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Wedding Budget

Wedding + Where We Saved Money in Our Wedding Budget

This is my last WeddingWire post before the wedding, and now that our wedding budget is basically finalized, I wanted to share where we were able to save money and give you some tips on how you can figure out where to save money too!

This is kind of a boring post if you’re not wedding planning, but if you’ve had a wedding recently or in the stages of planning you understand how quickly the cost of a wedding can skyrocket. Matt and I set a budget (almost two years ago now!) and I’ve gotten pretty creative with certain line items in order to get the look we want with our budget.

This post is sponsored by WeddingWire, as always, all opinions and ideas are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support A Blonde & A Briefcase!

Wedding Budget

Where to Save Money in Your Wedding Budget


This was the easiest place to save money. I wrote a post about how we saved money on our save-the-dates, but we also took this a step further with our invites. We actually had people RSVP online, and only sent RSVP cards to older guests. Instead of ceremony and reception cards, we included directions and how to RSVP on the back of the card. This saved us extra printing costs and extra postage. While some people might find it tacky or whatever, but honestly most people use their phones, and their stationary doesn’t really make it that far because it’s lost or recycled as soon as they RSVP.

If you love stationary, please by all means order gorgeous invites. We just didn’t have the budget for it and when we looked at the details, this was one of the easier ways to save money.


You’ll probably find this answer on every single website, but this was a big way that we saved money. We’re actually not doing boutonnières (our suit guy told us that pocket squares are the new thing), and for my bouquet I told our florist I wanted less expensive flowers. (It will still look beautiful, but that’s because I trust our florist implicitly!) Instead of doing floral centerpieces, we’re doing two different types, meaning that half the tables will have one thing and the other half will have another. (A lot of friends & family read my blog so I don’t want to give too much away!)

At church for our ceremony, I skipped the flowers on the ends of the pews and am reusing some of our reception decor for the pews. We’re only using a couple arrangements for the alter!

Flowers are absolutely gorgeous, but if you’re looking for good ways to cut back on your budget, try this! The other way is fake flowers, but that creates a lot of DIY work usually. I’ve also heard great things about DIYing your floral arrangements with flowers from Costco or your local grocer.


If wedding cake isn’t one of your favorite parts about weddings, in my humble opinion you’re doing it wrong. I absolutely love cake, and the sugar rush after doesn’t hurt for my dancing skills. Instead of having a huge cake for everyone, we’re having a small, two layered cake that is really simply decorated. We also have three full sheet cakes of different kinds of cake for our guests to enjoy!

There are a lot of other really fun ideas, like doughnuts or a candy bar. What ever you do, just know that a huge cake isn’t a necessity anymore. Paying your baker to decorate a huge cake is expensive, so doing sheet cakes is much easier!


This may seem weird, but we ended up with a venue that we didn’t have to decorate that much (no panels, no extra fabric) we just have to decorate the tables! We also are able to get a much lower per-person catering rate because they have in-house catering that is much cheaper.

When looking at your venue, you have to consider the overall cost of everything, decorating, catering, not just the venue rental fee.


Not able to afford a cash bar? Try to offer free beer and/or wine, or even two “signature drinks” for free. It’s not everything, but it allows for people to drink something for free.

I know that a lot of people tell you to only invite the amount of people you can provide free alcohol too, but honestly that’s not always possible. Do what’s best for you and your families, instead of what people on the internet say.

Rehearsal Dinner

Sometimes this is in the budget, sometimes just the groom’s or bride’s family takes care of it. But here are some ideas on how to save money.

Don’t go with a restaurant, but try a small space that you can choose what you cater in! My in-laws had the best idea, in order to save money they’re catering one of my favorite meals, tacos! It’s really simple and easy, no one has to worry about setting much up before the rehearsal, and the dinner will be super easy for them.

For us, we have a lot of people involved with the wedding so it’s going to be a large dinner. It’s going to be an informal time for our families to get to know each other better. Don’t feel like the rehearsal dinner has to be this super fancy affair. If a more laid back approach is you and your fiancé, then do something more laid back.

Decorator / Linens 

I didn’t know that linens were going to cost so much, but they are going to make such a big difference in our hall! Our venue does offer linens, but we found that going with a decorator was cheaper. Her linens were cheaper, and she had a lot more options. We are also renting a couple really cute items from her as well.

Sometimes shopping around can really help you, I didn’t even think about a decorator because I didn’t want her to do everything. She’s actually be really helpful and was worth shopping around a little more.

Wedding Budget


How You Can Save Money

Prioritize What You Want

Do you want great papers? How about an an awesome band? Pick 3-5 things and then allot more money for their services then others. Here is a great way to set up your wedding budget!

Find Really Great Vendors By Shopping Around

Instead of just finding one vendor for each service, I contacted multiple and/or reviewed their pricing online. By asking lots of questions and shopping around, we both feel really confident in all of our vendors.

Be Honest About Your Budget

This may seem counter-intuitive, but remember that you can be honest about your wedding budget with them. A lot of the time they can tailor their services to work within your budget!

Be Realistic About What You Can DIY & Ask For Help

I am not a DIY girl, but our families are amazing. I absolutely did not think that we would be DIYing anything for our wedding. But after a bit of a late night crisis when we had to replace our DJ which led to budget cuts other places, my mom swooped in and ended up taking over DIYing our centerpieces with the help of my mother-in-law!

My father-in-law built us a beautiful card box, that I’m so excited to use (and it sounds like it might become some sort of heirloom card box for Matt’s family!). An amazing family friend is making my veil and helped with our table numbers. Basically don’t be afraid to ask for help, so many people want to be able to help.

Remember At the End of the Day

You’re getting married. Yes little details are great on Style My Pretty, but it’s about your marriage! It’s about spending the day with your loved ones as you celebrate a new chapter in your life beginning.

As a blogger this was really hard for me to remember, because at times I was thinking about how great this stuff would look on my blog, and then I realized that it wasn’t about that. In ten years people are going to remember how much fun they had, how in love we were, and how great our family and friends were! Not about some little detail on the table!


Where did you save money in your wedding budget? As a guest what is your favorite part of the wedding? Let me know in the comments below! Honestly the WeddingWire budget tool has been a life savor!



Love this? Here’s more!

Here’s my beautiful bridal shower recap!

How to personalize your wedding on a budget!

First person you know well to get married? Here’s how we’re handling it!

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  • Miss ALK

    I’m not anywhere near getting married but these are fantastic tips Ashley! I was a bridesmaid for the first time this year and have a feeling more of that is in my near future, so I could definitely share things like this with friends planning weddings!

    xoxo A

  • Amanda Faber

    I completely agree on saving on stationery. Your guests literally throw it in the trash after the wedding is over! I wanted to splurge on this and my hubby would not have it. So glad I listened to him!


  • mckenna bleu

    Great tips for future brides! I would say photography is one of the most important things.

  • nicole simonetti

    such an informative wedding post! definitely something worth coming back to if I have to plan one. x, nicole //

  • It’s so insane to me how expensive weddings can be. I know when I am engaged some day I am going to have to save money where I can. So crazy to think even linens are spendy!

  • Ash Neverson

    I love weddings but the planning that goes behind it can be so stressful. Thanks for these tips. Hopefully I get to use them someday!

  • Audrey Knizek

    Having a small cake for display and then sheet cakes to feed all the guests is genius! There’s no need for a giant and elaborate cake when it’s just going to get cut up and eaten anyways. I would also not be opposed to a donut bar :p

  • This is going to be so useful when planning for my wedding one day! Pinning for later. 🙂

  • Taylor Mead

    I’m not engaged or getting married, but this is the exact reason I have a “Wedding” Pinterest board — for stuff just like this 🙂

    xo, Taylor || The Millennial Sprinkle (

  • Awesome tips! I saved a ton of money on my invites by getting “separate and send” invites. Basically, the invites and the enclosure cards are printed all on the same sheet of paper and then you have to rip them apart (they’re perforated). I was also able to cut costs by having a local florist that just opened do my flowers. That helped!

  • Weddings can get so expensive! I really want to put my money towards a great photographer!

  • I saved big on my flowers! My mom made my fabric bouquets with my grandmother’s brooches and it was so special! One thing I splurged on was my photographer!

  • Sami Mast

    These are all such smart tips! I definitely want to save this for the future (even though I’m nowhere near marriage yet, lol!)