At first my son and his fiancee were considering a big wedding, but in the end decided on a small, casual affair with just their closest family & friends. A friend of my son’s was able to arrange for them to rent a clubhouse in his housing division and the wedding date was set for May 31st.
This sort of thing might not be what would work for or appeal to everyone, but this couple deals with five children between them, and had the choice to have a wedding with 500-750 guests and spend a fortune that they’d never recoup, or whittle it down to about 90, have a honeymoon, and still be able to make the next house payment on their new home. I think that they made a wise choice for their situation. It turned out wonderfully and everyone had a marvelous time. Their frugal little DIY wedding was a lot of fun for everyone :)
Here are some of the ways that they cut costs :
- Guest List : Only closest friends and family attended, and the wedding invitation suggested casual attire. It also let them know not to bring their children ( there would not be room…only the wedding party children would be there ). Guest list total : 90.
- Beverages : Limited beverages : fruit drinks or water for the wedding party children, beer or bottled water for guests, with a limited amount of hard alcohol and mixers.
- Food : Family & Friends provided food. The photo below shows one table…there was another beyond it with more food and cookies, cakes, etc. There was more than enough and there’s not much to compare with home made. The only purchased food was chicken from a local restaurant.
- Beverage cups: purchased online at the best price.
- Decorations : The bride decorated the mantle in the clubhouse and made little painted bird house decorations for the tables. I went and picked lovely sweet-scented phlox in the early a.m. out in the country while it was still drenched with dew, then stored it in buckets of water for a few hours. When we went to arrange and cover the tables, I took the phlox and arranged it into vases and mason jars for the mantle, alcove, dessert table and dining tables.
Bridal Bouquet: I made it. I simply purchased one dozen cream colored roses to go with her gown and left them sitting in water for a day. An hour before the ceremony, I cut the stems, wrapped them tightly in painter’s tape ..no need to purchase floral tape..then layered ivory colored fabric over that and pinned it, and finished it off with some ribbon and a bow.
Music: they did something with an Ipad or Ipod / not sure but there was music :)
Tables and Chairs: the clubhouse provided a certain amount / a family member rented the remainder through an American Legion or similar club.
Photography: They asked me to do it. I am not a professional nor do I have a studio, but if a person has a family member or friend that likes photography, and if that person is able to relinquish the thought of photos in a studio, then much money can be saved. I took 208 photos / the majority were edited and on FB in an album within 24 hours. They can be saved to a drive or CD from my computer and the couple can get the photos that they would like printed after that.
Fashion: Before I show you the bride, here are the grand girls in their Walmart dresses…9.00 each.
Now the girls with their little cousin:
While the little girls couldn’t wait to pose for pictures, the boys were not interested. We did manage to get them into a few group photos and I usually tell them not to laugh, or not to make faces, which of course results in lots of hilarity and fun photos since they start to laugh, smile, and of course, make funny faces :)
Two favorite photos from that day :
Catching the bride’s twin sister ready to take pictures of folks at the same time as I was doing so:
The bride and her best friend in the ‘dressing room’. The best friend is supposedly due in July but she is so huge that most of us are quite sure that baby is coming earlier! :)
My son and new daughter-in-law after the ceremony.
My son’s favorite photo :
I had done a post about this wedding gown back in April. She found it at a consignment shop and purchased it for 50.00. She brought it here to be altered a bit, and I went online and found the exact same dress at a couture shop ( They wanted 750.00!)
“VINTAGE 1980′S ST. TROPEZ BEADED WHITE HALTER COLLAR MOCK NECK STRAIGHT SKIRT PRINCESS WAIST BACK SLIT BRIDAL WEDDING GOWN”
A radiant bride :
A very happy couple:
And a little grandson who really liked these cake lollipops that the bride and my niece made for the wedding :) Yours truly did too…they were delicious!