There is a real paradox at play when it comes to weddings; we are finding ourselves with less extra money yet our weddings are becoming more expensive and extravagant. Or at least, that is how it has seemed. But have you ever thought about how much of these extravagance has actually been done on a budget? In this post we are going to take a look at some of the things you can save on by doing them yourself, and they aren’t as daunting as you may think!
b a k e y o u r o w n c a k e
Okay, so maybe you can’t make a four tier red velvet cake iced to perfection with lace detailing and royal icing roses, but if you’re looking to save a bit of money then being a little bit more creative with your cake ideas may help in the long run. Have you thought about replacing the traditional tiered cake with a cupcake tower instead? Make a day of it, get your friends round and get baking! Not only will you be saving yourself a heap of money but you’ll have fun doing it and you will have complete creative control, who cares if they’re all a little different, they are all a little you.
If you decide that actually the traditional tiered cake is what you have always dreamt of, then that doesn’t mean you have to give it up in order to save some pennies. How about a naked cake? Being a little homemade-looking is part of their charm but by baking it yourself you avoid paying hundreds of pounds for something you can whip up yourself for a fraction of the cost. Make it even more romantic by baking it with your other half, not only is it a great thing to de-stress just before your big day but spending that one-on-one time together is something you need to make time for in the flurry that becomes the wedding build up. If you do decide that you’re going to bake your own cake or cakes, don’t forget that they don’t last that long so you will need to put some time aside right before your wedding to get it done, and if it goes wrong you won’t have much time to get it right (that being said, if your cake maker gets it wrong you have the same problem!).
We can’t all afford the very best of wedding stylists but that’s not to say you can’t have a beautiful wedding. Unless you are going for something totally off-the-wall it’s quite likely that someone has styled a wedding like the one you’re dreaming of before, and it’s probably on Pinterest! We all know Pinterest is the holy grail for all things wedding and we pin away without a care in the world but when you’re trying to plan your big day you need to take a more realistic and focussed approach. What exactly is it you’re trying to achieve with the look of your wedding? You need to have this fine tuned as early as possible, so do plenty of research to understand how you can achieve it in reality. Want an Alice in Wonderland style day? Try looking for tea parties, vintage decor and kitsch table settings on the site. Maybe you want something minimalist? Pinterest will have plenty of this too, so try looking more specifically at things like simple tablescapes, white decor and minimalist interiors. Looking around the theme rather than trying to apply it directly to a wedding will give you more scope and will let your creativity run wild, whereas if you search for just weddings straight off the mark you may actually limit your creativity and you could miss out on an idea that could have transformed your concept into a reality.
Next comes sourcing all of your pieces and dependent on your style there are a few options on how to do this. If you’re looking for uniformity then a hire company is probably your best bet but remember, a stylist may have contacts in this field so may be able to get cheaper prices than you will as an individual. You will benefit from not having to store the pieces however, and it takes the stress out of trying to find all of the individual pieces of crockery and table linen. If you are looking for a slightly more mismatched look or aren’t too worried about all of the pieces being perfectly matched then head to charity shops and car boots, you will be surprised what beautiful pieces are being sold for dirt cheap prices! You will have to spend time hunting for these and you’ll need somewhere to store them both before and after the event but it could be cheaper than a hire company.
t h e f a v o u r s
Candles have well and truly been done, CD’s are nothing new and miniature liquors are commonplace. How about thinking outside the box when it comes to your favours and looking to do something different? I’ve seen donut walls popping up all over the place but why stop there, they would make a great sweet treats to welcome guests to their seats. You could decorate these yourself picking a signature flavour for your wedding, or ice them to fit your colour scheme. They will also be a real crowd pleaser with both young guests and those young at heart! If your hen do is taking place right before your wedding, this could be a fun task to complete with all your hens that will not only be guaranteed a giggle but will also lighten the load for you.
If you have chosen a signature cocktail for your wedding why not bottle it up with a label marking your day for guests to take home and enjoy. If you print the recipe on reverse your guests can remake your concoction at home and the flavours in that tipple will forever remind them of your day. Speak to a mixologist beforehand or chat to whoever is running your bar to create something that really screams out who you and your partner are, ask them for a basic recipe and share with your nearest and dearest for a favour that’s a little bit different to the norm.
t h e f o o d
Image | Pinterest
Okay so this isn’t something I am suggesting you do yourself technically, but it’s definitely a good way to save some extra money when organising your day. An expensive catering company might not be quite right for your do, or perhaps it’s simply out of your budget. Not to worry as that certainly does not mean you can’t serve up a delicious feast for your guests! Instead why not try a barbecue or hog roast for a more informal meal, and provide bowls of potato wedges, salad and sides for your guests to help themselves to? It’ll be far cheaper than a three course banquet and your guests can have more control over what they fancy or would prefer to leave off their plate, everyone’s a winner!
This is far from an extensive list, but it’s certainly food for thought on a few ways you can save money on your big day. Do you have some tips you think people should know about? Leave them in the comments section below!