Stationary & Invites Because invitation packages include many different components, costs can accrue at an alarmingly high rate. This is the first impression of your wedding your guests will have, so you will have to decide if you want to go with DIY wedding invitations or with professional printing. If you decide on a professional stationer - there are plenty of inexpensive options which will save your wallet and your precious time. To save even more just go with a simple invitation and response card. It is classic and minimalist. Create a free wedding website and place the website on the reception card so guests can easily find any additional information.
Other ways to save: Skip the Save the Date cards. A chic and inexpensive way to do these is to find a picture of both of you and have them printed on postcards. Handwrite your wedding details and mail them for less than first class postage.
Flowers You can spend big bucks in a blink of an eye for an item which is going to be tossed out or die shortly after. Save your budget for something more important such as the food. Go with small tussy mussies or nosegays for your bridesmaids (mini vintage bouquets) and in season flowers which do not have to be special ordered or flown in. For the centerpieces downsize with small arrangements of potted flowers atop of columns or tall vases. You can get beautiful azaleas and hydrangeas which are usually inexpensive and they look beautiful. Vases filled with water and floating flowers or candles work well without breaking the bank. Think outside the box when it comes to your centerpieces.
Your Bouquet should be the only splurge in this category as it will be featured in your photography. The rest of the floral arrangements can be cut back tremendously as they are just a luxury - not a necessity.
Ceremony Decor Make garlands out of fabric, tulle or ribbons. Floral arrangements on the altar and head of the aisle are important as these are the main areas you will be photographed. Skip the fresh rose petals and opt for silk rose petals - cheaper and will look just as good for the photographs.
Transportation Hire a limo bus for the entire wedding party, picking up the guys first and dropping them off then swinging back to pick up the bride, parents and bridesmaids. After the ceremony, you'll only have one vehicle to take you to the reception location cutting back your costs.
Reception decor Besides toning down your centerpieces, think lighting as a means to "wow" your guests without breaking the bank. Candles, pin spots, washes of color, light stencils on the dance floor and projections can add ambiance without costing a fortune. Skip the place card holders and just use seating cards, saving the extra $100 to $200 from the holders to focus on your wedding favors.
Wedding Cake Rather than an over-the-top design, spend your budget on the quality of the cake. Guests will remember how good the cake tasted, not how tall or how decorated the cake was.
Entertainment Live bands are normally more costly than a DJ, if you can opt for the DJ and be clear on what types of music you want played.
Never Skimp on:
- Your photography - don't leave the documentation of your wedding to chance. You want to preserve every moment of it on film. Wedding videography is optional though - how many times are you going to watch your wedding on film?
- Catering - On average 50% of your budget should go toward the food. The food is the "heart" of the event, so it is money well spent and it is worth it.
- Areas to save money: Stationary, Flowers, Transportation, and Decor.
- Areas to meet your budget: Your bouquet, wedding cake, wedding favors.
- Areas to Not Cut Costs: Food & Photography