The date has been set! We are getting married September 1st 2011. I'm so happy to have finally decided on a date and venue for our wedding in Sorrento, Italy. I can't wait!
In my recent wedding update vlog, unfortunately I had to edit a lot of what I said out because it was getting too long. So I decided that writing it out would be easier, and wanted to share some money-saving tips with you guys!
As I mentioned in the video, my budget for the wedding is €10,000. I wanted to mention this because I know how difficult it is to plan a wedding for under the usual amount which is something like €27,000. That to me is crazy! And I don't want to get into any debt, especially not just before we even get married. So far, I've managed to secure some great deals for my wedding...and stick to my budget. Here are my tips on how to have your dream wedding without breaking the bank.
1. Get married abroad! This may originally seem like the more expensive option but it really isn't. If you live in Europe like me, getting married somewhere like Italy is actually very affordable. Travel around Europe is not expensive and you can double it up as your honeymoon too! Also, getting married abroad means fewer guests. Obviously, if you live in the US getting married in Europe will be a lot more expensive, in which case I suggest somewhere like Hawaii instead!
2. Keep your guest-list small. I know this is difficult, especially if you have a big family but it really IS possible. I am only inviting 59 people, and they are very close family and friends. Think about who you really want at your wedding, who you consider to be important in your life and don't get caught up in family politics. Your parents' friends and family don't have to be included if you are the one paying for your wedding. I know I am lucky enough to have parents and in-laws who understand that and some are not so fortunate, but it is important to make that clear from the beginning. It's YOUR wedding and you can decide who is invited!
3. Pass on the hair and make-up IF you are confident enough to do it yourself! This is something I definitely do not want to spend money on...when I know exactly what I want and how I'm going to achieve that myself. It just seems crazy to spend so much money on something I know I can already do. Think about what you'd like to look like on your wedding day and just practice that! You will get good at perfecting whichever look you want and by the time your wedding rolls around you'll be just as good if not better than a pro :)
4. Keep the ceremony and reception self-contained. This means you can pass on things like the car. This usually isn't too expensive anyway but it's an expense nonetheless. If you get married in the same place as your reception, it makes everything SO much simpler for both you and your guests. I am getting married outside, in the gardens of the hotel where the reception is taking place. This means I'm only paying one fee for the rental of the space for the ceremony and the reception.
5. Be creative with your centre-pieces. You don't need to go down the route of flowers if you don't want to. I personally have never been a flowers girl...but that's just me! I don't really like flowers all that much, and I never wear floral prints...hahaha! I've always preferred candles so my centre-pieces will be candles in big glass vases. We are having an evening reception so I think this will look beautiful at night! Of course the corsages and bouquets will be real white roses but limiting the flower costs to just that makes a huge difference!
6. Shop smart for your wedding dress. I am a firm believer that you can look stylish on a budget anyway, so I absolutely intend on applying that philosophy to wedding dresses too! You can find some amazing wedding dresses for under €200. You do not have to pay thousands to be a beautiful bride. Women are already beautiful anyway, we shouldn't feel the need to spend that much money on a dress that we're only going to wear once! I would actually love it if I could find a way of wearing my wedding dress again after I'm married. My tips are to find something that flatters your body shape, make sure it's made from good quality material and don't fuss too much about the designer/brand. You can find an original and unique vintage piece, or Nordstrom's have some amazing designer finds for more affordable prices.
Those are my money-saving tips for the meantime...but I will be back with more as my planning progresses! I hope you found those helpful. I know they won't pertain to everybody's tastes/circumstances but they work for me and hopefully they will help somebody in a similar situation!