Let’s be real – weddings & elopements can get expensive quiiick. It can be tricky to figure out how much money you + your boo are comfortable spending. And when you follow all the wedding trends and traditions, the bill just climbs higher and higher. So I’ve got 5 ways to save some money on your wedding, plus my top wedding budgeting tips!
1. Plan a weekday wedding
A lot of vendors offer discounts on weekday weddings. Why not plan your wedding on a weekday? If you choose a Thursday or Friday, the celebrations can last all weekend until your guests need to head back to work.
Vendors will also likely have more availability on weekdays, especially in the summer during the busy wedding season.
Bonus tip: hire your photographer first. They typically book up the quickest. If you can hire your dream photographer, then pick a date around their availability, that often works best.
For more reasons why you should have a weekday wedding, check out this blog post!
2.Make a list of your priorities
Sit down with your soon-to-be-spouse and make a list of everything that would make up your dream day. Out of that list, pick three priorities you two want to put the majority of your money toward or are okay investing more in.
After those three, brainstorm ways to save money on the rest. Focus on DIY or see how friends & family are able to help you. Do you have a cousin who’s amazing at makeup?
Maybe an aunt who can hem bridesmaids’ dresses? When you’re planning a wedding, it takes a village, so don’t be afraid to ask for (and accept) some help.
If something doesn’t mean a lot to you (like a garter or a fancy cake), just skip it and don’t look back. Replace it with something that would *actually* be meaningful to you. For example – put the money you would’ve spent on a garter toward meaningful wedding favors for your guests, or toward the honeymoon of your dreams.
DIY-ing parts of your wedding is probably the most obvious way to stick to your wedding budget, but I had to mention it.
If you have a green thumb, purchase all your florals in bulk to make your own bouquets and centerpieces. Better yet – choose flowers that are in season. Those won’t be as expensive and they’ll still be the pretty pop of color you’re looking for.
Summon your inner DJ and create your own playlist instead of hiring a DJ. Check with your venue to make sure their sound system is loud enough and available if you’re wanting a big dance party. Include your guests (and save yourself some time/effort) by asking for song requests on your RSVPs!
If you’re feeling artsy, create your own stationery through an easy-to-use graphic design tool like Canva. They have templates for Save the Dates, invitations, thank you cards, and way more! This is typically a pretty budget-friendly way to personalize your stationery and still make it look damn good.
Take “something borrowed” to the next level! When you’re planning your decorations (like your tables/chairs, plates/glasses) or even your wedding outfit, buy things second-hand. Go to your local thrift stores, or peek around Facebook marketplace. There are also tons of wedding groups on Facebook where couples will sell things from their wedding. Not only is thrifting more budget-friendly, it’s also more sustainable.
There’s also an amazing nonprofit organization called Brides for a Cause that resells used wedding dresses and donates money to women-based charities. If you’re in Portland, Tacoma, Seattle, or Sacramento you can make an appointment to find your dream dress without breaking the bank. If you’re not local, you can follow their Facebook page to see when they host virtual warehouse sales.
5.Keep your guest list small
Last but not least, don’t invite everybody you know. Seriously. And don’t give everyone a plus-one. (Unless your dream is to have a big-ass wedding, then go for it) But if you’re looking for a big way to cut down a few costs, re-examine your guest list. Then cut it down even more. Be really intentional with the people you choose to invite, and make sure you’re inviting them for a reason, not just because you feel like you should or have to. And not just because your aunt is pressuring you to invite all your fourth cousins you’ve never met.
I promise you will never regret only inviting the people who really matter. Put your money toward the people you care about & give them an amazing experience. Quality over quantity, right? That means you’ll be a little more mindful with your spending, versus buying a meal & useless wedding favors for 300 people you don’t really love.
If you’re looking for more ways to be intentional with your elopement budget, slide over to my blog post, Ideas for Your Wedding Details That Aren’t Overdone!