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I have a lovely little spring wedding for you today by Carrie Butler Photography in Utah! This couple chose a reception location that was already lush and beautiful with flowers to save on the cost of decorating. I just love the warm, sunny, happy feeling that this day seems to encompass. I hope you enjoy this wedding as much as I did! 🙂 xo- Jessica


Ashlee + Jonathan

American Fork, Utah

Mount Timpanogos LDS Temple.

What was your budget?

We were hoping for under $5,000. Photography was $1500 and flowers were $500. We payed $500 for a neighbors backyard as our reception location. My dress was $800. My husband's suit (which he needed anyway) was $200. $500 for announcements. Total decoration cost was incredibly less because the reception site was so lush and beautiful. I spent $200 on our cake. We did 2 different sheet cakes & and ice cream bar to keep cost down, but also because it was summer! It was a perfect cool treat! Family members & members of our church helped with the serving as volunteers. Our family members did the decorating.

How many guests did you have?

We had probably close to 300-400 guests

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

We added a few of our own touches to our reception. One of those things was karaoke! On one of our very first dates we sang karaoke with Jon's sister Lorissa. We got up and sang the duet “A Whole New World”. We had no idea at that point where our relationship would go. We decided that would be a perfect piece of us to share at our reception. 🙂 Another touch involved the fact that my husband Jon loves Superheroes, always has. He and his groomsmen secretly had superhero shirts on under their white shirts and at a certain point during the reception we slipped away and the men ripped open their dress shirts to display their superhero pride. This was one of our favorites!  And lastly, just before leaving, I pulled out something that my husband had been talking about since we had gotten engaged, but didn't think I would ever do: I pulled out a Spiderman pinata. Spiderman for Jon represented his childhood and to me, his Bachelorhood. On it I wrote “Jon's Bachelorhood”. He allowed me to take the first couple swings at it since I was the one responsible for it's destruction. Then he stepped up and in one swing broke it to pieces (it was filled with hugs and kisses…which is what he gave up his Bachelorhood for!) Those were our creative touches! 🙂

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

We had our reception in a backyard and used very simple decorations (like burlap and baby's breath and ribbon). We also antiqued cheap frames that we'd gotten and hung them from the trees.

What was your biggest splurge?

Our biggest splurge was our photographer, which is what we wanted and planned. We knew the pictures would last us all our lives.

What was your favorite detail?

My favorite details were the flowers and the warm/romantic feel created from the colors and simple decorations.

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

Walking out of the big double doors of the Temple and greeting our family and friends as husband and wife. And our karaoke song! (Jon adds: The most memorable moment of the day for me was definitely the pinata–Ashlee and I had agreed that we were going to leave at 9. At 9:05, I was preparing to go when Ashlee tells me that they had a pinata for me. Seeing the Pinata and realizing the significance of the situation was an amazing experience. I was literally destroying my bachelorhood that night. What an amazing thought! It also was a perfect example of the thought and care that Ashlee puts into everything that she does. It was a perfect way to end the reception, my bachelorhood, and begin our new life together.


Contributors: Cake + Ice Cream: BYU Creamery  ||  Photography: Carrie Butler  ||  Hair:  Jamie Johnson  ||  Florist: Marianne Seale  ||  Dress: Abella Bridal  ||  Seamstress: Debbie at the Hale Center Theatre in Orem, Utah.

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About Jessica

Jessica is the creator of The Budget Savvy Bride; she launched the site in May of 2008, shortly after becoming engaged. Jessica has been recognized as a budget wedding expert by various media outlets and continues to share realistic inspiration and actionable tips to help brides save money on their weddings. Google

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  • It’s SuperGroom! Love it. Jonathan’s suit is very nice too, glad to see a well dressed man.

  • Looks like it turned out really nice. Congratulations!

  • the church and the reception. this is the place is very important to complete the memorable happened in the life. to make it complete. we should put design of the said event. there’s lot of florist in utah to choose and to make design and to make colorful and memorable weeding. flower is sign of LOVE.

  • Sheila

    So they had 300-400 guests, and didn’t serve them dinner? I don’t see anything in the budget about catering or dinner or even appetizers. Hmmm….

    • Yes, Sheila, that is correct. The couple opted for a dessert only reception – a great way to save money! This allowed them to include all of the people who were important to them without blowing their budget. Definitely not uncommon these days- especially if you’re dealing with a large guest list.

  • Aja

    Did the friend have the tables, chairs, and tablecloths already? I didn’t see that in the budget list and that could be $500 in itself where I am.

    • Kelly

      More than likely, they used the tables and chairs from their church. Often times, there are tablecloths as well. It’s great when the community comes together to support the creation of a new family! We are doing a dessert and dancing reception for my daughter. Much more budget friendly as we will also have the same size guest list…also they are marrying in the same place. 🙂

  • Pingback: Flashback Friday: Our Favorite Spring Wedding in Utah | The Budget Savvy Bride()

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