Quick, hop in this time machine and I will take you back to the day that Shae and I got married.
BEE BOO BOP! Ding!!
We’re there. Take a look at that young couple enjoying the summer sun.
As you might expect, their wedding cost quite a bit less than the average $25k-$30k affair that most Americans have. Let’s take a peek at their budget.
Their biggest expense appears to be food and that was because they invited 110 guests to the wedding and had 30 for the rehearsal dinner. According to theKnot.com, the average wedding has 138 guests. Geez, if they didn’t invite so many friends and coworkers then they could have saved some money. Except they invited hardly any friends or coworkers. Almost all of the guests in attendance were extended family, and almost all of the guests at the rehearsal dinner were immediate family. Aye caramba!
$8/person is insanely cheap for catering. They scored a great deal by using a family friend who was just getting started in the business.
The menu was also very simple. Chicken, potatoes, corn on the cob, salad, and bread. The rehearsal dinner was beef brisket and switching the two or just doing the brisket both nights would be the only change they would make.
The wedding cake was a no thrills two tier plus sheet cake. It was nicely done by a family acquaintance and was delicious. There were no leftovers.
The venue for the ceremony, a church, had some stipulations that added to costs, such as required marital classes. At $5xx some dollars it wasn’t a budget buster.
One expense they could have cut would have been the DJ. Instead, spending more on alcohol would have helped guests have a better time. They scrooged on alcohol though because the reception venue said no (it was never enforced however).
Speaking of the reception, for a measly $250 they were able to use a community center for three days (rehearsal, reception, and brunch). That was a big money saver.
Their wedding bands were plain white gold bands from the department store.
The wedding photographer was Andrew’s brother and sister-in-law. The invites and RSVPs were designed and printed by another brother as wedding gifts.
Shae’s dress was a family heirloom. Some alterations were made for $50 and additional money was spent to clean and preserve it after the wedding. The headpiece was made by her mother.
In hindsight, things could have been done even cheaper. We went to a wedding last year that was very well done and almost certainly done on a smaller budget than ours. We did consider eloping, but figured our parents would kill us. Plus if we eloped we wouldn’t have funny photos like these:
Our honeymoon was a quiet week in the Midwest. The budget was around $1000 and included a hot air balloon ride (something that got rescheduled for our 1 year anniversary).
All told, wedding + honeymoon cost us $8,837.08 according to financial statements. Both were over budget due to all the nickels and dimes. With that said, I don’t think we would make too many changes from our younger counterparts. I for one am glad that we did not elope, as we often talked about when wedding planning was getting stressful. I am also glad that we abandoned the idea of having an outdoor reception on the family farm. Not only would it have cost more, but the stress of it possibly raining would have put everyone on edge. Especially when the morning sky looked like this.
At the end of the day, whether we had a big wedding or a small wedding. An expensive one or a frugal one, the thing that matters is the marriage. Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togeder tooday (for all of you Princess Bride fans).
It’s time to get back into the time machine and come back to the present.
Boo Doo Dee. Bink!
That was a fun little trip!