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So as much as I love and find it necessary to be surrounded in flowers… sometimes they are the first to go in the great wedding budget cut. It’s true. Flowers can be one of the more expensive things in your plan, and people have different feelings about this. You know my feelings. I worked in a flower shop for two years when I was 16 and can’t seem to shake the petals from my hair. I love them. And for me, they’re up there with food, and music as VIP wedding “big bucks” items. BUT, it’s different for everyone, AND it’s absolutely possible to maintain a beautiful wedding sans enormous blooms with simple elegant elements. Here’s how…

CHEAP FLOWERS IN BULK

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

This is one of my favorite rules, and if you are a regular Wedding Belles reader, you know that I talk about this often. You can maintain a really beautiful look at your wedding by using uniform flowers… lots and lots of them. Daisy’s, mums, carnations and tulips look AMAZING in large bunches. Simple and sophisticated.

 

BRANCHING OUT

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Especially if you’re planning a wedding that incorporates natural elements, using branches instead of flowers can be a very sleek and modern centerpiece substitute for mounds of fluffy petals. Incorporating other details like ribbon, hang tags, and even food can give your centerpieces a modern look for less. Just don’t go overboard.

 

MOOD LIGHTING

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

 

Candles are a great way to light your party, and your guests faces for photographs. Ambiance is very important, and creating different lighting schemes can changes the theme and style of your event. Substituting high candlesticks with lower votives along with small floral elements can add a unique style to your table. I have something similar to this on my dining room table now. Crate & Barrel, CB2, and Anthropologie have beautiful and really inexpensive faux glass candlesticks with beautiful embellishment. Add bright candlesticks, a dash of floral color and you’re done!

 

GIFT GIVER

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Showcase  your favors in beautifully packaged boxes as table centerpieces. Fill them with assorted candies, handmade soaps and stacked elegantly on white cake stands. 

 

FOUND OBJECTS

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

 

Nix the typical centerpice vases and head to your local flea market in search of found objects to incorporate into your wedding style. Use mismatched shapes and style to create a whimsical look on each table with simple florals.


WRAP IT UP

Etsy Seller Two Inspire You $55

Etsy Seller Two Inspire You $55

 

Turning a wreath on it’s back and filling the inside with high candlesticks or hurricane lamps with lighting is another way to make a smaller affair seem more intimate. Choose the wreathe carefully, and make sure your elements go together. 

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As everyone pinches their purse strings and adjusts to our not-so-hot economic climate, wedding goers can expect some changes in the air.


Smaller weddings with fewer guests

This is especially true now. The best way to cut your budget is to cut your guest list first. That way you can still treat your guests to a beautiful wedding with the unique and wonderful things you want without blowing your budget.


Destination weddings or destination type weddings closer to home

Again… your guest list can seriously shrink with destination weddings. People simply can’t afford the travel, hotel accommodations, gift…the list goes on for everyone they know. Your closest friends and family will make the trip, the others will skip but still send a gift. It’s a win-win.

More green and eco-friendly products and services
Green weddings have crossed the trendy threshold and are now in a full blown category as more and more people strive to live more sustainable and eco-chic lives.  Because of this, the “green wedding” has gone mainstream and vendors are tweaking existing services to accommodate the environmentally friendly couple.

Simplified decorations, centerpieces and wedding invitations
We’ll see a step back toward sweet and simple as people continue to have beautiful weddings without the fuss and fluff. This means simple yet elegant and budget friendly centerpieces alternatives and DIY invitations and decorations. More of that to come.


Increased use of online RSVP’s vs. traditional main-in RSVP’s

We’ve had this discussion already. But I for one feel there are ways to cut paper, postage and the killing of trees for some of your invites including the bachelorette, the shower and maybe even the wedding depending on what kind of party you’re planning to throw. Although I have to say I still really love a real paper invite. You can always do recycled.

Buffet Meals, Hors D’oeurve and cocktail receptions
Opting for one of these budget friendly options eliminates the stuffiness that can accompany a sit down dinner, and if done right can make for a really great party atmosphere with tons of dancing, mingling and snacking throughout the night! These are especially great for outdoor receptions! The possibilities are endless!

Cheesecakes, cupcakes and miniature desserts
Again. I’m a cupcake whore and I think having them at your wedding is an excellent alternative to pieces of stale cake that often go uneaten because the dance floor is full.  For go the cake. Downsize to miniature versions that look beautiful set out, and won’t cost you the farm.

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