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June 26, 2005

Kerry and Stuart's 10 Wedding Cost-Cutting Tips

We are very lucky that our parents offered to foot most of the bill for our two receptions, and on top of that we managed to find some good ways to cut down on our own expenses. We are living proof that you don’t need tons of money (or even jobs!) to have the wedding of your dreams.
1) Buffet! The food was really good and so much cheaper than a sit-down meal. It also made things a bit more laid-back, which some guests appreciated, and easier accommodated specific dietary needs.
2) DIY Invitations. We were lucky to be living in Japan when we made ours, and so handmade paper was really quite cheap, but we were able to make some lovely ones on our computer, print them on card, cut and paste the card onto the handmade paper, and we found envelopes that more or less matched. We spent about $40 on our 80 invitations.
3) DIY Party Favours- We made CDs for our guests of our favourite songs, many of which were played at the reception. We made CD labels and covers for the cases so they managed to look moderately professional. We spent about $25 on our party favours for 50 people.
4) DIY table place nametags- We printed the tags ourselves on white card, black border and a scripted font. We cut them out and poked a hole in them, and tied red ribbon through the hole. We bought sticks of Blackpool rock (£8) in our red and white colour scheme, and tied the nametags to that. It was very cool, and a good souvenir.
5) The stamp! I bought a daisy-like stamp at a craft shop, and red ink (£5). This became the official image of our wedding, and we put it on the CDs, party favours, nametags and my thank-you notes. It was really nice to find something that unified our plans, and it matched the red flowers on my dress and we planned my bouquet to match as well.
6) I didn’t wear a wedding dress, as our gathering was sort of informal. But my dress was suitably weddingy, absolutely beautiful and I got in 20% off at Debenhams- £108 in total.
7) DIY hair accessory- I was looking for a tiara-like thing for my hair. They were £50-£100 and weren’t that lovely. I am not at all crafty and managed to make one myself with a wire headband, wire and beads and I was able to make one that matched the red and white in my dress. Materials came to about $10.
8) Student photographers- we were lucky enough to find excellent photographer, just starting out and eager to build their portfolios. Cost was substantially lower than pros, and the product was good. A real bonus was their flexibility and creativity.
9) Brian the DJ- I think DJs are better than bands at weddings. Bands are just as cheesy as DJs and only play cover songs anyway. Our DJ played what we liked and was a million times cheaper than a band would have been.
10) Civil ceremony at the registrars- It wasn’t what we’d always dreamed of but it turned out to be a really nice, intimate, personal ceremony and now I wouldn’t have wanted it any different. We wrote our own vows, and they made it seem very special and I think it was absolutely wonderful.

One thought on “Kerry and Stuart's 10 Wedding Cost-Cutting Tips”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I looked at your pictures yesterday. I adored your dress.


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