It's wedding planning season so this is a super wonderful guest post by Melanie is right on time! – Anna
10 Unconventional Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding…
1. Sign Off Pinterest and Unsubscribe to Wedding Blogs
So much wedding stuff online portrays an unrealistic view of weddings. These people that can afford $50,000+ weddings, I don't know who they are, but they aren't you and they aren't me. That's ok. It's not ok to compare your wedding worth to them. Step away from the Internet, put down that wedding magazine and talk to someone whose marriage you admire. You'll have a much healthier view of your wedding and you'll be so much happier.
2. Make a Budget Reflective of Your Priorities
Put on your suspenders and fasten your pocket protectors, you two need to make a wedding budget. (Bonus: it's great practice for married life!) The easiest way to make a wedding budget and not send yourself to the poor house is to put your money into your priorities. Then, minimize or cut out the stuff you don't need. Are you a foodie couple? Put your money towards great food. Are you audiophiles? Put your money towards a kick-ass, live band. My husband is an artist, and I like to think of myself as creative, so we put most of our money towards wedding photography. No regrets, people.
3. Write a Narrative of Your Wedding Day
Get all 5th grade English class and write a descriptive narrative of your wedding day and the events leading up to it, so you can avoid leaving something out of your budget. We didn't think of things like gas for our cars, parking fees and breakfast that morning. If we had written a narrative, we might have avoided some of those little, unexpected things that can bust a budget as fast as a jack-rabbit on moonshine. Your 5th grade English teacher would've loved that analogy, by the way.
4. Don't be Afraid to Think Outside of the Box
Newsflash: weddings don't have to be held on Saturdays in June. You don't have to invite everyone and their brother. You don't have to have a reception at a big box hotel. (We had our wedding reception in a restaurant/bar for free!) The wedding police won't arrest you if you don't have table decorations. By thinking outside of the box, you can save big dough.
5. Get Creative
Like I said before, if you aren't very traditional, you can ditch a lot of the wedding “traditions” and save some major cash. If you are a little more on the traditional side and you are creative (or you know someone who is), you can DIY a lot of the things associated with weddings for way less than buying something new — decorations, invitations, you could even forge your own wedding bands if you are awesome like that! So many possibilities.
6. BUY and Avoid the DIY Trap
What? You just said DIY can save you money?! I know, sometimes it can, but other times it isn't cost efficient. In my case, I was slightly delusional and I thought I would bake 50 individual banana bread favors. Once I figured up the cost, it was much cheaper to simply purchase something small for our guests. Do your math, folks!
7. Don't Call it a Wedding
Once you attach the word “wedding” to anything it magically doubles the price. Do a search for “white dresses,” then search for “wedding dresses.” I'm waiting. Ok, done? Your mind is blown, right?! Take out the word “wedding” from your searches and open up your mind to possibilities, man!
8. Be Honest
Explain your budget, who you are and why you are way more amazing/beautiful/talented/different than other couples to vendors. In my experience, they'll be accommodating. People can't work for free, obviously, but prices are generally negotiable, especially if you are super cool. And you are, duh.
9. Enlist the Help of… EVERYONE
People you know are genuinely excited for you. It's kind of weird, I know. Friends, co-workers, distant relatives, they'd all love to help you get this wedding thing together. Let them help you DIY, borrow their punchbowl, exploit their talents. They love you (or at least like you) and want to help. It's kind of beautiful.
10. Remember, it's Only One Day
Yeah, this is super important, but years of debt isn't worth one day of extravagance. Keep it simple and you'll be just fine.
Do you have tips for saving money on weddings or events?
Melanie is a recently married librarian living in an Airstream with her husband. Yes, it's as weird as it sounds. Find out more about their life at Love Library.
P.S. Here’s a FREE DOWNLOAD for you! 110 Cheap Date Ideas! Enjoy!