Your first step down the aisle

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Hirer a wedding planner for the day of the event so that you can enjoy your day.
Here are a couple tips that have saved me a few dollars! 1. Have two receptions. If you have a large guest list and are looking for a cute way to cut the guest list for your reception, consider having a cake & punch reception for friends, and then a formal reception for your family and more important guests. You can enter the cake & punch reception, take a few pictures with your guests, have a toast, and then leave for your formal reception. This way, your guests who are not invited to the formal reception do not feel slighted, and you've saved a TON of money by being able to shorten your formal reception guest list. At the cake & punch reception, opt for cute cupcakes instead of a formal cake and have colorful punch to match your wedding colors, and provide small boxes with thank you tags on them, which do double-duty as take home boxes for the cupcakes and your inexpensive wedding favors! And if you're really on a budget, you and your bridesmaids can make the cupcakes.
Tiffany D.
In order to save money, almost all of our wedding "extras" are gifts. One of my bridesmaids is doing our calligraphy, my aunt is arranging the flowers I'll purchase wholesale, our friends are playing music and will DJ the reception. Another friend is a semi-professional photographer and is taking our photos. A friend of my mom's is doing our invitations at cost. Thus, all we are paying for is the wholesale price for ALL of those items.... total savings so far - a few thousand.
megan h.
Bundle services. Try to find a church that is able to provide most services at a discounted price.
Corinna J.
Visit different department stores and ask consultants at the cosmetic counters to try out different looks on you. It is a free way to find the perfect way to do your make-up. Plus, they often give away free samples of great products!
Kylie J.
Your bridesmaids are called "maids" for a reason! Delegate some jobs and tasks to them, it will clear up your schedule and your head. Especially if they have unique talents like being crafty or like to cook.
Molly W.
To save money on Save the Dates I am being creative. I am getting married at a vineyard and I am using some of their leftover wine labels for my save the dates. I will just print the info on the back of the labels and mail them out saving me lots of money! They were given to me for free.
Sandra L.
Check with family members and friends to see what they have. My future sister-in-law had a bunch of friends who got married last summer. They all pooled their centerpieces together and lend them out to others. By using pieces of their centerpieces, I am doing all of mine for free!
Marcia B.
This may not work for everyone, but for those of you with a big family.... ask them to help out with everything. And I mean EVERYTHING!! My mom's sister is catering, my father is preforming the ceremony, my cousins are singing in the wedding. We are doing appetizers and desserts instead of a meal, therefore, we only have a few sit down tables for older guests, and for guest with children. We mostly have stand up cocktail tables. We cut corners with basically every aspect of our wedding. The only large expenses that we have are the tent (t's an outside wedding) and the photographer. We also made our own decorations, which are absolutely beautiful. We bought lavender, victorian lilac, and white fabric and cut them into strips, tied them together, and hung them everywhere. Our wedding would have cost us over $25,000.... We only spent $9,000!
bethany p.
In today's economy, throwing any kind of party can be difficult, and the thought of catering an entire wedding reception can be a major headache. One solution is to turn the wedding reception into a potluck. Guests can be sent ideas about what types of foods they should bring so that the menu is cohesive. This is a fun and cost-effective way to make sure that no one will leave the reception hungry.
Chad V.
So far, the biggest cost I have seen has been in renting a location for the reception. Many places have a food and drink minimum on top of high rental rates. Many also only allow you to use their linens and tables which can be pricey. Try finding a non-traditional location for your wedding reception. Use your parents' or a friend's house or backyard, a public park, or a local YMCA or YWCA. Keep in mind, many times local organizations like the YWCA will use a portion of your rental cost to fund their programs for women and children, so you can help those in need while saving money at the same time! These locations will also allow you more freedom in planning your catering and rental items and won't have costly minimum requirements.
Kathleen P.
The fabric of your gown needs to be one of the factors in making it ‘the one’. Lightweight fabrics like chiffon are the best choice for warm-weather weddings. If your nuptials will be in wintery-weather consider heavier fabrics.
Alfred Angelo
In this current time period, most couples are already living together before their wedding. Most of the time, they register for stuff that they already own or up-grade on stuff they already have. Instead of registering for house hold things I already have, like pots and pans, I registered online for my honeymoon. You may also have someone sponsor your wedding. Now thats how you save money!!!
jenny f.
Instead of having your wedding meal catered, have a potluck. Ask a few of your friends and family to make side dishes and salads to serve. The bride and groom (or parents) purchase and cook the meat. It saves you tons on money. Besides, home cooked food always taste better than catered food. You only get a few choices of salads and side dishes and instant potatoes when you have your meal catered. Where I live, family and friends are more than welcome to make something for the wedding. To make it a little fun, have them write down the recipe and give them to you as a gift.
Jill B.
I have started over a year of planning before the wedding and am getting things here and there. Its much better than cramming it in to a few months. I have also been doing alot of Ebay shopping for certain things. I have been making my own invitations as well. It takes time but I have gathered the MOH and MOG together and the 3 of us have flown through them.
Kayleigh M.
Instead of spending big money on a spa day for you or your bridesmaids, go online and get facial recipes and a bunch of other spa tricks for free. Have a spa night at home - it's a lot cheaper and more fun since its in the comfort of your own home.
Ashley B.
Get someone you know to do your cake. Also you can buy simple dresses for bridesmaids or yourself and have your grandmother put on beading to jazz it up.
Haylie S.
I think the most effective way I cut costs was by doing tons of research. This was not necessarily the most time effective way, but it was worth it. I was able to get linens for a lot less than I would have if I went somewhere local or went with the first person I contacted. I would also suggest not limiting yourself to someone local for your services. The internet has been a great tool for me.
Casie K.
Make sure to plan your wedding during off-seasons and away from any holiday dates.
Ambre B.
Contact your local community college for event planning services. Many community colleges train event planners and floral designers and contract out their services. They usually offer variety, creativity, and flexibility at the fraction of the cost of professional vendors and they are supervised by professional event planners.
Erica W.