Thursday, March 3, 2011

Wedding Redo Part 5

How did you decide who would make the wedding guest list cut?

Well, my parents paid for our wedding so they determined how many people we could invite. They set the cut off at 150 guests-- we invited about 170, because of the rule that 10-20% generally cannot attend. After that, we gave my family 1/3 of the invites (to include my side of family and my parent's friends) to my parents, 1/3 of the invites (including his side of the family and his parent's friends) to his parents, and the remaining we were allowed to use for our friends from high school, college, coworkers, present day etc. It worked out very well for us.

{of course we invited all of our friends that knew how to party}

What are some of your best money saving tips? What aspects of your wedding did you feel were worth splurging on and what areas did you feel were good areas to save money?

Well the most important focus for us was the party itself. We knew that we wanted a fully stocked open bar, great food, and great music.

Our DJ was our biggest splurge. In fact, it's crazy how big of a splurge he was but it was my mom's idea and her treat. That being said, he was incredible and probably the best wedding DJ I've ever seen. There was a DJ and an Emcee and he really worked the crowd and got everyone moving. Despite the splurge, it was totally worth it and they were my favorite vendor of the evening.

{Here's our awesome emcee, Ice}

To help save money we made our own invitations and save the dates out of a starter kit from Michaels. The invitations turned out beautifully and no one guessed that they cost about 45 dollars for all of them after 40% off coupons from Michaels.

We also saved money on our videographer. Even though we were married in Washington DC, Baltimore is only 45 minutes away so I visited this website: and requested vidography services. Tons of videographers responded to me and we found one guy that went ABOVE AND BEYOND for a fraction of the price of a professional videographer. He did all that in exchange for using us as one of his sample videos as he was trying to start his own company.

We also saved a lot of money on our floral bill. Because our church was so lovely we didn't get any flowers for the ceremony. We didn't think it was worth spending a lot of money on a space that would only be occupied for 30 minutes. For our centerpieces, we wanted a fall theme so my mother and I bought all of the centerpiece pumpkins for 50 cents each at an after Halloween sale in 2008 and we supplemented what the florist did with our own berries, twigs etc. to help fill our pumpkins for less cash. Lastly, we didn't use a traditional wedding florist and instead sought services from a garden center. Garden centers can do everything a wedding florist can do, and usually for a lot cheaper.

{Our wedding was not one of those awkward ones where no one dances}

How stressful was it to make the seating chart/plan?

Not stressful at all. I was worried about this because people are always complaining about this task, but it wasn't difficult for us at all. Basically, we tried to sit our friends with at least 2-3 other friends. Then, we told our parents that they had 4 tables each and to arrange them as they wish. It made it much easier because my parents know their siblings and friends best.

{All the single ladies}

What's your best tip for keeping balance in your life and staying calm during the process?

Just remember that a wedding is one day, but a marriage is a lifetime. I tried to stay as relaxed as possible through the process and I didn't subscribe to one idea too greatly/powerfully. In my ideal world, we picked the fall so that we could take pictures outside amidst the leaves and trees. Well, it poured on our wedding day and it was freakishly cold. It didn't bring me down at all. In fact, I barely noticed. I think it helped that I didn't get wrapped up in how things should be, because I always remembered that something wouldn't come out as expected/planned.

{Party, Party, Party}


Ashley said...

love it -- your pictures are fabulous BTW! It looks like everyone had an amazing time!

Kim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kim said...

Love this - althought I have to say, I'm so happy to never have to plan a wedding EVER AGAIN!

Kassi @ Truly Lovely said...

I love these posts!!! And all the great tips! Thanks!

Dancy said...

I think the guest list is the hardest part of planning. And I'm with Kim (above). I loved our wedding but HATED planning. Seriously, how do people plan weddings w/o blog friends? I was clueless!

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