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Planning an Inexpensive Wedding

Spring and summer are coming up, which means it will be wedding season soon! Everyone knows how stressful planning a wedding can be. You have to worry about the flowers, cake, dress, venue, invites, wedding dinner etc. There’s so much to do and so many details you have to worry about! Plus, everything adds up pretty quickly. I got married back in 2016 and I can say that I didn’t spend more than $1,700 on my wedding. Here are some things I did to help cut down the price for my wedding:

  • Borrowed the wedding dress
  • Held my reception in a backyard
  • Did my own hair and makeup
  • Borrowed tables and chairs from family
  • Got decorations from a friend
  • My dad took my pictures
  • Had friends help with the food
  • Kept things simple

If you think about it, a wedding is a day-long party. You could spend thousands on it or a couple of hundred dollars and still have a great wedding. No need to stress about the little things. 

My friend works at a flower shop which was nice because I didn’t have to pay a fee for delivery. For my wedding, we had a lot of groomsmen and bridesmaids. You don’t necessarily need to buy them all a boutonniere, tie or bouquet and necklace. If you want you can just tell them your wedding colors and have them bring their own accessory to match- or not. Sometimes having things mixed and match can make things fun! We had matching ties for the groomsmen, but all my bridesmaid got their own dress.

group picture

Food is everything when it comes to parties. We just had lots of family and friends help with the reception food. We had our food ordered from Costco. The food was turkey pinwheels, chips, fruit, and cookies. Buying pre-cut fruit can be pricey, so my family helped cut up the fruit. It was laborious but it saved money! We also have lots of neighbors help out with the cookie making. About 400 people showed up and so making 600 cookies saved us around $200. In total, we spent around $800 on food and fed 400 people, plus we had tons of leftovers! You can even plan a more simple wedding and just have desserts. Do whatever you like but spend wisely.

food picture

Decorations really pull a wedding together. My best friend’s mom helped with the decorations. She had shutters and doors that we used as backdrops and we hung block letters and pictures around. Since this was held in a backyard, we had lights and lanterns that hung above the tables. Super simple but it looked great! So the only thing that cost in the decorations was my time. But that wasn’t a problem, it was fun putting everything together with friends. For the centerpieces, I used flowers from the wedding dinner. They were still fresh so might as well use the same resources right? We also put candles and pictures for the centerpieces. 



My cake was made by a family member. I was a simple two-tier buttercream cake. I was originally thinking about having it be three-tier, but the cake is more like decoration and the bride and groom are the ones eating it anyway, so why go super fancy with it? I didn’t want to pay extra for the flower toppers so I just used the flowers from my wedding dinner! I told my cake lady to grab any flowers that were laying around and put them on the cake. Last minute cake decorating turned out to be a success.


Every girl likes to look like a princess on their wedding day, (unless you’re like me and super laid back). For me, hair and makeup wasn’t a big deal. My husband doesn’t like it when I cover my face in makeup, and neither do I, so I did my own makeup. I knew if I got my makeup done by an artist they would cake my face and that is totally not my thing. Plus makeup can be pricey and sometimes it’s not the turn out you were looking for. For my hair, I just had my cousin braid a few pieces back and I curled it. I didn’t worry too much about it because it’s only one day and I don’t want to spend $300 on something that’s only going to last a couple of hours. I didn’t even do a retouch before the reception started. It’s important to have fun on your wedding day than stress about the little things. 

The best thing to do for a wedding is to keep things simple. Who is going to remember all the decorations you had at your wedding? NO ONE! Maybe not even you. I didn’t stress much over my wedding day and so it made it really enjoyable. When you worry about the little details things can be overwhelming. Just sit back and enjoy everything around you, no one can tell if you’re missing a decoration or if your cake was supposed to be a different style, no one knows! If something doesn’t go your way just tell yourself it’s only a few hours and you won’t die from it.  My wedding was perfect because I kept things simple. 

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Last Updated: 12/12/23