A Budget Wedding? A Few Choice Tips
Having had the good fortune to get married recently I’ve had lots of questions about where we shopped and what we did and of course, the inevitable, how much did it cost? The fact is I’m very proud to say we did manage a relatively budget wedding and had no less of an amazing day for it. So, here are my top tips for keeping your budget down:
- Get a relative to video tape it – my brother taped ours and it was perfect. Not only did he know us well and have a good idea of what we’d want on the tape but it had a much more personal feel to it. I then used Windows Movie Maker to format it and Windows DVD Maker to make DVDs for all the family.
- Can you or a friend make your own cake? A relative very kindly made plain cupcakes for us, decorated with sugar flowers we bought via an online supplier. We topped it off with an ‘Extra Special’ plain iced fruit cake from Asda, a cake topper and a sugar array of flowers. Our cake stand (from Amazon) was very reasonable but looked great.
- Use your favours as decorations and don’t be afraid to make decorations yourself. After pricing up the cost of paper hearts for all the tables, we realised it would be much cheaper to make them ourselves. We bought a cutout stamp from a craft shop and a load of tissue paper from a gift shop. Ask yourself if you really need all those balloons and trimmings – we were originally going to have red and cream balloons filled with helium all over the room but realising it would cost a fortune we opted for foil balloons scattered around the room, which actually worked much better. For our favours we bought plain bags, filled them with dragees and tied them off with a ribbon. We also filled small buckets with lovehearts and chocolate hearts. This provided us with cute favours for all our guests but they also worked as great table decorations.
- Don’t feel compelled to have a sit down meal. We had a lovely buffet and people raved about it and how much nicer it was to be able to sit wherever they liked and be able to pick at various food. It saved us about £11 per head, plus people didn’t expect wine on the tables.
- Don’t be afraid to hire a bar or similar. We hired the cellar room of a local bar – it had a self-contained bar, an area for the buffet, good seating and a really informal relaxed atmosphere. There was no room charge because we spent over £500 on food and drink and because it was central to town it was easy for people to find and easy for people to go and have a bit of a break between the afternoon and evening dos.
- Another tip is don’t let anyone pressure you into getting something you don’t want or need. It’s up to you whether you have a photographer, it’s up to you if you go to church or a register office and it’s up to you if you have one bridesmaid (or none) or twenty. The easiest way to see your budget spiral out of control is to start listening to other people when they talk about things you ‘must’ have. There’s nothing you must have, other than a marriage certificate at the end of it.
Finally, you’ll probably hear these two things a lot in the run up to your wedding: it will go by very quickly and you will love it. On the day, small things don’t matter. You can’t plan for everything and there’s bound to be something that doesn’t go to plan but trust me when I say that it won’t matter. And prepare to smile. And smile. And smile some more. So much that your jaw aches – but you won’t mind that either, in fact you probably won’t even realise until those pictures start coming back and it becomes apparent that there’s a reason it’s often the happiest day of your life.
Good luck and have a wonderful day!