Ways to Save Money On Your Wedding

When you're planning a wedding, costs can add up quickly and before you know it you've busted your budget. Every couple is looking for ways to save money on their wedding, but no one wants to be labeled as cheap. The challenge comes in finding ways to reduce your wedding cost without your guests being able to tell that you've saved. The following tips will help you find ways to cut costs without sacrificing style on your big day. 

  • 01 of 10

    Make Your Own Wedding Invitations

    DIY Wedding Invitation

    Diane Labombarbe/Getty Images

    Even if you're not a trained graphic designer, there are plentiful online resources that offer free wedding invitation templates for you to customize for your big day. From save the dates to wedding programs, the paper designs of your dreams are often just a quick internet search away.

    Printable wedding invitations give the couple the power to make their wedding invitations themselves with customizable templates that allow the couple to enter their own wedding details and information. An added benefit of these DIY wedding invitations is that the couple can print exactly as many as they need since there is no minimum order amount like with a traditional stationery shop. This option also offers flexibility to print the designs on a home printer or local print shop, depending on the budget the couple has to work with.

    The printable wedding invitation featured in the photo is from Download & Print, which is a great resource for brides on any budget. They offer dozens of printable wedding invitation designs at a low cost so you can create a customized look for your wedding day without the hefty price tag. 

  • 02 of 10

    Create DIY Wedding Decor

    Wedding Reception Table Centerpieces
    joshuaraineyphotography / Getty Images

    Recycle and upcycle everyday items from around your home to turn them into creative DIY wedding decor. You'll be shocked at the beautiful pieces you can create using items you'd otherwise throw in the trash or recycling bin. So many household items can be transformed into beautiful decor items with the help of a little spray paint or embellishment, and it doesn't have to cost you much money.

    Consider all the different items you toss in the garbage each week. Chances are, you're throwing away several glass items, paper, and metal cans on a weekly basis. Each of these items can be given new life with a little crafty effort. See our series on transforming these everyday items:

    You can easily do this for your wedding. Ask your family and friends to save their wine bottles, pickle jars, jam jars, glass soda bottles, milk bottles, and other glass items to help you stock up on glassware to decorate your big day. Then give each of the items a quickie makeover with some paint or other crafty elements to perfectly coordinate them for your big day!  

  • 03 of 10

    Shop in Bulk or at Secondhand Stores

    table setting idea for wedding


    Tim Macpherson / Getty Images

    Visit bulk stores such as Costco for items you could use as wedding decor, serve ware, or even food to serve at the reception. Shopping in bulk can offer significant savings, no matter if the items are large or small. You can get a sizable discount on items like cutlery, dishes, napkins, beverages and more at bulk stores. If you're looking for a modern aesthetic for your wedding day, you could check big box retailers like IKEA. 

    Be sure to also check out your local flea markets and thrift stores for items you could use as wedding decor. Purchase decor items, accents, or even your place settings to save on rental costs for your wedding day. You'll likely find items that will be great for a vintage or rustic wedding at your local secondhand shops.

    No matter where you shop for your big day, you can recoup some of your costs by selling items after the wedding is over. Resell any items you won't need going forward or donate them to charity for a tax deduction. 

  • 04 of 10

    Craft Custom Wine Labels

    Create Custom Wine Labels for your Wedding Wine
    Evin Photography

    If your budget is tight, you may want to cut down on your bar offerings. Serving only beer and wine is a very common tip for reducing costs for your wedding reception. If you want to shave even more dollars off your tab, be sure to choose a less expensive wine to serve at your reception.

    You can disguise your low-budget wine selection by creating custom wine bottle labels featuring your wedding monogram. Doing so will add an extra special detail to your wedding that your guests will love, and they won't think twice about the brand name of the wine you choose. 

    There are significant savings to be had if you purchase your wine from bulk liquor stores such as Costco, so be sure to consider them as an option when doing your shopping. 

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Make a Fake Wedding Cake (And Serve Sheet Cake Instead)

    Roses on top of a wedding cake
    Image Source / Getty Images

    Create your own faux wedding cake for decorative purposes, then serve your guests sheet cake. Most cake bakers price their cakes based on the time involved in decorating in addition to the size, so serving sheet cake requiring minimal decoration will help keep costs down.

    Your fake cake will look fabulous on a dessert table, and you will save money since your baker won't have to spend the time to create a detailed cake design.

    To take the savings even further, consider a grocery store cake for an even better price on sheet cakes, You could also choose to opt for cupcakes for a great single serving option. 

  • 06 of 10

    Skip the Wedding DJ

    Dj headphones on a sound mixer
    Oscar Sánchez Photography / Getty Images

    If you are looking for a way to cut back on your expenses, setting up a great playlist for your reception is something you can easily do yourself. There are many great apps that you can download to help run the playlist for the reception. 

    There are great services that you can use to set up your own wedding music in a more convenient way, such as Mixteka

    If you decide to go the DIY wedding DJ route, just make sure to test everything beforehand and have someone designated to oversee the playlist in case of any technical issues on the big day.

  • 07 of 10

    Consider an Untraditional Dress Retailer

    short wedding dress


    mother image / Getty Images

    Many department stores carry a lovely array of dresses that come in white and have options at a variety of price points. Consider visiting Macy's or Nordstrom to purchase a designer gown at a fraction of the price of a traditional wedding dress. 

    Another great tip for cutting costs on your wedding dress is to consider choosing a bridesmaid's dress that comes in white or opt for a short dress rather than a floor length gown. 

    You can also check eBay for cheap wedding dresses or opt instead to rent a gown from Rent the Runway rather than buying new.

  • 08 of 10

    Borrow Items for Your Wedding Rather Than Buying New

    beverage dispenser
    Getty Images

    Who says your something borrowed can only be an item you wear on your wedding day? Think of any family or friends who have items that might serve different purposes on your big day. 

    Some possible items to crowdsource include fancy beverage dispensers, cake stands, candy buffet jars, cake serving set, champagne flutes and more.

    Borrow these non-essential items from the people you love instead of purchasing them just for your wedding day. In doing so, you'll save money and create a more personal display of decor. Just make sure to return all items in the condition that you received them. 

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Choose Inexpensive Filler Flowers

    baby's breath wedding decor


    benhood / Getty Images

    Opting for inexpensive blooms like baby's breath or carnations for your wedding day florals can save you hundreds without sacrificing style. These flowers cost considerably less than other more popular wedding flowers and are generally available all year long. 

    Keep your arrangements simple and stick to an all-white color palette to give off an elegant vibe, while keeping your budget in check. You can also save money on your wedding flowers by choosing flowers that are in season in your area, as they will be more readily available. 

  • 10 of 10

    Skip Cocktail Hour

    Serving champagne on party
    webphotographeer / Getty Images

    If you are worried about your budget, you can nix the formal cocktail hour after the ceremony. Instead of offering passed hors-d'oeuvres and cocktails, just continue straight into the reception, dinner, and other festivities. 

    This option works especially well if you take care of your wedding party photos prior to the ceremony. If you take care of portraits before the ceremony, there is no need to offer the extra entertainment of cocktails and appetizers since your guests will not have to wait for you to finish photos. 

    You could also use the extra time you'll gain by nixing cocktail hour to have a receiving line. This tradition offers a nice way for the couple to personally welcome their guests into the reception, ensuring that everyone gets a moment to connect with the newlyweds.