Friday, May 16, 2008

Tips for the Frugal Bride

I confess: I wasn't the most frugal bride in the world. My parents were helping me pay, I was planning my wedding from a different state, and I really just wanted to do everything the easiest way possible, instead of doing it the most frugal way possible. Don't get me wrong: I wasn't wasteful. Neither I nor my parents would have been able to stand spending what some of the wedding shows suggest, even if we could afford it. Looking back, though, there are many ways I could have saved money and been a much more frugal bride, without in any way sacrificing the blessings and the happiness I experienced that day.

1. Don't get married on a Saturday.

One of the biggest stumbling blocks for me was the fact that the hall where I had my wedding had a 100 person minimum. We hardly could find 100 people that we really wanted to celebrate our wedding with us. Had we chosen to get married on a Friday or Sunday, this minimum would have been waived and we would have gotten a 10% discount on the whole affair.

2. Don't fall for the "Oh mommy" effect.

I don't think of myself as high maintenance. When I went to shop for my wedding dress, I actually preferred the large bridal warehouse to the small boutique. The dresses, to me, were just as beautiful, were easier to find, and arrived more quickly. The place where I faltered, though, was on my headpieces. Bridal consultants are trained to wait for the "Oh mommy" moment: when the bride tries on that perfect dress that makes her say "oh mommy!" that's when the headpieces come out. My consultant had a tiera and a crystal-studded veil on my head before I even knew what had happened, and in the moment we agreed to buy it all. The headpieces, put together, cost almost as much as the dress! Not very frugal at all.

3. Skimp on stationery.

To me, a traditional wedding invitation was important, but I didn't care about save the date cards or programs, so we skipped them entirely. Since we were only inviting close friends and family, we were pretty confident that they were planning to come and that they knew who we were. If you don't care about invitations, consider paring down to one page invitations, post cards, or even e-vites. If you have a wedding webpage, there's no need for a double stamp sized invitation anymore.

4. Shop around.

Even if you do go for full invitations, you can save a bunch of money by buying them online instead of from a local store. Most of your extras: your cake topper, your garter, your guestbook, can also be bought more cheaply online, and you'll have more selection.

5. Pare down centerpieces.

A truly frugal bride could eliminate these altogether, but if you want something nice, try mirrored plates with tea lights, or a single floating orchid. Elaborate floral arrangements will probably just go to waste.

I know there is probably many a more frugal bride reading this, so if you have any other tips to share, please do!

For more frugal tips, check out Frugal Friday at Biblical Womanhood Online.


Jeremy Dawes said...

Its good if we get married on the holidays as everyone would be free and all the work could be done easily with out any tensions. Thanks for the tips which are useful.

Christine said...

Some useful tips for brides.

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Leagh@bunchesdirect said...

I can't imagine wedding without flowers! I prefer buying flowers at the wholesale and then making your own centerpieces and bouquets for any occasion,actually.
Thank you for sharing your saving tips,that can really help!