My husband and I saved $1,000 to spend on our wedding. That amount had to cover everything that we would need for our special occasion. The first thing we did was make a list of friends and family members who had offered their services for free or at a discounted rate.
We decided to have our wedding ceremony in my mother’s backyard. Our wedding was going to be very small with just under 30 people in attendance. We wanted something simple and intimate. Her backyard was ideal because it was enclosed with a wooden fence in a quiet neighborhood. The best part is that she had a wooden archway already erected with white outdoor lights wrapped throughout branches that hang over the arch. It was the perfect altar.
I found a wedding officiant online and scheduled an appointment to meet with him in person. His personality meshed very well with ours and we booked him for our big day. His fees totaled $250.
I started my wedding dress search at David’s Bridal. I scoured through racks and racks of various dresses that just weren’t in my price range or appealed to me. Moments before I was ready to throw in the towel, I saw an area of discounted dresses. I browsed through the rack and found a glorious dress in my size. It was a white, strapless gown with sparkles that formed at the bust and trailed down the front of the gown. The dress fit perfectly and was marked down to $50! I couldn’t believe my eyes. The cashier explained to me that it was actually a prom dress. I started laughing and happily paid for the prom dress to wear on my wedding day. I also purchased a pair of white bridal flip flops for $20.
My husband wore a long-sleeved white dress shirt with black slacks, a burgundy cummerbund, and black dress shoes. The total cost for his wedding attire was $60.
The grand total for flowers was $150. I had a handheld bouquet of gardenias and we also ordered some rose petals to sprinkle down the aisle.
A friend of ours owned a restaurant and offered to cater our wedding as a gift. He set up a buffet table in my mother’s screened-in porch that overlooked the wedding area. He also brought dinner plates and silverware from his restaurant. Our wedding cake was a gift from my grandmother and my parents provided the drinks.
We rented table linens, two candelabras, decorative pillars, and white folding chairs from a local rental company. Our rental cost was approximately $250. My mother has a very large dining room with a table that seats 10 and a few folding tables. We used the chairs from the outdoor ceremony for the indoor reception, too.
I made all of the centerpieces for the reception tables. They were candles and stones on circular glass holders. All of the supplies cost around $30. We also bought bubbles for the guests to blow at us as we walked down the aisle after the ceremony. I found a large box of them for $20 on Ebay.
A good friend created a mixed CD for us that included every song played on our wedding day, from the song I walked down the aisle with to the music at our reception. We had another friend DJ during the ceremony.
We didn’t hire a photographer but ended up with hundreds of beautiful photographs between the family members and guests who took photos. My cousin videotaped the ceremony for us as well.