I think you would regret it.What about seeing if you can get a photographer to come out for like 2 hours to do group shots and photograph the ceremony?And I would rethink about cutting out the bartender, unless of course you have decided to go with no alcohol. A bartender basically covers your ass when it comes to people drinking. It is their job to watch the guests and cut people off when necessary. Also any liability that could occur due to people driving drunk, etc would fall on the bartender. But if you don't have the bartender then any liability will then fall on you.
I agree w/ cutting the amount of time down will help a lot. I was looking at doing that (hiring someone for 6 hours instead of 8) but then I found my photographer who was more affordable.
How I found mine was posting on a Facebook buy/sell/trade group that was more local to the area I was getting married in. 3 or 4 people recommended her and she ended up being $1650 for 8 hours, and includes a second shooter. The 6 hour girl was $1850. When I googled "photographer Denver" (which is the largest nearby city, they were all way out of my budget. The girl I went with would have been under $1000 if we were only doing a 4 hour day with her.
Yes! I have friends who used "the photographer friend" and 100% of the pictures turned out blurry, but WORSE than that, they never got a good picture of just themselves as a couple on their wedding day! (they didn't want the rest of us taking pictures with our little point & shoot's because of this person doing the pics, and they quickly regretted it once they got the pictures back (this was before the days of digital)... Another friend hired someone who was starting out with cheaper rates and the person didn't take the time/energy to make sure people were looking at the camera or the bride/groom had their eyes open. She got a grand total of 8 pictures she even wanted to have printed.
This doesn't mean you have to spend $500+ on a photographer though! You can have a good local photographer in for an hour or two to do the key and posed pictures without breaking the bank. That doesn't mean they stick around for dinner or any dances you do, but to get the posed pictures of you two, possibly the ceremony, key pictures.. Also, many photographers also will work with you to get the prints/files at a later date if you don't have the money right this second for the prints but they get paid their time so they're ahead... Of anything you're going to take away from your wedding day, it's the pictures that you'll look back on the most...
I'm having a high school friend who is now a young photographer do mine for cheap. Check with any local universities or even community colleges to see if you could hire an art/photography student. Since they're less experienced and need to build up their portfolios, you could probably get a pretty good deal.