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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Our DIY Budget Wedding

Here is a break down of what we spent on our recent wedding. We didn't set a budget. We just approached each item in a practical/budget friendly way. The first decision to having an affordable wedding was limiting the number of people we invited. We were able to have a beautiful wedding & reception by only inviting our immediate family & close friends.

Invitations: DIY $7 for printing, $2 for purple card stock. We had a small family-only wedding, so I only had to make 14 invitations.

Bride’s attire:
The Dress: My wedding dress was from David’s and cost $349. That was a splurge for me! At first I was looking at dresses that were under $100 online, but ended up with the dress from David’s because I wanted to try it on before I bought it! It fit perfect, and no alterations were needed.

The Shoes: My shoes were Dyeables that I ordered online, and had dyed locally. Total cost $90. I added a DIY rhinestone accent on the sole for $1. This one one of the things I was obsessed with.... having purple shoes! I had a hard time finding anything locally in purple, so I thought dyeables would solve that issue. I don’t recommend these shoes! First off the dye rubbed off on everything! I knew they wouldn’t be “water proof” but even just picking them up to put them on left dye all over my hands. I brought them back to have them sprayed with a sealer, and it helped a little. After wearing these shoes for 2 hours during my reception, the soles were all tore up, like shredded leather! I will never wear these again! My advice on shoes: Get a pair of shoes you’ll want to wear again so you can splurge on them, and don’t do dyeables!

Accessories: DIY Hair flower and flower pin for my dress $10. I made my hair flower and pin for my dress using silk flowers & feathers from a craft store. I made a bracelet with pearls & purple beads that I already had and bought a love charm for $2. I wore a pearl necklace that I already owned. I did get my hair done at a local salon the day of the wedding for $60.

Groom’s attire:
The Suit: We purchased a Calvin Klein suit from Macy’s. $350 for the suit, shirt & tie. This would be considered a splurge, but my groom wears suits for business meetings and needed a new one anyway. Purple argyle socks from Target $2.

Kid’s attire:
We rented suit pieces for my son from Men’s Wearhouse. $25 for the pants, shirt & tie. We bought him a pair of “converse” looking Airwalks from Payless for $12, and purple socks from Target for $2.
The girls found sundresses at Younkers, $50 for two dresses, worn with Converse shoes that they already had.

I pre-ordered 3 dozen purple carnations from Horrock’s, a local flower & fruit market. The day before the wedding I picked up the carnations, and also found purple roses, blue veronica flower, and white poms. I also picked up 2 white roses for the boutonnières. Total flower cost $50 for my bouquet, 2 girls bouquets, and 2 boutonnières. I added an antique brooch to my bouquet that I found at an antique store for $2.

The ceremony took place at Cooley Gardens in Lansing, Mi. The garden is managed by Lansing Parks & Rec. For a $25 fee, you can reserve the park for a 2 hour block of time. We had our ceremony under the pavilion, which provided shade and seating for our guests.

The Officiant:
Free! We contacted a local judge who was able to come perform the ceremony for us! We did send a “thank you” plant to his office since they are not allowed to accept any monetary gifts.

The Photography:
We found a student photographer on Craigslist who is starting out and was offering free portrait sessions to build her portfolio. We asked if she would like to shoot a wedding, and she was thrilled! Cost: technically free, but we sent her $100 as a thank you because we loved the photos!

The Reception:
We had our reception at Clara’s Restaurant in Lansing, Mi. It’s an old train station, turned restaurant with an actual train/dining car. We reserved the dining car for our 25 guests. No site fees or cake cutting fee. Our guests had eight different entrees to choose from. $14.95 per person. With drinks and tip, the total cost was $500, or $20 per person.

The Cake:
We were able to bring in our own cake to the reception site. We ordered 3 cakes for variety: carrot, coconut, and double chocolate from Sam’s Club. $40 total. These were the best cakes I’ve ever had at a wedding! Everyone loved the variety and flavor of each. We had so much left over, we could have saved money and only ordered two cakes. Cake serving set: $5 from Hobby Lobby. We borrowed cake plates from family to display the cakes.

The Favors:
Mini wine bottles: 16 mini wine bottles with DIY label $20.
Chocolates: 16 chocolate favor bags- $3 for the purple paper bags with DIY labels. $10 for the chocolates with purple & pink wrappers (bought on sale after easter!).

Potted flowers for 12 centerpieces: $8, patterned flower pots from Target dollar spot $1 each, cellophane wrap $3. DIY “plant poke” signs.

Sand Ceremony:
Sand Ceremony Jar $2 on clearance at Hobby Lobby. Individual sand jars, $1 each from the dollar store. Sand in 5 different colors $10 from Michaels Arts & Crafts.

Total cost for our wedding: $1,757
We had a beautiful wedding on a budget without sacrificing any details!


Tiffany Swartz said...

Awesome tips, Tammy :) I'm also looking for low-cost tips for when I walk down the aisle on St. Patty's Day 2012. I'm glad it was featured today in the #LoveLansing Daily today. :)


Tiffany Swartz said...

Thanks for posting these wonderful tips :) I'm also looking for ways to cut costs for my wedding on St. Patty's Day 2012. Great read!