Backyard Wedding Delight!

I am DELIGHTED to share this lovely backyard wedding!  Had I not been told this was someone’s back yard, I would never have known.  This bride was able to turn this into a beautiful setting to start their married life off right on an affordable budget.  Here are all her fabulous details.

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Looking back through my wedding photos, I realized that there was lots of things that I did and planned myself. I’ll start with the ceremony. A friend of mine had open area at their home and allowed us to have the ceremony there. We borrowed chairs from my husband’s church and chair covers from my mother in law’s friend. We chose a simple aisle runner from Hobby Lobby. The backdrop was sheer curtains (6) that came from Walmart, hung on some poles that my husband built using supplies from Lowe’s. The aisle was decorated in arrangements that my friend let us borrow. (They own a landscaping business..how convenient!!) We also used shepard’s hooks with mason jars hung on them. The mason jars came from Walmart, the beads and flowers came from Hobby Lobby. I wanted something elegant, but then again simple for my outdoor wedding! I had used Pinterest for a lot of these ideas and added my own touch to them. The signs were made from scrap fence boards and my mother in law painted them. Our programs doubled as a fan. I made these myself using cardstock and pop-cicle sticks. The program had our picture in a watermark with all of the wedding party and order listed. Instead of a guestbook, we got a signature frame. We found this at Kirkland’s. The bridemaids bouquet were made by me using real to life flowers, burlap, and ribbon, all from Hobby Lobby. The flower girls’ baskets were a set also from Hobby Lobby that I painted white and added ribbon to. The groomsmens’ flowers were all live, we decided these would be easier if made by a professional-lol! The ringbearers’ pillows were made from extra fabric, paint, and ribbon. My mother in law made those as well. My dress, veil, and head piece came from David’s Bridal. The music and all the equipment was supplied by a good friend of ours, this saved us a ton! He also did our music at the reception. Our reception was held at the Holiday Inn. We chose just to have cake and punch, as well as a cash bar. I did not like the typical wedding cake toppers, so we chose a set of birds! We spent the majority of our money on the photographer, who was awesome at capturing all of our favorite moment, and our honeymoon. We chose to Honeymoon in Gatlinburg, TN. Another helpful tip is to book the honeymoon early! We reserved a cabin and had it paid off before we even left! We just needed extra cash for food and activities.

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Q: I know a “frugal” or “low-budget” wedding could mean different things to different people. So, what did it mean to you?

A: It meant that we could plan our wedding exactly how we wanted and save money for what we needed for us and a Honeymoon.

 

Q: How much was your PLANNED total?

A: $3500

 

Q: How much was your ACTUAL total?

A: $3700

 

Q: What was your biggest budget saving tip that you can share with us?

A: We made our own invitations, save the date’s, and for the bridemaid’s we used fake flowers.

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Q: What resources did you find especially helpful (i.e. websites, blogs, craft stores, etc. )

A: Pinterest, Hobby Lobby, and my own ideas!

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Q: What was the most important service you spent part of your budget on?

A: Photographer and prints

 

Q: What was your favorite moment of the day?

A: Our wedding went as planned! The set up and decorations were beautiful.

 

Q: What was the most challenging aspect of the wedding planning for you?

A: Getting all our ideas actually together and getting things under our budget and done on time.

 

Q: Is there anything you would have done differently?

A: We would have chose a different time of the wedding ceremony and maybe included a dinner.

 

Q: What advice would you give to a bride planning her own frugal wedding?

A: You can find deals at craft stores, bargain places, and even things other people have (things you can borrow). Give yourself plenty of time to plan! Look for sales on different items that you may need in the “off season.” Hobby Lobby was a great store to get many items for my wedding and they always had a sale on something that we needed.

 

Free For All: Anything that I haven’t asked that you think is important to add.

A: I personally think it is better to spend the majority of your money on a Photographer and the Honeymoon. The ceremony won’t last but maybe 20 minutes and pictures can last even longer!

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All The Little Details!

 

Wedding Location: A friend’s back yard in our town.

Reception Location: Holiday Inn Banquet Rooms

Photographer: Sara Long of Sara Long Photography, Jonesboro, AR

Dress: David’s Bridal (I wanted a simple gown and it just so happen to be exactly what I wanted and on sale.)

Hair & Makeup: Brittany Brown of Split Endz

DJ: Cody Gentry (a great friend of ours) He took care of music for the ceremony and reception.

Florist: For the guys- Sassy Sunflower in my hometown, Manila, AR.

For me and my bridesmaids- I made our bouquets from getting supplies at Hobby Lobby.

 

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Fall Wedding in Indiana

Meet Isabel and Abe!  They were married this past fall in Indiana.  They wanted to have a fantastic day and still keep it on a budget that they could handle on their own.  Being a professional Life Coach (http://www.compassionatecoachingih.com/index.html) Isabel believes “if you can dream it you can do it!”.  And she did!  Not only did she stay in her budget, but wait until you hear how she made $500 to put towards their honeymoon!  Take a look at the creative ways she was able to pull off a fabulous wedding for $5,000.

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Q:  I know a “frugal” or “low-budget” wedding could mean different things to different people.  So, what did it mean to you?

A: Having a great wedding with all the people we love but staying within a budget since we wanted to pay for it ourselves.

Q:  How much was your PLANNED total?

A: $6000

Q:  How much was your ACTUAL total?

A: $5000

Q:  What was your biggest budget saving tip that you can share with us?

A: Keeping your guest numbers on the lower end, being creative with decorations,

and opting for a smaller but adorable venue.  We auctioned off some of our decoration items at the end of the night – worked out great

Q:  Tell me more about this auction.  Was this something that your guests knew was happening in advance?

A:  Well, some of the centerpieces we gave away as thank you gifts for those who helped us setting everything up etc so we didn’t have to spend any additional money and they all loved it.

Some of the guests knew about the auction especially family member who just told others. But some of them didn’t. We had the DJ announce it (instead of the dollar dance or so). Most of the decoration we auctioned off were my paintings that were part of the fall decoration on the walls. If I remember it right, we made over $500 or $600 which went towards our honeymoon. We had wine glasses made with fall decoration on it that everyone was allowed to take home – so we integrated the dishes/ glasses with guest gifts. Online you can get great deals and they looked awesome.

Q:  What resources did you find especially helpful (i.e. websites, blogs, craft stores, etc. )

A: I did a lot of research online but also already had a picture in mind in what I wanted to create. There had been too many books and magazines out there that would have added to my budget so I avoided that.

Q:  What was the most important service you spent part of your budget on?

A: photographer

Q:  What was your favorite moment of the day?

A: The wedding ceremony at the church

Q:  What was the most challenging aspect of the wedding planning for you?

A: getting everyone involved aligned with our budget plans. My husbands family is very big so making the decision on who to invite, was hard. But it seemed to work out just fine – some we invited didn’t come and other we did not invite showed up instead.

Q:  Is there anything you would have done differently?

A: I would have taken more time to choose a photographer.

Q:  What advice would you give to a bride planning her own frugal wedding?

A: Don’t stress about what others may think and want you to do with your wedding. You don’t have to impress anyone and you don’t have to invite everyone. With clear communication and expectation everyone understood and was very understanding and helpful. Ask for help and support. Forget about a fancy rehearsal dinner – pizza and sandwiches totally work and everyone loves it.

It is your special day and you can have it however you want. Even on a budget a wedding can be incredible beautiful.

All The Little Details!

Wedding Location: A small church in Plymouth, Indiana (cost us about $150)

Reception Location: An old Club house in Plymouth, Indiana (about $300 for 2 days)

Photographer: Jeff Polk Photography ($1100 – was not convinced of his work)

Dress: David’s Bridal (on sale for $400)

Hair: a small Salon in Plymouth, Indiana (for myself, my 3 bridesmaids and mother-in-law I believe it was $250)

Make up: myself

DJ: Krazy King Productions (great value for an amazing price We loved them. They are originally from Indianapolis, IN but travelled just for us.)

http://www.krazykingproductions.com

Florist: mostly Kroger flowers (very nice) and arranged it myself with the help of my sister. Turned out pretty good.

Cake: It was honestly Walmart. Price and taste was great. I would have pictured the decoration a bit different but it wasn’t bad at all.

Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse (with some discount and coupons)

Linnens: http://www.linenhero.com/Product-Lines/Table-Linens

Wine Glass Favors:  http://www.bargainmugs.com

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Kim and Jason: A Lovely Fall DIY

In October my dear friends Jason and Kim tied the knot!  Kim was up to her elbows in DIY projects for a year!  They were on a tight budget but still wanted to make it the best day of their lives.  Kim and I got to talk over some of the details to share with all you FBF lovelies out there!  Here are some of Kim’s tips.  And, of course, some photos!

 

Q:  I know a “frugal” or “low-budget” wedding could mean different things to different people.  So, what did it mean to you?

A:  Being realistic and knowing your limits.

 

Q:  How much was your PLANNED total?

A:  Take a deep breath.  No more than $5000-4000, which is still A LOT!!!!

 

Q:  How much was your ACTUAL total?

A:  $3500-$4000

 

Q:  What was your biggest budget saving tip that you can share with us?

A:  Be willing to do it yourself if you can, but know that it take up A LOT of your time and make you a bit crazy.   I recommend having a long engagement, shop sales, think outside the box, don’t be afraid to ask for help, and don’t have too many expectations.

 

Q:  What resources did you find especially helpful (i.e. websites, blogs, craft stores, etc. )

A:  Pinterest definitely!!  But definitely used coupons, watched for sales, and clearance areas for:  Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Walmart, and Target.  Also looked other places for items such as lanterns at Kirklands.   Day after Christmas sales are awesome.  Friends who just got married, use them as resources/advice.

 

Q:  What was the most important service you spent part of your budget on?

A:  Most important eh?  Most expensive was food of course, but most important was dress I would have to say.  What is a wedding without a bride?

 

Q:  What was your favorite moment of the day?

A:   The moment I was getting ready to walk down the aisle!

 

Q:  What was the most challenging aspect of the wedding planning for you?

A:  All of it!  LOL!!!   Working with other people and their schedules/inputs/opinions etc.  Secondly the money.

 

Q:  Is there anything you would have done differently?

A:  I would have cut a few things out that really didn’t matter that would have saved us money.   I would not have taken on SO MUCH!!

 

Q:  What advice would you give to a bride planning her own frugal wedding?

A:  Make a flexible budget, but stay with it.  Realize you will have to spend more on a few things, but you have to decide what is important to YOU and the groom.   Unfortunately realize that wedding planning will consume a bit if you are a frugal bride, but it is SO WORTH IT!!

 

Free For All:  Anything that I haven’t asked that you think is important to add.

A:   Remember it’s all about what you envision and realize it’s one day (yes an important day), but one day in the big scheme of things.  If you set your boundaries with family and friends (which is hard) things will work out.  If you think for a moment you won’t have this as a concern, hahaha…. get real =)

 

Just to list a FEW of Kim’s DIYs:  all the decorations, the wedding wreaths, ALL the flowers (including the bouquets), the favors, the sign in book, and much more!  Feel like you could never be as DIYey as this?!  Contact her yourself!  This journey has lead her to open her OWN Etsy store!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/ScrappyKimmy

 

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Photography:  Samantha J. Beauchamp Photography http://www.facebook.com/PhotographySJB?group_id=0

Ceremony Location:  Staghorn Chapel  http://www.staghornplantation.com/staghornchapel.htm

DIY Lace Flower Holder and Arrangement

It’s no secret that I LOVE DIY projects and that they can save you some BIG $$$$!  Looking for something a little different to put on your tables that won’t break the budget?  Try this:

I took a plain circular paper mache container (you can use whatever shape you think would look best).  Painted it pale pink (again whatever color goes with your theme).  Waited for it to dry and then painted again.  After it dried the 2nd time,  I spread a thin layer of the Mod Podge (up to where I knew the lace would stop).  Carefully applied the lace and smoothed it out.  I then carefully applied another layer of the Mod Podge of it (more like sponging it on lightly no brushing).  Then for good measure I sprayed it with clear acrylic spray.  I’ve let it sit outside for a couple of days to see how it holds up…..and it’s perfectly intact!  The lace has not moved an inch.  

Now for the flowers I took a floral styrofoam ball and let it soak in water for a few hours.  Then I took a golf tee to puncture holes to place my stems in.  For this project I used differing shades of pink Carnations.  They are very pretty, full, and inexpensive.  However feel free to use whatever flowers you like!  You can even use silk flowers if you want to make these arrangements well ahead of time.  I alternated the blooms and filled in with the mini Carnations where needed.

 

 

There are plenty of ways to adjust this to your desired theme.  Having a jewel or peacock themed event…..try painting the mache matching colors and covering with black lace.  Having a fall theme?  Paint in varying fall colors like orange and red and use a different fabric all together maybe a gingham pattern.  Tiffany’s inspired?  Paint that traditional Tiffany blue and Mod Podge a white satin trim around with a little bow.  The possibilities are ENDLESS!

To make just this one container cost me $5 at Hobby Lobby.  The flowers were an additional $12 at my local market.  Not too shabby if you ask me!

Hope this inspired some great ideas and you have fun with it!

Frugal Flowers Flock Together

If you are in the more advanced stages of planning your wedding, you know how expensive a couple of bouquets can become!  You are often looking at an average of $100 per bridesmaid and $250+ for the bridal.  Then you have the buttoners for everyone else (usually around $10-$15 each).  To help with the sting of the cost and get the FBF Peacock look you want there are several options you can choose from.

1) Use flowers that are in season in your area.  The further away you are getting those flowers the more they will cost.  Hydrangeas are great for this spring and summer.  You have all the peacock colors to choose from: purples, greens, and blues!  Plus the blooms are larger which gives you a fuller look for less.  You can add in a FEW of the more expensive favorites such as roses, calla lilies, and orchids.

   

2) You can use silk flowers instead of real flowers.  Once upon a time silk flowers looked very fake and cheap.  However, today you can find some fantastic looking silk flowers that you could never tell the difference.  There are many florists who also use silk flowers and can make you a fantastic silk version of your dream bouquets for much less.  You can also seek the help of the people working in the flower department of your local craft store (such as Michaels or Hobby Lobby).  Or if you’re up to the challenge you can make them yourself in advance.

Another perk to this route is you can sell the bouquets after the wedding and recoup some of your money!

you can make a large, beautiful bouquet with these 8 stems!  Usually half off at Hobby Lobby this would only cost you about $25.

 This gives you an idea of how they would look together.  I also added 2 peacock feathers. (please forgive the image, I shot these on my phone at Hobby Lobby)

3) If you’re up to the challenge (this is what I did), you can make your own real flower bouquets. Your local warehouse clubs (Costco, Sams, BJs) will always have great deals on real flowers.  You can also buy in bulk for a great deal.  You can also buy a few peacock feathers (again these are often 50% off making them about $2 each) to add in.

IF you do this I would suggest getting some help and doing them the day before for freshness.  After you make them, place them in a vase with water and place in the fridge or a very cool place to maintain freshness.

4) I mentioned this in another blog, but it never hurts to say it again!  You can grow your own.  I have known a couple of brides who love to garden and used their own flowers for their special day.  I LOVE this idea for several reasons:  I love to garden myself, this is a much more frugal route, and it’s a much more “green” option.
5) If you’re the more non-traditional bride you could skip the flowers!  A new trend for peacock weddings are fantastic peacock fans
 This image was from this Etsy store
These are a few options that you have. Just reflect on your budget and decide where you feel the importance is.  These options can really go a long way for a variety of budgets.