The Budget Savvy Bride » Kelsey helping brides create beautiful weddings without breaking the bank Fri, 27 Feb 2015 19:49:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Groomsmen on a Budget Tue, 16 Jul 2013 13:44:46 +0000 groomsmen

{image from Elizabeth Anne Designs}

Dear Budget Savvy Brides,

{If you haven’t seen my Part One post titled, Bridesmaids on a Budget, you can find that here.}

The second part of the wedding party equation is the groomsmen. Ahh, the groomsmen! They take second to the beautiful bridesmaids, and are often pushed into the corner standing in a shadow. But don’t forget, they play an important part of the wedding, too!

While my budget doesn’t allow room to pay for the attire of my entire wedding party (10 people in total!), I’ve opted to make budget friendly options for everyone.

If you read my Bridesmaids on a Budget post, you would know that each dress cost $30 (pre-tax). That’s almost unheard of nowadays, and it was a blessing that I wanted to pass down to the men, too.

While I have yet to find the exact option that we will decide on, I’ve found a few options that are budget-friendly, and may also give you an inspiration for your groomsmen.

It’s usually the case that bigger named stores can cut you a better deal than the local mom & pop shops, but in my experience, that’s very, very wrong. Like I previously mentioned in my Part One post, I was a bridesmaid that paid $150 for a dress. Likewise, my fiancé’ was also in a wedding where the one-day tuxedo rental was around $170 after fees & taxes. We felt at the time that it was important for us to be in the wedding, so we opted to purchase the (outrageously priced) tuxedo rental.

Anywho — we felt convicted that we would not put our wedding party in that position. So, we’ve researched many budget-friendly options that may be of an inspiration to you.


1) Mom & Pop Shops:

Our local Mom & Pop shops have quoted us anywhere from $69.99 – $79.99 for a tuxedo rental. Along with this price included a deal for every 5 tuxedos rented, the 6th tuxedo was free. This works with our wedding party, since we have 5 groomsmen and 1 groom.

The big-named tuxedo rental in town starts at $150 for the same package. WOW!


2) Do you have a tuxedo in the back of your closet?

This was not the most economical option for our groomsmen because most of them did not have a suit or tuxedo. However, if most of the groomsmen in your party have a suit or tuxedo, you might be able to wing this option.


3) The Casual Look

The “casual look” is very popular nowadays. You can search options online to see what style works best with your theme and wedding party. Maybe you want to skip the tie, the suit, or the fancy shoes? This could be a cheaper option if you decided to skip the suit and unnecessary extras!

I hope this has been an encouragement and of inspiration to you! Please comment below if you have more ideas.

Blessings to you,

Kelsey Scarbrough



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Bridesmaids on a Budget Mon, 10 Jun 2013 12:30:53 +0000 Dear Budget Savvy Brides,

I know what it’s like to be a bridesmaid. I know what it’s like to pay nearly $150 for a dress that – in my opinion – is uncomfortable, ugly, and unflattering.

While hanging up my old bridesmaid dress that has still not received any hits on Craigslist, I knew that I would not do that to my ladies.

Since I’ve had a longer engagement than some (currently past the 17 month mark), I knew I had a long time to look for the perfect dress for my bridesmaids on a budget. I wanted the dress to be beautiful, sophisticated, comfy, wearable more than once, liked by all – and budget friendly.

This was not an easy task as several big-named stores were carrying dresses from anywhere to $50 – $300+. While $50 was more manageable, the dresses were very plain and hard to come by in every size.

I spent months looking online trying to find dresses that could work, but I was leery of these websites and their return policy. While their prices were often cheaper, I wanted to find something even more budget friendly and less risky (girls always need a good return policy as a backup!).

Like many things in life, good things come to those who wait (and often unexpectedly). One of my favorite stores to shop is the good ol’ JCPenney. They’ve been around awhile, and in my experience, they have a good return policy too. (Many bridal stores do not). Anywho – I knew that JCP had bridal/bridesmaid apparel, and I attempted to check out what was in stock. I found that the bridesmaid dresses were typically on the more affordable scale, but they still did not fit my ‘real budget friendly’ category.

I decided to go “outside the box” and look at JCP’s everyday dress stock. I narrowed my search results by the color I was searching for, and I arranged the results by the lowest to highest price. Many of the search results turned up to be possible contenders and I picked two of my favorite choices. I logged onto Facebook and sent the dress link to all of my bridesmaids.

All of my ladies said “Yes!” to the dress!

Here’s a breakdown of the categories:
Beautiful: √
Sophisticated: √
Comfy: √
Wearable more than once: √
Liked by all: √
Budget friendly: √ (After the $10 off coupon, the pre-tax total of the dress was $30!)


This isn’t my bridesmaid dress — they no longer carry it online or in the store- however, this dress is somewhat similar. 


The total my ladies spent on their dresses was equivalent to the amount that I spent on one bridesmaid dress. While I can’t wear my old bridesmaid dress again, I am proud to say that these ladies will have many opportunities to look fabulous in the future!

As a Budget Savvy Bride, I take pride in the fact that I am stretching others budgets further, too.

Blessings to you,


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Top Tips for Couponing Your Way to a Fabulous Wedding Mon, 22 Apr 2013 12:15:05 +0000 MoneyRingPic

**Photo credit: via**

Hello, fellow Budget Savvy Brides!

In order to design a wedding on a budget, I’ve had to find new ways to stretch our dollar. Here are some basic tricks we’ve used to find great, budget-friendly deals:


1) Craft stores ALWAYS have coupons (and great sales!):

Check weekly for coupons and sales at stores such as Joann’s and Michael’s. You’ll often find 50% percent off coupons to pair with great wedding décor and DIY projects. Here are some great buys that I have found:

  •  50 piece Invitation set (retailed for $24.99), pre-tax total: $12.50 (Coupon)
  •  Rhinestone Bridal Belt (retailed for $19.99), pre-tax total: $9.99 (Coupon)
  •  Chalk Board Paint for DIY Project (retailed for $7.99), pre-tax total: $3.99 (Coupon)
  • Peony Bridal Bouquet (retailed for $14.99), pre-tax total: $7.50 (50% Sale)
  • Bridesmaid flowers (retailed for $2.99), pre-tax total: $1.50 (50% Sale)
  • “Thank You” cards; 100 Count (retailed for $19.99), pre-tax total: $9.99 (Coupon)
  • Spray Paint for DIY Project (retailed for $7.99), pre-tax total: $3.99 (Coupon)
  • Paper Mache Letters ($1 off + 15 – 25% Sale)
  • Flower Girl Basket (retailed for $11.99), pre-tax total: $5.99 (Coupon)


**Please note: Be sure to check the policy of the coupon that you will be using. Most times you cannot pair a coupon with an item that is already on sale. Usually, waiting for an item to be “off sale” and pairing the item with a coupon is a much better deal. However, please note that craft stores in your area might have different pricing than above.


2) There’s nothing wrong with the Dollar Tree:

I know, I know — the Dollar Tree is often looked upon as cheap and of ill-taste for a wedding. But, you will be surprised what great pieces you can find! Have you seen their amazing DIY Weddings section on their site?

  • Flowers, $1!
  • Flower Girl Petals, $1!
  • Raffia (great for rustic centerpieces!), $1!
  • Vases, $1!
  • Flip Flops (great for dancing!), $1!
  • Party supplies: cups, plates, serving wear, wine glasses, $1!
  • Favor Boxes, $1!

**Please note: Check around for prices first. Even though items are $1, they are sold in smaller quantities. Sometimes you can stretch your dollar even more elsewhere!



3) Bargain shopping — (no thrift stores here!):

At the date of this posting, I have not stepped foot into one thrift store to purchase wedding items. I don’t have much luck with these places, and I am notorious for finding bargains in “regular” stores.

Great places to shop for wedding bargains:

  • Ross (or any other outlet store):
    • Lanterns with LED light ($7.99 each)
    • Bird cage for cards ($14.99)
    • LOVE  décor sign ($4.99)
  • Old Time Pottery:
    • Pink Chandelier ($15)
    • Cupcake Décor sign ($2.99)
    • Rustic Décor sign ($9.99)
    • White Lights ($1.99 per box)


I hope these simple tips have inspired you to find new ways to create a wedding on a dime. Comment below if you would like to share your bargain ideas, too!

Blessings to you,


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New Bride Blogger: Kelsey Tue, 09 Apr 2013 13:10:28 +0000 Dear Budget Savvy Brides,

My name is Kelsey Scarbrough, and I am honored to be a guest writer for the Budget Savvy Bride blog. I’m looking forward to basking in budget wedding ideas with each and every one of you!

I am a young bride with a budget seeking to create a beautiful wedding day on a dime! My fiancé, Joel (22), and I (18), have made it our goal to live debt-free, and we refuse to let our wedding put us into financial hardship. With that goal in mind, we’ve researched, “couponed”, and bargain shopped to create our memorable day. We’ve had to sacrifice big ticket items and extravagant ideas, but the end will be so worth it – we’ll be married AND debt-free!

Our Wedding:

We are planning an elegant southern, “nighttime” wedding with small, rustic details. We’ve “saved the date” for the fall of 2013 (official date to be announced soon!). Our goal is to spend $5,000 or less with approximately 200 – 250 guests in attendance.


About us:

Joel and I met and fell in love on the basketball court. I was in my last year of middle school; he was in his last year of high school. We both attended and graduated college at an early age.

Joel graduated with a two-year college degree a year after finishing high school, and I graduated college before receiving my high school diploma in 2012. We are also graduating from college (again) next month. He will be walking with his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Florida Gulf Coast University (yes, Dunk City!). I have one more year left for my bachelor’s degree in Business Supervision and Management.

Joel plans to work as an Engineer and continue on to graduate school, and I plan to attend law school next year.

Our ultimate goal is to live simply, have fun with our resources, and to bless others with what we’ve been entrusted financially.

I hope to inspire you to find great wedding deals on a dime, and to enjoy every moment with your groom along the way.

Let’s get started!

Blessings to you,


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