Venue, Catering, and Rentals
- Event Bar Service-We had a cash bar at our reception. I think it’s fine to do so. Borrowedandblue.com lists the Top 10 Ways to Cut Alcohol Costs at Weddings.
- Rehearsal Dinner-I held a barbecue in my father-in-law’s backyard. A friend of mine had his at a pizza buffet restaurant. It doesn’t have to be expensive.
- Ceremony Officiator-The cheapest option could be to have a family member or friend officiate.
- Hotel Room for After Reception-E.how has suggestions on How to Save Money on a Wedding Night Hotel Room.
- Engagement Ring-I remember watching an Andy Griffith show as a kid in which a character replaces his wife’s diamond with a fake, and she doesn’t notice the difference. I’ve always wondered what the point of spending so much money on a diamond was, when you can’t tell the difference. De Beers began a marketing campaign during the Great Depression, to make people view diamonds as the only acceptable engagement ring. The Onion, the parody newspaper mocked the tradition and the modern diamond trade in the article Sierra Leone Diamond Miner Devastated By News Of Broken-Off Engagement. My wife had her grandmother’s and mother’s engagement rings. I paid $400 in 1990 to have one of them made into a new engagement ring. Clark Howard list of 3 ways to get the best deal on a diamond engagement ring, which includes lab created diamonds (not cubic zirconia).
- Wedding Ring for Bride-Livelikeyouarerich.com lists 17 Ways to Save Big on Your Engagement and Wedding Rings.
Attire and Accessories
- Tuxedo/Suit Rent or Purchase-My brother and brother-in-law didn’t wear one for their weddings. Moneycrashers.com lists several ways to save on tuxedo rental or purchase.
- Tuxedo/Suit Accessories-Are they really necessary?
Flowers and Decorations
- Bridal Bouquet, Boutonnieres, and Corsages-Theknot.com lists ways to save on wedding flowers.
- DJ-I’ve heard of them being replaced by music from your phone. There are advantages of having an MC for the reception, but maybe you can find a friend.
- Live Band-We had a live band at our wedding. I used to play in a bar band. I’m a huge fan of live music, but hiring a band is expensive. It’s also hard for a live band to play a wide variety of music for the wide variety of musical tastes of a wedding crowd. If you really want live music, you may be able to find music venue with a cash bar that is open to the public that would be glad to have your wedding party there.
- Gifts for Parents and Gifts for Attendants-We didn’t do parent gifts. I don’t remember what we did for attendant gifts.