Jodi & Vince decided to have an intimate weekday wedding attended only by immediate family and close friends, and as such they were able to use of the gorgeous Pala Mesa Resort in Temecula during prime Southern CA wedding season at a great price. The bride works as a masseuse and bartered massage services for different wedding items! Vince gifted his groomsmen personalized samurai swords and they took turns splitting pumpkins in midair for fun before the ceremony, and the couple also used one to cut their cake during the small reception afterwards. The bridesmaids sported wrist corsages and hand fans rather than bouquets- so lovely! Of course the couple splurged on photography and it paid off- Luminaire Images did a fantastic job capturing their day. All of the things the couple did to save money helped them to pull off a simply stunning wedding at half the cost of the ‘average' wedding! Hope you enjoy this feature and all of the gorgeous details as much as I did! xoxo-Jessica
Jodi & Vince
September 13, 2012
The Pala Mesa Golf Resort | Fallbrook CA
What was your budget?
Around $15,000 total.
Pala Mesa Site Fee: $1500
Pala Mesa Speaker Rental: $250
Wedding Package: Dinner, Wine, Champagne Toast, Open Bar $3200
Service Charges and Taxes $1291
Wedding Cake: $310
Photographer and Album: $3500
Music / Cello: barter
Makeup hair $440
Bridesmaids gifts: 320
Sand ceremony hourglass & sand: $300
Above is our wedding budget. We were given more money but chose to spend a portion of it on our honeymoon airfare. The 1927 Packard was a gift to us for the day from my good friends Dan & Sherry Walters from Classic Limo’s. They gave us our choice of car for the day as a wedding gift. They are amazing people & take great pride in their business & their cars. I do not know their correct pricing at this time, but their service is the best! They are always early & treat you better than royalty. We have used their service for other special events & they always impress.
How many guests did you have?
We budgeted for more but ended up with 26 or 27 people in the end so there was extra bar money, which is never a bad thing at a celebration!
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
We had a sand ceremony using an hour glass that we will turn over every year as our lives become more blended with time.
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
Limited our guest list to only immediate family & bridal party. some exceptions were made for Vince's aunt & uncles as he had no grandparents.
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
Breathe & laugh when things don't go your way even if you have to force yourself, stressing out never solves anything. As the bride and groom you set the tone for your day. If you are calm and happy everyone will be calm and happy. If you are stressed & freaking out other people will feel stressed and start freaking out. Enjoy a long engagement so you have all the time you need to plan your event with out being under pressure. You are only engaged for a short time. Savor it! It is this beautiful time where you are secure in your relationship but not yet married and you should cherish it. You only get to enjoy calling each other Fiance's for so long.
What was your biggest splurge?
Photographers & albums. My father asked me what was most important to me when we started planning & I told him memories, I wanted the best pictures & album possible so we hired Luminaire Images & they have far surpassed my expectations. They are worth every dollar and then some. People are still complimenting my photos.
What was your favorite detail?
I loved the green fans and Vince loved his Swords. The 1927 Packard was awesome & all of our guests got pictures with the car. It was definitely a crowd-pleaser.
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
I don't know if there is just one. Taking all of the photos was so much fun with my sisters/bridesmaids and the groomsmen. Molly & Matt, our photographers, made it fun & helped us feel so comfortable. Cutting our cake with the sword while trying to tell my husband “no you cannot chop the whole cake in half.” lol. He is such a big kid. Vince would say his most memorable was chopping pumpkins while the boys got ready. He gave each of them their sword and a pumpkin. These swords were so sharp that the pumpkins didn't have a chance. The boys all still talk about this & how it was the best groomsman's gift ever.
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 resources for planning a pandemic wedding here.