Blowing $100,000 on a wedding is still in season, and there’s no better way to show up your over-spending friends than by throwing a lavish affair without bankrupting your parents. Inside, seven tips to have a lovely and affordable wedding.
1. Prioritize: Are flowers and a gown especially important? Spend your money there, and reign in other expenses.
2. Don’t be afraid to haggle. Mention that you’re willing to recommend your vendor’s services to all your friends and cousins and sisters who, oh my god, like, just got engaged! What a coincidence!
3. June wedding? Real original! Be flexible with your date. April and October are perfectly nice, and far less expensive. For an even better deal, get married in February.
4. Ok, fine, the February wedding may not be the hottest idea, but instead of getting married on Friday or Saturday, consider Thursday or Sunday.
5. Long engagements save money. You’ve got your whole lives ahead of you. Make your grandmother wait an extra few months and take advantage of seasonal sales that can halve the cost of pricey dresses.
6. Invitations are pretty and all, but people throw them away. Consider printing them yourselves or letting people RSVP online.
7. Understand the business. Flowers and cakes are expensive because they’re labor intensive. Simple but elegant cakes taste as good but cost far less. Similarly, exotic flowers are nice, but make the displays less time-intensive.
“All these things add up,” [Alicia Rockmore, CEO of Buttoned Up Inc] said. “I think it’s just remembering that at the end of the day, people are there to celebrate your wedding. They’re not there to see what $500 flower arrangements you have on every table. Just remember that people, your guests, are never going to notice the details that you do … Don’t get overwhelmed on every little, tiny thing that you need to spend money on. The most important thing is that they’re going to be there to support you.”
Bridezillas seriously scare us. Before you get carried away with wedding plans, sit down and read Rebecca Mead’s One Perfect Day: The Selling of the American Wedding. It’ll save your sanity, and the down payment on that house you’re going to want in a few years.