Wedding Recap
The Budget Savvy Bride
Here's every last detail just for you! This photo is of Dane and I in front of the Liberty Theater in Dayton, Wash. All photos are by the talented Ali Walker at Ali Walker Photography.

Here’s every last detail just for you! This photo is of Dane and I in front of the Liberty Theater in Dayton, Wash. All photos are by the talented Ali Walker at Ali Walker Photography.

To my dear friends,

It has been so fantastic to share my journey with you. We have all 600 of our wedding photos and I’ve combed through them to find all the best details to inspire you. The wedding was a really emotional time for us and each day that passes I love the details of our wedding more and more and I’m proud of what we were able to accomplish. Enjoy!

Our chapstick favors! Our guests hoarded these! There were none left!

Our chapstick favors! Our guests hoarded these! There were none left!

Maid of honor Jennifer helps with my dress.

Maid of honor Jennifer helps with my dress.

Our program was a two-sided newspaper I made.

Our program was a two-sided newspaper I made.

Me, mom and Jennifer.

Me, mom and Jennifer.

I used puzzle-make.com to make a free word search with all of our guests' names in it for our guest book.

I used puzzle-maker.com to make a free word search with all of our guests’ names in it for our guest book.

Glamour shot!

Glamour shot!

Sister Alison and Jennifer helped me put I Do stickers on my wedding shoes.

Sister Alison and Jennifer helped me put I Do stickers on my wedding shoes.

My favorite project -- my bouquet made of heirloom brooches from family and friends.

My favorite project — my bouquet made of heirloom brooches from family and friends.

http://www.aliwalker.com

Our ceremony was late in the day so we did a first look. I loved spending more time with Dane on our wedding day. It was one of the few times I didn't feel stressed.

Our ceremony was late in the day so we did a first look. I loved spending more time with Dane on our wedding day. It was one of the few times I didn’t feel stressed.

 

Dane gives our snowflake girl Brooklynn a high five.

Dane gives our snowflake girl Brooklynn a high five.

Our bridal party! The buys rented suits and my maids picked out black dresses. Their tights had small polka dots and their jewelry included pearl dangly earrings and pearl bracelets with black bows.

Our bridal party! The buys rented suits and my maids picked out black dresses. Their tights had small polka dots and their jewelry included pearl dangly earrings and pearl bracelets with black bows.

Dane made his boutonierre out of duck and goose feathers and copper wiring to go with our no-flowers decor.

Dane made his boutonierre out of duck and goose feathers and copper wiring to go with our no-flowers decor.

My maids had bouquets made out of vintage sheet music. The sheet music was actually music for Christmas carols!

My maids had bouquets made out of vintage sheet music. The sheet music was actually music for Christmas carols!

We were all freezing for pictures but that kind of made it more fun because we were a little more candid.

We were all freezing for pictures but that kind of made it more fun because we were a little more candid.

Our ring bearer Kolton wore suspenders and a gray bowtie and looked precious. We're proud of him for making it down the aisle.

Our ring bearer Kolton wore suspenders and a gray bowtie and looked precious. We’re proud of him for making it down the aisle.

 

These little plastic deer were on the cupcakes. Loved them!

These little plastic deer were on the cupcakes. Loved them!

Our s'mores bar was a hit. We ordered peppermint and caramel marshmallows to add some variety.

Our s’mores bar was a hit. We ordered peppermint and caramel marshmallows to add some variety.

My mom, and my best friend, gave me away. This was one of the best choices I made.

My mom, and my best friend, gave me away. This was one of the best choices I made.

Yup, I cried the whole way through the ceremony. I managed to laugh a little bit too as I read my vows to Dane. He and I chose to write our own.

Yup, I cried the whole way through the ceremony. I managed to laugh a little bit too as I read my vows to Dane. He and I chose to write our own.

My father-in-law and his buddies made us this eight-tier cupcake tree. The cupcakes were red velvet and chocolate cake with peppermint icing.

My father-in-law and his buddies made us this eight-tier cupcake tree. The cupcakes were red velvet and chocolate cake with peppermint icing.

After the ceremony was over and the food was served I could finally let my hair down. I popped into the photo booth with Dane and enjoyed showing off the photos.

After the ceremony was over and the food was served I could finally let my hair down. I popped into the photo booth with Dane and enjoyed showing off the photos.

And then when my dress got too hot I changed into my second dress and we danced the night away!

And then when my dress got too hot I changed into my second dress and we danced the night away!

 

Jillian & Dane

December 15, 2012

Weinhard Hotel | Dayton, Wash.

What was your budget? If you are able, give us a rough breakdown of how you spent your budget.

Our original budget was $12,000-$15,000.

Venue  – Restored hotel was $2,000 for the day, including all 14 guest rooms for the night

Catering – $3,895

Day-of Wedding Planner – $1,050

Photo Booth – $600

Decorations – $300

Rentals (Cocktail Tables, linens, heaters) – $390

Bridal Dress & Accessories – $1,730

Groom’s Suit & Accessories: – $130

Favors – $60

DJ – $558

Ceremony Pianist – $100

Paper goods – Save-the-dates, invites, stamps, favor tags, programs – $1,047

Photographer (all-day wedding coverage & engagement photos) – $3,075

Gifts for Wedding Party – $400

Total: $15,335

How many guests did you have?

75

What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?

It was a goal of mine to make our wedding feel personal and do as much for free as we could. I worked for a newspaper at the time of our wedding and so I designed a two-page newspaper as our wedding program, complete with personalized crossword puzzle. We printed out childhood photos of ourselves as décor near the restrooms and spent countless hours cutting out paper snowflakes for our 3-D snowflake wall. Our guest book was made for free. I used a free puzzle maker program online to make a word search with all our guests’ names. I made our card box, my bouquet out of family heirloom brooches and all of the special touches including embossing, ribboning and stamping our invitations.

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

We saved the most money on our venue and our food. I originally thought we would get married at a winery, and those venues start at $4,500 for an evening. Our hotel at $2,000 was a steal. Also, because we had heavy appetizers for our food, we saved a lot of money there, too. Also, because of my new husband’s allergies, we didn’t do any real flowers. My bouquet was made of heirloom brooches and my girls’ bouquets were made of vintage sheet music flowers.

What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?

I felt like I was really prepared and organized until the last month. When we had deaths in the family and I left my job for a new career, things got really crazy and all of a sudden I had almost no time to finish up the last-minute details. I started throwing money at projects to get them done, which hurt my budget. But, every detail was perfect the day of. My best advice is take the week off before the wedding so you can devote plenty of time to handling last-minute issues that pop up. I also will never regret shelling out the $$$ for my day-of wedding coordinator. If there were any issues, I wasn’t aware of them! Ignorance is bliss sometimes!

What was your biggest splurge?

Photography! And it was so worth it- Ali did an incredible job capturing our day. We also splurged on our photobooth and everyone had a great time with it.

What was your favorite detail?

I loved my bouquet. I had brooches from all grandmothers and family friends and it sparkled like nobody’s business. I also loved the plastic deer toppers on our cupcakes. It was a nod to my new husband’s love of nature and “exploring.”

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

I LOVED taking photos with my fiancé, soon-to-be husband, before the ceremony. We spent about an hour together freezing in the December weather and running around Dayton getting mud on my dress. It was one of my only low-stress points of the day. It also started to snow during our ceremony and I could see the big fluffy flakes falling through the windows of the hotel. That was awesome.

VENDORS

Venue Weinhard Hotel, Dayton, Wash.| Photography  Ali Walker Photography| Caterer Olive Catering| Dress Jasmine and Alfred Angleo | Hair & Make-up Marcia Willard | Wedding Coordinator Without A Hitch Walla Walla | Rentals Sandy’s U-Rent, Sun Rentals | DJ Loney Tunes

Jillian, age 26, runs a weekly newspaper in a small town in Eastern Washington State. Her wedding date is set for Dec. 15, 2012 and loves the challenges and possible snow that comes with a winter wedding. While she's not running around reporting and hanging out with her family of newsies, she is reading, laughing, cuddling her kitty, dancing or sitting on her porch in the sunshine with her husband to be.

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    • Renae
    • February 11th, 2013

    Jillian, these are absolutely stunning!

  1. photography is a great place to splurge! preserve the beautiful memories.

  2. Love these pictures!

    • Ellen
    • February 11th, 2013

    Gorgeous!! I love the no flowers choice. :)

  3. Everything looks absolutely lovely, Jillian! So glad you had a wonderful day! xoxo

    • Jillian
    • February 11th, 2013

    Puzzle web address: free word search and crossword puzzle generators I have used since college. Typo above, it’s really: http://www.puzzle-maker.com/

  1. February 11th, 2013