By Alice Robertson, Tidy Home
Whether you or your partner’s parents are picking up the cost or you’re footing the bill yourself, paying for a wedding can turn expensive very quickly. It’s your big day, and there are probably some things you’ve always wanted to include in the ceremony and reception. Unfortunately, making sure they all get incorporated will only expand the bottom line. Without substantial savings, you could be taking on major debt, and that’s not a great way to start out married life. The good news is that planning a wedding is a highly fluid, creative process with lots of wiggle room when it comes to finding affordable ways to include everything you want. Anyone can have a memorable wedding, no matter the budget.
Cull the guest list
A lot of the planning will depend on the number of guests you’re inviting. It’s tempting to invite everyone you know to share in the big day, but an overloaded guest list means writing a big check to the caterer, while also trying to find a venue big enough to accommodate everyone comfortably. If your goal is to have a personalized and intimate wedding, inviting hundreds of guests isn’t the way to go about it. Try making a list of everyone you might want to invite, then go back through and try cutting it down 25 percent, followed by another 25 percent until it’s down to a workable size.
It’s traditional to get married in a church, and many people insist on tying the knot in the same church, synagogue, or mosque their families are affiliated with. Keep in mind that decorating a religious facility comes at a cost, which will vary based on size and policy. Most have rules that may eliminate some of the features you wanted to include in the service.
Instead, consider getting married at home or at a public park or garden. You’ll be fully in control of the ceremony and reception, though it means lots of advance cleaning and prep work. An at-home reception likely means renting tables and chairs and a large tent in case the weather doesn’t cooperate, but many people prefer not having to arrange everything based on someone else’s rules. You can easily decorate your venue on a budget with plenty of DIY options out there (that will actually look good).
Catering is one of the biggest expenses of any wedding, but you don’t have to spend a lot to serve a dinner that everyone will enjoy. Consider developing a menu and preparing the food yourselves, especially if you have family members who like to cook and are good at it. It’s worthwhile to stay in control of the costs because you can be economical and make all your own choices. If food preparation isn’t your thing and there’s no one around who can help, consider reaching out to a small, family-sized restaurant in the community that caters or is willing to cater.
An increasing number of couples are opting to record their wedding ceremony and reception themselves. Wedit offers a complete wedding video package that allows you to capture everything from the rehearsal dinner to the morning-after brunch. Our camera rental package includes five HD cameras, prepaid shipping both ways, and the ability to view, share, and download all pictures and videos for a year. We also offer editing packages to ensure a professional yet personalized final product for an additional cost.
Your wedding day should be special and memorable, but it doesn’t have to be a major source of financial stress. See it as a chance to utilize your own creativity and resourcefulness to create an occasion that’s uniquely yours. With some research and careful planning, you can pull off an event that’ll have everyone talking and leave you enjoying the money you saved for the honeymoon.