Some people spend years dreaming about their wedding. Maybe you are one of them. When the day finally comes, you are faced with planning everything down to the last detail, from organizing the flower arrangements to designing the wedding invitations to finding a BBQ wedding catering company. After realizing just how much a wedding can cost, it is easy to grow discouraged and even apprehensive about your upcoming wedding. But it is possible to throw the wedding of your dreams while staying frugal.
Here are seven tips for planning your wedding on a budget, courtesy of The Smokehouse Grill.
1. Keep the Guest List Short
It may be tempting to throw everyone you know on your guest list. But before you invite Jen from the accounting department, you need to remember that each additional guest you invite increases the cost of your wedding. As your guest list builds up, your expenses for food, seating, and venue space increased.
You should also remember that the larger your guest list is, the less intimate your wedding will be. Try keeping your guest list to close friends and family. Your coworkers and acquaintances will be more than understanding if you want to have a small, intimate wedding.
2. Host the Ceremony at Home
Hosting your wedding at home comes with a variety of benefits. Not only do you save money by refraining from renting a venue, but you also have the privilege of enjoying your wedding in the privacy of your own home.
That being said, home weddings on a budget are only suitable if you have a small guest list. You still have to rent chairs, decorations, and tables. If you decide to have the reception at your house, you will also need to figure out catering. Luckily, a variety of catering companies will come to you! Couples often choose companies that specialize in BBQ wedding catering, as this option tends to be on the less expensive side. Many catering companies also offer tables, chairs, and silverware for rent.
3. Hire a Local Catering Company
Speaking of catering, you should look into a variety of local catering companies to find one that will fit your budget. Some companies, such as The Smokehouse Grill, will sit down with you to choose a package that suits your particular budget. They may also let you choose between purchasing complete on-site catering or having them deliver and set-up the food. The latter option is obviously cheaper.
You should also see if the catering company you are interested in offers alcohol packages. To save money, you should purchase a wine and beer package. Cocktails and top-shelf liquor can get pretty pricey.
4. Design Your Own Invitations
Many of these websites offer a variety of customizable templates to choose from. So even if you don’t consider yourself an artsy person, you can still design a wedding invitation that looks like it was created by a professional. To save money, refrain from using thick paper or special materials such as linen or eggshell. If you have the printing capacity, you can print the invitations at home.
If you don’t consider yourself to be the traditional type, you can also look into wedding e-vites. You will save money on paper, printing, and postage costs.
5. Keep the Flowers to a Minimum
Fresh florals are stunning but costly. It also isn’t practical to spend a boatload of money on flowers that will perish quickly after the ceremony. Besides, sometimes less is more.
Small bouquets and single flowers can be quite elegant. If you live near a flower garden, you can even arrange your own bouquet from them -- with the owner’s permission of course. You can also save money by purchasing fake flowers. Most people won’t notice the difference. And they are just as elegant as a bouquet of genuine flowers.
6. Scout for Decor at Local Thrift Stores or See if You Can Borrow Some
Thrift stores are great places for finding unique, vintage decorations. Whether you go to your local Goodwill or your neighborhood thrift store, you are bound to find something here. Lamps, chalkboards, lights, mason jars and quirky centerpieces are aplenty here. It may take some digging to find the perfect piece, but the amount of money you save in the end will be worth it. By thrifting, you are also being eco-friendly! Overall, it is a win-win situation.
7. Choose an Off-Season Wedding Date
The date of your wedding plays a large part in the cost of renting a venue. Off-peak wedding dates will be much cheaper than those during peak season. The day of the week will also influence the cost of the venue. Mid-week day weddings are cheaper than afternoon weekend weddings.
Peak wedding season typically takes place from late Spring to early Autumn. The most popular months for weddings are June and September. Except for the month of December, winter weddings are usually on the cheaper side. This is because venues tend to be booked from holiday parties around that time.
Planning a wedding on a budget doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice quality to save money. With these savvy tips and tricks, you can still throw the wedding you have always dreamed of. You will probably feel relieved after everything is said and done. Instead of blowing all your money on the wedding, you will have some leftover funds that will help you begin your new life with your partner. Maybe you want to splurge a little on the honeymoon. Or you want to save up money for a down payment on a house.
Need some help finding a wedding caterer? Contact The Smokehouse Grill today to start planning your wedding menu!