We’ve been in a recession for awhile, and despite some signs pointing towards a recover, one thing remains true: weddings are expensive! They can be one of the most expensive undertakings if you’re not careful, and it’s easy to be a willy-nilly bride and write checks your bank account can’t handle when your eyes are set on the day of your dreams. With a little strategic planning, however, it is possible to throw a fantastic wedding and reception, and come out on the other side without your piggy bank frowning at you. Here are some tips for planning a wedding on a budget:
1. Wow’ing Them– Good food, good drinks, and good music are what your guests will remember. Sure, catered food is de rigeur when it comes to weddings, but why not go the homemade route? Have your family and friends help with the menu, and bring their famous dishes. They can also help with the bar by donating a bottle of alcohol, or mixing up a batch of their famous wild lemonade. And the playlist? Surely, your friends have CD’s or an iPod you can borrow, which will help free up money you would have otherwise spent on a DJ.
2. Do Us a Favor– It’s ridiculous to think you need to go all out on party favors for your guests. Yes, it’s nice to give them a small token of appreciation for attending your big day, but you don’t need to break the bank to make the point. This is a place where do-it-yourself projects can really pack a punch. Whip up a batch of baked goods, and give one to each guest with a handwritten “thank you.”
3. A Picture’s Worth a Thousand…- Well, dollars if you hire a snazzy wedding photographer. Do you have a friend who dabbles in photography as a hobbie? Or what about giving the job to a photography student at a local college? You’ll save yourself a bundle by skipping a traditional wedding photographer who will cost you big bucks. Better yet, put disposable cameras on each of your tables and encourage guests to capture moments of your wedding that you would otherwise miss.
Just remember, the most important part of your wedding should be your own happiness. And surrounding yourself with loved ones will provide more timeless memories than the expensive centerpieces you couldn’t live without. Set a budget for your wedding, and do what you can to stay within the lines, or better yet, beat your own guestimation.