"MONEY IS NOT THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THE WORLD. LOVE IS. FORTUNATELY, I LOVE MONEY." - JACKIE MASON
The number one issue our clients find themselves concerned with is their budget. Whether they have tons of help from family and a big, healthy budget or are bankrolling this shindig themselves and only have a modest one to pull from - all people want to get the best value for their buck.
Here are our top 3 ways to save money while still throwing a beautiful and personalized event:
1. Manage Your Headcount
Sure, you want everyone under the sun to be there to see you and your boo say, 'I do'. It's quite possibly THE most important date of your life, thus far. We get it. But we always recommend having realistic expectations when it comes to how many people your budget can provide a steak dinner and open bar to. We suggest organizing your guest list in 3 tiers:
MUST have. These are your close family, best friends, and wedding attendants. People that you consider to have actually contributed to your success in life. The people you'd thank in your Oscar speech.
LOVE to have. These are people that you might have been close with previously, childhood friends who still hold a place in your heart, but you may not see or speak to them weekly like your "must haves". This also includes that Great Aunt with whom you've not spent any time, but it would be meaningful to have at the occasion. (Don't forget that cousin who can breakdance, we can always use a little b-boying to liven up the reception.)
LIKE to have. These are people you have worked with and associates, friends of family, and distant relatives. You like them. You think they are a lot of fun. And you might have even gone to THEIR wedding. But that is in no way an obligation to invite them to yours. Think to yourself, "would I go tomorrow and buy them a $100 meal just for kicks?" If the answer is, "not likely", I'd keep that in mind.
Grouping your guest list this way makes it easier to decide what to do if you run into budget issues. The last thing you want to do is compromise on your photography package because your dad's old boss and his new wife took up valuable event real estate!
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2. Double Duty
Now, if you have picked a central vibe to pepper throughout the wedding and you're watching your pennies, I suggest finding ways to make things work double duty. For instance, if you have an outdoor wedding in a warm climate, use paper fans for your ceremony program. Use food or wedding favors as centerpieces. It might sound kooky, but a South of the Border theme would be adorable with a delicious salsa and some blue corn chips in brightly colored Fiesta bowls along with tiny bottles of patron arranged in the center of the table. Or instead of splurging on a cake, make a cupcake tower at the center of each reception table. It would look cute, free up money in the budget and who doesn't like cupcakes? (Don't answer that. I don't want to know. I'm innocent and idealistic; don't ruin me.)
3. Handmade Touches
Everyone can agree that personal, handmade touches make a wedding more wonderful, but it will also save money. Utilize anyone in your court with a special skill who has volunteered to help. Got an aunt who bakes the BEST cookies on earth? Enlist her help and package 3 of those suckers up as a gift for your guests. An inexpensive idea for that South of the Border vibe we mentioned is to give a packet of jalapeno plant seeds and attach your best salsa recipe. Or enlist our floral help with providing a single succulent in some painted dollar store pots for each guest. As much as we all love dolphin shaped bottle openers - if you aren't known for your love of flipper, you can probably pass on costly (and tired) ideas. Be creative and save a bunch of money! My 2 favorite things!!
These are just a few ideas to help save money on your wedding, but give us a call and schedule an appointment to see how we can specifically help YOU. You know that's what we're here for, right?