The cost of a wedding can quickly escalate and so you may find yourself thinking of ways to cut back and spend less. There's loads you can do, you could cut back on the guest list, book an off peak time of year or you could have a week day wedding which isn't so bad but if you wanted a summer wedding with all your friends and family there then I believe you should have exactly that. I'm all about saving money without compromising on quality, so here are a few things you can do, to get you started!
Let's start with the dress ...
There are many high street retailers that have now started selling bridal gowns such as Debenhams, Asos, Monsoon, Coast and John Lewis. Shopping for a dress via the high street could save you thousands. Some wedding dresses sell for as little as £250!!
For those of you who'd prefer the experience of trying dresses on in a bridal boutique, there are many bridal shops that share my goal of providing quality dresses for a fraction of the cost, you can find any of these online.
If you're really on a tight budget, why not opt for a basic dress and dress it up with a bolero and accessories, the reason I say this is because a dress that's laced with embellishment will certainly cost a lot more than a plain ivory dress.
Every year, there are bridal sales up and down the country with almost every bridal shop launching a sale. Keep an eye on your local bridal shop to see when their upcoming sales are. You could bag yourself a bargain!
One top tip to help save you money would be to avoid making any alterations. Choose a dress that looks amazing off the hanger. Choosing a dress that laces up at the back would also be a sure fire way to avoid having a dress being altered as you can adjust the fit via the laces.
Are you on Facebook? There are loads of wedding groups designed specifically for those individuals selling second hand wedding dresses at a fraction of the original asking price.
Or for those of you who'd like to give to charity, there are some amazing charities that sell second hand wedding dresses meaning you could grab yourself a bargain whilst also helping those in need. What could be better?! Some of you may assume that opting to buy a wedding dress from a charity shop would certainly mean compromising on the quality of dress but actually, you'd be mistaken. Given that wedding dresses are only usually worn once, the wedding dresses that end up in charity stores are usually still in pristine condition.
Okay, enough about the dress! Let's talk about the venue ...
I've spent months researching the UK's best venues for what I consider to be affordable prices. A lot of venues are under £1,000 with others being under £500. Remarkable! All of this information is on the internet, right there.
You could also choose a venue that is so striking, there's little you'll need to add to it. That would save you a fortune on decorations.
What about the food and the drinks?
A great way to save money on the drinks (if your venue will allow) is instead of having an open bar, have a couple of drinks dispensers and fill them with cocktails so your guests can help themselves to drinks, it will definitely be cheaper than a drinks package. I love this idea because you can fill the drinks dispensers with quirky home made cocktails and you can add your own spin to it.
If you want to save as much money as possible, you could opt for a venue that allows you to bring in your own caterers. If you were to put on a BBQ or a hog roast, it may work out a lot cheaper.
When sitting people, think about having bigger tables so that you need less centre-pieces.
If you've got a natural knack for arranging flowers and you're having a summer wedding, why don't you try your hand at picking and arranging wildflowers to use on your big day?
Why not merge the entertainment with the favours which will help you to save money! Rather than buying a jar of sweets for each individual and then on top of that, providing a fireworks display, why not give your guests sparklers to thank them for coming and then once it's dark, go outside, light them up, take loads of photos and combine it with the entertainment for your guests. It's so simple and yet so effective, who doesn't love the magic of watching a sparkler burn out. It'll be something your guests will thoroughly enjoy!
Or if you'd prefer you could make your own wedding favours. There are loads of recipes online for you to get your teeth into.
Okay, so I've given you loads of ideas on how to save money on your wedding but have you thought about ways to fund it?
Believe it or not, there are many ways to top up the wedding fund. The quickest and easiest way would be to host a car boot sale. Why not have a clear out, sell your unwanted junk and you could be making £150 for half a day's work but why stop there, rope your friends and family in, they've probably got loads of junk lying around and would be quite happy for you to take it off their hands. If you're trying to slim into that wedding dress, don't waste money on a gym membership, take up dog walking, for a small fee, you could be shedding the pounds whilst earning them too!