I need wedding planning advise.?

by DIY wedding planner on December 11, 2011

We’re hard working people that don’t have a whole lot of money because we are planning to buy our 1st home. And i don’t have parent to pay for the wedding.
We are planning on having the wedding at his relative’s home who has a gorgeous house with alot of private acres. His aunt is cartering the wedding, of course we’re paying. With everything else that is involved with planning a wedding I’m totally clueless and don’t know how to go about doing this without taking out a loan which could be equal to a student loan. And we don’t want to be in dept afterwards.
Any classy DIY ideas for a wedding. Please no advise on plastic plates, cups, and crazy decor–that is out of the question.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Kimi Cabanna December 11, 2011 at 6:36 am

My new husband and I were engaged for a little over a year, and just got married July 7th this year. I have parents that are pretty well off so they didn’t even flinch when wedding planning started. We ended up doing everything traditional, the church, the dress, the elaborate reception, and after we saw the total bill my husband and I asked ourselves why we didnt use the money for something else. Even though the money wasn’t an issue for my parents, we saw a lot of money wasted, and we keep asking ourselves why didn’t elope, and go on 2 honeymoons instead of spend it all in one day (that both of us were so busy for that we didn’t even get to enjoy it).


Luv2Answer December 11, 2011 at 6:36 am

Choose 3 things that are super important to you. Things that you always notice or admire at other weddings. Are you a dress person? Do you always have to get the first glimpse of the cake at the reception? Does the food have to be amazing? Pick the three things and make those what you spend your money on. Everything else can be what you scrimp on. An outdoor event doesn’t need flowers other than your bouquets. Use decorative candles, lanterns, hurricane lamps and other items as centerpieces. They don’t have to match if you have a theme. Make sure you have enough food but keep the variety down, this will help with costs. Spread the cost out for yourselves and if you have to use a credit card, all be it wisely, then do it. You sound responsible and should be fine. Good Luck.


J J December 11, 2011 at 7:04 am

Find a friend who enjoys amateur photography but is not a professional photographer. You will have nice photos but without the expenses (of course you would want to do a little for him/her for doing the deed).

Make your own guest book using a scrapbook (purchase at a craft store) and decorate it with pictures of you and your fiance and just draw lines. It’s a very personal touch to your wedding.

Find a friend who likes to make flower arrangements and go with her/him to pick out silk flowers (they are less expensive). Anything you don’t use, save your receipts and return!

Have some friends help you make invatations. There are some nice sets of software out there.


delfin28 December 11, 2011 at 7:11 am

I had a DIY wedding and it turned out great. Make the invitiations, rsvp’s and programs yourself. Many craft/party stores have great stationary. I spent $50 for all my paper stuff, including thank-you notes. Set the ceremony with an arch as the backdrop, decorated with silk flowers, garlands, tulle, etc.-all inexpensive, but can be really pretty. I would suggest a garden theme, since you have the room outside. Rent chairs, tables, linens, glasses and flatware. Go for the basics, no one will remember that your plates were silver-rimmed. Spend most of your dough on food and beverages.

We had about 7 months to plan, and a limited budget as well. Decide first how much you can really afford to spend and stick to it. Ask friends and family if they have any talents that they can lend-we had a pro DJ who is a friend emcee as his gift, and all of my bridesmaids helped me cater. Most people are willing to lend a hand. Good luck!


Desiree K December 11, 2011 at 7:32 am

go on the knot.. find pictures of ideas you like.. then hit a local craft shop and find ways to match these at a cost you can afford..
when shopping for your dress, hit the sample sales, you can get designer dresses at 70% off with just a clenaing and alterations you are set to go..
instead of flowers think of older tradition ideas.. carring a bible or rosary down the isle..
instead of a high price photo.. use disposalable cameras at each table, then leave a basket at the door for people to drop them off..
pretty much if you are willing to put in the effort you can do this very cheaply BUT very elegant


Ruth M December 11, 2011 at 7:49 am

Hi there – I did my own wedding too….32 years ago. Things were less expensive back than, but it was still alot to us and we paid for everything too. What I did to cut corners was I had people in the family help me. My uncle was a photographer and he took our pictures. He didn’t charge us, it was our wedding gift. My aunt made our wedding cake, another gift. We are Latin and it is tradition that the best man and made of honer pay for something. They paid for the band and cause the band members were friends of my husbands they changed us half price. All in all it turned out very nice. You just need to ask around for help. I’m sure you have lots of friends and family that are willing to help you in some way and they will do it cause they love you and they want you to be happy. Good luck!


mups mom December 11, 2011 at 8:12 am

i recently attended an outdoor wedding on a shoestring budget that was great…..borrow or rent tables and chairs…borrowed wedding china from several relatives(most people have service for 8 or 12) so each table was different but beautiful. table decor was wild flowers in mason jars(you could borrow vases too) tied with ribbons. flowers by the bundle are also cheap at farmers markets. vows under a pretty tree with large planters of flowers from the parents deck for decor. you will need a level area of ground to set out folding chairs for the ceremony and an area for dancing. a good stereo system with a variety of CD’s is all you need for music for the whole day. the best man ,MOH and parents of the couple do toasts and introductions. ask several guests to take pics so you’ll have lots to choose from. relax and enjoy.


Peace December 11, 2011 at 8:58 am

Since catering and location is taken care of and your wedding is outside, you don’t have to spend so much on decor. The best decorations I’ve seen are always the simplest:

- A few Chinese lanterns hanging from the trees
- clear Christmas tree lights
- A simple centerpiece of a flower floating in water with a candle
- White linens with camping lanterns under the tables. This provides a nice soft light for when it gets dark

Also, you can buy flowers from a local market and make your own bouquet. You can make your own invitations, programs and favors (if you chose to have these) as well. Get Better Homes and Gardens Wedding issue. The provide a lot of DIY ideas along with step by step directions.


divine v December 11, 2011 at 9:43 am

I was once where you are and I hope that I can be of some assistance to you. I seen a page called http://www.diynetworks.com that had information about weddings of this nature. You said that the aunt’s house has a lot of acres. You can utilize these areas if they are lush and full of greenery. Choose a great place for the ceremony and rent some chairs that you can decorate with ceremony programs and flowers. Line the walk area possibly with red and white roses or flower of your choice. Roses are very romantic. You don’t need many other flowers. Have something as the focal point at end of aisle like a nicely decorated arch. In choosing the area for the focal point make sure during the time of the reception the sun is not is the background unless it is setting.(For picture reasons). Find a great area for reception. This area may be the only place where you may have to spend a little for elegance. You will need a tent. I’m sure if you look up events web pages you will find great tent suppliers. Use candles for the centerpieces and I’m sure you will have what you need. Good Luck


gileswench December 11, 2011 at 10:24 am

It’s simple. This is what you do:

1: prioritize. Cut out anything that doesn’t matter to at least one of you and isn’t for the comfort of your guests. Make sure there’s enough seating and food to go around, but forget the personalized printed napkins, ribbons and matchbooks. Remember that most people don’t bother taking favors and half of those who do won’t know what to do with them later unless they’re edible. Do you really need a guest book? Concentrate your bucks where they’ll give you the biggest bang.

2: comparison shop on everything. If it says ‘wedding’ then you can almost certainly get it cheaper somewhere else. Oh,and don’t be afraid to shop dollar stores, thrift stores and garage sales for unusual decorative items. If you choose wisely, you can find some amazing bargains that way. Get the best you can for the least you can manage and you’ll never regret it.

3: DIY is your friend. I spent $35 on my wedding flowers, total. We were married out of doors, so a lot of big floral arrangements seemed pointless. My matron of honor and I went to a florist’s supply that was open to the public the day before my wedding and bought a little bit of anything that was long-stemmed, inexpensive, and pretty. We added in one bunch of red roses, one reel of red ribbbon, one reel of florist’s tape and enough pearl-headed pins for all the boutonnierres and the one corsage we were doing. Then we tied sheaf bouquets for me and my bridesmaids and cut a few stems down for the boutonnierres and the corsage. I’ve known people to spend six or seven times the money to get six bouquets, six boutonnierres,a corsage, and a rose to lay on each table at the reception because they had them professionally done. Real flowers on a tight budget that covered all our needs worked out because we did the work ourselves.

4: everything doesn’t have to match. In fact, in an outdoor, rustic setting, it usually looks better if it doesn’t all match too perfectly. Pick a couple colors or a general style and borrow things wherever you can. For instance, if you want white tablecloths, you can ask around among your friends and relatives and have a prettily coordinated look without spending a lot of money. Want glass vases on the tables filled with flowers? They can be tall, short, plain, cut, etched, even edged with a touch of color and still all work.

5: limit the liquor. Don’t bother with a lot of hard liquor. Consider just serving champagne and beer, or your favorite wine, or even having a dry reception. Bar bills run up quickly, but big ptichers of lemonade can be just as festive as champagne if approached with the right attitude.

It’s easy to cut corners on your budget without cutting corners on quality if you just pay attention, stay open to unexpected options, and do as much of the work yourself as you can.


J December 11, 2011 at 11:22 am

you can do things like make your own flower arrangements, using fake flowers from a craft store or something may be cheapest. you can also make your own wedding favors, and maybe have a friend take the photos for you. the most expensive part of a wedding, that i have learned, is when you have other people do it for you (florist, photographer, etc.) You can still have a classy and beautiful wedding, it just might take a little bit more effort on your part to get things done. Good Luck, and don’t worry, it will be great…just relax and enjoy the moment!


esignup December 11, 2011 at 12:13 pm

Just make sure you have a semi pro photographer or relative shoot lots of photos. Have EXTRA film / memory cards and Batteries

A 2nd person should shoot video. Have extra charged video batteries on hand, batteries drain fast when people zoom in and out a lot.

Video and pictures are going to be the only thing you can touch or see when the day is done.
Tip: give everyone a camera, process the film over time, once you have the money.


Mandy P December 11, 2011 at 12:21 pm

silk flower cost less and are great keepsakes. do you know someone who is good at taking pictures, see if they will take your photos as a wedding present. Use alot of the natural outdoors for decor and just add the color from your wedding in to make it look tidy and cute.


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