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Scrapping our traditional wedding...what are our options now?

Hi all,

FI and I were scheduled to be married in September 2013 but have recently decided to scrap pretty much the whole thing. We had a traditional ceremony/reception planned but really, it just got too big for both of us. Neither of us wanted to spend lots of money on a wedding but as things kept adding up, our total ended up being close to $20k.

I hoping you can give me some ideas of what to do now - FI and I are really low-key people so the most important things are good food (I'm not opposed to a BBQ), good booze, and about 100 guests. Has anyone had a non-traditional wedding that can share their ideas/thoughts?


Re: Scrapping our traditional wedding...what are our options now?

  • try looking up park district buildings, local museums, or even seeing if any friends or family with a large backyard would be willing to host the event. Be careful, because sometimes the cost of rentals can really add up, but you can definitely have a low key, low budget event! Getting the food catered from a BBQ or other local place will keep your costs down, as will doing things buffet style. You can also order booze in bulk (there are lots of sites/advice on how much you need for any # of guests). 
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  • If you are willing to cut your guest list, forgo dancing and a bridal party, and have a daytime wedding, private dining rooms in restaurants can really help you cut your budget down.  H and I had a morning ceremony with a lunch reception for 42 people and our total including attire was about $7k.  Admittedly I live in a high-cost part of the country (DC metro area) and we chose a fairly swanky restaurant, so you could probably cut costs even further.  Good luck!
  • KDM323KDM323 member
    Knottie Warrior 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    What is your vision and your budget? What do you want to do? It doesn't matter what the definition of "traditional" is...what matters is what you and your fiancée want and what you can afford. I've seen everything from elaborate weddings for 300 guests, to small backyard weddings for 30 people where the bride wears a sundress and the groom wears a linen shirt. One of my cousins rented a converted barn, brought in a caterer and had a wonderful wedding just last year. It was rustic and beautiful and not as spendy as having the wedding as a more expected venue. Another couple I know is renting a beach house and having their closest family/friends (less than 30 people) there while they get married on the beach and a caterer is coming in to do a very fun clam bake style afternoon style reception for them. There are a million options as to what you can do....sit down with your fiancée and pick something special to you!
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