Sometimes a great way to save money is just right in front of your face.
When I attended my first wedding event, just six weeks into our engagement, I thought I had found THE ONE. My wedding ring. A local jeweler had it on display and it was so lovely, and so delicate, and so unique… and so Ashley. Said ring, though, was a bit out of my budget. But after agonizing over this decision, and pining for this perfect circle of platinum, I decided it was worth the splurge. After all, I will look at this ring every day for the rest of my life.
While I am a big believer in living modestly, I also think it's important — on arguably one of the most important days of your life — to treat yourself, within reason. When I first started dedicating funds to our wedding, I decided there were a few things that I prioritized, and on those items I allowed my budget enough wiggle room to get what I (or we) wanted. Because Matt and I are tying the knot in New York, it seemed obvious that far more than half of our budget would need to be reserved for our reception space and food/bar. Such is the case with just about everything in the city — space just costs more here. I've lived here long enough to know that.
Our wedding bands were the other X factor — I wanted both of us to get something we would love now and for many (many, many, many…) years to come. Especially Matt, and partially for selfish reasons — I am so eager to look down at his hand and see a wedding ring there. The idea of that makes me so happy.
Last weekend, while visiting my hometown for my bridal shower (hosted by my mama!), I asked Matt if he'd be willing to go to the nearby outlet center simply to get sized for a ring. After hearing me mention our wedding bands for the umpteenth time, he agreed (to shut me up? Probably.). I really only had that intention while driving there… and then it hit me. I bet we could get a pretty sick deal at the Zales outlet store… Genius! I'm not sure why it hadn't occurred to me earlier — OF COURSE going to a jewelry store outlet would be substantially less expensive than its full-priced counter part!
So, there, my husband-to-be found his wedding band-to-be, making his wife-to-be very, very happy. We scored an incredible deal — like almost 70% off the original price kind of incredible — and it felt so good to pocket that dough that I decided to roll the dice and go on the hunt for me as well. And to continue our hot streak, I found a very similar ring to the one I fell in love with months earlier for about ONE-SIXTH of the cost! We left the store wedding bands in tow, and with about $700 of our original ring budget remaining!