Weddings on a smaller budget

Cost saving measures for weddings, part 1

As life gets more and more expensive each day, I found that more and more couples are trying to be as frugal as possible when it comes to spending on their wedding day. Most would prefer to invest money on a down payment for a house or on an amazing trip rather than spend a lot of money on one day of their lives. Thus, they choose to get married on a very small budget. How do they do it you ask? Well, here are some tips:

Venue: Having your wedding in a park, such as Baker Park can save a lot of money followed by a reception at a community hall such as Cresmont Hall in Crestmont N.W. Calgary. Or, you can also have your ceremony and wedding in your own back yard; very cozy lovely atmosphere.

Cooked photography


Many couples also choose to have destination weddings thus combining their wedding as well as a honeymoon. I recently spoke to a couple who got married on the Mayan Riviera, Mexico, in an all inclusive resort for $10,000.00. That is kind of hard to beat. If you choose this type of wedding, it is a good idea to talk to a travel agent who can make all the arrangements for you. Aisle Travel is a great agency as the owner is a wedding planner who can help you with all the details.Carolyn from Genesis Vacations is a TPI Travel Agent who works a lot with engaged couples and I highly recommend her.



Invitations: There are a number of websites where you can order invitations for example, Wedding Paper Divas is a site that many of my couples use. I also know of a local florist who does custom invitations for a reasonable price, DeeVine Petals,and does a great job. Also, e-vites are becoming very popular today with many couples. They save on paper, postage and cost. Paperless Post is a site I recommend.


Photographers: I tell all my clients that the photographer is the most important vendor that you hire for your wedding because he/she captures all the memories of your special day. I always recommend a good photographer as there is nothing more disappointing than getting your wedding photos back and they are not what your expected and what you were promised. Now a good photographer in Calgary start around $3500.00 for the day. However, you can still hire a good photographer on a tight budget by hiring them only for 4-6 hours. Many photographers have hourly rates therefore bringing down the cost tremendously. I work with many good photographers and it is very hard for me to recommend any one of them because each one has a unique style that may not appeal to all couples.


Wedding dress: Most brides dream of getting their wedding dress at Kleinfeld’s in New York, but unfortunately, not everyone can afford to. However, buying a second had dress from Kleinfeld’s is another options. Everthine Bridal Consignment Boutique is one option in Calgary and Bragging Bride Boutique is another one. Another option you may consider is renting a wedding gown from Sunshine Bridal Studio Calgary; they have amazing reviews and I am sure you can find something to fit your taste and your budget.

This dress photographed by Twenty Twenty Photography originally belonged to the bride’s great aunt and she had it tailored for her own wedding.


Food and Drink: Your choices of food and drinks depends a lot on the venue you choose. If you are having your reception at your home, you could probably have your family and close friends help out with the preparation and serving of the food. If you are having it at a community hall, you could also have family and friends help out, or you could hire a caterer and choose an inexpensive menu served buffet style. My favorite caterer is Rob from Red Seal Dining. If you give Rob a budget, he will try his best to make it work. Or, you could hire a student who is culinary school to prepare your food; SAIT has a wonderful program and puts our many excellent chefs. These students also welcome the opportunity to get some experience.

As far as drinks are concerned, buying your own alcohol and mixes and then have family serve the bar is a great cost saving measure. Also these days, it is perfectly acceptable to have a toonie bar or a cash bar. And, just as an FYI, if people have to pay for their drinks, they are a lot more careful with them and rarely get drunk.

I would also like to recommend that you hire a wedding planner to coordinate your wedding day. The planner will keep everyone organized and totally cut back on your stress. Check out our “Month of Coordination” collection or contact Alexandra at [email protected] or call her at (403)519-7731.

If you enjoyed this informative blog, please look for the second part with more cost saving measures next week.