The average wedding in the UK costs over £30,000
I’ve put that fact as the heading just because this sounds absolutely insane to me. I don’t see the need to put yourself into wedding debt, just for one day. Perhaps this is my attitude because I’m a student and so the thought of even possessing this much money is inconceivable to me. Regardless, money is a huge issue and area of concern for a lot of people out there, not just students.
That’s why, this week, I thought I’d put together a post about ways that you could reduce the cost of your big day. Cutting costs doesn’t mean that your day has to turn out appearing cheap. In fact, I argue that it could actually personalise your day.
The Dress / The Suit
Okay, this is a difficult subject to approach. For many brides, the dress is one of the most important aspects of their day. However, it can also be an extremely expensive, especially considering that they are only likely to wear the outfit for one day. According to trusty Google, on average people often spend over £1,000 on their wedding outfit.
Do you remember that scene in Friends when Monica, Phoebe and Rachel go to the sample sale for wedding dresses? Well that’s actually a thing. If you’re set on grabbing a designer gown, try and find a good designer sample sale. Have a search for a sale near you and head there as early as you can to get the best deal.
Alternatively, you could look for dresses that aren’t specifically bridal gowns. I honestly believe that when brands slap the word ‘bridal’ in front of an item, they automatically increase the price. If you’re not set on walking down the aisle in a white dress, then this technique could be perfect for you. Be on the hunt for a high street dress or even skirt and top if you’re feeling adventurous!
The final option here could be to rent a gown. Now, this definitely doesn’t sound that glamourous. BUT, you’re probably only going to wear this dress once and while it is nice to be able to show the grandkids, it could save you a fortune to rent a dress just for a couple of days. It’s just a thought. All of these tips can also be applied to men looking for suits.
This seems a pretty obvious one. Maybe I don’t even need to mention it, but I will anyway. The more people you invite the more expensive your wedding will be. Consider only inviting your closest family and friends for a more intimate affair.
Leading on from a shorter guest list is the idea of a smaller venue. Generally, no matter where you are, if you have a good group of people, then the event will be a success. Perhaps one of your family members owns a large garden or knows of a nearby field where you could set up a marquee and hold the reception?
This would definitely be the most cost-effective way to host your wedding, so long as someone is willing! On the other hand, if you have a small wedding party, you might only need to hire out a room in a nice restaurant or bar for your reception.
I love handmade touches to a wedding, especially if you are a creative person. Stand out features that you could make yourself are invitations, wedding favours, name tags and centre pieces. These are just to name a few. I’d recommend going down to HobbyCraft and see what you can find. While these tasks might take quite a while to complete, I personally find them quite therapeutic. You could easily get them done in the evening while watching television.
In addition to lowering the cost, you would also be able to make sure that everything matches perfectly and is completely within your theme.
I don’t recommend cutting out a photographer completely because I really think it’s important to make sure that you have some really high-quality photographs after your special day. However, if you want to keep it to a budget by only having the photographer before and after the ceremony, then you could put disposable cameras on everyone’s tables to capture all those small fun moments that a photographer might miss.
Some people opt to hire an entire photobooth, but these can be extremely costly. You could make your own or buy some props and set up a photobooth corner with a place for people to stand their own phones to use a self-timer.
If you have a large amount of people on the guest list for your reception, you could consider having a smaller ceremony with meal afterwards. Then you could have the rest of your guests arrive after the meal for a big party.
The bigger the cake, the bigger the cheque! The chances are that not a huge amount of cake will be eaten at the end of the night. You can probably get away with a smaller cake than you expect. Or, does someone in your family love baking? Maybe you could ask one of them to make your cake?
What would Emma do?
I think that, initially, it might feel a bit demoralising to feel as though you need to cut corners on an event as special as a wedding day. However, there is a need to be realistic. Your wedding day lasts only 24 hours and while it may be a very important 24 hours, it’s not worth breaking the bank over. Personally, I would much rather spend a lot of money on a honeymoon than a wedding. I’m also quite creative, so would enjoy doing whatever I could myself. Utilise the skills and connections of your friends and family – they are likely to want to help out and will feel honoured that you have asked them to be involved.
Whatever you decide to do, as long as you’re happy and comfortable then the day will be a success. The last thing you want to be worrying about when you’re walking down the aisle is money.
With love and wedding wishes,