Summertime provides a wonderful opportunity to trim a wedding budget by hosting the event outside at the residence of a friend or family member. Jordan and Carlton's wedding encapsulates everything perfect about events hosted in personal homes. I love the simplicity and intimacy of the backyard ceremony and dessert reception. The use of old furniture to decorate and serve the desserts adds so much character to the reception. Jordan's dress is also a gem of this wedding! I love when bride's re-purpose a previously used dress, and Jordan's is absolutely beautiful. And one of the best part of this backyard wedding? It only cost $2,000! xoxo, Jessica
Jordan & Carlton
June 7, 2014
Oregon | Private Residence
What was your budget?
Our budget was about $2,000 at most.
$500 – dessert bar, and full coffee bar
$500 – Beautifying the yard (we had it at my inlaws so we had to spruce up the yard)
$200 – decoration materials (all handmade)
$100 – our outfits ( I wore my mother-in-law's wedding dress, and my grandmother in law made it perfect! )
$100 – invitations and stamps
$600 – miscellaneous (paying people who helped, last minute touches, flowers, etc…)
How many guests did you have?
More than 300.
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
We wanted our wedding to be one that was comfortable, fun and beautiful. Neither of us are excessive people. We wanted simple and beautiful. We wanted to make it clear that what we were most excited about wasn’t our wedding day, but the years that would follow of marriage. We used a lot of things our community already had (mason jars, vintage furniture, flowers from friends gardens, etc.). The community really came together, which we loved. We wanted it to be a celebration of the love that we share and our lives becoming one, praising God for bringing us together.
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
The biggest thing we did to save money was to do the best with what we could actually afford, rather than going into debt for one night. Our parents and family and friends really all rallied together to make it possible. What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side? The best advice that I have is that a wedding is one day or one night, and it is beautiful and fun and amazing, but what’s important is every moment after it. Some girls get so obsessed about every detail being absolutely “perfect.” But what is perfect? Perfect is two people who absolutely love each other starting a new adventure as one. I’m glad we didn’t spend more money on our wedding because it flew by!! What was your biggest splurge? As two poor college students we didn’t’ really splurge! We stayed within what we decided we could afford. A lot of the bigger costs were covered by our lovely friends! A couple dear to us did our photography, a cosmetologist friend of mine did my makeup, the dress was my mother-in-law’s. We had our wedding in their yard in the country. My brother in law did music (: It was great!
What was your favorite detail?
I loved the little things that made everything look and feel so lovely. My little sister was the flower girl, and she threw multi-colored rose petals. The aisle was lined with mason jar flower vases. The weather was PERFECT! The music fit perfectly. On the table with our guest book there was a typewriter with this beautiful quote that has stuck with me all this time: ” Now at last they were beginning chapter one of the great story no one on earth has ever read, which goes on forever, in which every chapter us better than the one before” (C.S. Lewis).
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
The most memorable part of the day for me was after we had just finished the ceremony and we went in this beautiful field — just the photographer, my husband and me. It was so nice to be away from the crowd and excitement, and in that still quiet, awe-filled moment, realizing that what I had dreamed of since being a little girl was actually happening. I was a wife, absolutely in love with her husband. That love has only grown more and more since then.
Photography: Anne Nunn Photographers
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.