Colleen
Newbie May 2021 Ontario

Ways to save but not compromise on aesthetic?

Colleen, on November 22, 2019 at 10:27 Posted in Plan a wedding

Hi!
My fiance and I are currently both students (hence the long engagement lol) and are trying to find ways that we can save money on the wedding while also not compromising on it looking amazing!

Does anyone have any great tips or tricks that they've used to save a buck or two? I definitly don't mind getting crafty if you have any suggestions out there!

Thanks!

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17 Comments

  • Erin
    Super May 2020 Ontario
    Erin ·
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    I ordered my invitations from Costco. We have 100 guests so 50 invites and 25 RSVP cards in total cost me $57.60, some of my guests (the younger crowd) will be instructed to RSVP online.


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  • Becky
    Curious July 2020 Alberta
    Becky ·
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    We are doing our wedding a very minimal budget. I have found the biggest thing is to take your time. I would look at something and chew on how to do it for less for the next few weeks research talk with friends and family and have been 85% successful. The other thing is look in your friends and family groups. Utilize the skills that they have. I have saved literally 1000s by having a friend help with my hair and make (she runs a salon) my cousin has offered his DJ skills. My aunt is a florist so she is helping with flower arrangements. It felt uncomfortable to ask for people’s help but I was pleasantly surprised to learn that they were beyond excited to help.


    Feel free to message me if you have anything in particular you need to save a bit on. I would love to help Smiley smile
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  • Emily
    Curious September 2020 Ontario
    Emily ·
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    I echo a lot of what these ladies have said but also:


    1) Buy linens- if you know anyone in the states order from linentablecloth.com or a related site. You will pay much less than renting and are guaranteed to make your money back.

    2) FREE SECTION IN KIJIJI- I cannot stress this enough. I do a quick, daily look through the free section on kijiji. I have found a really beautiful old door to make a head table sign, some old windows, a rustic ladder. Keep in mind whether you want to (or like to) undertake DIY projects.

    3) Try not to mention the word 'wedding' when getting quotes or looking at things, as this tends to inflate the cost of almost EVERYTHING. I know this is inevitable in some circumstances (bouquets for a birthday is hard to believe).

    4) Try buying things like vases or mason jars over time when you see them at Value Village or on kijiji.

    5) Online invitations and save the dates.


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  • Emilyn
    Beginner August 2020 Manitoba
    Emilyn ·
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    Make deals with brides selling their stuff from their wedding... check Facebook, Kijiji, VarageSale. Make deals! We know these girls are stuck with an abundance of decorations, bouquets, everything left over and lots of people will take offers if you are reasonable and it can save you a ton on everything.
    • Reply
  • Allison
    Curious October 2020 Ontario
    Allison ·
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    I've found lots of resources recently that might be of help!

    - StillWhite is a great resource for finding second-hand dresses at a fraction of the cost!

    - Renewed With Love is also a great dress resource in the Ottawa area Smiley smile

    - Facebook marketplace is a great place to find candleholders, linens, and other decor for a fraction of the price

    - I would also look into renting flowers - there are lots of places that make bouquets that look totally real for a fraction of the cost of real flowers. Alternatively, you can make centerpieces! I know a couple who did candy displays on each table as a centerpiece and there were little bags so guests could take some home!

    - Ditching the cake and doing a sweets table (cupcakes/cookies/donuts) is much more cost effective!

    - Look into giving your dress to a consignment shop when you're done with it so you can recoup some of the costs!

    • Reply
  • Taylor
    Devoted October 2020 Alberta
    Taylor ·
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    Everything decoration wise I am buying from wish. My dress is from amazon. It can be risky but if you read reviews from worst to best it helps save a smidge of time and money. Starting from worst reviews you quickly see why they gave it and you can see if that is something thats a deal breaker or not. My wedding dress is only costing me 200$ and the decorations only like another 100$. I am going to be making the cake so that will save alot. The way they get you is names. Places specifically for wedding stuff or that has brands will ding your wallet good and sometimes the quality is a joke. You would even be surprised what you can find at the dollarstore or facebook marketplace.

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  • Vika
    Beginner August 2020 Ontario
    Vika ·
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    I've gotten some advice in the last little while on just this! I'm in a similar boat with my FH having just graduated and started his career job and myself still in school, so we are trying to find a way to mix the glam with the budget. Some tips I've gotten:

    -Make your bouquets from Costco flowers which are both gorgeous and much more cost effective

    -Shop the marketplace / Kijiji for decorations from previous weddings such as seat covers, vases, etc.

    -The cake doesn't typically need to match 1-for-1 with the number of guests you have as not everyone will eat cake. I can't remember the exact fraction but someone said to estimate for about 75-85% of your guests actually eating cake

    -Try an off-season wedding or a weekday. We are getting married on a Friday because we get a gorgeous space that normally has a 120 person minimum on a weekend but has no minimum on a weekday, so we are only paying for the amount of guests we are actually having.


    Good luck and I hope your wedding goes beautifully Smiley smile

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  • Ashley
    Featured August 2020 Ontario
    Ashley ·
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    I made sure to shop around for each and every vendor. i made a budget and we stuck too it. if any vendor couldnt work within my budget i didnt bother with them

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  • Liarra
    Frequent user February 2020 Ontario
    Liarra ·
    • Dispute

    What we've done is:

    1. Evening reception 7pm, open bar and appetizers refreshed all throughout the night - no sit down meal saves a ton of money

    2. NO flowers, they really jack up the price, instead I opted for greenery for all of our bouquets and anything I could resell after the wedding (ex. lanterns)

    3. Decor, keep it simple. We bought TONS of flameless candles on sale at Michaels when they had a buy 1 get 1 free deal on and TONS of lanterns through facebook marketplace. I plan on reselling ALL of it after the wedding. Flowers just die off and you lose all your money.

    4. If you really want flowers, wait until michaels has a stem sale, and buy a whole bunch of fake stems, make your own bouquets. Many girls on here have done this and can probably help you out with tips. Just search "fake flowers" or similar into the community search engine.

    5. Skip the videographer and splurge on a photographer. We know people who did both, to me it is more important to have amazing photos than mediocre of both that I may not absolutely love and want to look at over and over again.

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  • Vinod
    Featured August 2017 Ontario
    Vinod ·
    • Dispute

    There were many things I would have loved to get though the expense was adding up. The solution that worked great went 3 ways:

    1. Retail shops are great for looking at actual gifts to get for family or wedding party. Favours are also another thing you may want to choose and save if the manager would give a discount for a large quantity ordered.

    2. Online shopping is just about the most wonderful thing you can get for the small things at a lower price and shipping time. If not satisfied and want to return to amazon or ebay, they will accept as I am an amazon shopper and prime member (2 days delivery). Contacting the third party seller may let you keep the product and refund you the money. It saved a lot of time and effort to deal with sales people and getting upset over the policy if no refund was possible.

    3. Rentals are huge in savings and hassle of storing at home. This process allowed me to put a deposit and to pick up 2 days before the event and return by the end of the weekend. Consider how much time you save to put everything together and having to take the extras home when not needed.

    4. Friends/Family are great to help lend what they have stored for their wedding to use for yours since its useful and exactly the thing you need.

    I do hope these options help and put that extra money in your pocket.

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  • Amelia
    Featured October 2020 New Brunswick
    Amelia ·
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    Make a list of things you would be sad to skimp on. (Like if you've always wanted a bonkers big tall cake you would be heartbroken to have a small cutting cake and a sheet cake behind the scenes for guests.)


    Having a smaller wedding means fewer guests to feed, but you could also do lower cost food options like food trucks or skipping a buffet.
    If you're handy you could diy centerpieces and bouquets. Costco sells fresh flowers online for cheap! Or if you choose artificial you can sell to another bride afterwards. And on that note check out second hand items on Facebook yard sales or kijiji.
    • Reply
  • Colleen
    Newbie May 2021 Ontario
    Colleen ·
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    Thank you so much! That's really encouraging to hear!

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  • Kelsie
    Featured July 2020 Ontario
    Kelsie ·
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    Booking vendors early helped us. Most vendors require a deposit but you get to lock into the rate for whichever year you book in.


    We managed to save on our venue (booked it in 2018 for our 2020 wedding), photographer (2018 rate!) which were our highest spends altogether. Keep in mind, for the venue, your food costs might increase year to year but that will be apparent in the contract - and if it isn't apparent - definitely ask!


    I also agree with Ashley, be upfront with your budget. They may be able to suggest alternatives that work for you without sacrificing the look you're going for. My cake vendor has been amazing that way - I let her know where I am at budget wise and she says this is what I can do for you! We work it out from there.

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  • Colleen
    Newbie May 2021 Ontario
    Colleen ·
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    View quoted message

    Thanks! That's also great advice!

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  • Colleen
    Newbie May 2021 Ontario
    Colleen ·
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    View quoted message

    Thanks! I'll definitely keep that in mind!

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  • Rayanne
    Featured February 2021 Ontario
    Rayanne ·
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    Make sure you know what you what is key to save you from buying stuff you'll never use. Check out marketplace for their used wedding stuff. I cant stress this enough. So many things a bride will sell for half the price that was used once. Plus you can sell it after to try to make some of it back. Finding the right venue for you. Keep guest list as small as you can. Think out of the box. Do you want just appetizers? Keep the menu simple. If you serve alcohol try to keep it simple. You could go for cash at or a twonie bar. Possibly a sample sale for wedding dress? Check out second hand stores as well.
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