A wedding for less – seven tips for saving pennies on your special day
Starting off married life saddled with huge debt is not ideal. The average spend on a wedding in the UK right now is a whopping eighteen thousand pounds! Avoid this by cutting costs to the bone. It is still possible to have a romantic, unique and special day to share with family and friends, without blowing the budget. Take on board these tips to maximise style at your unique wedding event, whilst minimising financial outlay…
The vintage look is very much on trend right now. Don’t waste time on new reproductions, go straight to the source and get authentic original vintage wedding gear. Look online for second hand gowns – of course, most will only have been worn once so are in fabulous condition. Charity shops and antique auctions are also great hunting grounds for wedding garb that looks a million dollars but costs a few quid. Don’t be over sentimental about the gown – it’s just a dress! If you must buy a designer version, invest in one from the current season which will retain its value long enough for you to get it sold on Ebay once the nuptials are over.
Park the wedding car
A posh wedding car should be one of the first things to be sliced off an already stretched budget. Forgo a Rolls Royce or vintage Daimler in favour of a smart taxi cab. Request a dark coloured sedan that looks understated but smart – nobody will be looking at the car, all eyes will be on the bride. The fare for a smart, reliable local taxi cab will be less than a grand wedding car and will free up money in other areas.
Once the date has been fixed, research which flowers will be in season at the time of year. Plant a cutting garden with flowers in colours to compliment your chosen colour scheme. Florists charge a fortune for buttonholes, bouquets and flower arrangements, but with some organisation and hard work it is possible to put together a stunning floral display yourself. You tube is a wonderful source of DIY instructional videos on many aspects of wedding decorations.
Bridesmaids dresses off the peg
Made to measure dresses can be expensive so choose bridesmaid dresses off the peg. Many department stores have wedding ranges with a variety of bridesmaid dresses in coordinating colours and styles. Bulk orders usually attract discounts so if your bridesmaid posse numbers are high, be pushy and ask!
Buffet is best
Offer buffet food at the reception rather than going for table service. This will be cheaper and if you plan on a relaxed and fun celebration, the vibe of a buffet meal is far less formal. Cup cake towers are a popular and cheaper alternative to a fancy traditional, tiered wedding cake.
Call in favours
Do you know any talented amateur photographers who could take the pictures on the day? Anyone who’s hobby is gold or silver-smithing that could make your rings for less? Graphic designers and printers who could put together the invitations and order of service? Friends who play in a band or string quartet who could provide the music? Or a budding DJ who’s busting to break onto the wedding circuit? There will be a steady stream of people wanting to help your special day go with a swing, so accept all the offers of help you get.
Go for unpopular dates
If you have your heart set on a venue but can’t quite stretch to the fees, consider choosing a less popular date. Summer weddings are traditionally the most expensive time of year to marry in the UK – Autumn and Winter months are often less pricey and venues may be able to offer more flexibility on cost packages. It may be entirely possible to get married in your first choice venue at a less popular time – and bearing in mind the UK’s glorious Indian Summer this year, you could be in a for a sunny celebration. Alternatively, think of marrying on a day other than Saturday – midweek or Sunday receptions are far cheaper with savings of up to 50 per cent at some popular venues. By choosing a less popular day there may be added discounts on photography, florists and ceremonies, as well as the likelihood that fewer guests will attend.
Tying the knot should be a happy occasion, not one shot through with worry about how much it’s all going to cost. Decide on a budget at the start, and stick to it – that way you can begin married life on an even keel, focused on a bright future together…