Wedding Week – Day 3 – Casey Milleson on Sticking to a Budget

Your wedding day is likely the most important day of your life to date, but just because it is the most important day of your life doesn’t mean it has to be the most expensive!

Today, I’ll give you a few ways to cut costs for your wedding, while still having a day that is full of little details reflecting your personality as a couple.

  1. Choose an off day, date & time.  Getting married during peak season on Saturday afternoon or evening is the most expensive time to get married.  Choosing a date in January, February or March is a great way to cut the costs of your wedding venue as well as vendors because there is less demand.  If you’re set on a wedding day during peak season, choose an off day such as Friday or Sunday or even a nontraditional time like mid to late morning.

  1. DIY Stationery.  Professional invitations range from $70-$500 per 100 invitations.  Doing them yourself is a great way to cut costs & still have beautiful stationery.  You can download low-cost custom invitation suites on Etsy or you can use pre-made wedding suites at You can customize the colors as well as the text, which makes for an incredibly easy DIY.  Printing can be done at your home or online, where many vendors will cut the paper for you to ensure a professional finish.

  1. Enlist the help of “friendors.”  By enlisting the help of friends as vendors, you can save a lot of money.  You can either call in favors or trade services, both of which are great options.  Most friends and family members would love to help make your wedding day all you’ve dreamed of, so don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Make sure to not let the generosity of friends/family go unnoticed, though. Be sure to thank them on your wedding day to ensure those relationships aren’t strained, but strengthened from the experience.

  1. Ditch the drinks.  Another great way & one of the easiest ways to save money is to ditch alcoholic beverages at your reception.  If you must serve alcohol, have only one or two signature beverages rather than having an open bar.  This alone could save you thousands of dollars!

  1. Serve appetizers & sweets.  Serving a full course meal adds up quickly, no matter how many guests attending your big day.  A great alternative is an appetizer reception with dessert.  If your reception doesn’t fall during a meal time, you can get away with serving mini appetizers with a dessert bar or wedding cake..or both!

  1. Become friends with your local grocer.  Your local grocery store is such a great resource during your wedding planning process.  Many grocers such as Publix have amazing bakeries & can create cakes for a much lower price than actual bakeries.  Take a photo of a cake in & have them replicate it for you or stick to a simple white frosted cake and then decorate with flowers.  The bakery isn’t the only place you’ll save money at your local grocery store.  Floral departments often charge 40% less than florists for centerpieces, bouquets, corsages & boutonnieres.

Having a budget helps you stay sane during the wedding planning process.  Don’t be afraid to buck traditional norms in order to have the wedding of your dreams.  The most important thing is that you’re getting married, so take time to invest in your relationship now, even during the planning process.  Your wedding will last one day, but your marriage is for life.  As Anne Almasy so aptly put it, “If you’re planning your wedding right now, please just close the magazine. Log out of Pinterest. And look at the person you want to grow old with. Remind yourself of why you’re doing this. And really CELEBRATE when that day comes. Don’t stress about your shoes or your cake or your flowers. Don’t stress about anything. When it’s all over, you will be married, and surrounded by the people who know you and love you most in the whole wide world. I promise: that is the Perfect Wedding.”

So there you have it.  You definitely can have a perfect wedding on any budget.




Casey Milleson is a content and organization pro from Nashville, Tennessee.  She enjoys learning new things and teaching others to do the same. She loves DIY projects and is passionate about people overcoming the D in DIY. She’s part of the trio that makes up Budget Wedding Boot Camp & is also currently working on a new project–Mostly Millie, an online shop filled with “handmade happiness.”


You can find her on Facebook.


Photo submitted by Casey Milleson.

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