So my FI and I are low on money, and our families are also low on money. My parents are retired and already have a lot to pay for. They said they'd be saving up, but I'm not expecting a whole lot. We literally have a budget of probably $2000 right now, unless I get a better job or I can pick up a lot more freelance work.
I do want a really NICE wedding though, something memorable and really personal.
Here's some things that we've decided on in order to cut costs:
- Potluck Reception - EDITED. Please read my reply on page 4. :/
I'm keeping track of what everyone is bringing via a website I'm going to be building for the wedding guests.
Thankfully, we found a nice venue that has a kitchen, stove, microwave, and fridge and... it's nice and CHEAP! :D Plus it's already decorated in one of the colors we're using.
- Making my own dress. Not many people do this anymore. But my aunt has made dresses for brides in my family for years. I've also been sewing for at least 10 years. So I can have my dream $2000 dress for only $100 and no need to worry about alterations because I know it'll fit! I'm letting her do the more difficult work, and I'll be doing the easy stuff or just the really artsy things like beading.
- DIY everything, from invitations to decorations. Anything I buy is going to be minimal. I'm an artist and graphic designer, so I don't really want to spend all that money to have someone do something I can do myself. For the engagement photo, to send in invitations I'm considering just doing some really pretty artwork of us which will also be displayed at the reception. :) All favors and gifts are going to be personally handmade. I think it's far more personal that way. I'd rather give someone a nice keychain or trinket that I made as a momento than a matchbook and little bag of candy.
- Flowers: Fake, inexpensive but nice looking fake flowers for all the table arrangements. I love exotic flowers, but there's no way I'm spending hundreds for them on tables. I'm only using real flowers for the bridal party and toss boquet.
- Music and photography: Thankfully, I do have friends who do really good work in this area who I'm planning on asking. It should really help to cut down costs.
- Cake: I have a relative that makes really beautiful cakes. We're considering asking her, but we're also looking around at local places too. With the money we saved from the stuff above, I think we can budget for a really lovely cake!
So what other ideas and suggestions does everyone else have for their weddings that are lovely, but low or no cost?