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DIY Backyard Wedding On an $8,000 Budget

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We have a beautiful wedding to share with you today. Amber and Collin did not use a traditional venue, rather were gifted the incredible backyard of a family friend to use for their wedding. In addition to making lots of DIY's and borrowing items from friends who recently got married, they were able to pull off a gorgeous wedding on their budget! Enjoy this DIY Backyard Wedding on an $8,000 Budget!

Amber + Collin

Fulton, Missouri
- 09/14/2019
Total wedding budget $7,381

Budget Breakdown

Below is an estimated wedding budget breakdown provided by the couple.

  • Catering
    17%
    $1273.31
  • Alcohol/Bar
    7%
    $539
  • Cake/Dessert
    4%
    $285
  • Flowers
    2%
    $123.81
  • Decor
    11%
    $784
  • Music/Entertainment
    10%
    $750
  • Photography
    11%
    $775
  • Partner 1 Attire
    6%
    $478.95
  • Partner 2 Attire
    4%
    $300
  • Stationery
    4%
    $300
  • Hair & Makeup
    5%
    $335
  • Miscellaneous
    23%
    $1732.23
  • Total wedding budget
    $7380.80

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

I asked for a lot of assistance through this process because with almost everything being DIY, I did not have time to do it all myself! My sister-in-law offered to craft the ring box. I crafted the metal letters at the head table.

Did you do any DIY projects or create any handmade items for your weddings?

I DIY’d all of my signs. The welcome and bar signs were picture frames that were given to me, and I filled them with foam core boards with hand lettering. I created the directional sign with an old wood pallet and paint.

I used $1 4×6 photo frames from Ikea and typed up my own signs and printed them on brown craft paper for various areas like the cupcakes, bartender tip sign, taco bar, etc. and free printables for the reserved seats at the ceremony and at the reception tables. All of the small signs like cupcake flavors, drink signs, taco bar toppings, etc. were from the $1 section at Michaels. The seating chart was a slab of wood, and I borrowed my friend’s Cricut to do the names.

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

This was a “backyard” wedding, in a sense that it was not a venue! So we did not pay for this location at all! An old family friend offered to lend us his “backyard” (he owns his own vineyard on his personal property), and all we had to do was get it ready for the event. It was a LOT of work — his yard needed lots of cleanup…we mowed a huge space behind his house for parking, and cleaned out his entire “shed” (this is the building where we had the reception). We also planted flowers, etc. and spent quite a few weekends here before the wedding to make sure it was perfect! The wedding party used their basement and upstairs bedrooms to get ready.

I borrowed as much as I could…some things included: lanterns and candles for table centerpieces (from a friend who just got married), head table (we owned this), table linens (friend of MIL), wine barrel (friend owned), vintage chair (parents’ owned), books (owned).

Was there anything you decided to splurge on?

The food was catered by Pancheros…this was one of our larger splurges, but TOTALLY worth it! They set everything up and cleaned up when it was all through. We did not have to worry at all about the mess, and they controlled portion sizing to ensure all of our guests had at least one plate.

We purchased all of the drinks ourselves and came up with the cocktails! A full bar was something that my husband wanted, so we bought in bulk at Sam’s and saved some money that way. We had beer, wine, spirits, sodas for mixing, and a “his favorite” and “her favorite” cocktail, as well as the “take a shot and take a seat” wedding favors located with the seating chart. We also had a friend who is a bartender and asked him if he would want to make some extra cash that weekend, but his fee was smaller than some of the places that offered their bar tendering services.

Describe your attire.

The dress was from Azazie.com, as well as my bridesmaid dresses, groomsmen ties, and mother-of-the-bride and mother-of-the-groom dresses. I dress shopped at many different places locally and found that they had lower prices than the boutiques near me. You can spend $10 (for bridesmaid dresses) and $15 (for bridal dresses) to try on a sample dress at home before you buy, and they also have an option for custom sizing which helped me cut costs of alterations. I found it to be pretty accurate and only needed a few tweaks to the size that I received (some things are not custom, like the strap lengths, etc.). Men’s attire was rented from Men’s Warehouse.

Describe your flowers.

I used all faux florals so we could craft beforehand, and purchased all of my florals from Hobby Lobby (they usually go on sale every other week for 50% off!) My maid of honor used work at a florist shop, so she put together all of the boutonnieres, bouquets, and corsages. And another bridesmaid helped me with some of the floral arrangements that you see in various places as decor (next to the cake and near the seating chart).

What was your favorite detail?

DIY Arbor. My husband and I found inspirational images and tutorials online…we bought the wood, bolts, and wood stain at Home Depot, and spent a weekend putting it together with my father-in-law. We cut the wood to the lengths that we needed and stained everything ourselves. My mother-in-law helped by creating the floral arrangement on it (all also bought from Hobby Lobby on 1/2 price week).

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

Husband forgot the rings!

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

Don’t be afraid to not get married at a venue…it is a lot of work, but can save you lots of money and can be so much more personal! And talk to friends and family — we borrowed so many decor items for our wedding and saved so much money in doing so!

Vendor Credits

DIY Backyard Wedding On an $8,000 Budget

When you shop via links on our site, we may earn a small commission if you make a purchase. Learn more.
We have a beautiful wedding to share with you today. Amber and Collin did not use a traditional venue, rather were gifted the incredible backyard of a family friend to use for their wedding. In addition to making lots of DIY's and borrowing items from friends who recently got married, they were able to pull off a gorgeous wedding on their budget! Enjoy this DIY Backyard Wedding on an $8,000 Budget!
outdoor wedding ceremony

Amber + Collin

Fulton, Missouri
- 09/14/2019
Total wedding budget $7,381

Budget Breakdown

Below is an estimated wedding budget breakdown provided by the couple.

  • Catering
    17%
    $1273.31
  • Alcohol/Bar
    7%
    $539
  • Cake/Dessert
    4%
    $285
  • Flowers
    2%
    $123.81
  • Decor
    11%
    $784
  • Music/Entertainment
    10%
    $750
  • Photography
    11%
    $775
  • Partner 1 Attire
    6%
    $478.95
  • Partner 2 Attire
    4%
    $300
  • Stationery
    4%
    $300
  • Hair & Makeup
    5%
    $335
  • Miscellaneous
    23%
    $1732.23
  • Total wedding budget
    $7380.80

I am in LOVE with today’s budget-savvy wedding! Anna and Cliff made use of an aunt’s backyard to create a beautiful ceremony and reception venue for their big day. Anna’s succulent bouquet is stunning and I love how they carried succulents throughout their decor. And how fun are their tattoo favors? What a cute and creative idea. Enjoy this DIY backyard wedding! xoxo, Jessica

bride getting ready vans shoes wedding dress succulent boutonierre wedding band groom getting ready wedding stationery wedding processional wedding processional outdoor wedding ceremony outdoor wedding ceremony outdoor wedding ceremonyoutdoor wedding photos vans wedding shoes swing wedding photos wedding reception entrance outdoor wedding ceremony wedding menus drink station drink station outdoor wedding reception wedding photos beverage station wedding favors ball jars wedding coasters wedding signage baby's breath wedding decor wedding decor tattoo wedding favors tattoo wedding favors baby's breath wedding decor

wedding seatin wedding desserts wedding desserts wedding desserts wedding desserts wedding desserts wedding desserts cake cutting first dance first dance wedding lighting

Anna + Cliff

June 23, 2016
Sierra Madre, CA | Family Backyard

What was your budget?

Our total budget was about $15,000.

  • Dress with alterations: $1500
  • Food:$1600
  • Decor including plates and utensils:$1500
  • Dessert and cake: $400
  • Groom’s attire: $300
  • Rentals: $2500
  • Lighting: $700
  • Paper goods: $300
  • Shoes: $20
  • DJ: $845
  • All flowers: $550

The remainder of our budget was spent on photography.

How many guests did you have?

We had 65 guests.

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

We made cards for each table that had fun facts about Cliff and me. To learn other fun facts you have to venture to each table.

We had a temporary tattoo station. I am heavily tattooed and my husband does not have any, so I thought it would be fun for everyone to be able to get a tattoo.

Our card box is an old ammo container. My dad is a retired gunsmith and made it for me. I have the box displayed in our room now.

Our centerpiece for the bride and groom table is a Buck skull that my parents found on their property in Utah.

For desserts, Cliff loves red velvet so naturally, that was our cake. It was my parents 32nd wedding anniversary also, so we did a Hummingbird cake for them. We did pies as well. Most important was the Key Lime Pies. Cliff is from Florida and I wanted that to be represented.

 

Read This: 10 Tips for Backyard Weddings

Did you do any DIY projects or create any handmade items for your weddings?

The menu cards, social media cards and fun fact cards were all handmade. The Ball jars and key bottle opens were purchased but the tags were hand painted and names printed and assembled by me.

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

EBAY! Most of the jars and all the glass trays were from eBay. We purchased a lot of things on sale too, my dress and shoes and most of Cliff’s attire as well.

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

Have fun with it! At the end of the day it’s for you and your husband. We looked at it as if it were just a party!

What was your biggest splurge?

Our photographer! Honestly, that was the only thing I truly cared about. I wanted gorgeous photos so I could keep reliving that day.

What was your favorite detail?

Our bride and groom table was so magical. It was a dream come true.

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

When the sun had gone down and our amazing lights glowed, Cliff and I were able to have the dance floor to ourselves and really got to live in the moment.

VENDORS

Photography: Elizabeth Burgi Photography • Venue: Family home • Flowers and Headpiece: Eucca via Etsy Shop • Stationery: Shutterfly • Catering: Gus’s BBQ • Bakery: Magnolia Bakery • Rentals: Circa Rentals and Stecklair Events • Linens: Imperial Rentals • DJ: SoCal Mobile DJ • Lighting: JFox Events • Bridesmaids Dresses: David’s Bridal • Wedding Gown Designer: Vera Wang • Bridal Shop:David’s Bridal • Jewelry: Kate Spade • Shoes: Vans • Groom’s Suit and Tie: Express

GET INSPIRED: See more Backyard Weddings on a Budget

Vendor Credits