A dear friend of mine got engaged in April and has set her date for January 2009. Most brides will not even dream of planning their wedding in under one year and so I was eager to hear her ideas for her big day! (We'll call her Nadia to keep some personal information private).
I realized that this bride is doing something that many brides do not. She is using so many resources to her advantage to help her come in under budget while not sacrificing what her ideal wedding is. She has scoured the web for inspiration for invitations, photographers, venues and wedding dresses and she has managed to get amazing deals on everything thus far! So I thought I would go into a bit of detail that can maybe help some future brides out as well.
There is a restaurant in Vancouver that used to be an historic bank so the detailing on the building is pretty unbelievable. Nadia's fiance saw an old friend downtown a few weeks ago who happens to be the owner of this restaurant. They were invited for dinner and fell in love with the interior and the location. They decided to get serious and ask the owner about holding their wedding at the restaurant, and what he offered them was something that they never even thought possible! The entire venue (2 floors) for both ceremony and reception including setup and takedown, all of the decor including candles, and customized tapas for the entire evening all for under $2000.00. That works out to less than $30.00 per person!
Another mutual friend of ours happens to be an amazing photographer who is interested in breaking into the wedding industry. She has graciously offered to be the wedding photographer which will be free for Nadia and at the same time will help her to create a portfolio.
Nadia knows exactly how she wants her invitations to look, after spending hours pricing them out locally and online. As an avid scrapbooker, she has decided to make them herself for all 70 guests and was able to purchase enough cardstock, envelopes and embellishments for a total of $143.00 at a store closing sale.
Nadia knew that she wanted an off-white dress that was fitted, but she was open minded to the designer, style and all other details. Once again she used the internet to find the right dress and she was able to narrow down the exact style of her dream dress! Rather than spending thousands on the dress, she utilized Craigslist and ebay and then came across a local wedding dress consignment store that carries a huge selection of current dresses. Nadia found THE dress here, which happens to be a Maggie Sottero, for less than $500.00!
These are just some of the ways there are to utilize resources for your benefit! We're not saying to take advantage of people but if you know someone who is genuinely interested in and is happy to help you, then let them! When it comes to wedding planning, sometimes you can have your cake and eat it too!