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10 Money Saving tips for your wedding

Congratulations! You are engaged! Doesn’t it feel great?

As the realization of this new relationship status sinks in, you might be super-excited to start wedding planning and that’s when the bombshell drops—crazy wedding expenses! Yes, weddings are expensive. Everything from the venue to the photographer and food can have you straining your bank accounts down to the last penny.

Fortunately, there are several ways in which you can cut expenses and make the most of what you can afford. After all, you do not want to start your marriage in debt. So, here are 10 money saving tips that every couple should consider. This will help you cut a few corners and save some money while budgeting your dream wedding.

1.Venue

budget venue

Three aspects of the wedding usually fall into one account—food, beverages and venue. Together, these three components will consume almost fifty per cent of your total budget. The easiest way to reduce expenses on venue rates is to book a single venue for both the ceremony and reception. This will not only eliminate the rental charge for an entire site, it will also allow you to save on transportation from one site to the other. Two birds with one stone! If you want to further cut charges, consider hosting the wedding during the off-peak season or on a weekday, when prices will be drastically slashed. An advantage of doing so is also that it will be easier to obtain the venue booking as the competition will be very less on these days. Saturday nights are usually the most expensive option. Get married a day early, or a day late, and you will appreciate how much easier this will be on your pocket. Another intelligent idea we found on Buzzfeed is to host your wedding on a day preceding a public holiday, so everyone gets to have fun late into the night as they are off work the next day, and you still get to save yourself some money.

2.Guest-list

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Three words—Snip! Snip! Snip!

Be ruthless with cutting names off your guest list and your wedding expenses will be reduced drastically. Rather than hosting a huge wedding where you don’t know half the people and have to skimp on the service due to budget constraints, isn’t it better to have a lavish affair with the few people who really matter to you? A direct approach to reducing your wedding guest head count is to omit children and colleagues from the list. Also, not everyone needs to have an invite with a plus-one. Limit the plus-ones to spouses, serious partners and live-ins only. Well, if your parents are paying for the wedding, they may want to invite a few extra people, so handle this as is appropriate in your case.

3.Food and drink

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Skip the traditional formal dinner and opt for a wedding brunch or lunch instead. Perfect for a casual wedding, you could cut costs this way. Now, if you want a sit-down plated meal, choose a three course meal over a five-course meal, and it will still go down well. And you can minimize costs by choosing to have your reception at a hotel, instead of at a rented venue. This way you will not have to bring too many things in like utensils, seating arrangements, table linen etc, as it will all be available at the restaurant. You can always find the right dishes to serve on their menu. Most good restaurants have beautiful chairs and tables, and there is no doubt that they are perfect places to dine at. So, help your budget by taking this route. When you choose a restaurant that looks stylish and matches the theme of your wedding, half your job is taken care of. When serving beverages, stay away from the idea of an open bar. Serve beer and wine instead of liquor and add one cocktail drink to complete the list.

4.Wedding Cake—don’t make it, fake it

faux cake

Well, maybe not the entire cake, but at least the extra tiers! Remember that each tier will add several dollars to the cost and unless you have so many guests at your wedding, why let it all go to waste? Most bakers can create faux wedding cakes which look exactly like the real thing. They usually use Styrofoam layers and cover it with icing and decorations, so it looks like the real deal. So, you can get the look, but for much less cost. There are several other ways to make the most of your cake budget, the details of which we have covered in a previous article dedicated to the subject. Here are some of the ideas in a flash:

  • Use a smaller couture cake for display and sheet cakes in the kitchen for the actual service
  • Limit the expensive flavors to one or two tiers alone, while using standard flavors for the remaining tiers
  • Choose standard shapes like circle and square instead of topsy-turvy and fancy shapes to reduce cake costs
  • Decorate with economical options like real flowers, ribbons and easy DIY toppers
  • Go for butter-cream frosting instead of fondant and cut the price by almost fifty per cent
  • Use half or three-quarter servings in place of full serving sizes to eliminate wastage and cut costs
  • Serve cake alongside other desserts in the buffet, instead of at the table. Then, only those who want it will have it and you can reduce the overall order this way

5.Rent your wedding dress or buy it second-hand

If you are not keen on having a brand new wedding dress, opt for a rented one or seek one out second-hand. Vintage wedding dresses are a happening trend, and you can max out on this now. Second hand wedding dresses can be found for as low as half the original cost, even when there is little to no damage to them. There are websites dedicated to this, and you will find plenty of choices to select from. The other option is to rent your wedding dress from a consignment shop or bridal boutique like Best for Bride. Here, you can mostly find the gown in the style you want to wear for a fraction of the original cost and not worry about what to do with it later. With the option to also rent matching accessories like wedding jewelry, veils and headbands, you can achieve the perfect bridal look without hurting your bank balance. All you have to do is place your order in time, collect you dress on the appointed day and enjoy your wedding in it. Return it after the wedding, and worry no more about what to do with your wedding dress. It couldn’t be easier. The third option is to repurpose your mother’s or grandmother’s wedding gown with the help of a talented tailor. Not only will this not cost as much as a brand new wedding gown, it will also give your family heirloom new life. Sentimental and sensible, isn’t that smart? Now, your groom could also rent his tux and the two of you could divert the money saved into a well-deserved treat like your honeymoon.

6.Make the most of sample sales and trunk shows

If there is time left for your wedding, you needn’t go wedding gown shopping already. Keep your eyes and ears open for sales and trunk shows and you could pick up a dress at a better bargain. Or, browse through the sale and clearance section of websites like Best for Bride and make your pick from the dresses listed there. If you aren’t too particular about wearing a specific gown on your big day, why not make the most of your wedding budget by choosing the best choice within your means from these listings? The same could apply to your bridesmaids dresses too. Look for any bulk discounts and use it when choosing the dress. They will appreciate your concern, and nobody at your wedding need know that these were picked up at a sale.

7.Try alternate bouquets

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Cut flowers are expensive and not environment-friendly, so spare the pain and still have fabulous wedding bouquets and décor with alternatives to original flowers. Bridal and bridesmaid bouquets using silk flowers and paper flowers are very beautiful and attractive. Similarly, you can vary your décor using fruits, candles and other easy-to-find accessories and still have a fantastic and unique wedding design. You could even consider succulents and potted plants for your wedding décor, and these could be used again either in your new home or gifted to the party guests to take home with them. Now, if you must have flowers, go for the seasonal and local variety and you can save some cash this way too. Ask your florist for what is within your budget and leave her to weave her magic with it. Or, if you are up for the challenge, make your bouquets on the day with what you find at your local grocery store. The price of the flowers you get there will be far less than at a flower shop, and this means you can find more flowers for your budget. Imagination is key, and it is not difficult to create splendid centerpieces, bouquets, aisle decorations and even venue décor using craft supplies from thrift stores, provided you know how to work around them. You can also use the same flowers that were used at the ceremony venue for the reception, and cut down on associated costs. All it takes is a quick move of the pieces from the first location to the second, and I am sure nobody is going to mind it.

8.Go bargain hunting for your wedding favors

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Personalized wedding favors created exclusively for your wedding are stylish and special, but not absolutely essential. The true meaning of wedding favors is to gift your wedding guests a small and sweet memento for their valuable presence at your wedding. This can be anything you deem fit for this purpose. It can be homemade cookies, brownies you had your baker add to your cake package or preserves that you bought on sale.

It doesn’t have to be expensive, it doesn’t have to be in fancy packaging! It just has to be thoughtful and your guests will appreciate the gesture. Our suggestion is not to be too specific with your ideas and there will be hundreds of bargains out there, waiting to be snatched. Visit the sales and discount sections of wedding favor websites, and book a deal that falls within budget. This will give you a good bargain for the money you can spare. You can always customize it with a few craft supplies that can be found on sale, and you will easily have a personalized wedding favor in no time. Consider printing out your own monogram or wedding stationery using free fonts available online, and you can also save on expensive labels and tags for your wedding needs.

9.Hire and buy local

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When choosing a caterer, booking your band or buying flowers think local and it will save you loads. Plus, you will already know what is best in the area and can make a wise and informed decision accordingly. Go with seasonal fare for your menu and the cost of your food will go down. Should your band have to travel from out-of-town for the reception, remember that you will be paying for their effort to travel this far for your function. Go with the local favorite instead, and you are certainly going to get a better bargain. Like we mentioned earlier, flowers that are flown in from elsewhere will cost more. So, think of whether it is actually worth the added cost. Wouldn’t you be able to achieve a similar effect by substituting it with something local? If so, isn’t that better?

10.Choose your transportation wisely

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You do not need a limo, vintage car or even horse and chariot to drive you away from the venue. You can make a grand entrance or get away in any other car dressed up for the event. All you need is to use your creativity to dress up the car with some wedding paraphernalia, add a “Just Married” sign and you are good to go.

Hopefully, you now have enough tips to have a great wedding day without it costing you dearly. For more wedding tips and advice, continue visiting us on Best for Bride—your one-stop destination for everything bridal.

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5 must-haves at your winter wedding

Winter weddings are a growing trend. As more brides choose to get married in winter, the options available to brides to them are also more. As you go around customizing and adding personal touches to your special day, let us look at the essentials that you shouldn’t forego, so your winter wedding is delightfully complete. Here they are now!

1.A warm and cozy venue

Remember that your wedding guests will be bearing the chills, as they make their way to the venue. So, it is necessary to warm up the hall, well before they arrive, so they can relax and feel comfortable once they are there. Make sure that the hall is well-heated, and there are no drafts entering the room. Keep the ambiance warm and welcoming with soft glowing yellow lights and cozy decorations that immediately make it cheerful. You can also place a few blankets and throws for those guests who really feel cold, to wrap up in.

2.Warm drinks to ward off the chills

Who wouldn’t love a warm cup of cocoa, tea or coffee, when they enter indoors for your wedding. Make arrangements like a coffee or cocoa bar, where your dear ones can enjoy a warm drink before participating in the wedding ceremony.

3.Great lighting

This tip on the Wedding Party Website, is a very important one that all brides have to pay attention to. With the days being short, you do not want a gloomy setup with shadows all over the place. Make sure you pay attention to the quality of lighting, as this will determine the overall ambiance. Rather than choosing bright white lights, warm yellow glows and candle lights are pleasant. Candles also step up the romance, and enhance the holiday cheer.

4.Bring the outdoor elements inside

It is almost impossible to have an outdoor wedding when the cold season is at its peak. Nevertheless, you should add plenty of natural elements to your wedding décor, to add a natural charm to your party. Don’t skimp on flowers or foliage. If you are worried about the steep prices during this season, go with seasonal elements like pine branches, mistletoe and fir, or flowers that are available all-year round. Take inspiration from holiday decorations, and you will come across various elements that are perfect for decorating your wedding venue.

5.Appreciation for all those who made your wedding a success

Everyone from your bridesmaids, to the vendors and your guests have to work extra to make a winter wedding successful. So, you should openly appreciate all the effort they put in to make sure your big day a success. Appreciate and thank them openly for their contribution. Choose thoughtful wedding favors for your guests, and also add a special line or two, thanking them for the trouble they went through to come to your wedding. Similarly, thank your bridesmaids and the rest of the bridal party with gifts that they deserve. Lastly, don’t forget to send thank you cards and provide positive reviews to your wedding vendors.

Have you chosen your wedding dress for your cool, winter wedding yet? If not, come visit our bridal gallery on Best for bride and choose from the lavish collection we have.

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Find out what the floral choices at your wedding actually mean

Most brides only worry about how pretty their bouquets look, and how well it ties to their wedding themes. We cannot, of course, discount the budget factor, and many brides also make this a priority when choosing the flowers for their wedding. However, wedding flowers hold much deeper significance. They personify the values the couple hold dear, and the choice of flowers can tell your guests a lot about you, as a person.

If you are a bride who values the meaning behind traditions, and would like to choose flowers based on what each one signifies, here is a guide to help you make your choice based on the most important factors.

Love and happiness

Marriage symbolizes the beginning of a new chapter; one that marks the love between a couple, and is hopefully filled with joy. Choose the following flowers to express your joy at stepping into this new beginning in life.

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  • Lily of the Valley
  • Stephanotis
  • Gerbera

Roses are the traditional symbol of love, especially the deep red ones. Apart from them, you can also use the following flowers in your wedding, as a symbol of your love

  • Tulips
  • Myrtle
  • Pansies

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Togetherness, Friendship and Faithfulness

A happy married life means the bride and groom remain faithful, and enjoy each others company for years. As their relationship mellows, a good marriage grows sweeter and deeper. Age shouldn’t distance a couple, but bring them closer. This can be possible only when the couple are first friends, and then lovers; for friendship is one of the strongest human relationships that is unaffected by age.

Fredrich Nietzsche said, “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”

This is why every couple should promise to remain friends in thick and thin. Make your choice from the following flowers that are symbolic of togetherness, faithfulness and friendship, to make your floral selection reflect this thought.

  • Bluebells for everlasting love
  • Lavender for devotion
  • Violet for Faithfulness
  • Magnolia for Perseverance
  • White roses for unity
  • Gladiolus for faithfulness and honor

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Luck and fertility

Every couple looks forward to a lucky marriage; one that tides over their storms in life and helps them stay together, come what may. As they begin their journey together, they accept good wishes and blessings.

Historically, marriage was the couple’s passport to begin a family together, have progeny and continue their heritage. Although this has changed over time, there still are couples who look forward to having a happy family with children after their marriage. The following flowers are symbolic of good fortune and fertility, and you may like to add these to your wedding.

  • Hollyhock for fertility
  • Bells of Ireland for good luck
  • Iris for health
  • Alstroemeria for wealth, prosperity and fortune
  • Snowdrop for hope

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While these flower choices are popular in weddings, there are many more flowers that you can choose from. We suggest that you take a look at this article on the Flower Expert website, to find out the meanings and significance of more varieties of flowers. Once you have decided what flowers should be part of your wedding bouquet, come visit us at Best for Bride. We can help you create the bouquet that is just right for your big celebration.

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For the bride who loves color—10 ways to add interesting pops of colors to your wedding

White and weddings are synonymous—the bride in a white gown, white shoes, white cakes, white seating arrangements… This may work for many brides, but there are also those who genuinely love color and feel stifled by the stark whiteness that dominates most weddings. Nevertheless, they do not want to play with too much color, as it can quickly overpower the entire setting, and make it just another party. Or, it may be that they do not want to disappoint their families and friends who expect them to stick to the standard white wedding style.

For those of you who think and dream in colors, here are some practical ideas to add vibrant pops of brilliant shades into your wedding. From bright bouquets to colorful dresses and vividly colored wedding cakes, we have you covered in every way. So, read on and find out which of these ideas you will love to add to your wedding.

A bright pop of color through with groom’s tie and bridal bouquet

red tie wedding

We love how this couple used the same fiery red in the bridal bouquet and the groom’s tie to inject a strong dose of rich color into their outfits. Notice how the brilliance of the red forms a striking contrast with the stark white of the bridal gown. There are few other colors that can create an impact as strong as red. And the brighter, the more attractive it is. Purple, emerald and orange are some of the other colors that can create a similar effect. I also found this interesting idea of matching ties to shoes on this article at Buzzfeed, where the groom matched his orange tie to equally orange shoes. Not an idea for the faint at heart, though!

Slip into a pair of bright heels

Brooke (28)

Image Credits: love_K_photo, via Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Gone are the days when the bride had to choose white shoes to get her outfit right. A pair of brightly colored shoes will be like a little secret hidden in plain sight. This is a perfect choice for the bride who has that tiny rebellious streak, but doesn’t want to defy tradition entirely. It is mysterious and interesting, as little pops of color make short appearances when your dainty feet show as your dress hemline is slightly displaced. Or, if you are daring enough, you could even wear a bright pair of sneakers under your wedding gown. You may already have observed that brides who choose shorter hemlines and dresses for classic vintage wedding themes often choose colorful shoes. Another trending favorite where adding color to shoes is concerned, is to simply wear a shoe with a colored sole. Nobody will be complaining that way, yet you have an unobtrusive but satisfying option to add color to your ensemble.

Think of colorful accessories or a creatively designed wedding dress If you are wary of wearing anything other than white at your wedding, how about adding your favorite color to your main outfit through a brightly colored belt, sash or underskirt. It doesn’t have to be the main feature, but will still be noticeable and can add a signature style to your overall look. You could also look at wedding dresses with a colored motif or one in white with colorful prints or appliques over it, to incorporate a little color into your look, but without excess. Here is a wedding dress that looks like any classic wedding dress from the front, but features a band of red silk that starts at the back of the strapless corset and continues into the train.

Wear a bright flower crown

It isn’t unusual to find beautiful brides playing with elements of nature to add color to their attires. Flower crowns have an unbeatable charm, and it is almost as though the bride is blessed with nature’s bounty and is embraced in it’s beauty. Bright flower crowns, whether big or small are packed with power to create a colorful impact. Here the bride has played with soft and subtle pinks in her brilliant flower crown. Doesn’t she look simply divine in it? Perfect for an outdoor wedding or a destination wedding, this is one choice that every bride should consider. After all, it is not every day that you can walk around wearing a flower crown, feeling like a princess!

Weave colorful flowers into your hairstyle

At long last-plum rose and golden berry clip
Image Credits: Faylyne, via Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Now, if you don’t feel comfortable in a flower crown, you can always weave flowers into your hairdo and get the desired pop of color that way. If your hairstyle involves braids or curls, you can add tiny flowers like button roses into them. Or for serious impact, consider adding two or three signature blooms into your hair in a single location. This will add more emphasis to the color and create a striking effect, as the vivid colors cannot be missed. This article on Xovian.com offers some insight into how to choose the right flowers and getting your look right. I like the author’s idea of trying out unusual flowers like ranunculus, instead of the tried and tested roses and lilies (read boring!) There is no compulsion that you should go for natural flowers, you can find authentic looking faux flowers as well, and they may in some cases work better than the real ones.

Bold and beautiful bouquets

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The easiest way to inject color into your wedding outfit without going overboard with it, is through your bridal bouquet. You can choose the brightest colors you come across, and still not look too loud, when you limit them to your bouquet. It can also be done in moderation for a pleasant and welcoming feel. A monochromatic bouquet in a bright color usually has a splendid impact. Since all the flowers used will be the same color and relatively of the same size as well, it will look elegant and the color will be a welcome style element. You can also use a composite bouquet, where a single large flower is crafted out of individual petals of various flowers. Although a little expensive, it is a fantastic way to create impact with your floral bouquet. If you want to learn more about this unique bouquet idea, I suggest you watch this video by J and Cather, that will tell you everything you need to know about it.

Colorful jewelry
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Image Credits: thisisbossi, via Flickr, [CC BY 2.0]

A fantastic way to add a pop of color that is immediately noticeable, is to choose colorful jewelry for your big day. You have plenty of options to consider, based on the style of wedding and your preferences. Colored gemstones with polished finishes and set in silver or gold can look elegant and stunning. For once, skip the traditional diamond, pearls and white crystals and opt for colors like turquoise, garnet, emerald, sapphire or ruby. These will in fact be even more attractive and can make you feel unique and attractive. For a casual vibe, you can go with uncut and natural looking stones. You can even consider necklaces made from shells for a beach wedding.

Colorful bridesmaids

 

The colorful bridesmaids

Image Credits: Miss Phoenix, via Flickr, [CC BY 2.0]

Your bridesmaids are a valuable addition to your wedding pictures, as they will be featured everywhere. So, why not consider dressing them up in deep and exciting colors to make the overall wedding setting more fun? You can choose any color you want when you go with colorful bridesmaids. Or, even work with the mix and match trend to further spice up the colors at your wedding. This option will not only make each of your bridesmaids feel unique, it will also make your wedding party be stylish and beautiful when they all come together. You can read more about how to do this on this previous article of ours. Another option that you may like to consider is to keep your bridesmaids looks similar, but add color through their accessories. Here, you can mix and match colors and assign different colors for each of your bridesmaids. The picture here should give you a good idea of how this would work.

Colored wedding cake

The white wedding cake may be classic, but it can always give way to a bolder and fashionable choice. One thing we can keep is the white base, and add colorful designs and accessories on it to create an attractive and appealing dessert that will be the highlight of your dessert table. Now, if you are the bride who wants to go with color all the way, don’t hesitate to get a big and bright wedding cake with all the colors of your wedding palette, added to it tastefully. We also find the option of having alternating colored and white tiers very attractive. Work with your baker to find a design that brings out the colors you have in mind in the most festive way, in the form of a fabulous wedding cake that the guests at your wedding will feast their eyes on.

Have a colorful dessert bar

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Image Credits: Didriks, via Flickr, [CC BY 2.0]

Everyone loves to indulge in sweet desserts, and with so many options in creating colorful desserts, this is a brilliant way to add color to your wedding day. Go all the way with color, and use an assortment of desserts to make your sweet feast tempting. Candy and sweets in clear containers, cupcakes with colored frosting and rows of macaroons, chocolates, pies, cakes, fruit desserts and tarts can make the entire setting festive. Accessories like colored platters, picture frames and interesting messages can add more color as well. The same can be accomplished with the drinks counter as well. Consider displaying colored mixers with brilliant mixing sticks and natural pops of color with the use of lemons, olives, mint and herbs for original colors.

Colorful props and décor accessories

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Even when your wedding color palette has more neutrals than color, you can always brighten up the atmosphere by adding strong doses of color in the right places. Add them through accessories like balloons, centerpieces, table runners or even display signs. Many weddings that play with an almost all-white palette look several times more attractive, with a few pleasant additions like colorful napkins or wedding stationery in bright colors. When set against a neutral background, they look even more attractive and the color usually has stronger impact this way. Buntings, displays, sign boards and backdrops are all ways to bring color into your setting. Don’t forget to dress up the aisle and altar also with splashes of color.

Confetti here, there and everywhere

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A quick and inexpensive way to add color to any setting is to add some confetti. In fact, confetti is a huge hit among brides today, as it is fun, exciting and easy to incorporate. Whether you feel you need to add some color to the tables or want to liven up the aisle, confetti can quickly come to your rescue. It is also a trend to have the couple showered in confetti after the ceremony, and is a wonderful way to celebrate your union with a special dose of color.

So tell us, which of these ideas will you be using at your wedding?

For more wedding tips and advice, continue visiting us at Best for Bride.

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Plan your wedding after picking your top priorities

Your wedding plans depend on the amount of money you are ready to spend. With thousands of big and small details to look at, it is often difficult to determine what deserves more attention than the other.

If you are like most couples, your wedding may be the first occasion when you plan a party, so huge. So, it certainly isn’t easy. If you enlist the help of a wedding planner, you will receive very useful guidance on this front. This is because they are professionals, who have practice planning on a budget. Additionally, when working with a wedding planner, you don’t end up with nasty shockers like mentioned on this APW article, where something turns out to be twice the price you anticipated. One or two such instances, and all your budgeting goes for a toss. Nonetheless, wedding planners come at an added price, and not every couple can afford them.

In such a scenario, the easiest way is to prioritize what is most important to you, and plan your budget around it. Pick three priorities, allocate funds to these first, and then decide how to distribute the rest of your budget.

Take a look at this list, and choose the three most important things you want for your wedding from it. Once you do, you can divvy up your budget to accommodate the remaining details.

Dream venue and décor

Are you open to looking at various venue options, or do you have your heart set on a single location? All-inclusive wedding packages cover everything at a reasonable price, but do you want everything customized with the added price tag? Are you particular on a specific color palette, seating arrangement, or centerpiece design? If so, set aside a chunk of your budget for all this.garden-550991_1280

 

Menu and bar

Must you have a classic five-course plated meal, or will a buffet do? Do you want an open bar, or serve custom drinks only? Do you want your wedding to be remembered for the food and drinks you served, or is it just one of the other things at your wedding? Hiring local vendors and customizing your menu around seasonal dishes can reduce your food bill, if serving gourmet fare isn’t very important, to you.

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Entertainment and photography

Wedding entertainment, in many cases, is what makes a reception a hit or miss. Here, you have to weigh the price of a live band against a DJ, consider the cost of games and hiring special entertainers for children. Similarly, do you want a particular professional photographer to cover your wedding, even if it means he charges twice as much as the others in the area?

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Flowers, centerpieces, wedding cakes and favors

If you are prepared to try out various floral combinations, you may get a better deal. Similarly, how important is having exquisite centerpieces? As for favors, do you want to gift expensive one-of-a-kind favors, or is it enough to choose a keepsake, without a hefty price attached to it? In the cake department, how important is customizing it with very specific details? Or can you work with the best packages on offer?

 

bouquet-603738_1280Dresses for the couple

The wedding dress is expensive. Do you want to buy it brand new, or is it better to rent your dress, or even use mom’s dress, and save the rest of the money for something more important to you? The same goes for the groom too. If you plan on keeping the dress, figure in the cost of professionally preserving it as well.

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Visit our bridal gallery on Best for Bride, and find wedding dresses in all budgets for your big day. We make the decision much easier for you.

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Wedding centerpiece ideas

You may not give much thought to the centerpieces for your wedding reception tables, but they are more important than you think. Your wedding guests will spend a lot of time at their tables, as they have their dinner and chat with each other. So, these centerpieces will be in constant focus. Their arrangement will reflect the tone of the wedding and set the ambiance.

While some venues offer a few custom centerpiece options to choose from, you can also opt for your own design and find one that is suitable for the theme of your party. Let us look at the different factors you should pay attention to when designing your centerpieces, so you can maximize their effect.

Height of the display

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This is an important criterion to pay attention to when choosing your centerpiece designs. A centerpiece that is too tall will obscure the view of the guests who sit across each other, and it will be difficult for them to communicate. So, your centerpiece should be low. You can still create an impact by designing the centerpieces to be unique and with interesting design elements. The only time you can go with higher centerpieces is when the design is elongated but not broad. This way, it will not obstruct the view, and will allow guests to talk to each other comfortably.

Width or size

The centerpiece should be compact and not spread out. It should be proportional to the size of the table, and the arrangement should be neat and attractive. Depending on whether the tables are round or long, choose a centerpiece that has the right proportions. A single centerpiece or a cohesive group that occupies a circle in the center is ideal for round tables. Well-spaced tall arrangements on a table runner through the center will be good for long tables.

Choosing the design elements

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Flowers and candles are the popular choices for centerpieces. Apart from these, you can also use balloons, crystals, gemstones, jars, pebbles, shells, fruits or anything else that you can think of. The elements you choose should blend well with the theme. For a beach wedding, a clear vase with shells at the base and floating candles on top would be appropriate. You can also make use of seasonal flowers and fruits to add color to the centerpieces, and also get them at a lesser price. Make sure that you keep the color palette consistent and don’t go overboard with details. It is always the simpler designs that create more impact.

Choose variations for more visual interest

It isn’t necessary that all your tables are decked up the same way. In fact, it is more attractive if each table was personalized differently. Keep the colors consistent and the designs similar, but make slight variations in the arrangement. This will be more interesting. You could alternate two color combinations for each table, or even change the heights and designs of the centerpieces from one table to another. When you alternate styles, the only thing to remember is all the pieces should be tied together with a few unifying factors and not look too distinct.

For more wedding decor tips and advice, visit us on Best for Bride.

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How to hold on to your wedding bouquet by preserving it

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You invest a significant amount of money, time and effort in choosing your bridal bouquet. So, don’t you think it is sad that the blooms that played a huge part in transforming you into a bride, can wilt and be lost forever, after the day?

Fortunately, there are ways in which you can prevent this, and in fact save your wedding bouquet as a keepsake for the years to come. Here are the different ways you can do this.

Silica-drying

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You can have this done by a professional, or try your hand at it yourself. The technique involves brushing powdered silica gel all over your bouquet (sparing no inch of it), and placing it in an airtight container. The gaps in the container should then be filled with silica gel. It is then left to dry for a week to ten days. Once dried, the color is fixed using a fixing spray, and the bouquet can then be displayed in a glass box or flower vase in your home.

Freeze-drying

This is an expensive method, and one that has to be done by a professional. It can take up to three months to complete. The flowers are treated with starch and then freezer dried in the original bouquet style itself. The benefits of this method are that the bouquet looks pretty similar to how it did originally, but it is perhaps the most expensive of all the other methods.

Preserve it after drying

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All you have to do is to hang the flowers upside down in a safe area till they are fully dry. Although the flowers will lose the original look, it will still be a memorable keepsake of your milestone event.

Press and frame

Here, you basically remove the flowers from the bouquet and either save all, or a few. You can flatten the blooms by placing them beneath a heavy book or something similar. If you are good with your hands, you can then arrange them in a frame. The alternative is to have them professionally pressed and framed. Either way, you can transform your wedding flowers into a work of art that can be displayed in your new home.

Apart from these traditional bouquet preservation options, I found many more fantastic ideas at Pinterest. Let us take a look at some of the most brilliant ones.

Create a Christmas ornament

This idea by Wedding Party is ideal for those of you who are short on space and time. Just grab a few flowers from your bouquet, dry them and pack them into a transparent bauble. Close it off with the cork of a wine bottle used at your wedding, and add your wedding date to the glass ornament. You now have an ornament which you can fondly bring out and display on your Christmas tree every year.

Use it in a paperweight

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The Flower Preservation Workshop company suggests having your wedding flowers converted into a beautiful paperweight. Take a look at how the end result looks, and I am certain you will fall in love with it. Brilliant!

Now, tell us which of these will you be using? If you haven’t thought about it yet, it may be a good idea to do so now. For more wedding tips, advice and fun ideas like these, keep visiting us at Best for Bride.

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Ideas for a pretty wedding cake decorations with flowers

Flowers have the power to transform any gloomy space into something cheery and welcoming. It is no wonder that these beautiful elements of nature have a prominent place in weddings, and are found everywhere from bouquets and centerpieces to bridal hairdos and wedding cakes.

Wedding cakes decorated with real flowers have an endearing charm. It is an easy way to match your wedding cake to the rest of your wedding theme. So, here we will look at all that you need to know about wedding cake flowers and how you can use them to make your delicious wedding dessert look fantastic.

How to choose the flowers

There are basically two ways in which you can use flowers for cake displays—crystallized or freshly picked. Master cake maker, Fiona Cairns, who is famous for decorating Prince William and Kate’s wedding cake, says that crystallized flowers can be used on cakes to create masterpieces. In this article on the Daily Mail, Cairns suggests using edible blooms such as rose, pansies and lavender and leaves like mint and sweet geranium for crystallized decorations. These can be crystallized with a sugar and egg white coating well ahead of the wedding day, and will not spoil.

When using fresh flowers, the decoration should be done just hours before serving, as they can wilt. Here are the list of factors you have to consider when choosing them.

  • It is important to ensure that the flowers used are not toxic and haven’t been sprayed with pesticide.
  • It isn’t necessary to decorate your cake with only edible flowers. You can also use non-edible flowers for decoration, but make sure that these are removed before serving.
  • If a flower is edible, you can serve it to your guests and leave it to them to decide whether they want to try it or not.
  • Choose flowers that do not wilt easily, especially if your wedding venue is warm.

Things to remember when using flowers as your cake decoration

The best person to guide you on which flowers are suitable for cake decorations, is your florist. Ask your wedding florist to thoroughly clean each and every flower which will be used on your cake.

If you want the beauty of the blooms on your wedding cake, but are worried about how hygienic it will be, choose a cake design with tiers that are separated and flowers placed between these tiers, so it doesn’t touch the cake.

There are various arrangements you can consider for your floral wedding cake. These include, but are not limited to the following:

An arrangement on the top tier alone, where a spell of colorful blooms will occupy the center. They can be placed on a divider that separates them from the frosting.

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Bright colorful flowers that richly deck the layers of the cake. This can be done with the same flowers or a multitude of varieties, depending on the theme.

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Small flower arrangements at different locations and also on the edges to add a pop of color.

For more spectacular cakes with floral accents in both fresh and candied versions, take a look at our cake gallery on Best for Bride.

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Winter Wedding Flowers

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When planning a wedding, choosing flowers in season is a well-known strategy for saving money. What if you are having a winter wedding? Are there flowers in season even when the ground is covered in snow? What are the options for winter wedding flowers? Should couples use trendy alternatives to flowers in order to save money when planning a winter wedding?

Winter wedding flowers can be economical or break the bank. If you have your heart set on having flowers that are not in season during the winter, your floral budget can suffer. You may have to pay more or have fewer flowers to accommodate the extra cost associated with off-season flowers.

Some flowers are available year-round at very reasonable prices. Roses, carnations, Gerbera daisies, and some types of lilies are a few of the flowers that are generally available any time of year. Remember, if your wedding is close to Valentine’s Day, the price of roses may be much higher than usual. Narcissus are an economical winter flower.

When choosing the types of flowers that you want for your winter wedding, you could ask florists what flowers would be easiest on your budget. If you want a particular flower to be the highlight of your wedding flowers, you can call local florists and ask for pricing for what you want on the date of your wedding. You may find a florist who has your favorite flower for a significantly lower price than the others.

Many types of filler flowers in a variety of colors are available throughout the year. Don’t be discouraged if there aren’t any economical choices for flowers that would show off the wedding colors. A white flower like white roses or white lilies could be used along with filler flowers and accents that match the wedding colors. Dried flowers and eucalyptus are another option for bouquets and wedding flowers.

Winter brides often get creative with alternatives to flowers. They may have fewer flowers and supplement the wedding flowers with handmade accents. Paper and burlap flowers are a popular DIY wedding decoration. One couple made burlap roses for their groomsmen’s boutonnieres. Modern bouquets can be crafted from fabric, feathers, colorful buttons, beads, strings of pearls, vintage brooches, or photocopies of pages from the couple’s favorite book. Even white, black, and gray leather has been used to make a rose bouquet.

Embrace the white, snowy look. While one option is to go bold with red roses and other red flowers that are in season, consider echoing the pristine winter with your flowers. Some gorgeous wedding bouquets and arrangements have been made with white peonies and dusty miller for a white winter look. The dusty miller provides a silvery-gray accent. Within the context of winter, they can look as if they are ferns dusted with snow.

For more information about planning an incredible wedding any time of year, please take a look at the Best for Bride blog.

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Dress up your wedding bouquet with Gorgeous accessories

Floral bouquets have a refreshing beauty.  You can never go wrong with adding more excitement to your wedding bouquet with a few well-chosen accessories. These accessories can easily tie your bouquet to the theme of your wedding. While we have seen bouquets that are entirely made from non-floral elements in another post, we will now look at some accessories that can be used with your floral bouquet in this article. This will not only allow you to have a unique design, but also give you the option to save something special from the bouquet as a keepsake to remember your great day by.

This video on the Martha Stewart website demonstrates some excellent techniques to dress up your bridal bouquet. Let us look at the various elements that were used to complete these looks.

Silk ribbon tie

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A bunch of flowers with long stems look naturally charming, but may seem a little incomplete. To add more finesse to the arrangement, all you have to do is trim off the excess length of the stems, and secure it with the most luxurious silk ribbon that matches your color palette. This is a very basic floral bouquet design, but one that is just right if your bouquet contains vibrant and lovely, large flowers which are attractive on their own, and do not require too many additional details. While securing the ends of the ribbon, it would be a good idea to use decorative pins in a row, to give it an attractive finishing.

Satin ribbon bow

For a compact round bouquet of flowers like roses, consider wrapping the stems with a double sided satin ribbon bow with a luxurious silky finish. You can tie the two ends into an elaborate bow, and add small details like button roses or little crystal brooches on the streamer.

Wedding brooch bouquets

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Brooches are very dainty, feminine accessories, that add an instant charm wherever they are used. Dress up your wedding bouquet with these fantastic accessories, and it will be a wonderful addition to your overall look. You can choose brooches that match your wedding jewelry, or colorful brooches that match the wedding palette, and they won’t go unnoticed.

Lace trims

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Image Credit: Aenon Nimus

Flowers and lace are always a perfect match. A floral bouquet with a small lace trim in the perfect bridal accessory for a vintage style wedding. You can choose the trim to match your wedding dress, if it is in lace. It can also be your something old, where you can pick your lace from your mother’s or even grandmother’s wedding dress. Not only will this have sentimental value, it will also be a choice that renders a unique touch to your bouquet.

Patterned cloth trim

If your wedding theme incorporates patterns like chevron, geometrical prints, polka dots or stripes, add the same details as the trim for your wedding bouquet. It will be a perfect addition to the décor, and the brighter the color, the more attractive it will be against your white wedding dress.

Which of these ideas do you like? Come visit us at Best for Bride, and we can help you realize your ideas for the best wedding bouquet you can possibly think of