A little background, we just started wedding planning last month and i'm brand new to all of this, but i like the idea of a diy wedding.(plus it never hurts to save some money right?) But looking into rental options, diy, or just flat out buying, its becoming overwhelming. What areas of the wedding are best for diy? Decorations yes, but i'm struggling with everything else. Some experienced advice would be awesome!
I am DIYing decorations and centerpieces. I also ordered real touch fake flowers instead of real flowers. Amazon and Etsy have become my friend lol they have a lot of good wedding stuff and for good prices. Wait to buy invitations and STDs (if you are ordering online) most places do promo codes and deals around major holidays. Also not sure what kind of wedding you are looking for but we are having a rustic barn wedding and am using a lot of wood for decor so I will be going out and finding tree stumps and things, which are free! lol Our barn venue is also privet owned so there are no taxes or fees added to the cost so look in to places that are privet owned like parks, barns and things like that. Good luck planning!
Getting married on any day other than a Saturday also helps save money! I’m getting married on a Sunday and that saves me like $15 per person. We have a big guest list so the savings there adds up!! That being said, obviously the smaller guest list, the lower the costs. picking a date during the off season also helps with costs.
theres no need for fancy invitation suites. Vistaprint has really nice basic invitations that are reasonably priced and get the job done.
Cutting the photobooth (if you were debating on one) would also save money. Or at least make it a DIY one. People will have their phones and I’m assuming you will already have a photographer, so a photobooth isn’t really needed.
If you you are willing to risk it, you can find photographers a lot cheaper when they are fresh out of school or still learning and brand new. You risk the photos not being exactly perfect, but you might be surprised!
Same goes for hair and make up. I heard if you go to one of the cosmetology schools or something, you can often get it done a lot cheaper.
Dont bother with an event planner. If you have the time, planning a wedding isn’t as hard as it seems. Just follow the check list on here or make your own, and you should be fine
DIY isn't always cheaper - just remember that. We're DIYing a lot so it's customized to our colors, theme, etc, but it's not always cheaper. We're doing signs, flowers, catering (highly frowned upon here).
Depending on what you're wanting to rent, see if it's cheaper to buy. For example, it's $10-$12 for me to rent tablecloths when I can buy them for $7 then turn around and resell them when I'm done to make back some of that money (same goes for signs and other decor, I plan to sell it). Ask around to see if any friends have what you're needing (lanterns, jars, an arch, flowers, fabric, etc).
Shop sales/promo codes for STDs, invites, thank you cards, etc. I found my invites, envelopes, etc for 50% off on Vistaprint.
The biggest way to cut costs is to cut your guest list - that's what adds up quickly for most. Between extra seating, food, drinks, etc the cost per person adds up.
Saturday weddings are the most expensive.
I'm skipping the videography, photobooth, placecards, giant cake, etc. We're opting for a smaller cake, cupcakes and cookies. More variety for about half the cost.
Honestly, other than decorations, I'm not real sure what else can be DIY. Flowers, favors, decor, invitations, and possibly music...that is all I can think of. Some other ways to save money though, are: having your wedding during off season / on a Sunday or during the week, having an early in the day wedding (brunch or in between meal times), serve beer & wine vs full bar or opt to have a dry wedding, find photographers & videographers that are up and coming vs established professionals with years of experience, serve cheaper food options like bbq italian or mexican, and use Sams Club or Costco for flowers and cake.
A huge money saver is skipping on favors. They are barely ever taken and never missed when not there. Since you've got a year hold off on buying things until there is a sale. Pinterest will be your best friend for DIY things and this forum has LOTS of ideas from previous/current brides. Good luck and happy planning!
You can do your flowers/bouquets/garland (real or fake), i would say less flowers will save a lot, sunday-thursday is typically cheapest and around april-september. Also, you can go without favors, do simple invites (as most get thrown out or not kept long), depending on whats most important to you, you can have no videographer or do a DIY way like WEDIT, the smaller guest count the cheaper, limit booze to wine and beer, etc! So many ways just br care as PPs have said, DIY can be the same cost or even more sometimes. The dollar store will probubly become your best friend and DIY is a lot of work and wedding planning in general is very stressful and a lot ot remember so give yourself plenty of time (longer engagement)
I agree with MrsV.. skipping certain things helps save money. We are not doing favors. We're not doing a photobooth. We chose to have people RSVP via wedding website to save money on postage and inserts in our invitations. We're not printing programs (no religious ceremony so very possible), menus, etc. I am not DIYing anything. Our venue really doesn't need much decoration. Our tables are rectangular, we are just having candles and hydrangea vases down the middle. If you are particular about a theme or color scheme that is when DIY can be good I guess.
All diy doesn't save money. If you already have some materials for your DIY, yes it does. But if you have to buy every single input and equipment that you need, then no. You also have to count your time that you spend making DIY. It's a cost as well (idk why people don't count it). Also the biggest way to cut costs are to limit the amount of guests.
- we are having our garland “lay” instaed of being stung together - saved money on labor. - providing a few pieces of our own furniture (sweetheart table and chairs) - DIY signs although be mindful some DIY is actually more expensive if you have something specific in mind. We DIYd our signs and send off and saved money but the invitations have been a fiasco and I would have fathered ordered -moms Making the veil and our arbor - sourcing from family and friends- we are sourcing out oil lamps. We were amazed at how many people actually had lol thus, we didn’t need to rent them -you can limit the guest list as well...
Do not, I repeat, do not go into debt for a wedding. Definitely keep your guest count as low as possible! My guest count is 20, and instead of a reception, we’re going out for brunch.
DIY doesn't mean cheaper. I used to work at Michael's in college and you wouldn't believe how many girls would come back to return/exchange something because it wasn't right, or didn't have enough, etc. If you're a crafty person, great. If not, consider your limitations or ask a friend to help out.
Get married in the off seasons or on less popular days. I'm getting married on 12/7/2019 and I'm saving hundreds in décor and flowers because my venue will be decorated for the holidays. My friend saved over $5k just by getting married on a Friday.
Shop in season or just when it's about to go out. I shopped for winter/holiday items in season and was able to save an additional $300 in décor and centerpiece items.
Shop sales. It's worth the headache of the dozens of emails, but sign up with your favorite stores and keep an eye out for sales. Vistaprint sent out emails to their members ahead of sale and it saved me over $120 in save the dates and invitation suites.
Shop thrifty or secondhand. Looking on Facebook Marketplace saved me a few bucks on items that were secondhand. I even got table numbers for free!
Ask for referrals. Either from your venue or family/friends. Referrals can make a huge difference! I was able to save over $300 on rentals because they were a referral from my venue. And I was able to save $100 with my photographer because she was a friend of my bridesmaid and gave me 2 CDs for free as gift!
Ask your vendors how you can cut costs. My florist was willing to drop the delivery fee because it was less than a mile from my venue.
Beg, borrow, and steal (but not really). Ask to borrow items from a friend or family member. A friend was given a few items from her sister's wedding the year before and it really helped.
Be smart with your decisions. Not everything has to be DIY or even done for that matter. Cutting unnecessary items such as favors, over the top florals, or escort cards will save you from a DIY headache and lots of $$$!!!
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