Budget · Love

Magical Winter Wedding Savings

A winter wedding can be magical thanks to the natural glimmer of snow, the need for cozy textiles and the craving for warm comfort food. I am in love with the idea of a winter wedding. Picture it: glittering blankets of snow, crackling fireplaces, hot chocolate toasts, twinkling lights, and maybe even a bit of holiday bedazzle. Winter weddings can be truly magical and oh-so-cozy affairs. And the best part, a winter wedding can allow you to save serious pennies without compromising your dream wedding.

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A Better Venue

winter-wedding-ideas-245516-1513889473566-image.700x0cFewer couples choose winter weddings which means less competition for dates and lower prices. January and February dates seemed to be least expensive out of the year. Many of the more expensive venues we looked at offered significant discounts in this price range. For couples who have their eye on a certain venue and are more flexible on time of year, this can be a great strategy.

Seasonal Decor

During the winter, you can save a lot on the decorations needed for your wedding. Instead of using tons of expensive fresh flowers, go with seasonal decor such as pine cones, berries, wood pieces, and evergreen branches. This not only looks more suitable for the season, but also saves you big money on decorations. Winter can allow for simpler flowers like Gypsophila (or ‘baby’s breath’),  a beautiful flower that you can buy direct from the flower market for a tiny price. You also probably have Christmas lights already on hand that you can use as well. Flowers are a huge wedding expense, so being able to only use a few or opt out completely helps keep your wedding significantly on budget.

Not only is your venue probably already decorated for the holidays, but you can also find plenty of decorations on sale at craft stores like Michael’s and AC Moore. Incorporate bare branches, miniature white lights and other items that you can easily find and are available  during the winter season. For example, you can find bare branches, paint them white and combine a few white flowers into them to create amazing centerpieces. In addition, think about how you may be able to recycle holiday decor into something that works well for a Winter Wonderland wedding.

Getting married in a church? Many churches go all out during the holiday season, adorning the building with intricate flower arrangements, take advantage of their hard work! Incorporate those decorations with your own! More bang for way less bucks!

Your Dream Dress

The best time of year to purchase your dream dress is winter. Between Black Friday and imagesCyber Monday, you’ll likely have your pick of sales and great deals on any dress you could imagine. The same goes for bridesmaids’ dresses, which is bound to leave your bridal party happy. Additionally, many bridal shops, have winter blowout sales where you can purchase the dress of your choice at a steep discount; think 70 percent off. Still, even if you happen to miss these particular sales, you’ll probably find your dress at discount anyway since winter isn’t typically a busy wedding season.

Inexpensive Food

Apart from a few holiday parties, most caterers are less busy in the winter months. Businesses usually see an abundance of clients during the spring and summer, and like venue owners, see a decline in the winter. Because of this, you’ll find that you can snag your favorite chef, or baker, for a lot cheaper than you would during the summer. Since caterers aren’t as busy, you’ll be able to serve a full meal for a fraction of the cost you’d normally pay and you can always utilize this slow time for negotiation as well.

Festive Drinks 

d5ad83efe99574d532be0852a1dd294eChampagne is traditionally associated with weddings but is very expensive. Serve something festive such as mulled wine, spiked hot chocolate or spiced cider for a fraction of the price.

Cheaper Favors

Instead of giving away the usual box of almonds, drink cozies, candles or picture frames, winter offers up an array of wonderful and inexpensive favor ideas that are bound to delight your guests and save you money. You can DIY everything from cute hot chocolate kits, to scented pine cone fire starters, to personalized gloves for the cold season. A winter wedding provides many unique and useful options for wedding favors that don’t have to cost you a fortune.

Beautiful Photos

carly-chris-atwell-winter-wedding-1-1500x837When everything is blanketed in fresh snow, the world looks a little more beautiful, at least in my opinion. No matter what’s going on with the weather, you’re bound to have beautiful pictures.  Unlike rain in the spring, you can still take pictures in the snow. You also don’t have to worry about renting a place for pictures because literally anywhere you take them will look beautiful and surreal in a winter wonderland. Also, like venues and caterers, photographers see a slow season during the winter as well, which means photos for less.

xoxo

Brittany & Brianna

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Budget · DIY

DIY Save the Dates

Hi guys,

I’ve always love the idea of Save the Dates. A cute little card with our engagement photo telling our guests its official; we have a date and we are actually getting married. So one of my first thoughts after we decided on our date and venue, was “Yes I can send out Save the Dates!”, that initial excitement was gone I realized the cost associated with these adorable little cards. 

Now we both have large families and even after painstakingly narrowing down the guest list, we still have 185 guests, which means I need to send out 105 cards. And the average cost of a card is around $2.00 plus the cost of a stamp which is now $.50 so if we do the math (2.00+.50)* 105 = $262.50 (not including shipping/tax)… ouch

So after scouring the internet for cheap (but not cheap looking) Save the Dates, I was outta luck. There was nothing I liked. Ok so I though, what are my other options, perhaps I just skip the Save the Dates and send out the invitations earlier than expected? But no I wanted to send them out. Spend the $200+ and skimp somewhere else? Even if I wanted to, where can I pull money from? How about I make them myself? Ok perhaps thats an option, but they can’t look like I’ve made them. And if I am to make the Save the Dates, I need to stick to a supply budget. Ok I think I can do that…

And guess what…..I did it! I made Save the Dates, and they aren’t half bad. And even better, I didn’t spend more then $50 (not including stamps). Below is how I did it.

Supplies:

  • Vellum Paper
  • Cardstock
  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Scissors or Paper cutter
  • Glue sticks
  • Photo prints
  • Paper fasteners/brads
  • Envelopes

Steps:

  1. I started with a basic design on Adobe Illustrator, but you can use pretty much any word processing/photo program like Word, Photoshop, etc. This design was printed on my inkjet printer onto the vellum paper. I was able to get three cards per sheet of vellum since I made each card 4″x 6″.

2. I also created and printed a back for each card that showed my wedding website. This can be optional. I printed this on pink cardstock. 

3. After I printed out all of the 4″ x 6″ cards on both the cardstock and the vellum, it was time to cut out the cards. If you have a paper cutter this can be a quick process, but if you are like me and use scissors, be prepared it can easily take hours. Go slowly and cut each card out on the lines.

4. Our photographer offered us free engagement photos with the wedding package, but you can also easily use any photo (new or old) you’d like. Once you decide on the photo, order a bunch through an photo printing company like Shutterfly or Snapfish. You can do whichever size you prefer, I chose 4″ x 6″ prints to get the best bang for my buck. Little known fact, if you download the Shutterfly app on your phone, you can get FREE, yes free unlimited prints each month (you just pay shipping).  I was able to order 125 ( I wanted some extras) prints at the cost of shipping. We had two photos that we loved, so we did two different versions of the Save the Date.

5. I glued each photo to the cardstock, which made the Save the Date less flimsy and gave it a higher quality feel. This can be optional if you’d like. 

6. Once the glue is dry, place the vellum layer over the photo/cardstock and insert a paper fastener/brad to hold the whole card together. 

If you notice in this photo, the exact center of the photo is my fiance’s head (not a good look, with a paper fastener pinned through your head). So i simply put the fastener off-center and problem solved. 

And the final product…..
What do ya think? Not too bad for DIY.
Until next time…
xoxo
Brianna
Love

DIY Wedding Invitations

diy_wedding2_blog_extraThe cost of wedding invitations are between $400 and $800 on average. The price varies based on many different factors including the amount of invited guests, wedding theme or design, and materials, all of these are the major things that add up to give you your final price. Letterpress wedding invitations and hand-lettered save-the-dates are undeniably elegant, and invitation suites can get expensive—fast. Don’t forget to budget in the price of stamps. Who knew paper and printing could be so pricey? One way to cut some costs is to DIY your invitations.

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If you’re on the hunt for a budget-friendly alternative (and aren’t afraid of a little DIY work!), there is another option: printing your invitations at home.  Website such as Etsy offer printable invitations designed by stationers and graphic designers, then delivered to you as downloadable .JPG or .PDF files that you can either print in the comfort of your home or hand off to the local print shop. For a fraction of the cost of a custom invitation suite and printing services, you can get a semi custom invitation that fits your weddings theme.

If you aren’t afraid of the computer, another option is to design your own invitations. Wedding invitations can be made on basic programs like Word and more advanced programs like Adobe Illustrator. There are even a lot of free templates online that guide you through the process of creating and designing your own invitation suites.

Flower-Bouquet
Flower Bouquet – Free Wedding Invitation Template
Cards & Pockets

Decorative papers, envelopes, pockets, stickers, whatever your heart desires can be purchased online for fraction of the price. Our favorite online website for the supplies is “Cards & Pockets.com” . They even have full kits for invitation suites and come in a variety of colors and designs.

With the help of the internet and the many blogs dedicated to wedding invitations there is no reason that with a little hard work you cant save hundreds of dollars.

xoxo

Brittany & Brianna

Budget · Wedding Gowns

Say Yes for Less

PW-dress-rackYour wedding gown is one of the most important parts of your wedding day. You’ve probably been dreaming about it and all of its little details since you were a little girl. Unfortunately with the perfect wedding gown often comes a not-so-perfect price tag. Your wedding dress is something that you will most likely only wear once, and we understand that it can be tough to justify spending 10% of your entire budget on just the gown. Wedding gown rental is a popular trend that can help reduce the cost, but you’ll have to return your dream dress eventually.

Did you know that you can purchase pre-owned wedding gowns? A pre-owned wedding dress is a gown that has already been worn by another bride for her wedding day, but the gown has few flaws and can be worn again after a cleaning and some tweaks. These wedding gowns are often listed at deep discounts, allowing you to live out your fairytale dreams at a much more affordable cost. Secondhand wedding gowns are a great option for brides who are looking for that dream designer gown at a lower price point. You can also find pre-owned wedding dresses that have never been worn and still have the tags on them. These dresses are usually the result of brides who found another dress they loved more and were not able to return the gown to the store.

Another great option are sample wedding gowns. What are sample wedding gowns?Wedding gown manufacturers require retailers to buy a minimum number of gowns to be used as showroom items, also known as “samples”. These gowns come in a variety of sizes and may have been tried on several times or not at all depending on the store. These gowns have not been worn in a wedding or altered but they may have some small imperfections, which is why stores are able to offer them at discounted prices.

At Something Old, Something New Bridal we offer our brides a great selection of discounted designer sample and pre-owned wedding gowns at affordable prices. Our view is that no matter the budget, all brides should experience the thrill of finding their dream gown. All of our dresses are priced under $1,500. Come check our selection of beautiful gowns!

xoxo

Brittany & Brianna

Budget · DIY

My DIY Wedding

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Its official, I am a bride-to-be. My Fiance finally popped the big question and now its time to plan the wedding. I am a bride with a budget, in fact I’m a bride who refuses to spend an outrageous amount of money on my wedding (I’ll save that for the honeymoon!)

Like most recently engaged girls the whole wedding planning process started out overwhelming me. Wedding planning checklists and budgets moved me to near tears and left me with many sleepless nights. After all I needed to find a venue, photographer, dj, ceremony band, officiant, hotels, invitations… you get the gist. Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of an elegant fairytale wedding with all the bells and whistles, yet as I started to inquire about pricing I realized my fairytale dream might not be possible. So the research began on how to throw an extravagant wedding on a shoestring budget. I decided that if I wanted my vision to become a reality, I was going to have to make it — literally.

enhanceThere are so many helps tips, tricks and tutorials online for DIY weddings, and I thought, why not go for it? I can do anything I set my mind to. So in order to save money yet still have the elegant fairy tale wedding, I will be doing everything myself (with the help of my amazing mother and bridal party). The save the dates, the invitations, the flowers,  the decorations, the cake, and of course, the bridal gown alterations and accessories (helps that my best friend is an fabulous seamstress).

In the next couple of months leading up to my wedding, I will post tutorials, tips and tricks on all of my DIY projects, starting with my Save the Dates.

I can’t wait to share it all with you!

Until next time

xoxo

Brianna

Photos by fabulous Sarah Shelley Photography