NOT to order from sketchy companies like June Bridals. They try to recreate designer dresses at a cheap price. You likely won’t receive a dress that looks like what you ordered, and the quality will be terrible too. 10/10 do NOT recommend.
I am a HUGE fan of real flowers, so I don’t want to tell you to go the silk route. One of my close friends is planning her wedding and we were talking about this. Depending on who you hire and what you’re wanting, it might make a big difference in price. However, in my eyes, time is money. By the time I spend trying to piece together the right combination of flowers, I would end up mad at the world. haha! I’ve gotta admit, I am definitely willing to pay a little more for a lot less stress. I have seen some amazing bouquets made out of fake flowers, and props to those of you who do that! It just gives this girl too much anxiety. So if you’re set on having real flowers, here are a couple things you can do to get the most out of them! Have the bridesmaid bouquets double as centerpieces/decor for the reception. Incorporate more greenery — it’s beautiful (and serves as a great filler). You can also look into larger bloomed flowers, they will take up more space, giving it a fuller look without as many individual flowers! …and if you (or someone you’re close to) is creative, but you’re still wanting real flowers, buy bulk and put the bouquets together yourselves! My cousin did this for her wedding and they turned out beautifully! You can also opt out of boutonnières for the guys, replace them with a pocket hanky instead!
THE GUEST LIST
This one is easier said than done…but #QualityOverQuantity. You would be surprised at how much money you can save, specifically on food and alcohol, when you narrow down your guest list by even 20 people. If you have to rent things like chairs, that is also going to save you there too! You are likely already feeding your guests, so skip the party favors if needed. Think about who you genuinely want to celebrate with you! I don’t have much more on this, but to really think about the cost of each plate.
UTILIZE YOUR RESOURCES
I’m not telling you to plan this huge, extraordinary event when that isn’t in the budget. But you can take advantage of the rewards from various credit cards! If you are spending the money anyway, you might as well earn some perks. Different cards have different rewards, so you will want to search around to see what is best for you. Maybe it’s cash back, maybe its earning points towards airfare (did someone say HONEYMOON?!). With all the technology, you are able to pay it off almost instantly — so you might as well get the perks! I love the cash back my Discover card offers, as well as earring points for travel with Southwest Airlines! I am also ale to use those rewards for purchases on Amazon, which is a good place to get almost anything you need! This is money you can essentially save or use for things you might need or want down the road!
There are so many ways to save money when planning your wedding if you just think outside the box! Splurge on the things that are important to you.