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helping brides create beautiful weddings without breaking the bank

It's a tough economy to throw a blowout bash, but, ladies and gentleman, it can still be done!  Here are five ways you can scrimp without being accused of being a Scrooge.

cut costs


1. Timing is Everything

The most expensive time to book a venue is a Saturday night during the summer. To radically cut costs, try to have your wedding at a less popular hour. There is some truth to the saying, the early bird gets the worm. Not only will your photographer get to use natural lighting throughout your reception, but the parents of young children will be happier as well.


2. Ditch the Flower Fund

A new husband told me recently that he was blown away by how much fresh flowers cost. Add in the stress of transporting these delicate blooms, potential allergies, and pollen stains, you're much better off keeping these pretties to a minimum or swapping them out completely with a festive alternative. Many brides are walking down the aisle with brooch, candy, or origami bouquets.


3. DIY Centerpieces

Create fun and memorable centerpieces by salvaging your home for knick knacks or visiting the local thrift store. While advanced crafters can let their imaginations run wild, newbies can pick something close to home like creating memorable framed collages.


4. Limit the Guest List

The more may be merrier in some instances, but not when it strains your budget. Limiting your wedding to your nearest and dearest not only saves money, but also creates a much more intimate experience and with fewer plates to buy, you can splurge on the mains or appetizers.


5. Research Your Dream Dress

Viewers of Say Yes to the Dress will know that high end couture gowns can be over ten thousand dollars. However, brides are sourcing their wedding dresses creatively. Not only do prices vary at your local bridal boutiques, but it also depends on when you buy. Many bridal salons host trunk shows, where you can can get a fifteen to twenty percent discount!

If you're a savvy online shopper, you can also find hundreds of vendors that specialize in affordable wedding dresses, sample couture gowns, secondhand dresses, and rentals.

For the best deal, it pays to do your homework.


Photo Credit: Top left Love and Found, top right janejoss, bottom left Creative Carmelina, Bottom right Once Wed [via Pinterest]

Natalie Tsang is a freelance writer and editor of SimplyBridal‘s blog. She was born and raised in California and is a hopeless romantic. She dreams of a rustic, whimsical wedding.

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About Jessica

Jessica is the creator of The Budget Savvy Bride; she launched the site in May of 2008, shortly after becoming engaged. Jessica has been recognized as a budget wedding expert by various media outlets and continues to share realistic inspiration and actionable tips to help brides save money on their weddings. Google

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  • Ros

    A few that I’ve found:

    – Instead of ditching the flower fund, letting go of a “vision” for flowers can drastically lower costs! I love yellow flowers, and we’re getting married in August – bunches of sunflowers/daisies/whatever else is at the farmer’s market, arranged with greenery and tucked into mason jars, is a cute (and cheerful!) centerpiece for a country wedding, and, really, can be done for a minimal cost.

    – If tightening the guest list isn’t an option (aka: my fiance has a HUGE family, and Thanksgiving dinner for “immediate family” is almost 50 people, so cutting down is difficult), looking at the type of wedding you’re throwing is helpful. There’s no way we could afford a ballroom/satin dress/elegant and chic type of wedding, but we can absolutely throw a fantastic party with mechoui and salads, yellow flowers and greenery, cocktails and punches, adorable century-old building next to a country creek kind of wedding. Is it necessarily what our first “vision” was? Not quite. But it will be fun, fantastic, affordable, inclusive, and low-stress. Certainly less stress than trying to cut down on the guest list when family is involved!

    – For plus-sized brides, finding a dress-maker and getting a custom dress can actually be cheaper than bridal stores. I’m getting a cotton voile and eyelet lace dress (summer wedding + polyester = heat…), it’s tailored, gorgeous, fits perfectly into the PERFECT hourglass, and cost less than 400$. If you’re in a city, price may be difficult, but seamstresses in nearby towns would likely be cheaper, and just as good.

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