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Minimalist Eco-Friendly Wedding in Texas for $18K

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We have a very special wedding to share with you today. Marissa and Johnny created a Minimalist Eco-Friendly wedding using finds from Goodwill for 75% of the decor. We especially love how they infused family traditions and their heritage into their wedding. Enjoy this Minimalist Eco-Friendly Wedding in Texas for $18K!

Marissa + Johnny

Austin, Texas
- 12/07/2019
Total wedding budget $18,188

Budget Breakdown

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

  • Photography
  • Venue
  • Catering
  • Stationery
  • Partner 1 Attire
  • Accessories
  • Partner 2 Attire
  • Coordinator
  • Hair & Makeup
  • Flowers
  • Miscellaneous
  • Music/Entertainment
  • Alcohol/Bar
  • Bartender/Servers
  • Decor
  • Rings
  • Total wedding budget

How did you meet?

After several months of little to no successful activity on the dating apps, Johnny triangulated the issue and adjusted his parameters accordingly. As soon as he began exclusively swiping right for women of color, he matched with a Latina (or Filipina or he didn’t really know but the last name was Rosales, so it was a win-win) by the name of Marissa. Marissa’s profile pictures included several photo ops at Asian restaurants, another plus. She opened with, “Hi handsome!” Oh, the audacity.

Following a series of dates where Johnny got stood up by Marissa (long story), they finally met at Moontower for a “pre-date” (long story). Johnny, in all his magnificent paranoia, made sure to drop a pin for his friends lest his fear of being kidnapped for his soft skin ever came to fruition.

Over the next several months of Hamilton Sing-A-Long parties, life-threatening river floating excursions, and MLK Day parades, they learned about each other, and they learned with each other. Marissa and Johnny knew long ago that they would grow old together, but before then, someone had to pop the question.

What is your proposal story?

Johnny intended to propose in a field of flowers in Fredericksburg, TX, but it being June in Texas meant that all outdoor life withered away under the oppressive Texas sun. Instead, while we were in the air-conditioned Airbnb, as Leon Bridges played in the background, who so often accompanies our slow dances in the kitchen. Johnny, already a man of a few words could barely produce any words at all, but Marissa connected the dots and said yes. Both in tears, our friends who accompanied us came out from hiding and we all celebrated with a photo op and drinks!

Tell us about your wedding vision.

Marissa, a lifelong avid thrift shopper, and planner, already knew the vision she had for the wedding. They looked at several venues but they all seemed too high and didn’t fit well with their budget. They kept searching and right when they were about to settle and give up a kidney they found Ranch 505 in Buda, TX. It was a bit more rustic than anticipated but nothing decorations couldn’t fix.

After securing the venue it all started coming together on their vision board. Marissa browsed through her many many years of planning on Pinterest to narrow down a style. They went with a minimalist whimsical green wedding. About 95% of all items like vases, candle holders, jars, and more were purchased at Goodwill and the rest was either purchased through a wholesale site or borrowed. The last balance for all items purchased for decor was $252. Now all those items have been passed down to family and the next friend who is getting married this year. The circle of reduce, reuse and recycle!

Tell us about your attire choices.

We both have a love for style and staying minimal. We wanted to look super fresh but not break the bank. When Marissa was in her hometown Weslaco, TX she stumbled upon a bridal boutique name Sposa Mia with her mom. They went in to just browse and make an appointment if they loved what they saw. Marissa knew what she was looking for but was not ready to purchase anything just yet. We walked in and a consultant gave us the rundown. We looked around and not even 10 min later she came back to tell us her client just canceled and we had an hour and a half to try stuff on. We immediately started grabbing dresses we loved to try on.

After 4 dresses and tears later Marissa found her dress and it was on sale! They also had a promo going on that month which included a $250 credit which she used for her veil! Win-win!!

Now that Marissa was out of the way we started to look for Johnny’s tux. Well, I guess us talking about it we started receiving sponsoring for The Black Tux and that is when we looked into it. We scheduled an appointment at the Barton Creek Mall in Austin, TX, and immediately loved the ivory on black lapel tux. Marissa fell in love with Johnny all over again at that fitting.

The love didn’t stop there because Johnny’s long time best friend and his Best Mel, yeah cause her name is Melissa, surprised us with something amazing. Johnny being of Vietnamese descent as well as Melissa, she knew that having some sort of tradition would be the icing. She gifted Marissa with a second wedding dress, a beautiful hand made red áo dài made by a woman in Houston, TX.

What was most important to you two? Was there anything you chose to splurge on or skip?

The most important thing was that we represented our cultures of both Mexican American and Vietnamese American. We wanted to surround ourselves with family and friends that we love so much. Everything had a meaning from our food truck P Terry’s to the playlist we gave to our DJ. We wanted to have some inside jokes or memories with the music. That way we could look across the room and just smile from what it meant to us.

What were your favorite parts of the day?

My favorite part was the dancing. We danced so much our bodies hurt the next day! We have so many photos showing how much fun we had. I was even told my friends that they had never seen a bride dance so much.

Tell us about your wedding flowers.

After a year of pinning ideas, it all went down the drain. I went into Austin Flower Co. and browsed around writing down prices and flowers I liked with a $1000 budget. When it was pick up day, my mom and I went to grab the flowers and they were all in boxes since we did wholesale. It was so much cheaper but a lot of work. One of my best friends Hannah Cotten put most of our arrangments together. She was on a roll and even after I got frustrated from creative exhaust she stepped in and took over. She is a Scientist but could definitely be a floral magician as well.

Tell us about your wedding cake.

Well, I have been blessed with really good friends. One of my bridesmaids Adriana VanderEnde baked our cake herself and it was everything. We had some trials along the way and it was everything I imagined our cake to be and it was made by one of my favorite people so even more of a bonus. It was a strawberry cake with buttercream frosting and had little flowers around it.

We purchased another cake that was gluten-free and dairy-free from Mr. Natural since I have both of those allergies and it came completely wrecked and the baker was completely rude and wouldn’t work with us. Being the day of, I started to panic. Again, my amazing friend Adriana came to rescue and fixed the cake while adding some details making it a groom’s cake with our Phamily crest.

What did you do for favors?

We didn’t do anything for favors but asked that everyone take a slice of cake home.

Please describe any DIY, handmade, or personal details.

Most of my wedding decor was from Goodwill and vintage shops. I spent around $250 for all my decorations and serve ware. Some items were borrowed and the others were purchased overtime at Goodwill and Savers. I’m an avid thrift shopper and have been since I was a kid so I knew exactly where to go and what I wanted. Pinterest was a huge help as well. You can find all my inspiration here on my Pinterest page. https://www.pinterest.com/mrosales0813/weddinggoals/

Did you include any family heirlooms or special traditions?

We did not have any family heirlooms. Johnny’s Best Mel (Melissa Lype) gifted us with a traditional Vietnamese wedding dress in which I changed to later in the night. It was beautiful and we purchased the fabric together and had it made in Houston, TX. It was an amazing experience and such an important tradition.

Do you have any advice for couples planning their weddings now?

Yes, spread out the planning and take your time. Everyone says to have fun but sometimes it’s not when you’re dishing out a lot so take a step back and remember why your doing this. We didn’t receive help from anyone and our honeymoon was our registry so our family and friends came through for that and helped us have an amazing trip to Mexico City for 2 weeks. Just focus on what is really important and think “Will my guests actually care if this was at the wedding?” I can guarantee you, they won’t.

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