Saving on a Wedding, Pt. 3

December 2, 2008 at 3:21 pm 9 comments

This is post three of a three-post guest series by Ali of Tattered, Tagged, Treasured on how she saved a ton without cutting anything they valued on her wedding. Post one is here, and post two is here.
The Decorations

So, we had our caterer but no plates or silverware or linens. I looked into rental places and the lowest cost per tablecloth for tablecloths I considered fit to serve upon was $15 each. Screw that. I bought about 15 matching tablecloths in various sizes that fit my wedding colors on eBay for less than $100 shipped. If you start early and you’re willing to use patterned tablecloths and be flexible, you can get an insanely good deal.

For plates, we decided we didn’t care if every plate was different since the eclectic look, again, fits well with our theme. I picked a few up at tag sales, but I bought the bulk of them at Goodwill. FYI, you can bargain here, too! At our Goodwill, plates were $1 each. We bought 106 plates (every plate they had that wasn’t chipped or terribly scratched) for $70. We probably could have bargained even more, but at some point you just get tired and want to be done, you know?

For my silverware, I didn’t care what it looked like as long as it had the heft of metal. Standard rates in a lot of places were as high as $1 per utensil. I went with this eBay store: Bob’s Restaurant Supplies. I got 432 pieces for just over $100 shipped.

We wanted a lot of easily disposable stuff since we’re doing so much ourselves. I hit up Party City and spent $350 on all disposables. This was enough for all 70 people to have two rounds at the buffet, over eight drinks, plenty of passed cocktail food, two plates of dessert and one cup of coffee or tea. For our napkins, we went entirely with paper. For our dessert plates, we went with gold plastic. For our dessert forks, we went with gold plastic. For our coffee cups, we went with gold paper. For all drinks, including wine and champagne, we went with clear plastic. Sure, glass would have a much nicer heft, but this is something we didn’t feel it was worthwhile to schlep in or spend on. Rentals for glasses and linen napkins cost more than the total amount we spent on all of the disposable stuff and you don’t get to keep any of that, either. A lot of people choose to go personalized on all of this kind of stuff. We chose not to because it’s very hard to control the quality of what you’re getting and the plain stuff is ultimately going to look a lot classier on our patterned tablecloths. The best part is that we could open packages as needed and return some of it after the wedding.

I like flowers, but the return isn’t worth the money to me, so only the wedding party bouquets was going to use flowers. Our centerpieces were large glass vases which we were going to fill with water and frozen cherries (to float). We spent between $8 and $15 on each vase. When I went to go get the frozen cherries, I couldn’t find any. On the other hand, roses were on sale super cheap, so we went with roses after all.

2946188191_68d1212ac1I had masquerade masks to hang everywhere and candles to place everywhere. The mansion is fully furnished and decorated, so that was it for decorations for us! Using what’s already there is a great way to save money and it lends so much personality and warmth to your wedding.

Honestly, there are so many ways to save at your wedding. These are just a few of the ways I chose.


Ali’s post about the wedding with links to all the photos from the wedding is here if you’d like to check out the end results and see if it looks like a frugal wedding. In my opinion, it was an awesome one.


Entry filed under: not spending. Tags: , , , .

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