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Affordable Wedding Photography, Videographer and DJ Options - Look Here!

Posted on May 23, 2019 at 12:30 AM

I know a bride that used Wedding Bug Studios to book a photographer for her wedding. The process is simple and prices start around $700. There is also information about booking DJ's and videographers in your area as well. Click the link below to visit the website of this hidden gem!


http://www.weddingbug.com/


How To Budget When You Are Invited To An Event!

Posted on March 29, 2019 at 4:00 PM


In earlier posts, I have given advice about saving money for a wedding if you are the bride but what about if you are the guest? This YouTube video by Tracy Hensel adresses how to save your money if you are expecting to attend a wedding or other event without falling in a financial pintch! 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayNXnTA92E4




Financial Duties Of A Bridesmaid Or Groomsman

Posted on December 8, 2018 at 12:35 AM

It does not matter if you are a bridesmaid or groomsman, there are many obligations that come along with being part of a wedding party. This means a lot of your time and money will be spent as the big day approaches. You'll be expected to contribute towards the bachelor or bachelorette functions, bridal shower and even the engagement party. We haven't even gotten to emotional support and DIY assistance! Plus don't forget your wedding gift from you to the happy couple. These are the gifting basics all wedding party members needs to know.

You might think that your presence is perfect enough, unfortunately, pre-wedding spending and your friendship does not excuse you from wedding gift duties. Here are some tips that should ease the burden.




Instead of spending big money for a gift when you attend every event, figure out a budget before you accept your wedding party role. Know how much your participation will cost, and decide what you’ll be able to afford when it comes to gift giving. Then, split your gift funds among the events where a gift should be brought - this includes the engagement party, bridal shower, and the wedding itself. Set aside 40-50% of your money for the wedding gift, then split what’s left in half, giving yourself a firm budget for each present so you’re not left short on cash.

Need another way to stretch your money? Try giving a group gift! Get together with other bridesmaids or groomsmen and pick an extravagant gift and split the cost among all of you. Shop early so you can be the one to snag that gift your BFF really wants, like that totally gorgeous diamond necklace or that pricey Kitchen Aid mixer that would have been way out of your price range otherwise.

Less Expensive Alternatives To Traditional Receptions

Posted on July 2, 2018 at 1:40 PM

Barbecue Theme Wedding Reception The guests will be delighted to celebrate your wedding with this fun-loving party. Your celebration can be more casual with traditional foods like ribs, chicken and potato salad, or pump up the menu with grilled tenderloin, salmon and chicken kabobs. If you are in a location that permits fire pits, consider having interactive foods like s’mores for dessert.


A Dessert Theme Wedding Reception If your a dessert lover, nothing would be sweeter than to invite your guests to join in a decadent dessert wedding reception. This works out best when your ceremony is later than the regular dinner hour.  Indicate on your invitations that the reception is desert only so that your guests won't arrive expecting plated courses. For some real special treats, have a chef prepare things like cherries jubilee, bananas foster or crepes Suzette stations. These are all less expensive alternatives to a full dinner. To make it custom, add a “make your own sundae” bar and have a signature sundae. Serve coffee, cappuccino, espresso and tea to accompany the desserts. If you don't serve alcohol, you will save a lot of money, but no one will miss the open bar with a wonderful coffee station.


Breakfast Theme Wedding Reception  This works best if you and your mate love early mornings!  Have your ceremony at sunrise and follow up with a planned breakfast reception. Traditional breakfast items can be supplemented with some fun stations like omelet stations or pancake stations. Give oatmeal a new twist and have your chef create an oatmeal creme brulee. For the alcohol you can limit that budget by serving mimosas and kir royals. If you can splurge a bit more money, a Bloody Mary station is another fun option. Guests are served a traditional Bloody Mary, but there would be an addtional station with all sorts of options your guests can put in their drinks such as blue cheese stuffed olives, shrimps, scallops, celery, and sour cream.


Mexican Fiesta Theme Wedding Reception  Hire a Mariachi Band or Flamenco guitarist that will keep your guests dancing, and if that doesn’t work some Tequila cocktails certainly will. During the cocktail hour, have a salsa and guacamole bar. Add a station with foods like steamed shrimp, boiled egg, chopped red pepper, chopped cucumber, chopped tomato, chopped onion, diced chicken and tomatillos so that your guests can customize their guacamole. Entrees can include some traditional Mexican favorites like tacos and burritos. Adding a rice dish is also an inexpensive and filling option. Don’t forget to serve Mexican Wedding Cookies!


Picnic on the Lawn Theme Wedding Reception The venue needs to be at a location that has acres of beautiful scenic land or at a park. Fill up decorated picnic baskets with breads, cheeses, fruit and a bottle of wine for each couple. Give each guest a traditional checkered blanket and have them layout on the lawn. You can hire a harpist or string quartet make the mood more romantic. To strech the budget even further, give the baskets away as your wedding favors!


Tip - When planning a reception remember, most often breakfast costs less than brunch or lunch, and dinner is typically the most costly. Some locations may offer discounts for off-peak times like Friday or Sunday or times during the day other than dinner.



An Inexpensive Solution For A DJ

Posted on June 14, 2018 at 3:50 PM


A lot of people ask me, "Is there a way that I can DJ my own wedding to help cut costs?" While I was surfing the web for some ideas, I stumbled across this article on CNET's website, "How To DJ Your Own Wedding". I thought it was kind of interesting and I've included the link below.  So if you know someone that is responsible enough to do this correctly, you can delegate him or her this wedding task.

http://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-dj-your-own-wedding/

Wedding Cake or FunCake?

Posted on March 8, 2018 at 12:55 AM

Should you purchase a wedding cake or a FunCake? It depends on how well you like cake and your budget! Jewel Osco has a wedding cake option called FunCakes. It's the latest trend in weddings that saves you money without sacrificing the thought of having an actual cake at the reception. The FunCake is a prop that looks like real a wedding cake. It is made out of three stacked styrofoam rounds, they are covered in real fondant and other decorations. This gives the illusion of a real looking wedding cake. The FunCake has a slit in the back that can hold a real slice of cake for the bride and grooms "cake cutting" during the reception. You can even add a cake topper if you wish. Knowbody will the the cake isn't real except for the two of you. It will look completly real to your guests without the high cost. The guests are served from a sheet cake or a torte cake that is purchased from Jewel Osco. The next time your in Jewel Osco go to the bakery counter and check it out or go to www.cakerental.com for more information.


Example of a FunCake - This photo is from cakerental.com 


How Should You Shop For Discounted Wedding Decorations?

Posted on July 7, 2016 at 11:00 PM

The first thing you should do after you decide on a theme for your wedding, is to make a list of the decorations you will need. Only purchase the items if they are on sale. For example, lets' say your going to a have a traditional wedding and the ceremony is going to be at a church in about a year from now. You decide that pew bows are one of the decorations you will need to get from the store. The next thing that you should do is sign up online for cupons to be emailed to you from places like Jo Ann Fabric, Michael's, Hobby Lobby, Paper Wharehouse, Party City, etc.  Also, sign up for any cupons that can be sent to you via text message or by mail when your favorite store has a sale. Next, go to a few stores (like the ones mentioned above) that have a wedding section and see which store carries pew bows that you like. Wait until you recieve a cupon for at least 50% off or more and purchase the item. Pay attention to the clearance departments too you might catch a lot of deals there on some wedding items as well. Repeat these steps for the all of the wedding decorations on your list. Start shopping using this method at least six - nine months before your wedding day and you will save a lot of money.


How To Book An Inexpensive Musician Or Photographer For Your Wedding Ceremony

Posted on July 6, 2016 at 4:50 PM

If you are interested in having live music for your wedding ceremony (and maybe even the reception) a place to look for lower cost musicians is the music department at your local university. Call the music department and ask if there are any students who are studying the same instrument that you want played, and if they're available to play music for a wedding. This would help the student build thier resume and you will save money on this expensive element of your wedding. 

This also can be done to find a photographer as well. While your inquiring about the musicians, ask if there is an art school or photography program. Ask if there are any students or recent graduates that would be willing to photograph your wedding at a discounted price. That student would also recieve experience to build his or her portfolio while you save again on wedding costs.






Ways To Get Reduced Or Free Vendor Services For Your Wedding!

Posted on July 6, 2016 at 12:15 AM



The classic way to save money when planning a wedding is to offer to advertise a vendor in exchange for reduced rates. This strategy often works for wedding reception services such as florists, musicians, caterers, photographers and DJ's. You display the vendor's cards in exchange for discounted services. At the reception, you can place a card by each guest's place setting that has a list of the businesses that provided services for your wedding with their contact information. This type of advertising at wedding receptions has proven to be very effective. There are a lot of businesses that would jump at this opportunity to provide services at reduced rates for that opportunity!

A way to get free services is to ask talented people that you know if they could provide their service instead of giving you a wedding gift. For example, lets say you have a friend that is great at photograpy. You can ask him or her if they would take the pictures for your wedding instead of giving you a gift. Your friend doesn't have to worry about spending any additional money to give you a wedding gift and you get a wedding photographer for free! 


Ways To Save Money On Drinks For Your Wedding Reception

Posted on July 5, 2016 at 11:40 AM
Providing alcoholic drinks can be very expensive when factoring it into the budget for your wedding. There are a few ways that you can cut the costs while still providing quality drinks at your wedding reception. For example, instead of having a full open bar you can save money by just offering wine and beer, or have a free cocktail hour and a cash hour after it.  It would be more cost efficient to purchase a keg of beer but any leftover beer will go to waste. If you have extra bottles or cans they can be stored up to six months. 



If you rent a venue for your wedding reception, see if you can supply your own alcohol instead of using the venue's stock, that is a way to save a lot of money. Purchase basic drinks from a discount liquor store in your area. Only buy some red and white wines and a few varities of beer to serve. If you want your bar to be a full bar instead, purchase a varity of standard liquors like rum, whiskey, vodka, gin, a few mixers and some soft drinks such as juice and sodas. Remember, overestimate and buy more drinks than you think you will really need. The last thing you want to happen is to run out of drinks before your wedding reception is over!