Who doesn’t love a good budget savvy beach wedding? Miria and Paul created their dream laid back, intimate beach wedding by doing lots of DIY and getting their loved ones involved as well. Time and time again it seems that one of the best ways to cut costs is to enlist the talents of those you know and love, and this wedding proves just that! Miria & Paul crossed quite a few things off their list by having their loved ones create items for their big day and it definitely saved them a bundle. How great is it that she was able to create centerpieces and decor out of bottles and jars they’d used over time, instead of purchasing new items? Super budget savvy if you ask me! The couple still chose to make room in their budget for a talented professional photographer, and Mikkel Paige got some gorgeous shots of the celebration and delightfully crafty details! I know you’ll love this wedding as much as I did! xoxo – Jessica
Miria & Paul
September 21, 2012
Ocean Beach – Fire Island, NY
What was your budget?
Initially our budget was $5k but we ended up bumping it up to 8k when we decided to rent our venue, in our case a house very close by the beach, for an entire week instead of just for a day and make it our honeymoon location as well.
Roughly we spent 40% on the venue, 14% with decorations, 12% on food, 12% on photography, 8% on flowers, 8% with the justice of peace and 6% with drinks.
How many guests did you have?
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
I was very happy and blessed to incorporate personal touches throughout the entire wedding! From having my gorgeous dress made by my grandma in Brazil to giving my husband and brother-in-law the hard task to drink tons of beers so I could make my center pieces out of the empty bottles. Needless to say they hated their task, haha! We served little cakes that are traditional for Brazilian weddings, to honor the family heritage. Our first dance was to Green Eyes by Coldplay.
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
Renting a house instead of a venue and doing it myself all decorations. Another beautiful touch was my cake, which was entirely made by my mother! Lots of sweat and tears involved, since it was her first wedding cake ever, but it came out perfect, delicious tasting and almost $0 cost! Another family member also created our cake topper.
I enlisted my brother and his girlfriend to help make the sand bottle favors. My husband made the wooden signs that turned out so nicely. I made my own bouquet with Calla Lilies and Baby’s Breath I picked up at Stop n Shop grocery store and I also made the “guest book” wall.
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
To enjoy!! Time flies by and all you take from it are the good memories, so put the stress aside and truly enjoy every minute!
What was your biggest splurge?
Renting the house for an entire week.
What was your favorite detail?
My favorite detail was to be able to have a very laid back and intimate wedding. I wanted my guests to feel as if they were on a barbecue at their best friend’s house.
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
My dad singing me a song! My dad doesn’t really speak English – though most people at the wedding couldn’t understand him singing in Portuguese, it was still SO sweet and special to listen to.
Photography: Mikkel Paige Photography
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.