There are so many things to love about this budget-savvy wedding! Erik and Elizabeth did a beautiful job staying on a budget and weaving together their different cultures. And how wonderful is their reception venue? I love when couples choose a place that has significance for them. Enjoy this fairgrounds wedding! xoxo, Jessica
Elizabeth + Erik
July 8, 2017
Racine, Wisconsin | Racine County Fairgrounds
What was your budget?
Our budget was roughly $6000. This included the money our parents generously contributed.
The Wedding Dress : $1200
The Grooms Attire: $120
Reception Venue: $400
The Ceremony – Free at my church! (We gave the pastors that married us a monetary gift of $300 for counseling and marriage services).
Food and Drinks: $2000
Wedding cake: $55
Wedding band: $711
Hair and Makeup: $0! My Mother-In-Law is a hairstylist, so she glammed up me and my bridesmaids.
Photography: $750! We used some dear friends of ours who are just starting out with their photography business! They gave us an AMAZING deal and even more AMAZING photos!
How many guests did you have?
We had 240 friends and family!
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
The venue we used is part our county fair grounds. I grew up going to the fair every year and even competed in various categories. My mom, aunts, and uncles were all involved in 4H growing up, and the County Fair is really special to my family.
The flower petals, used by our flower girls, are a collection of petals that came from flowers that Erik had gotten me throughout our 5 years of dating.
Erik (my groom) comes from a Hispanic background, so we had a Mariachi Trio serenade guests throughout the appetizer hour and dinner. Everyone was also invited to snack on chips and salsa, and we had fajitas, rice, and beans included in our menu options. We also included the “El Baile de la Vibora” or Snake Dance for our first dance.
Did you do any DIY projects or create any handmade items for your weddings?
I made all the table numbers and signs that directed guests to the bathroom, dance floor, favors, dessert, and game area. I also arranged the flowers and bouquets because we simply ordered the flowers in bulk. I also made about 12 different types of cookies that went home with our guests. My family and I also made the miniature pies that guests could choose as a dessert option. I made the seating chart cards, the invitations, and save the dates.
Someone had given me a shirt that said “Feyonce” on it, so being a huge Beyonce fan, I made shirts for my bridesmaids with different lyrics on them.
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
I think one of the biggest areas we saved money was all the DIY! Some days it was a hassle, but it made everything so much more personal!
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
Don’t be afraid to delegate and ask for help! Your friends and family should be so excited for your special day, and willing to help wherever they can. It feels so good to contribute to something so big! It will save you tons of money and money, all while improving your mental health!
I had an AMAZING day-of coordinator who truly helped make the day completely flawless. I might have put TOO MUCH on my friends and family if it was not for her! Find someone to be in charge, someone who is willing do work and get things done, understands your vision, and executes brilliantly!
What was your biggest splurge?
Our biggest splurge was definitely the food. We had pasta, meatballs, potatoes, fajitas, rice, beans, grilled steak skewers, grilled chicken, hot dogs, popcorn, chips and salsa, pies, cupcakes, cookies, and cake balls! It was really important to keep the guests happy and fed!
What was your favorite detail?
I loved everything about our wedding, but I think one of my favorite details was the Mariachi Trio. My Father-in-Law really wanted some live music, and it was a last minute addition, but the way they helped blend cultures was so meaningful!
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
Right in between the pictures and the ceremony, we had about an hour to spare, so our bridal parties decided to all go out to Chick-Fil-A. It felt amazing to relax, eat a good meal, and enjoy being with friends before everything got crazy.
Photography: Lenz Photography • Ceremony Venue: Fellowship Baptist Church • Reception Venue: Racine County Parks Department • Flowers: Sam’s Club • Day-of Coordinator: Kim Rusk (family friend) • Stationery: DIY via Canva • Videography: Caleb Dixon – Unlocked Media • Catering: Infusinos • Bakery: Sam’s Club and Maggiano’s Little Italy • Bridesmaids Dresses: ModCloth • Bridal Shop: Amelishan Bridal • Groom and Groomsmen’s Attire: Banana Republic • Ties + Shoes: Allen Edmond
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 pandemic wedding resources here.