Does anyone have any tips on saving money for a wedding?

by DIY wedding planner on December 9, 2011

I need some tips on saving money for a wedding? Would it be tacky and redneck to do DIY ideas for a wedding? I really need some help when it comes to this. We are planning to get married outside.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Patricia G December 9, 2011 at 3:46 am

Saving money for the wedding or lowering the cost of the wedding? Two different things. If you saving for it, you can cut down on eating out, going to the movies, stop clothes shopping, stop spending on what is not a necessity. If your talking about lowering the cost, you could make all the centerpieces yourself, making the favors yourself, by or rent your wedding dress at Davids Bridal. They have beautiful gowns that are very inexpensive. Hire a DJ instead of a full band, talk to the high school or college photography teacher, they may be able to photograph your day for a lower fee, do all the decorating yourself. Have the wedding in the park, where only a cleanup fee is charged, You could make the invitations yourself. AC Moore and Micheal’s have great starter invitations {all you do is put your info on it} or you can print them off the computer. The best thing is to compare prices in different stores. Be sure to stop around for tent and table rentals as well. Local fire houses usually rent out tables and chairs for a low fee. Check around for different Caterers. PLan on a simple menu. Have it served “family style” or a buffet. It is usually cheaper.


;-( ;-) December 9, 2011 at 4:07 am

I am known for designing weddings on a small budget where the bride, and several friends, do much of the work and let me tell you… They do not look red neck. Instead I feel like they are much more personal.
Some of the things that i have noticed to not look too redneck but saves a ton of moo-lah are:
1) Print out your own invitations and have a friend take a photograph of the happy couple on a digital camera. Take the photo you like the most to the nearest Walgreens and print out enough to put one in each invitation. Also, adding a small trinket always goes a long way (i.e. a few rose petals purchased at the nearest dollar store in your wedding color or even a few bling charms in one of your wedding colors.

2) There are many sites on the internet that will help you create your own diy wedding embosser that you can use in every little way, then incorporate these monograms on everything. Trust me…you will see how the smalles (and rather easy) of things will go a long way.

3)Make your own Favor labels. Use your computer, printer, designer paper and your own ingenuity to make a worth wild touch to the wedding reception.

4) Use your computer to print out the words on the envelopes, this always looks better than handwritting.

5) Make your own wedding programs. look up for great ideas or go to your nearest Michaels for great pack that you can make your own.

6) Do it yourself Monogram cookies are always a great (and tasty) idea for a favor. Do the monogram diy idea and design it on a heart cookie. Wrap in see through plastic bag, and tie with a ribbon that is one of your wedding colors. Always fun!!!

7) Make your own unity candle… There are countless ideas on the internet for these.

8) Make your own cupcakes in your wedding colors instead of having the traditional wedding cake. This is a new trend and definitely saves on the pocket book.

9) There are even countless ways to make your own decorations (such as: pomanders, wreaths, hanging lights, and more)

The only problem that often arises with diy wedding ideas is that you must devote enough time to each task or you will bring yourself much stress and anxiety to the days prior to the wedding.
Whatever you choose know that this is your day and it often works better to do some things yourself.


Watermelon December 9, 2011 at 4:56 am

You need to think about what is important to you and is a must have at your wedding and what would just be nice to have “just because.”

Some people choose not to have a dance and instead just dinner. Others choose to have an intimate dinner with close friends and family and then later in the evening, have a dance and invite everyone you want.

There really isn’t a big price difference between buffet and plated dinners. It is cheaper to only serve appetizers, cocktails and cake, which is what my fiance and I are doing.

It’s not tacky to do a lot of the things yourselves. You’re not inviting complete strangers or appearing on a TV show like Four Weddings where people will be rating your wedding. Your friends and family know you and just want you to be happy. Michael’s is a great store for getting supplies for your wedding. I went there for the wedding invitations (being printed off my computer) and for the items needed for the favours, which I’m making. Because my guest list is small, I’m able to spend the time personalizing the favours with names and special messages.

An outdoor wedding saves on decorations too because mother nature is already so beautiful. Mother nature also serves as a place to get decorations. Consider going to the beach and looking for rocks, seashells, drift wood and anything else that you can get creative with, with supplies from the dollar store (another place I have utilized). Wal-mart and Target are also good places to find items for DIY.

As for saving money for a wedding, basically just cutting back on things in your life will go a long way. We used to eat out a few times a week and now it’s only 1-2 a month (HUGE savings there). I’ve always loved second hand stores for clothes but I very rarely go now and am just making use of what’s in my closet already. Basically, we’re buying what we NEED and saving our WANTS for later on.


TTC #1 =) December 9, 2011 at 5:34 am

Quick answers:

Print your own invitations – you can get super cute sets at places like Walmart, Hobby Lobby, even Office Depot. Make sure you get regular sized invitations so you don’t have to buy the more expensive stamps. Don’t do an RSVP card – include on the invite for people to email you or reply at your wedding website (you can get one at I didn’t even get half of my replies back – I had to turn around and call them all anyways.. most people don’t get how important RSVP’s are until they have their own wedding – also, hand deliver as many as you can. I was sending invites out right around Christmas, so I brought all those invites to family Christmas’ and saved a bunch on stamps. I also hand delivered Thank yous to those I could.

Skip Ceremony Programs – I made them, they took forever and a zillion got left at the reception. No one took them. A ceremony is easy to follow – no one needs a how to.

Doing your own flowers saves a ton. I made my bouquet for my bridal portraits and they looked amazing. I got the flowers from a craft store. I bought the more expensive ones and you couldn’t really tell they were fake. Still way cheaper than the florist. If you use a florist, only get the flowers you need. Adding all those flowers in centerpieces cost a fortune!!!!

Only have one cake. There really isn’t much need for a brides and grooms cake. We had 100 people and 2 cakes, we took half of the grooms cake and the whole bottom layer of a 3 tiered wedding cake home. Do a layered wedding cake and do different flavors on each layer.

You can save a lot of money by having light finger foods instead of a full course meal.

You can save alot of money by having your wedding on a friday night or sunday. Saturday’s are the most expensive.

Bargain shop on all your wedding accessories. I got my dress online for half what Alfred Angelo wanted. I found my shoes at a shoe outlet (I opted for brown shoes that matched the sash on my dress – bonus – I can wear them again!) :) I got all my jewelry at a super large outlet jewelry store. Try to find a dress that needs little alterations. Mine was a lace up back and I picked high heels out the size I needed so I didn’t have to alter the hemline. All I needed was a simple one point bustle which cost $35.

Ask only your closest family and friends to be in the wedding party – the smaller the wedding party, the cheaper it is on you. It also isn’t necessary to have a flower girl and ring bearer.. that adds more money on to you. We didn’t have either. If you have them though, obviously they are super duper cute!! :)

We didn’t do a rehearsal or a rehearsal dinner. We just told everyone what was up. It’s not rocket science. A walk through of the wedding ceremony is not needed and neither is a dinner. If you have lots of family or friends from out of town, have a small bbq at home the night before – way cheaper!

Obviously, alcohol is expensive. Cut that out or cut it back to only beer and wine or margaritas.

Getting married outside makes it easier to save money. You don’t have to have all the fancy linens, the fancy centerpieces, etc. You can definitly make it super elegant outside, but you can also pull of a really laid back easy going wedding. Make your own centerpieces. I went to a wedding where the bride collected little twigs and spray painted them black, placed them in a vase with small pebbles and then made little dangly things off a few branches out of red beads. It was awesome looking!

Search search search search online for anything you want. I searched a ton of different websites for our guest book, toasting flutes, cake serving set, etc. I compared and compared sites until I found the cheapest. I ended up saving over $100 by doing that.

Don’t think you have to go all out for your wedding. sure, the magazine weddings look awesome, but is that really you? I did alot of my wedding myself and by no means would I consider my wedding redneck. We splurged on our venue (it was on a yacht) – so I saved everywhere else I could. I was extremely happy with our wedding and in the end, not very many people will remember all your small details. Just make sure YOU are happy with what you are doing. And don’t stress. It’s over sooner than you know and you sit back and ask yourself why you worried so much! LOL

Good luck with the planning process and remember to enjoy yourself. Have fun! It makes it so much easier when you do! :)


Greyt Grey December 9, 2011 at 5:53 am

There is nothing wrong with going the DIY route. In fact, most of the ladies on here had one or more DIY projects at their weddings. But be warned: DIY is not always going to guarantee that you’ll save money. Especially if you’re not a particularly crafty person to begin with.
My husband and I paid for our wedding without using credit cards or asking for handouts from our parents. To save money we made small adjustments that over our 2 year engagement added up to some major savings. For example, we’re both coffee fanatics. Each of us was accustomed to stopping at our favorite coffee shop weekday mornings for a $4.75 latte. $4.75 x 5 days a week = $23.75 per week x 52 weeks per year = $1,235 per person. Cutting out morning coffee for both of us equated to a savings $4,940 over the course of two years. Mind you, we had a $5,000 wedding – paid for almost exclusively by cutting out the morning coffee.
There are other things you can do: plan your trips so you’re not driving so much. Pack a lunch instead of eating out. Buy in bulk rather than for individual meals.


Avis B December 9, 2011 at 6:12 am

Get married in the morning and then follow that ceremony with a breakfast or brunch. Breakfast is the least expensive FULL MEAL that you can serve your guests PLUS you do not have to serve any liquor except for a champagne toast to the Bride and Groom, you don’t even have to hire a band or DJ for a morning reception. What would you rather pay? $19.95 per person for a breakfast or $89.95 per person for a three course dinner?

Only have a Maid of Honor and a Best Man. You only have to buy one more bouquet and one more boutonniere and two THANK YOU gifts.

Have a one flower (all pink roses or all white carnations or all yellow daisies) bouquet. Normally when a florist creates a Bride’s bouquet several types of flowers are needed which adds to the total cost of the bouquet.

Control the flow of liquor or do not serve any liquor at all. Wedding guests love FREE liquor and they will drink and drink and drink at YOUR expense.

Getting married outside is not necessarily the least expensive way to have a wedding. Have you priced tents? Tables and chairs? Place settings, silverware, and glassware?

Answered by; A Certified wedding specialist / A Professional bridal consultant / A Wedding ceremony officiant


Mara F December 9, 2011 at 6:59 am

Great idea – I think it’s ridculous how much weddings cost nowadays, that money can be better spent put in SAVINGS!

Getting married outside is great, not sure where you live, but if it can rain at anytime, make sure you have a plan B.

Here are so ideas on an inexpensive wedding:
Keep it informal (I am not saying not to get the big white dress, do that, but keep everything else informal)
Have the wedding/reception at someone’s home that has a great backyard! You can do the ceremony there as well as the reception.

You can HIRE a BBQ catering company to do a really great BBQ spread for the meal – that can still be very nice, but not as expensive as serving salmon.
Daisey’s are great spring/summer flowers and are VERY inexpensive, don’t use fake flowers (that’s redneck) :)

Invitations – there are so many great ones that you can do yourself now, I suggest that. Even walmart has great ones and doing that can save you a LOT of money.

As for centerpieces on the reception, you can start collecting and borring clear class vases from people and buy them cheap – even sometimes at the dollar store, in all difference sizes then place some either colored stones in the bottom (perhaps your wedding colors) then put in a few daisey’s in each one, it can look REALLY nice.

Decorations – if you are getting married in the evening where the reception will be at night, run small WHITE christmas lights around the fence and wind up the trucks of all of the trees. You can also add candles in small votive holders on the tables around the flowers (just don’t light them til it gets to be sunset).

Keep your wedding party small – that cuts down on drama PLUS the cost of the ‘extra’s’ you need to buy them, ie, flowers, gifts, etc..

Keep your wedding guest list small or at least under 100, if you can. That can really cut down on the cost.

Serve only beer and wine. (Full bars can get very pricey) If you’re doing it at someone’s home, you might want to giet a little ‘red neck’ and get a keg. ;)

Look into party rental places for the tables, chairs, linen – table cloths, knapkins, plates, forks/knifes/spoons. Using REAL linen can make your wedding look sophisticated, even if you are serving BBQ for dinner/lunch.

Get married in the morning/early afternoon and serve lunch – not a huge dinner and you can save some money there.

DJ or if you have friends that can play instruments, ask them for a favor.

Cake – do your research, I know in my area there are SERVERAL amazing cake makers that do the work out of their home, and they charge a lot less than a big bakery does. Ask around.

Wedding Favors – find neat small picture frames (real small) you can search around for them or find them online and put a picture of your and your fiancee (perhaps an engagement picture) wrap it in tule with a preprinted ribbon (easy to find online) saying Thank you for sharing our special day with your names and the date.

Pictures – OK…..I REALLY REALLY encourage you NOT to skimp here. Remember of EVERYTHING you doing on your wedding day, the photo’s are what you have to look at FOREVER. So, in my opinion this is where you really look for the best photographer and what you can afford.

Misc things like: Wedding Glasses/Cake Knife & Server, etc…… borrow them from your parents or grandparents, it makes the day really specials to say – oh these were my grandparents glasses when they got married and I am using them. Just remember everything doesn’t HAVE to be new.

MOST OF ALL – enjoy it!


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