Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Wedding $$$

Now that boyfriend has proposed, I don't feel like I can call him "Boyfriend" on my bloggy anymore.

But calling him "Fiance"? I'll try - if it sounds too tacky I'll start using his name.


Do any of you have ANY idea how expensive weddings are?! I'm sure you married folk probably understand, but it's news to me!

Fiance and I recently realized we'll probably be paying for the majority of the wedding ourselves. With that being said, we I battled with the idea of not even having a wedding. I don't have $10,000 laying around for a rainy day. See: Polly's Surgery - that brat.

And it's looking like a wedding, with the number of guests we want, is a minimum of $10,000.  We don't want to take out a line of credit (which we are finding is more popular than we thought!) and we still have a honeymoon to pay for!

I thought if I can't have the wedding I'd always imagined (pretty dress, pretty hair, beautiful outdoor location) then I'd rather do the elope shindig. People keep telling me, "Don't forget what the day is really about. It's about your marriage. Nothing and no one else." so I thought WELL HELL. If it's just about the marriage then let's hop in the car, head to the courthouse and call it a day.

Keep in mind the people telling me this are always re-married. People who got their big day. Their big dress and big hair. Ended that marriage then had a smaller, more intimate ceremony the second time around. They got their big day - can't I have mine?

This is everything that has been flowing through my head.

Keep in mind I do NOT want a $30,000+ ordeal. I don't care if my guests have filet mignon and salmon. I don't care if my dress is Vera Wang and I don't need a $1,000 cake.

But a girl has basic wants!

So with that being said, here's how we've decided to cut costs without cutting guests:
  • Friday or Sunday - A lot of venues give discounts if you have your event on a Friday or Sunday.  Aaron wants Friday, but I think Sunday is more ideal.  So we will see :-)
  • Fall or Winter - When I thought about my dream wedding, Fall and Winter never entered my mind.  Ever.  It would be summer CLEARLY.  But venues will take off a good $1,000 if your event isn't during peak wedding season (June-September)!  While the weather in Reno/Tahoe can be finicky during October (2 years ago we got Snow on October 5th!) we're considering an October date instead.
  • Food - this has been the hardest because I've said from the beginning I could care less for fancy food. The best wedding I attended actually had appetizers which I think is an AMAZING idea. But I've been convinced a full meal is ideal (since we're not having it in town). Most venues don't offer "cheaper" food. It's all or nothing. It's the filet mignon and salmon or nothing. I think a pasta bar would be PERFECT, so now I need to find a venue that agrees with me
  • Booze - We want our guests to have a great time. And this typically coincides with an open bar. However venues charge up the wazoo for alcohol, so we've decided to limit the openness of the bar. It'll be more like a cracked bar.
  • Dress - Seriously, I've made my budget $250. And that INCLUDES the veil and shoes and jewelry. It's possible - it has to be. There are dresses online that start at $250 (of course that doesn't include alterations). Don't laugh at me. Dresses typically start at $750 for a CHEAP dress. But I have the time to look, and I'll only be wearing it for 1 day.  Although I think I paid more than this for my prom dresses (thanks mom!)
  • Flowers - I plan on minimizing the amount of flowers I use to the bouquets and possibly altar decorations. I'm trying to get creative with centerpieces using candles and other decorations. Flowers are pricy. And they die. So I figure I can cut costs by limiting flowers.
  • CONTESTS - At one point in my life I had a contest winning streak.  I won concert tickets, a trip to the bahamas, CDs, Port of Subs, you name it.  I'm entering as many contests as humanly possible.  Stationary, dresses, jewelry.  Everything.  Maybe my luck will strike again and I'll win something.  Anything. 
Our last resort is an event in my parents backyard.  Aaron's ONE request was to not have a backyard wedding (and my friends have been shocked when I tell them this is what I'm thinking), so I'm trying my hardest to crunch the numbers and make our event happen with a venue.

If all else fails, we're eloping.


  1. I must be living under a rock. Congratulations!!!! So exciting, I'm going to have to catch up on your posts!!! You are going be a gorgeous bride!! Good luck on all of your planning, I'm with you on the whole wedding budget thing. When the time comes for me I cannot fathom spending tons of $$$$.

  2. let me know how you manage to keep a baby budget because when that day comes for me I will probs have to sell a kidney to pay for my wedding. #helpmeimpoor :) Congrats on the big day though!!!!

  3. Congrats!!! It'll be a special day no matter what because you're marrying the man you love. But on the saving money note? I heard good advice that if you plan your wedding after someone else's big money hot shot wedding, you can usually use their flowers. Flowers don't wilt and go bad (esp in colder weather!!) for days or even a week! Imagine letting someone else buy the expensive floral arrangement, and essentially recycling it?? Depending on the venue you use, you could ask the wedding planner to hook it up. ANd ya... dresses? Psh, it's one day!!! I'll certainly never wear my prom dress again, and that was a pricey thing!! haha

  4. Congratulations!!!! My sister got married last summer and the 'BIG wedding' although an amazing day the lead up was a stress for everyone! I think I'll opt for the elope when it's my turn :)

  5. It's SO stressful isn't it. I'm engaged too, and to be honest, felt just like you. We were going to do the big wedding but try keep the costs low but in the end we just couldn't work it out. As a result we've put the whole thing on the back burner for now, not because we don't want to get married, just because it was getting too stressful trying to keep everyone else happy and we didn't think we were going to be after spending all our money on a not so awesome wedding. We're now looking at going abroad for ours, inviting just our closest family and they've all said they'll pay their tickets. It'll still be several thousand dollars but it's better than tens of thousands.

    Btw, you can also sign up to websites where people give you money for your honeymoon instead of gifts.

    Amelia xxx

    PS: Stop by my blog and enter the BEAUTY GOODIE BOX GIVEAWAY to win lots of fun, cute Korean beauty products - Ducklingtoswan.com! :) xxx

  6. Congrats on your engagement! My friend just got engaged Saturday and I called yesterday to talk to her and she was telling me her budget and I was like man oh man weddings are expensive!! Kind of crazy! Good luck in your planning :-)
    Found ya on the link-up

  7. congrats on the engagements.

    hey there. I'm Laney and a Newbie here. Hope you can come and follow me back! http://owltellyoulikeitislikeitornot.blogspot.com/

    fb: http://www.facebook.com/LaneysNightOwlVenting

  8. Congrats on the engagement!! Weddings are very time consuming, but it will all be worth it :)

  9. Hi I am a new follower to your lovely blog (Via GFC)and it really feel pleasure meeting new awesome bloggers like you. Found you through Monday Mingling Blog Hop.

    my blog: www.wilsontom.blogspot.com

  10. we just got married in october and boy oh boy are weddings expensive! my fiance and i decided we should get into the business somehow "when we grow up." :) good idea about the fall wedding. it really does cut costs, and you can't go wrong with the pretty fall leaves all around, even if it rains. ;) good luck with the rest of your planning! (your blog is amazing!)

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  12. I was married almost 13 years ago and now that Pinterest has graced us with it's presence, I am sure the costs of weddings have doubled...I think you are on the right path with the cost cutting and will still have the day of your dreams! You deserve it!!

  13. hahaha a cracked bar! Love it! Thanks for commenting on my blog! I'm your newest Follower :)

  14. My fiance and I (or maybe just me) have thought about eloping a thousand times. I feel you:) xo Lauren of www.cornwellfam.com

  15. YES! weddings are crazy expensive! I did my wedding with 7,000 bucks and I blogged about all my savings because I don't think people should have to pay big bucks to have a great, beautiful wedding! (http://www.untilonlyloveremains.com/search/label/Happily%20Ever%20After )

    You can do it! you can have a stunning wedding on a budget!

  16. I planned my entire wedding myself and we paid for basically all of it. It was about 12K but it was everything I could have ever wanted. Let me know if you want any tips on cutting costs. Good luck.

  17. Hi- I just randomly found your blog and wanted to tell you congrats on your engagement! I was just married in August and my husband and I went through the same issues with money. We wanted to pay for the majority of our wedding but my husband is also in law school so we wanted to keep cost down. Just a tip- I was so surprised how much flowers at a flower shop cost so we decided to order ours in bulk from Sam's Club or CostCo. It was SO cheap, just a suggestion :) Happy planning!


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