Planning a wedding and need to plan a budget wedding? Your wedding day is one of the best days of your life, but how do you go about planning a wedding on a budget? Here are a few ideas:
This is a service that a lot of people deem to be extravagant and unnecessary. However, in our experience, it can be a real money-saver, stress-saver, and at sudden moments of panic, absolutely life-saver. Weddings are daunting, stressful and require enormous attention to detail, and an experienced wedding planner will instinctively make sure that the finer particulars are taken care of – and you’ll be amazed what crops up on you and adds extra expense during the long drawn-out formation of your big day. Wedding planners know what deals to ask for, how to negotiate them and what needs to be covered, which takes an enormous amount of stress and unexpected complications off your shoulders. It really is a very worthwhile investment.
Try to avoid Saturdays. Most venues are open for Sunday weddings and midweek weddings, and quite often, you can arrange your ceremony and reception at a mere snippet of the price of hosting on a Saturday. It’s also well worth researching last-minute deals online (call us here to find out about venues in your area), and of course, marrying outside of popular seasons such as Christmas and the height of summer will definitely save you money. Dry hire venues are also a good way to go if you can find a good deal on catering and theming, and for more intimate weddings, we can source large and elegant function rooms that often have access to outdoor terraces.
Weddings cakes can sometimes be exceedingly expensive. Ask your friends and family if they know anyone who has a skill for baking and/or cake decorating, and approach them to negotiate a deal. There are cake making shops up and down the country that can provide you with supplies (as well as a thoroughly enjoyable shopping experience), and save you a bundle – it’s simply a question of finding a steady hand who can put it all together. If a cake stand and knife aren’t included in your wedding reception package, again, ask around to see if you can borrow one. You may well come across a beautiful antique stand or a stunning contemporary platform that didn’t cost you a penny.
Although most brides dream of couture and high-end gowns, those of us on a more modest budget may be looking for an alternative solution to this potentially expensive necessity. If you already have an outfit that has sentimental value to you and your partner (perhaps you wore it on your first date or when the question was popped), or maybe you just have a suitable gown for this commission, it’s well worth looking into getting it embellished, modified and reformed into a bespoke, one-of-a-kind wedding dress. For example, last year we saw a bride turn a simple cream-coloured strapless cocktail dress into a flowing, 60s style lacey number, simply by adding good qua lit rhinestones and a lace over-layer with a trail. It looked a million dollars, absolutely stunning, fitted her perfectly, yet cost a grand total of £350 – which simply covered the cost of the materials, and the services of a local dressmaker. As long as you go in with a clear design in mind and on paper, it will take very little time to create your dream dress.
Obviously, this only applies if you’re getting married in a city or semi-urban venue that has established restaurants nearby. For the chance at good representation and exposure, many independent and/or family owned restaurants are willing to cut quite amazing deals for bulk catering opportunities. This is one of the many areas that hiring a wedding planner comes in handy, but with a lot of good spirit and a friendly, professional and business-like approach, it’s quite amazing how little you can spend on a good quality buffet from a local restaurant. You’re unlikely to be able to arrange sit-down meals, but these are a rarity amongst more modest weddings – as no matter what company or restaurant you use, formal dinners are always going to considerably bump the price up. Local research also lets you uncover hidden gems in terms of world food that can meet cultural requirements, and an understanding of your guests often becomes apparent in the presentation and use of authentic ingredients in the food.
No matter how unusual your specific your ideas, there will always be hundreds of venues to choose from when hosting your wedding. It’s incredibly tiresome explaining the same thing to 10 or 20 different managers, corresponding with multiple businesses at the same time and sifting through the details to make sure the venue can deliver exactly what you need. Then, there are endless site visits, only to discover (after an hour’s drive and a stale cup of coffee later) that the venue doesn’t look at all like the pictures on the website, and the staff are unhelpful or unwelcoming. Using a venue finding company won’t cost you a penny, and they will use their tried and tested database of UK venues to narrow down the ones that can best meet your requirements. Then, they will handle all the communications on your behalf (while keeping you completely in the loop) to ensure that you get the best value for money possible, and that you get exactly what you’re paying for.