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Elegantly Rustic California Wedding

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bride and bridesmaids with dresses

Today, we’re featuring a lovely northern California wedding with 180 guests that comes in at $7,000! Laura and Kyle made their big day beautiful on a budget through focusing on the natural beauty of the venues, incorporating family heirlooms into the decor and accepting help from family and friends. Laura’s dress, the soft pink and white flowers and lace table linens provide elegant touches. They did a marvelous job making the most of their reception venue, working with — instead of distracting from–  the beauty of the outdoors by creating picnic feel with the BBQ dinner and games.  Enjoy this rustic California wedding! xoxo, Jessica

invitations pink and white bouquets on staircasebride shoes and dresstandem bike card and rignsbride and bridesmaids with dressesbridal hair and makeup

back of dressbridesmaidsgray suitpink dresses and gray suitsflower wreathwedding ceremonywedding ceremonychapel doorfirst kisswedding couple photowedding church photoschurch photosrustic barn couple photonorthern Cali weddinghand lettered signsweeping willows at the receptiongift table notes for happy couplecanned jam wedding favorphoto displayreception seatingcenterpiecespicnic utensilswatermelon and brisketBBQ mealdrink stationgiant jengabunting, lanterns and lightsfirst dancecakeat the reception end of the day

Laura + Kyle

July 19, 2014

Tulelake, California | St. Augustine Catholic Church

What was your wedding budget?

Kyle and I both agreed early on to keep our wedding costs low by sticking to a $7,000 budget. We did a lot of research and discovered just how many costs we could scale down or completely eliminate to treat our guests to a fantastic celebration without blowing our budget.

Save-the-Dates:          $200

Invitations:                 $200

Wedding Gown:         $800

Bridal Party Gifts:      $400

Bouquets & Bouts:    $100

Ceremony Venue:     $0

Photographer:           $1,900

Ceremony Décor:      $100

Reception Venue:      $0

Officiant:                    $200

Flowers:                      $500

Reception Décor:       $300

Tables and Chairs:    $0

Paper Goods:             $300

Food:                           $900

Beer & Wine:             $400

Favors:                        $400

Misc. Donations:        $200

Grand Total:               $7,000

How many guests did you have?

We celebrated our wedding day with 180 of our closest family & friends.

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

We tied in lots of elements that were closely connected to our lives to infuse our entire wedding day with personality. We used lots of heirloom family items as props for our reception including wine barrels, a vintage trunk, antique radios, grape crates, quirky coolers and more. I spent a little time during each week of our engagement working on DIY projects including signs, paper lanterns, paper flowers, buntings, table runners, lawn games & more.

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

One key piece to keeping our costs low was to focus on a family-centric, easy, fun, backyard environment that would make everyone feel right at home. We also focused on the natural beauty of our ceremony & reception venues to eliminate the need for excessive décor. The biggest thing that made a difference in our costs was the kindness & generosity of our family, friends & community. We were loaned tables & chairs, linens and sound equipment and were gifted with a beautiful cake and exquisite paper flower pew decorations to add special touches to our wedding.

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

Graciously accept help. It can seem awkward to accept or enlist help from your friends & family while planning your wedding, but it is so rewarding (and relieving!) to share the preparation of your big day with those you love.

What was your biggest splurge?

Our biggest splurge was our photographer. We shopped around & found a great photographer that shot in a style we loved at a price that made sense. We wanted to make sure that every little detail was captured for us to look back at for the rest of our lives. We are so grateful that we can now revisit our wedding pictures and remember sweet moments that just didn’t last long enough!

What was your favorite detail?

We (and our guests!) just loved our adorable mini-jam jar favors. We dressed each jar up with a sweet doily & twine cover to tie in with the rustic theme of our wedding. It was so fun to “spread the love” with our guests.

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

We will never forget seeing each other for the first time at our wedding ceremony. All of our hard work & planning came together in that moment and immediately focused us on the importance of our MARRIAGE, not just our wedding.


Photographer: Pixy Prints Photography  •  Invitations: Swell & Grand  •  Wedding Gown & Bridesmaid Dresses: David’s Bridal  •  Bridesmaid Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar  •  Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse  •  Flowers: Fifty Flowers

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