Six years and seven months. 150 miles. Three apartments. 2 cats. 1 boy. 1 girl.
That’s how many days are left until I put on a white dress, walk down the aisle and say “I do” to becoming Mike’s wife.
Pretty exciting if you ask me.
Remember the whole “Save the Date” post I wrote a few weeks back where I go into detail about the hundreds of ideas I have gone through and tossed aside? The same stupid Save the Dates that caused Mike and I to claw at each other’s throats after spending hours surfing Pinterest and wedding blogs to find the “perfect one?”
Well – after tossing a million and one ideas in the desktop “recycling bin” we finally figured it out. And we couldn’t be more excited about the finished product. Because it looks awesome. And because they cost us $3.60.
Here’s the thing… I’m planning a wedding on a pretty small budget. $10k to be exact.
Well – in the wedding industry that’s considered tiny. To my bank account – it’s a pretty daunting number since Mike and I are paying for this wedding by ourselves. I mean – I know people who spend half of that on their dress alone.
But I need to find a way to stretch $10k to cover EVERYTHING. That includes venue, catering, open bar, wedding dress, groom’s tux, paper goods like invitations, save the dates, postage, flowers, bouquets, centerpieces, DJ, photographer, hotel stay, rehearsal dinner, wedding bands, bridal accessories, transportation, among a thousand other things that I’m forgetting right now.
I remember when I was in the process of getting a proposal from a caterer, when I told them my budget was $10k for the entire wedding – they laughed. The woman literally laughed in my face and thought I was confused. “You mean $10k for the catering, right?” No ma’am – the entire shebang.
Did you know the average wedding costs $27,000 (not even including a honeymoon)? That’s nuts!
Don’t let people like that tell you that you can’t have a wedding on a small budget – because you can. I know people who have had weddings that cost only a grand! (Which I find incredibly impressive… but I like cocktails and good food way too much to settle.)
In fact planning a wedding on a small budget makes you find ways to be more creative and resourceful and makes your wedding that much more personalized from the cookie cutter packages so many places are offering these days.
Anyways – back to the point. My Save the Dates were originally inspired by a design I found on a wedding stationary website that specializes in invites and announcements. If I had ordered 50 of them from the website it would have cost me at least $110 – not even including postage yet.
So I asked Mike if he could use his photoshop skills to play around and recreate the design to our liking. Here’s the finished product:
I love them. Mike loves them. My mom loves them and so does my Maid of Honor (in fact her exact words were:
Want to know why I REALLY loved them? The pricetag. If we had done this the traditional way they would have cost us nearly $150 by the time postage was included. But instead we were able to order 50 of these for $3.60 – the price of shipping. That’s right – these were practically free. Snapfish offers first time customers 50 free 4×6 prints – it was perfect. If you’re not a first time customer – you can get 4×6 prints for only 9 cents which is still quite a steal.
Now we just need to worry about envelopes and postage. I found these cute pink envelopes that are $14 for 50. But I’m also playing around with the idea of getting these reprinted on the back to make them look like postcards in order to eliminate the need for envelopes at all. That way I’m saving the earth of its pink trees while also keeping some extra cash in my wallet.
I do love these custom stamps though from Zazzle and I think it might be worth it to pay a few extra bucks for them since I’m saving so much money elsewhere. What do you think?
Also – for any other budget brides out there looking for a few good resources, here are some of my favorite places to visit for ideas to cut back on costs.
Remember – you don’t have to spend the mortgage of a house to have an awesome wedding. You just need a really awesome guy that you’re excited to grow old and play Scrabble with.