Friday, May 6, 2011

Budget Friendly Wedding Planning Tips

The average cost of a wedding is $19,581, and with today's economy, who can afford to spend that much? Having a lower budget doesn't mean you can't have a beautiful wedding, it just means you have to be more mindful of how you spend your money. The following are tips on how to have a beautiful wedding without going into debt.



 1. Set A Budget
 Make sure to set a budget and stick to it. Always make sure your budget includes a little more money than you actually need to allow for emergencies. There are a lot of online sites that offer free budget calculators when you sign up for the site. Some of the sites are weddingwire.com, weddingchannel.com, and theknot.com. They may also have other tools you may need, such as seating charts, rsvp worksheets, and free wedding websites. Take advantage of all the free tools you can.

2. Buy Online
I know the thought of buying your dress online sounds crazy, but it can save you a lot of money. I bought my wedding dress online and I had a great experience. The store I bought my dress from was romanticgowns.com. I ordered it from the site, about two weeks later they sent me a dress to try on in my size, I sent the dress back letting them know it fit, and in about three weeks I received my dress, and it cost almost $300 less than if I had bought it in a shop. Davidsbridal.com and amazon.com also have nice wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses, and flower girl dresses. You can also find cheaper favors, wedding accessories, and wedding decorations online.

3. Prioritize Your Money
Make sure you spend the most money on what matters to you the most. If the cake matters the most, spend more on the cake, but less some where else. If it's your dress, spend more on it, but maybe less on the flowers. 

 4. Take Your Time
 The longer you give yourself to plan your wedding, the better. It's easier to spend $6000 on your wedding over 2 years than it is over 6 months. And you can buy things while they are on sell in the off season wedding months, September to March.

5. Go To Bridal Shows
Bridal shows have vendors there that are willing to give you deals. Make sure to bring money, because some vendors offer deals at the show that you have to take advantage of while you're there. I bought a coupon at a bridal show for $10, and it ended up saving my groomsmen 50% off their tuxes. Make sure to search online for upcoming bridal shows in your area.

6. Check For Group Rental Discounts
Some tux shops offer deals the more tuxes you rent. Some give the groom's tux free with a certain amount of rentals. Check your local Mens Wearhouse to see if they have any deals going on.

7. Use Silk Flowers
I know some people can't stand the thought of having fake flowers for their wedding, but with today's technology, silk flowers have come a long way. There is a new type of silk flower called "Real Touch", that looks, feels, and even smells like the real thing, but still cost considerably less. In my etsy store EventsByTammy.etsy.com I offer premade and custom silk bouquet sets at very affordable prices. For the price you might pay for just the bride's bouquet, you can get your whole bridal parties flowers.

8. Have a Friday Wedding
Some venues offer considerable discounts on Friday Weddings, up to 50% off. The reason being, it's more inconvenient because Friday is a weekday, and people may have to work, but if you give your guest enough notice, they should be able to take the day off.

 9. Make Your Own Centerpieces
 Making your centerpieces can be very easy. If you use silk flowers, you can make them in advance, and they will be ready to go. Silk also give you the advantage of playing around with the look of the centerpiece until you find the right look. Also, you can just do candles in your centerpiece and no flowers at all. Stores like dollartree.com and save-on-crafts.com make it affordable and easy to make your own centerpieces.

10. Have Your Friends And Family Cater
If your reception is in a place that lets you bring in your own caterer, why not have friends and family cater your wedding. You can delegate certain dishes to certain people and it will cut down the cost of your wedding considerably. And if they do the food for you as a gift, that is one less thing you have to pay for.

I hope these tips will help you plan a more budget friendly wedding, happy planning!

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