Your wedding is one of the biggest days, and expenses, of your life. Studies show that couples that spend less money on their weddings have a more successful first year of marriage – most likely because less debt equals fewer money troubles – and are more likely to still be married by their 10th anniversary. So here’s how to start your journey together off on the right foot:
1) Forget the big dinner, just have a civil ceremony
Let’s face it, the big traditional dinner is a huge expense. While you might think you may recoup your expenses by getting lots of fat angpows, it almost never works out that way. Keep it simple and head to the Registry of Marriages instead for a simple civil ceremony. Follow it up with an elegant brunch or cocktail reception or just head to your favourite romantic spot for a bottle of bubbly to seal the deal.
2) Walk the aisle straight to the reception
Yet, due to family pressure or other reasons, you might still have to throw a big party. Instead of having a huge banquet in a hotel, save yourself money by holding both your ceremony and reception at the same venue. Many venues have multiple spaces that can be rented in tandem, or you can get creative with an outdoor wedding on the grounds followed by dinner and dancing inside. Be creative! Why not rent a posh house on Sentosa Cove for the whole thing?
3) Time your wedding just right
Avoid peak months, such as the school holiday months of June, November and December, which are very popular for weddings. Not only will it be easier to set a date, you won’t be competing with everyone else for the top photographers, florists, caterers etc. Other tips include avoiding the period after Chinese New Year (guests will have angpow fatigue) and National Day (downtown traffic will be a nightmare, but the fireworks will be spectacular).
4) Vintage dress
Custom wedding dresses can cost an arm and a leg. Why not upcycle a vintage gown into something entirely your own. Look through family heirlooms, scope our thrift stores or surf online to find something that can be tweaked by a good seamstress into something that will bring out your best. Not only will it save you some money, upcycling is kind to the environment as well. Alternatively, you can also grab a bargain here.
5) Print your own invitations
You can easily print, package, and send your invitations yourself in as little as a few hours! Gather your girlfriends together to help you perfect your wording, stuff envelopes, and lick stamps with a bottle of your favourite bubbles and make a date out of it. This gorgeous laser-cut lace trimmed invite is easily customisable and the perfect choice to show family and friends to prepare for a glamorous affair.
6) DIY favours
Instead of handing out expensive trinkets that will only end up gathering dust on your guests’ shelves for the rest of eternity, why not make your own wedding favours. Pair them with a sweet thought or romantic theme and you’re all set. Think sweet things like homemade jams or chocolates that are easy to make and appealing to all. Why not make it a fun night in and invite your bridal party or family around for a fun evening of baking, crafts or more.
7) Grow your own bouquet
If you give yourself enough time, you can grow your bouquet in a pot or two on your balcony. Delicate and understated azaleas, bold dahlias, and silky peonies all grow well in container gardens. Roses, snapdragons, and sunflowers also grow well in full sun. Talk to an expert gardener to make sure you get a variety that will be in bloom by your wedding day.
Your big day shouldn’t leave you with a big headache and a bigger credit card bill. These ideas are just a few of the thousands of smart and thrifty ways you can save while still throwing the wedding of your dreams. Saving money doesn’t have to mean popsicle stick decor and a buffet of cucumber sandwiches, it can be every bit as gorgeous and glamorous as you pictured as a girl.