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helping brides create beautiful weddings without breaking the bank

When I first got engaged I was absolutely floored to find out what the average wedding costs today. I immediately felt worried because I knew I wanted a wedding, and not to run off to Vegas or head to the local courthouse as some people suggested. I realize the wedding is just a celebration of what is really important – the marriage and the commitment. But isn’t that a wonderful thing to celebrate?


Luckily I did some research into budget weddings, and breathed a huge sigh of relief that I could accomplish what I wanted without guilt or debt. My fiancé Tom and I are really lucky. We are both in a good position financially for our age, and we have the support of our families. In fact various family members will be chipping in to cover around 1/2 of our wedding costs. But even if it was paid for 100% I would still want to be budget conscious. Because when it comes down to it – it’s a single day and not worth spending a fortune on.

Before I looked into it I thought a budget wedding meant a backyard BBQ or something like it. As regular readers to this site know, a budget wedding can vary widely and the only difference between the standard “average” wedding and one on a budget is more forethought and planning, conscious choices, knowing when and where to cut something, and a healthy dose of reality IMO.


We were engaged almost exactly a year ago today, on Memorial Day weekend in 2012. By the time our October Wedding comes around we’ll have had a 16-month engagement, and spent 12 of those months planning.

The first decision Tom and I made after I said “Yes!” was to have engagement photos taken. I asked a friend of mine from work who likes to photograph as a hobby. It wasn’t important to either of us that these be done by a professional. I’m sharing some of my favorite photos from that shoot here. We felt really comfortable around her and the results are pictures that feel really “us” and not staged. And they were super budget-friendly as well! We loved the photo of our hands so much that we used them on our save-the-date cards.


Our October wedding will feature nods to our personalities, the outdoors, warm fall colors, and our favorite meal – breakfast! We’ll be having a late morning to early afternoon event.

I’m looking forward to sharing more of my inspirations, tips and tricks in the upcoming months. Thank you for reading and for sharing advice with a fellow bride-to-be!


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About Ashley Catherine

I’m a 24-year old marketing coordinator from Portland, Oregon who enjoys outdoor activities like hiking and riding my bike, reading, blogging, and indulging my nerdy side with video games and trivia nights. I’m marrying my wonderful fiancé Tom in a fall-themed wedding on October, 5 2013. I’m lucky to call him my best friend.

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  • ibridalgowns

    Thanks very much for your kindly post.

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