30+ Best Wedding Tips and Stories

The wedding season is upon us. In a few weeks, we will be seeing weddings and happy faces all around us. The followings is a list of wedding tips and stories submitted by readers like you and me. Please be sure to read the comment section for details and follow links to articles on other blogs.

The Best Wedding Tips and Stories

Click on the link at the end of the entry to go to the comment below, or to the blog article that links here:

  1. Save Money With a Frugal Wedding at Being Frugal
  2. Choose unconventional date like Friday night in December (FFB)
  3. Try out alternatives to catering services (Meutia Chaerani)
  4. Go to wedding shows for giveaways and discount, ask friends and family for contact, create your own invitation, book your photographer early. (Jackie)
  5. Don’t be shy with the gift registry (Writer’s Coin)
  6. A story of Las Vegas wedding, and a tip to buy a smaller cake. (Beth Kimber) — Good story
  7. Cut out the frills (My Dollar Plan)
  8. Use a wedding planning web site (CarolBEE) — Must read
  9. Be selective with your invitation, shop around for the best price, keep it simple, take advantage of sales, don’t spend money on bells and whistles, and DIY when it makes sense (Bunny)
  10. A story of DIY backyard wedding (Pamela Munro) — That’s how one of my close friends got married too…very nice
  11. A lot of frugal tips every aspects of a wedding (Tina)
  12. Cut Your Wedding Costs With A Few Simple Tips at I’ve Paid For This Twice Already…
  13. A story of spending only $2,500 for a 100-guests wedding (Nina)
  14. Pete shares his wedding story and a few tips to safely cut out some expenses when planning your wedding (Pete)
  15. 10 wedding tips based on her own wedding (Susan)
  16. Our frugal wedding at Basic Financial
  17. Hold your wedding after your church’s Christmas service (Nancy)
  18. Six frugal wedding tips, three of which involve Costco (Kari Carlisle) — Interesting
  19. Frugal Ideas for a Wedding at Prime Time Money
  20. Confessions of a Frugal Bride at My Daily Dollars
  21. Wedding Planning: It doesn’t have to be stressful at Sher’s Corner
  22. Wedding Tips – Involve Your Family and Friends at Cash Money Life
  23. Ginger tells us to elope! — well actually… (Ginger)
  24. Kelly shares tips from her simple and very meaningful wedding (Kelly)
  25. The Nespys’ Guide to Frugal Weddings! at Mrs. Nespy’s World
  26. Our Wedding: Nearly Everything That Could Go Wrong, Did at Naturally Gluten Free
  27. Weddings and Wedding Favors: a Chance for Real Frugality at Mrs. Micah
  28. A Frugal Girl’s Decidedly Not Frugal Wedding at Be This Way
  29. Be careful with your prescription, especially on your honeymoon (Chris)
  30. FinAidGirl offers a variety of tips and her best tip is: “Ask around, compare deals, do-it-yourself!” (FinAidGirl)
  31. Mrs. Budgetsaresexy on frugal wedding-ness at Budgets Are Sexy
  32. Cheap Wedding Ideas: Keep Wedding Costs Down at Prime Time Money

Please add your tips and story below.

About the Author

By , on Apr 29, 2008
Pinyo is the owner of Moolanomy Personal Finance. He is a licensed Realtor specializing in residential homes in the Northern Virginia area. Over the past 20 years, Pinyo has enjoyed a diverse career as an investor, entrepreneur, business executive, educator, and financial literacy author.

Leave Your Comment (25 Comments)

  1. Heartbroke says:

    My fiance and I have been trying to get married for almost two years now and thanks to the help of a crazy x and my wondrefull family I was beginning to wonder if it was worth all the herat ache. My biological father and his wife decided to be complet a** holes and tell me in their forever drunk state, that since my younger sibling and fiance have also decided to get married this year that our wedding is much less important than theirs; and that since they had told us that they would help pay for the cost of the wedding but have now changed their minds since we woulden’t be rescheduling our wedding, yet again (we have reschedualed twice already) we now have a third the money planned. It’s been very difficult we have now had to find a new less appealing place th have the wedding and reception. Cutting corners has been hard, emotionally for the most part not to mention finding people who will work on the amount we now have to offer. Thanks for all the helpfull tips they are great any little bit helps.

  2. Emily Ann says:

    In planning my wedding I have learned that being unconventional is saving me tons of money. I didn’t like the pressure of buying a wedding dress in a shop so I bought a J. Crew wedding dress that I love on E-Bay for $125! This kept with one of my promises to myself for wedding planning. I refused to spend more on something “because it’s my wedding day” than I would normally spend. This means less than $150 for a dress, less than $30 for shoes, less than $25 for my wedding lingerie…etc. This has been a great way to help me keep perspective.

    In addition, I have made a strict budget and won’t allow myself to spend more. This can be challenging and forces me to come up with unique solutions. For example, I was only able to spend $50 on gifts for my bridesmaids. With 5 girls on my side, $10 a bridesmaid was not going to go far with “traditional” gifts! I decided to purchase some really nice Amy Butler fabric and made great clutches. This worked wonderfully within my budget.

    Also, we are having Mexican food for our reception. My fiance and I are famous among our friends for our love of Mexican food, so it is special for us. It is also inexpensive! For around $10 a person we will have a delicious fajita buffet…great for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.

    I am a firm believer that weddings are expensive because people do not look for unique ways to get around the wedding industry markup. It’s very possible to have a beautiful, personal wedding for much less than the national average.

  3. Erika says:

    Craigslist Services is a great way to find local wedding vendors of all types and bugets. Most of them offer testimonials and are more than willing to let you see their work before hand. So far, I’ve booked my photographer ($200 for 4 hours), my cake vendor ($125 for 2 tiers & 50+ servings), my ceremony & reception venue (8 hours), wedding planner, officiant, and 2 servers – including tables, chairs, linens, bar, sound system, and a customized cermony ($1350 for all), and my dress alterations ($25) by using services found on my local Craigslist! That’s only $1700 for everything mentioned above. You can’t beat that unless you have the wedding at home, and even then you will have to rent the tables, chairs, linens, figure out music, hire an officiant, etc.

    I’d also recommend using the holidays to your advantage if you haven’t set a date yet. My wedding is going to be in June this year and so far, I’ve been able to save money on silk flowers & decor offered at 60% off post-Valentine’s Day and will be able to save big on flower girl baskets and dresses that go on sale after Easter, as well as finding tuxedos and dresses on sale as prom approaches! Steer clear of expensive holidays such as Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. Flower prices triple during these times, and most vendors aren’t willing to make exceptions to their prices just because your need is not holiday related.

  4. finaidgirl says:

    Best tips: Ask around, compare deals, do-it-yourself!

    Photography: Almost everyone has at least one friend or relative who is a talented photographer. Ask as many people as you know whose photos you like and who won’t mind taking pictures to be the “unofficial” photographer. Having at least two people do this is probably best so they can also enjoy the festivities.

    Music: DIY! If you have musician friends, ask them to play. As for dancing, my favorite part of my wedding day was planning the music playlists. My DJ cousin hooked up my laptop to speakers and we just let it play.

    Invites: DIY! Again, at least everyone knows one especially crafty person, even if you don’t think you do. I designed them myself, bought my own paper, and brought it to work to print everything out on the fancy laser printer. I invited friends over to help stuff, address, and stamp them.

    Guest list: Someone suggested that in terms of friends, I invite only people I had been in touch with in the past year. This worked for the most part but follow your gut – there are exactly 3 people I thought I should invite then but I didn’t, and I regret it to this day.

    Also more guests than expected couldn’t attend our wedding, but since we paid in advance, we worked out a deal with the facility to upgrade our bar package, which was a big hit!

    Dress: I was lucky enough to find the perfect dress that fit great off the rack! Plan 2 was to buy a VERY inexpensive dress and pay for good tailoring.

    BRIDESMAIDS: the biggest regret of my wedding. 🙁 I wish I told my girls to wear whatever they had in a certain “theme” shade (pastel for summer). Instead I took the typical route and forced them to buy the same color, pricey dresses from David’s Bridal, which was a nightmare for all of them. I still feel so bad but they still love me anyway!

  5. Chris says:

    I spent most of my Honeymoon in Maui, naked on the bed with a cool breeze blowing through the room, listening to the waves crashing on the shore. Unfortunately, I was naked on the bed for all the wrong reasons. I was taking a new antibiotic perscription I had never taken before and had erroneusly not read the label. One of the precautions was to stay out of the sun while on the medication. This was not a good combination for sun drenched bueatiful Hawaii. Nor was the three hour drive in the convertible around the northern end of the island. I had a photoalergenic reaction to the sun and broke out in a horrific full body rash resulting in a trip to the Dr. My advice, know your perscriptions and whether or not your medical coverage will cover you were you may be traveling to. Then again, naked in bed for a week was kind pretty nice, minus the itch!

  6. Jill says:

    I posted my crazy wedding story here:
    Titled: Our Wedding: Nearly Everything That Could Go Wrong, Did

  7. Kelly says:

    Last summer, we finished our master’s degrees, got married, and moved so that I could start my PhD: all in the span of a week. Crazy! Since my parents were traveling to the Midwest from Oregon, we did not want them to spend excessive amounts of money for the wedding. They ended up spending around $1000. It was simple and very meaningful, and I would not trade that for all the money in the world.

    One piece of advice: don’t buy things from the wedding section at stores. If “bridal” or “wedding” is in the name of the product, they automatically raise the price. Chances are, you will find the same thing–or even better–where you least expect it. For example:

    1. Believe it or not, we found our four beautiful single-layer cakes at Sam’s Club: they cost around $15 each, and looked like wedding cakes. They even had those gum paste flowers on them! To display them, we used different heights of cardboard boxes underneath the tablecloth, and everyone thought we’d spent a fortune on a wedding cake.

    2. The only flowers we used were for the attendants and our mothers: also bought at Sam’s (they have great deals on long-stem roses). My dad has experience with floral arranging, so he did the bouquets and bouttonieres himself!

    3. Also, another potentially expensive item we skipped was a wedding guestbook. I figured I would be like most people, and put that thing in a box somewhere, and never look at it. Instead, we used a 40% off coupon for Michael’s and bought a frame with a large mat, intended for autographs. We had our guests write notes on it, and now we have it hung on the wall, with one of our favorite wedding photos in it. MUCH more meaningful…at least to me.

    A gorgeous wedding does NOT have to cost a fortune. We borrowed things from the church and from other people, decorated very simply, and did NOT pay a professional photographer, and it was wonderful! In the long run, it made planning–and the big day–a LOT less stressful. 🙂

  8. Ginger says:

    In a word – ELOPE! But, when that is not your style, the word should change to PLAN. Allow at least a year for prep. Backwards plan everything. Break every segment of the wedding down and scruitinze it heavily. Make a master list of needed supplies for each segment of the wedding. Decide on an overall budget. Purchase the must haves first. Work to get the largest discount on everything. Six months out, re-evaluate everything and see where you stand. See if you are ready to re-prioritize the “wanna haves” and work on adding in a few at a time.

    My daughter is getting married 6/7/08. So far we have not paid full price for one single item. Everything has been on sale, clearanced, purchased with coupons, etc. I am responsible for the wedding portion of her big day and her father is responsible for the reception since we are divorced. We each gave her a budget of $5000. I’ve done well enough on my portion to pay cash for everything, pay for her to be moved, buy them a new washer/dryer and restock their kitchen pantry and still have money left over. I’ve also been able to purchase my wedding attire, that for my son and his 2 little boys as well. No one gave up quality, style or what they wanted. We simply allowed enough time to wait out the best deals.

  9. Kari Carlisle says:

    My husband and I did several things to keep our wedding to a budget.

    First, my crafty mom put together simple, but incredibly elegant, bouquets of red roses from Costco.

    Second, we’re real outdoorsy, so it was an appropriate favor to make bags of trail mix, again from Costco.

    Third, our rehearsal dinner was an informal party at the church, catered by Subway. It really took the edge off the stress.

    Fourth, and I’m not recommending this, we made our own wedding cake. We spent a lot of time picking out flavors (three different ones!). We bought a Wilton cake decorating book (neither of us had ever decorated a cake before). We bought the supplies at a cake/candy supply store. I baked the cakes from mixes two weeks before the wedding and froze them. The day before the wedding, I made the frosting and my husband did the decorating. Berries and fake vines polished it off, and the cakes were displayed on a tiered rack we rented. Friends were responsible for the delivery and set up at the reception. The folks at the hotel where we had the reception, and everyone who attended thought it was professional! It was the hit of the party, and many said it was the best wedding cake they ever had. But it was also the most stressful part of the wedding for us. Oh, except for making our own wedding invitations.

    Fifth, the wedding invitations – we picked out pretty papers at an art store and did our own printing. Buy extra materials and supplies to cover any mistakes. Make sure you have back up ink/toner for your printer, and get this done early. Bride crying at 2:00 a.m. not good. Nowadays you should be able to find help from a scrapbooker.

    Sixth, we booked our honeymoon through Costco. Smokin’ deal on an all-inclusive resort in Cancun.

    Happily married for over 8 years

  10. Nancy says:

    One of the biggest cost cutters in my wedding was to choose to be married after the Christmas service at my church. The church was already decorated for the season, so we didn’t have the florist cost that we might have had.

  11. Susan says:

    A couple tips on how we saved:
    1. One of our bridesmaids’ boyfriend is a professional videographer. They offered that as their wedding gift so we totally lucked out
    2. Since the bride (me) is allergic to flowers, we ended up with cupcake towers as the centerpieces so people got more to eat!
    3. We opted for a Saturday lunch reception so that definitely cut down on cost and we also opted for a hosted bar which ended up being a good $10,000 cheaper than an open bar
    4. http://www.netbride.com saved us $70 on each bridesmaid dress
    5. We made our own invitations by DIY and did an online reservation which worked wonders
    6. aa.com offers a 5-10% discount for flights a week before your event and a week after your event
    7. By booking our reception at a hotel, the hotel also gave our guests a discounted rate for staying there AND the hotel was a one-stop shop for linens, cake, and catering.
    8. DJ – another bridesmaid’s bf was a deejay so that was their wedding gift to us
    9. photos – we purchased a flickr account and passed out business cards (vistaprint.com does business cards for free) that had our flickr account name and password. It allowed our guests to share their digital camera photos instantly after the wedding. Within a week after our wedding, we had roughly 1,000 photos to view!
    10. Transportation – we did want to arrive in style in limos, however, it was much cheaper to opt for two smaller 8-person limos instead of trying to ride all together in a 16 person limo – we probably saved about $1,000 that way

  12. Pete says:

    My wife and I got married about 6 years ago now, and our wedding was a beautiful affair. It was catered with a reception held at a local country club, we had over 200 guests, and we spared no expense on flowers, decoration, dresses, DJ and party favors. After all was said and done we ended up spending over $30,000. Luckily for us my wife’s parents were the ones paying for everything, and they wanted to pay for it since my wife is their only daughter.

    Looking back my wife cherishes the memory of our beautiful wedding, but if I had gotten my way we wouldn’t have spent quite so much money on the wedding. Wouldn’t it have been much nicer just to have her parents give us all that money, and have a smaller affair?

    If we could do it over here are some places I think we could have saved some money on things we probably wouldn’t have even noticed.

    1. Photographer: We spent a ton on a photographer for our wedding when we probably could have found someone cheaper. We have friends who for their weddings had family friends and acquaintances who were good photographers take wedding photos that looked just as nice or better than some that the professionals take. Of course you need to be careful when doing this, but if you find someone talented, it doesn’t need to be expensive.
    2. Reception location: Our reception was held at a local country club, very beautiful, exclusive and expensive. Friends of our had receptions that were almost as nice at local VFW or Knights of Columbus halls that were substantially cheaper.
    3. Keeping the wedding small: We basically invited everyone we knew to our wedding, and the more guests you have the more things cost. You need to take into account the costs of paying for dinners, party favors, valet parking, etc. It adds up quick. Keep the wedding smaller and it will be cheaper – I guarantee.
    4. Make your own invitations: We spent a fortune on creating and mailing our custom printed invitations. Make your own invitations for a substantial savings.
    5. Wedding cake: Our cake was beautiful, delicious and monstrously expensive. Have a family friend who bakes well to make cake for the reception. We have friends that did this and no one even knew the difference.

    Those are a few areas where I think you can safely cut out some expenses when planning your wedding. Of course you need to be careful, and realize that sometimes you’ll get what you pay for. But as long as you plan ahead, and give yourself plenty of leeway for making some small mistakes – you’ll be fine.

    When things get busy on your big day, don’t forget to enjoy the day and your new spouse! You only get married once and all the small details and things that seemed so important really won’t anymore once the day comes!

  13. Nina says:

    My tip is to combine all of these tips! My husband and I only spent about $2500 on our wedding for about 100 guests…yes, you read that right…we were CHEAP!…and of that, $400 was for my dress, $300 for the site, $300 for the cake, $200 for flowers.

    We picked a Wednesday to get married, chose an out of the way site that was naturally green and beautiful so we didn’t need to decorate much, didn’t cater (Grandma got us trays from Sam’s Club instead), bought my dress off the rack and had it altered, had the minister’s wife sing instead of paying someone else, had my brother’s guitar teacher play the processional and recessional for about $100, and burned a couple of CDs for the reception (we didn’t dance). Hubby designed the invitations himself, and we got them printed at a local print shop.

    Our biggest saving was the cake. A friend of ours owns a restaurant, and makes a killer tangerine butter cake. We convinced him to make it for our wedding. He basically charged us for the pans, since he didn’t have them, and it came out great! We got $1000 wedding cake for 1/3 of the price. Another friend of the family made the groom’s cake.

    I ordered the flowers from a wholesaler and my bridesmaids helped me put together the bouquets the day before (ok, I wish I had spent more on flowers…despite my best estimates, the bouquets were kinda small).

    For our honeymoon, we drove to the next large city and booked a mid-price hotel room, spent 3 days…we both had to get back to work. But we figured, why pay for plane tickets and expensive destinations if we’re probably not going to leave the hotel room much 🙂 And when we did, we already knew where things were and could go out to eat and go shopping without getting lost. We spent maybe $400 all together on the honeymoon. Our biggest expense was the rings…$600 for the both of us, but we both got the rings we wanted instead of the cheapo $50 plain gold bands.

    One word on photos and videos…I do wish we had spent some money on both of these. Our photographer was a friend of my mother-in-law…I have 1 picture of my family from my wedding because she would do whatever MIL said. And our videographer was a friend of my husband’s…I still haven’t watched our wedding video because I’ve seen some of his other work, and it stinks…oh well, ce la vie.

  14. Tina says:

    Based on our wedding a year ago, I’d like to offer the following tips:

    – Even if you’re super-busy, you really don’t need a wedding planner. Just allow extra time.
    – Make/ print the invitations yourselves
    – Try to invite only half the people you originally want! This is really the single biggest factor which determines the cost of the wedding.
    – Don’t tell any of your vendors that you’re planning a wedding. Say it’s a birthday party. Yes, even when you order all-white bouquets.

    – I know some wedding etiquette sites frown on this, but we asked extra people who wanted to come but we couldn’t afford to have, to visit at the church to watch the wedding – quite a few people did!
    – If getting married at a church, ask if the church’s own florists can make the arrangements for the church, and the flowers can be donated (i.e. left) there afterwards. Bonus – it’s tax-deductable!

    – Have a two-course lunch, brunch or breakfast instead of the full 3-course dinner
    – Only serve one glass of champagne per person for the wedding toast, and offer non-alcoholic beverages instead.
    – Negotiate to get the wine you want if using a restaurant or catering company
    – Have inexpensive favors. We bought huge bowls of candy for our wedding favors, to go in Chinese takeaway boxes – there was a stampede!
    – Stick to minimum effort for maximum effect when decorating the tables, and do it yourself as much as possible. Look at bridal magazines for ideas – I know you’re already doing that anyway!

    The advantages of a lunch/ breakfast also include:
    – Not having to hire a band or DJ for dancing (a music student friend played piano for our reception, but you could also hire music students from the local college)
    – For my husband, skipping the “first dance”!
    – Guests don’t feel the need to drink as much (see the “one-glass” theory)
    – No need to “entertain” people for a long period of time
    – Allows for children if needed

    Photos and Videos:
    – Negotiate a half-day rate with the photographer
    – Pass around your video camera and camera to a couple of trustworthy family and friends to – be sure not to put too much pressure on them to get things perfect, this is why you pay a photographer for the official shots. Our photos taken this way ended up being pretty fantastic and captured the spirit of the day, all taken by people with almost no photographic experience whatsoever.
    – You don’t need a videographer. Ask a friend with a video camera. You’ll only look at it once, and you really only need the ceremony and the speeches at the reception captured. Those are the important bits.

    Anyway, all these tips enabled us to have an amazing wedding for around $7k in a relatively expensive city. Hopefully they’ll help other people. But the most important tip, remember to have fun!

  15. Pamela Munro says:

    The story of our DIY wedding at home – When my husband and I got married a few years ago, we decided to make it a family reunion as well and hold it in the backyard of our family house. It had just been refurbished for renting, so it was empty, and we could all sleep there on mattresses, saving considerably on housing. The biggest cost was all the airplane tix! I see people citing $10,000 for a wedding as a bargain. Well, we had much better things to do with our money!

    We decided on an afternoon garden wedding in the backyard of our house. I found some faux china pattern paper plates at Target and bought them and matching napkins. That set the color scheme of pink and foam green. I then found inexpensive foam green paper table cloths at the grocery store. My sister also bought paper goods she found in Germany, and bought yards of tulle. I found classic white tissue paper bells, and some angels (probably originally intended for Xmas). Once at the house, I fashioned an “altar” area in the backyard where the ceremony would be held by a local minister, hanging tulle in a swag between 2 trees, and ornamenting it on the ends with the angel figurines. We bought potted lilies (in season) from a local garden center and grouped them around this altar area. (Later they got re-planted in the garden!)

    We had the reception area in the den leading onto the screened patio, with a long table outside. We decorated the patio with strings of patio lights and there was a table covered by a vintage cloth in a corner of the den for the cake and presents and above that a decoration made with the tissue paper bells and festoons, with angel figurines and bows added.

    We used family glassware to make little flower arrangements for the tables in the patio. Queen Anne’s lace was in season (it grows as a weed around there) & we had the kids go and gather lots of it. This we supplemented with roses from the supermarket. There was a punch bowl of ice tea and a big jeraboam of champagne to toast with out of a collection of family glasses. I made special large ice cubes with springs of mint in them for the ice tea.) We did order the wedding cake from a local Italian Bakery – and added our own angel decorations to that, too.

    My wedding dress was a long linen one in light green (from a thrift shop). I carried a lace parasol from an antique store and had a bag. The shoes had also come from a thrift shop (new). We set up a music area outside and brought our own ambient music. (I made my nephew the DJ). We also set up a small karaoke system for post-wedding entertainment. To announce the ceremony I rang 2 Tibetan singing bowls to clear the air. We rented white chairs from a party company.

    And out in front of the house we had a sign, welcoming everyone to the wedding and big decorative balloons – And the entrance way was decorated by tulle and angel figurines on the wall, the door had a wreath with tulle added.

    The pictures were candids taken by friends. We were presented with a lovely album and CD of the wedding afterwards as a wedding gift.

    It was a lot of work – but a real DIY wedding, our style. We had a lovely time hanging out that night at the fire pit outside we had bought on sale & a good time was had by all!

    So, we only spent a couple of thousand dollars (the airfare included). It can be done.

    P.S. We did “save the date” announcements via Evite and then sent out invitations I had printed myself on our computer. I also did thank yous via Evite and computer-generated thank yous.

  16. bunny says:

    1) Invite only close friends and relatives. There’s no need to invite everyone you know.
    2) Survey, survey, survey everything to get the good price.
    3) Wedding invites don’t have to be too fancy – as people just receive them and toss them aside. It’s not like it’s going to be framed.
    4) Buy anything you need for the wedding during the sales.
    5) Don’t spend on extra details that wouldn’t really matter.
    6) Anything that you can do on your own, do it. Example: no need to hire a wedding planner, etc.

  17. Beth Kimber says:

    We had our wedding in Las Vegas for a number of reasons- most importantly price and family issues. I said I wouldn’t do it, I said it was tacky, I said it was cut rate. I was wrong, and encourage anyone to take a second look at what a wedding means and whether Vegas fits the bill. After my mother started suggesting “bright colors” and taking over and I spent the first two weeks of my engagement period crying, I decided that Vegas had everything I wanted- a good time for everyone (me- no one could control my wedding, my future husband- he shouldn’t have to spend the whole engagement period listening to me cry and complain, our attendants- what better place for a party!, my family- the hotel just gave us a checklist and nobody had to lift a finger), a priest to marry us in our faith, and an emotional tie (my husband proposed on top of the Eiffel Tower at Paris Las Vegas). The total cost fit within the budget that I was given by my family- about 25% of what my friends were spending. I had a wonderful wedding and a lovely reception with open bar, plated dinner, a gorgeous cake and beautiful flowers for well under $10k. I had enough left over for engraved invitations (everyone is allowed a splurge!), my designer wedding dress bought and resold on Ebay, gifts for everyone at the wedding, honeymoon clothes, attendant gifts and a bridesmaids’ luncheon with adorable invites. The bottom line is that it fit my emotional and financial desires and bottom line, and I seriously pray every night that my husband and I never get divorced- I have already had my perfect wedding and couldn’t wish for anything more.

    And for a more succint tip- order half the size of cake that the vendor recommends. Spend the money on something else. Have you ever seen more than a 1/4 of a cake eaten? We were also flying to Jamaica the next morning from Vegas and lived on the East Coast and couldn’t exactly save the cake.

  18. CarolBEE says:

    Wedding websites are quickly becoming a necessary wedding tool for today’s bride and groom. It allows the newly engaged couples to communicate with their family and friends. The couple can introduce their partner to out-of-town guest, showcase wedding plans for the big day, and is a great way to help your guest do their wedding shopping.

    There are countless reason for you to invest in a Wedding Website. Below is a list of just a few good reasons:

    This is a great way to get those baby pictures from Mom.
    When I was engaged to Don, I talked to his mother and got the cutest baby picture of him. He was dressed up in a Tarzan outfit. I posted the photo online with several other growing up pictures. This was a great way to personalize the website and a wonderful way for my out-of-state relatives to get to know my new husband to be.

    Inform Guests
    The website allow you to give your guest directions to the wedding ceremony, parking instructions, and other vital information that every guest should know when they come to celebrate the day with you.

    Provide Travel & Lodging information for your out of town guests
    Don wanted to make sure that our guest has all the information that they could possibly need. He had visited hotels that were close to our wedding ceremony. We posted the hotel names, contact information, prices maps, driving directions, and web links. We had a few out-of-state guest that were very grateful for this information.

    Offer an online R.S.V.P.
    In today busy world, this is a wonderful option for your guest. They are more likely to sit down at their computer at work and quickly RSVP to your invitation on-line.

    Wedding Registry
    Provide guests with a list of stores that you are registered with and their web links. This will make it convenient for your guest to do their gift shopping.

    Share the events with those unable to attend
    Post up to date photos of you getting ready for the wedding, let your guest get to know your wedding party by posting their photos and a paragraph about who they are, and share those embarrassing bridal shower and bachelor party photos (girls…. this is a great way to make sure that he behaves himself at the party! :-P)

    Calendar of events (showers, bachelor parties)
    This is a wonderful way to notify everyone when the rehearsal dinner is or the pre-wedding party events. You can post date, time, location and maps so your guest are not late or get lost on their way to the party.

    Include a story of how you met and/or his proposal
    Come girls! This one is a now brainer! Everyone is a sucker for a good romance story. This is a great opportunity to make him shine in front of all your friends and family.

    Online Guestbook
    Everyone want to share in on all the fun! Online Guestbook is a wonderful way for your guest to share a personal comment or two. Warning!: Family and Friends will tell stories on you. It will be fun to see what they remember and want to share with your finance.

    Share your Wedding Day Photos
    Everyone wants to see the pictures from your big day. Now your guest who couldn’t make it to the ceremony can now share your Wedding Day.

    So as you can see, you very much need a wedding website. The website is a sensible solution for you to share your wedding information with your family and friends. You will enjoy the process of planning your wedding details, sharing your story and helping your guest. The Wedding Website is an activity that you both will enjoy doing together as it brings you closer together….sharing special moments and memories with each other and with your loved ones.

  19. Push hard for an 42′ LCD TV for the shower, it CAN happen. It did for us and still no one can believe it. They’re like “Ohhhh I should’ve pushed for that.”

    Push for what you REALLY want. You just may get it.

  20. Skip the stuff that isn’t important. I didn’t care about favors or elaborate centerpieces, so we didn’t have any. Same with a video; still pictures were just fine.

  21. Jackie says:

    Well my fiance and I are getting married 8-8-08! Here are some things we have done to save:
    -Go to every wedding show that you can (that are free) put your name in all those giveaways. We won half off a DJ and a free wedding coordinator.
    -Ask family and friends if they know anyone. My grandma knows a seamstress that is doing my dress for very cheap and it looks awesome! My aunt knew a caterer…ect.
    -Invitations are not worth the money, people just throw them away. It was hard to spend money on them. I designed them on adobe photoshop and printed them all at officemax. Definitely worth it!
    -If you book your photographer early enough they might offer a free engagement shoot, thats what we did!
    -Oh my grandma knew a cake lady too! We get a discount.

    I hope that helps!!!

  22. One of the best thing that we did for our wedding is to NOT have catering service. Instead, we placed bulk order to local specialty food producers. Since we held the wedding in a village in Indonesia, the producers are usually street vendors (peddlars) selling traditional food in carts. At the end, we had unique array of traditional local food in our wedding receptions menu from five different street vendors. It’s also cheaper than having to go through catering. Moreover, we’re helping the local food producer making a living and promoting their business to the wedding guests. We’re being frugal and helpful to other people!

  23. Nirav says:

    The best money tip for weddings is not to get married! Saves you so much money on the wedding the divorce! Plus if you have bastard children that you don’t care for, you might be able to get out of paying for their upbringing and education!

  24. Glen Craig says:

    The best tip that’s worked for us was to be unconventional with your date. Most weddings are in the Summer, usually a Saturday night. Nothing wrong with that but it can get expensive finding a place in such demand. We found a beautiful location but they were booked up through the next year (for Saturdays and Summer months) and expensive. We really didn’t want to start off in debt because of our wedding. A friend who was married at the hall called up and found out they had a Friday night available. In December. The day before New Year’s. We thought about it and then said “why not?”. As a result of the time the cost was significantly lower while still giving us the package a Summer wedding would get. We were married on a beautiful winter evening and I think our guests will always remember our winter wedding (it’s also easy to remember the date when it’s the day before the last day of the year).

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