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Topic: Sooo clueless...any advice is welcome....  (Read 946 times)
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TreeTree
« on: August 12, 2008 08:18:27 AM »

Hello, my boyfriend of nearly 6 years and I have decided we really want to spend the rest of our lives together and make it official...however times are tough but looking better.  He was just employed full time and I'm about to start a 35 hour a week job and substitute teach in the mornings/afternoon.  Still, we're tired of waiting to strike it rich and plan a huge shebang....I feel as if we are engaged but I don't have an engagement ring...I really don't mind that I think the wedding bands are more important, but I haven't really told anyone but my sisters because there seems to be all these "rules"and  steps people go through.  Has anyone here done it this way?  Just have a ceremony and maybe on an anniversary have a really huge reception?  Does anyone have links or advice on how to make something special that includes those closest and feels like an event but doesn't cost much?  We both like this woman who did his grandparents vow renewal and taught his confirmation class...I was thinking of calling the church and asking what we could do there...and then maybe something at one of the state parks?  I still want to look pretty and feel special but don't want to spend the amount of a car or a house down payment on a wedding...help!

Oh, btw, we both have discussed lots of ideas and if we could afford huge we'd do a whole kind a Tim Burton esque theme...black and white with swirls and in october...maybe some orange accents.  We both really love the movie Sleepy Hollow.  Maybe we could still do something that reflects our personalities.
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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2008 07:34:33 AM »

By no means does a lovely wedding need to cost a fortune! Of course many people think that $5000 is cheap for a wedding  Undecided. And I understand what you mean about the rings, my wedding is in about 6 weeks and my engagement ring is nearly here  Cheesy. BTW I found absolutely gorgeous custom made rings and got our engagement rings and wedding bands in sterling silver, citrine, stainless steel and titanium and paid less than $150 for all 4 rings. Let me know if you want the supplier details and stuff, they really do rock.

How about a nice ceremony in a church/park (whatever you fancy) or even have a friend ordained if you are in the US? The ceremony doesn't need to be expensive and if you choose a garden setting (local botanical gardens,etc) you don't even need decorations. I know one Craftster hired an art gallery - instant decorations! Something that makes the day special and let's your loved ones get involved.

If you wanted a reception you could have a park picnic, or in October you could even have a wedding/Halloween party and have everyone dress up in Burton-esque clothing. For a park reception you could have 'traditional' picnic blankets (op-shops and family cupboards) and everyone could bring something yummy. A few people on here have done the 'bring a plate' (in a classy way of course) and it went over really well. Does anywhere around you decorate a public area for halloween? In blacks and oranges and other harvest colours? Perhaps you could have a party in a place like that. Do you have family/friends that would offer their yard for a party?

Otherwise, having a reception months or years after the wedding is becoming popular too.

Don't forget, if you have a late afternoon or mid morning ceremony you don't have to feed everyone a meal. Light snacks are fine and could be made with some help from friends.

My wedding is a simple ceremony at the local Botanical gardens, without additional decorations since it will be in September (our spring). Our reception is at a nearby buffet restaurant since we are having around 30 guests and it's much easier than catering and hiring a venue. I was going to go for a big picnic reception with finger foods, drinks in coolers and a light bbq for a relaxed and fun day until I was offerred the buffet restaurant. I am making my dress (less than $80), got my shoes on sale for $8, my fiance is getting a lovely suit from a department store for about $120, my flowers will be fabric ones made from my stash, the invites were printed in bulk and then put together by me (hand-delivered to all but a few people and around $60) my headpiece will be handmade, and instead of a cake I am making a cake shaped card box with a cake topper since the restaurant has a dessert buffet. So I get to to DIY lots of things, not pay heaps and still feel lke I am having a 'real' wedding Cheesy

I hope that helps a little. Let me know if you have any other ideas to bounce around.
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TreeTree
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2008 07:48:35 AM »

That helps alot...I'm probablly a little mad for wanting to have it with like 2 months notice...hope people will still come.  I like the ideas about location.  I'd love to sew my own dress but  I'm just beginning to learn a machine and know nothing about patterns....my mom does know how to though and that would be a way for her to feel involved...still short notice kinda....know of any super simple dress patterns that would work?
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« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2008 08:07:45 AM »

Have a look in the dress section of any pattern brochure at the fabric store. The evening and special occasion ones are usually very fancy. This is mine, I'm making it floor length and making my own straps and I have to muck around with the bodice a little cause I don't have runway-model b-cup boobs, lmao. THe fabric I am using is a heavily discounted embroidered bridal fabric and should make the simple pattern look really flash.

As for the time... I have 6 weeks and I have just tried on my mock-up dress. Hmmm, I best get working Cheesy

Honestly, 2 months is heaps of notice for a good party! Don't forget, you can always wait a year if it will give you what you really want. Try not to sacrifice your deepest wishes if you just can't do it on a 2 month time frame. Or you could elope and have a party afterwards Tongue I would have if I didn't fear the wrath of my mother   Roll EyesGrin
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2008 08:14:51 AM »

When my husband and I got married, we had just graduated from university, so we had NO money (plus student loans!).  What we did was go to the courthouse for the ceremony (It's nicer then you think) and then our parents paid for us and about 30 others to have a nice dinner at a restaurant.  Some people might want more, but honestly it was lovely, and so intimate!  We knew everyone there really loved us, and we had a wonderful time!  We also didn't bother with an engagement ring, and we've just celebrated our 11th anniversary.  I have never regretted not having an engagement ring.
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TreeTree
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2008 11:51:23 AM »

Cheesy. BTW I found absolutely gorgeous custom made rings and got our engagement rings and wedding bands in sterling silver, citrine, stainless steel and titanium and paid less than $150 for all 4 rings. Let me know if you want the supplier details and stuff, they really do rock.


Definitely would like to know the supplier, even though they probably don't ship to USA
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« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2008 05:08:52 PM »

Actually, they are in the USA! And they did not rip me off with postage which was lovely Cheesy.

THIS is my engagement ring *swoon* I love it, the perfect stone and setting and they used the exact measurements from the wedding band for a comfy fit.

My fiance's 'engagement' ring Cheesy

And these as matching wedding bands

Please mods, I am in no way affiliated with these people. Just a veryhappy customer and I would like to share that with other Craftsters looking for a great deal.

The guy that did the wedding bands (and they fit perfectly) is sooo great, he did us a bit of a deal but his prices are fabulous and his workmanship is beautiful. I am anxiously awaiting the two engagement rings and the people that did mine were extremely helpful and quick to respond to my emails.

I never thought of Etsy until I saw it mentioned on another post and I am so glad I checked it out! Do a search in the jewellery category and be amazed, it's way cheaper than a jewellery store and it's handmade to your specs.

Oh and this woman has some of the most fantastic rings, I was going to go through her but changed my mind at the last minute and this one has wedding sets at $30.  Shocked

Sterling and Argentium silver wedding bands
Stamped sterling silver bands
Titanium bands

Just some of the people I have had on my favourites since I started looking for rings. Good luck.
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BoxOfRocks
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2008 08:00:44 PM »

Best wishes to you and congrats to your fiance!

Still, we're tired of waiting to strike it rich and plan a huge shebang....I feel as if we are engaged but I don't have an engagement ring...I really don't mind that I think the wedding bands are more important, but I haven't really told anyone but my sisters because there seems to be all these "rules"and  steps people go through. [snip]

I still want to look pretty and feel special but don't want to spend the amount of a car or a house down payment on a wedding...help! 

You ARE engaged because you mutually agreed to get married.  A ring doesn't make it "official."  You and your fiance do!  And to be married, all you need is a license!  Those are the only "steps."  The rest is gravy.

Great suggestions above about having it in a park, getting a friend to perform the ceremony, not serving a full meal, and making your dress or having it made.  Another idea on the light reception vein is having a dessert and punch or wedding cake and punch reception during a non-meal time.  That will really cut down on your cost, since food and beverage is a huge chunk of reception costs. 

For decorations, would you consider using fall gourds or squashes?  Would be low cost and quite seasonal.  The black and white swirl--as part of the reception food, perhaps frosted sugar cookies with this design?

Tim Burton / "Sleepy Hollow"--the movie was shot through a blue filter.  Would you consider using blue as one of your colors?

I also recommend checking out the book "Bridal Bargains" by Denise and Alan Field.
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BouppyBaby
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2008 09:45:11 PM »

I feel your angst! Smiley I'm also planning a wedding on a budget. It's been a little overwhelming for me too. I'm still a student, and my fiance is paying down student loans. But we've been brainstorming together, and it's actually turned out to be fun...in a crazy brainteaser sort of way.

Etsy really is a great resource for inexpensive jewelry. You might think about checking them out for dresses too. Lots of vintage and handmade originals to.

As far as decor, we're making paper flowers instead of live ones. Way less money, and they keep better afterward. Check out this youtube user for great origami tutes: http://www.youtube.com/user/joostlangeveld. Or, you could use Martha's tissue flowers:http://www.marthastewart.com/article/paper-flower-bouquet

We're also making our own very small, very basic sugar skulls for seating assignment/favors. Or you could make several larger ones to use centerpieces. They look great decorated or left blank. You can find kits, molds and directions online. Just google "sugar skulls" or "sugar skull molds." They'd be perfect for a Burton/black and white theme.

And along gourd lines...those little white pumpkins would be great. You could carve jack-o-lanterns for each table. How cute would that be!

We're opting for cupcakes. Easy to make and a lot less money than professionally made wedding cakes. And just as yummy! You could do white cake with black frosting, or devils-food cake with white frosting. Or both!

I see nothing wrong with eloping and throwing a big party. Or doing a small ceremony now, and a big reception once you've saved up the funds. It's all about what you and your fiance can/want to do. Don't let the man get you down! People have come up with all kinds of rules and regulations for weddings. I say poop on that! A wedding is a party that celebrates the love you have for one another. It should be fun, not stressful!
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TreeTree
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2008 10:07:21 PM »

We talked about it tonight and I think we're leaning torward a legal ceremoney at town hall now and a religous ceremoney with a big party maybe next year...it'll probably still need a budget cause we both have stuff to pay off and we'd like to get a house....home is priority over fancy parties and dresses.

I think I will get our bands on etsy....as far as the dress i may go for just a shorter white dress...like a pretty wrap dress...I think I actually saw one on macys.com suprisingly.  The fiance doesn't seem that crazy about the whole wedding dress thing...he thinks they are all ugly, lol...big poufy white dresses aren't his thing.  I just hope my parents will be cool about this....I think they will and they can't afford to help so I don't think they expect us to squeeze blood out of stones either.

Thanks everyone for your support, I love the ladies on this site!
« Last Edit: August 14, 2008 10:07:48 PM by TreeTree » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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