Hosting a Low Budget Wedding?

by DIY wedding planner on June 23, 2012

I would like some tips on hosting a low budget wedding. I don’t want to spend a fortune on ONE DAY, but I don’t want it to seem cheap either. So here’s some info about what the plan is so far:
~Ceremony at the church we are members to, with about 200 people attending (he has A LOT of family), mid morning
~Reception of 50-75 people at the local park (here are some links to some of my pics I have taken of the park before: ) There are also “shelter” areas at the park with picnik tables, a covering (not a gazebo but not a tent) and everything, though I am not sure the cost for renting them.
~The reception will be a late luncheon (maybe around 1 or 2 pm to start), so no alcohol. And my father has offered to cook.
~I have found some low-cost wedding gowns, but have yet to pick one yet.
~We will have a friend of the family do the main photos, then we plan on collecting photos from the guests, too.

Other than that, I’m a crafty person and have already looked up some ideas like making my own veil, so diy suggestions are good, too.Any questions, just ask and I’ll try to answer them.
**I will not accept or appreciate rude, useless, or biased answers. If you are here to be rude, take it somewhere else** Thank you all in advance!
Some of the 200 are people who we know but not super close to (and are only being invited out of accommodating to our parents). And its not like we’re gonna turn someone away if they come to the reception, and we’ve already discussed extra food. We aren’t having place settings…the reception will be very informal, so its not really that big of a deal. And we have talked to our families about this idea, and they didn’t have problem with it at all.
And if you read about the separate locations, its not like some people would be leaving and some staying…it is 2 different locations, actually in 2 separate towns (small towns, so not like a huuuuuge drive)
Krissyly: about accepting rude answers, I was referring to the people who go around trolling the internet.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

HIS! June 23, 2012 at 5:17 am

Your plans sounds great with the exception of inviting more people to the wedding than to the reception. That is not polite and needs to be coordinated by either inviting only the 50-75 to both parts of the celebration, OR inviting the entire 200 to the reception as well.


iloveweddings June 23, 2012 at 6:14 am

Ally, sorry but I didn’t read the whole thing because I had to stop at the …..”ceremony for 200 people and reception for 50-75.” Sorry, but that’s a no-no. You should ALWAYS invite everyone to the reception that you are inviting to the ceremony.

Please don’t do this. It’s not fair to those that are asked to the wedding. Then….what do they do? Get in their cars and go home? No. Invite the 50-75 that you are asking to the reception to the ceremony.


knittinmama June 23, 2012 at 6:14 am

Perhaps you can have a cake and punch reception at the church right after the wedding then have a family only dinner that evening. Your wedding ceremony guests won’t feel put out by not being included in the reception. They don’t need to know about the family only dinner.


Jessica June 23, 2012 at 7:00 am

Have you thought about what you might do if it rains? I would check out alternate plans, just incase. What about music or entertainment for your guests. You don’t necessarily need to do a dj or band, but maybe some games or something. Also for decorations, you can check out tons of websites to get some cheap decorations and diy invitations. I would also plan for a lot more than the 50-75 you intend to invite to the reception, most people will assume they are also invited to the reception if they are invited to the ceremony. It’s also kinda tacky not to invite them to both. Are you going to be doing a lot of wedding traditions like garter toss, boquet toss, first dance, ect? Think about how you want to incorporate those things when planning your venue for the reception. Hope this helps and good luck!


rebecca brightmoon June 23, 2012 at 7:07 am

a wedding reception is a gift from you
too your guest for coming to your wedding
if you have 200 people at your wedding
then you should have 200 at the reception
a wedding invite includes both wedding and reception
inviting people to a wedding and not the reception is rude
many people buy new clothing, get you a gift, burn their gas
to get to wedding, rearrange their time so they can get there,
it’s like having an A list and B list
you are good enough to see me in my pretty dress and everything else
but you are not good enough to eat my food


krissylyn June 23, 2012 at 7:23 am

First, if you’re willing to put your whole life out here on the internet, then I believe you DO have to “accept” every answer you get. No, you don’t have to appreciate them, or vote them best answer, but you get what you get in this forum.

Second, spend some time looking at this website. There are bunches of ideas for more alternative DYI weddings. Some of them are so cool, makes me want to do it all over again, just to use these ideas.


La Vie Boheme June 23, 2012 at 7:56 am

Whoever you invite to the ceremony must be invited to the reception. There is NO exception to this rule. That said, I can’t see feeding 200 people is going to be low budget unless you are serving hotdogs


sme168 June 23, 2012 at 8:09 am

Well, I’m lucky because my answer is not rude but based on years of wedding etiquette: you cannot invite 200 people to your ceremony but only invite 50-75 people to the reception. The reception is the bride and groom’s way of thanking the guests for coming out and celebrating with them.

It doesn’t matter that the ceremony and reception are in two different places, nor does it matter that you don’t know all of your guests personally. What matters is those who are invited to the ceremony be invited to the reception.

And, what would you do if you had an extra 50 people show up to your reception? You say you aren’t going to turn the away, but that’s a lot of extra food to have on hand “just in case”….

Save yourself the hassle and only invite the number of people you can comfortably feed to the ceremony AND reception.

And, while you are planning, please read up on a few wedding etiquette books and for money-saving ideas, read “Bridal Bargains.”


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