Posts in the 'Wedding Inspiration' Category
Rather than the roundup of awesome things rocking in Weddingland around the blogosphere this week, I thought I’d point out some rad Pinterest accounts to follow, especially for brides on a budget (that’s you)! While not all are budget-specific wedding blogs, many are. Some are just great for location-specific (mountains and coast) and some span content ranging from weddings to beauty to lifestyle. The one thing they do have in common, though, is they all serve up wonderful wedding inspiration on (nearly) everyone’s favorite discovery tool site.
DIY Bride — Of course it’s jam-packed with crafty ideas, but there’s lots of gorgeous inspo, too.
Kiss My Tulle — Not just for super budget weddings, KMT’s Pinterest board is full of life hacks, pretty inspiration and some goodies for your mommy friends, too.
The Budget Savvy Bride — Great for more classical, traditional brides on a budget.
Mountainside Bride — Does getting married on a summit or at the base of towering peaks appeal to you? This might be the pinner to follow!
Pretty Pear Bride — Sick of seeing stick-thin wedding models? PPB has lots of plus-size real brides and inspiration.
Budget Fairy Tale — If you’re planning a wedding to your Prince Charming, BFT is a great place to start.
On the Go Bride — Ever feel like you’re alone in the business of life and wedding planning? You’re not.
Hey Wedding Lady — The DIY board isn’t to be missed, mmmkay?
The Big Fat Indian Wedding — I loooove looking at south Asian weddings: The henna, the colors the gold everywhere!
Classic Bride Blog — We love making our own body goodies, and the Apothecary board is full of awesome how-tos.
Rustic Folk Weddings – Her budget wedding board is bursting with great tips.
Elizabeth Ann Designs — Guys, EAD has a FREE PRINTABLES board.
Chic Vintage Brides — CVB has a board that proves budget doesn’t have to equal cheap.
Oh Lovely Day — OLD’s DIY wedding board is gorgeous.
And, of course, you should follow us! We have everything from bridesmaid inspiration to life hacks to blogging tips and of course much of the amazing stuff you see here every day!
The biggest piece of broke-ass advice I can offer is to not let yourself believe that you need everything to be new.
Think about it: The vast majority of wedding decor pieces are event specific, and they can’t easily be repurposed in a home, whether it’s because of how they look or just the sheer volume of them (I know my home doesn’t have room for 30 bud vases!). Accordingly, the market for secondhand wedding supplies is HUGE. I can *kind of* understand people worrying about bad juju if they’re buying used wedding rings, but do you really think there’s any negative vibes attached to some ribbon scraps or table runners? I don’t! If you take advantage of the secondhand market, you can save a ton of money.
One great resource is consignment stores. I never visited one when I was planning my first wedding, but this time I stopped by a couple when I was trying to finish my dress hunt. I was astounded at how much inventory they had! The best part is that once the items have been in the store for a certain amount of time, they go down to 50% off. I was able to buy partial bolts of black tulle and black glitter tulle, which will be used to make flower girl dresses, for super cheap.
The other resource I’ve found to be extremely helpful is Craigslist. I’ve found most of my items by going to my local page and then searching the for sale section for “wedding” and sorting by date. You get some junk in your results (like many posts for small appliances saying, “I got this as a wedding gift and we never use it,” so register carefully!), but you’ll also find the most relevant posts. I’ve also popped over to arts and crafts, and regularly check the free section for things wedding related and not.
I’ve had two really great scores. First, I found candy buffet vases for a steal — 8 for $25! I am clumsy and ridiculous and broke two before I could get them home, but it’s still a great deal.
These aren’t the exact ones, but pretty close!
Most recently, I bought a lot of pumpkins that are basically everything I need for centerpieces, minus the 6 that my florist is handling.
I spent about $125, and then probably another $50 on supplies. All told, I expect to be at less than $10 per table on centerpieces. Not bad, especially considering the florist’s centerpieces are around $35 each. This way, I get some fresh flowers, but I don’t have to pay what it would cost for flowers on every table.
My fiance does bodywork and painting for cars, motorcycles, and just about everything else, so he’s going to give the pumpkins a little bit of TLC. They need some smoothing and to be repainted. Some of the ivory ones will stay ivory, and the rest will go flat black. The fate of the glitter and metallic ones is yet to be decided, and I’ll probably see if I can resell the gourds. I’m envisioning using rhinestones, thumbtacks, paint and glitter to make a slightly different design for each of the 20 tables, with the common materials as a unifying thread. We’ll see once I really get crafting though — it may seem too overwhelming and then I’ll dial it back to 2-3 designs. Here’s my first draft of playing with the thumbtacks, plus my Pinterest inspiration!
It’s not perfect, and it’s definitely a work in progress, but it’s a start! It just snowed in Minnesota after two weeks of sunshine, so I’m ready to go back into hibernation and get some crafting done. I’ll be sure to take pictures along the way, and maybe post a tutorial or two!
You guys. I officially have my dress, and I am so. excited.
I actually bought my dress in August of last year. I’d finally found a day that two of my besties were available, and had scheduled a few appointments at L.A.-area salons. My BAB strategy was to find a really gorgeous floor-length bridesmaids dress, and order it in ivory or Champagne. I had picked out a few amazing styles that looked almost identical to actual wedding dresses, but were averaging around $200 to $400 – sometimes a full $1k less than their bridal counterparts.
The first salon was supposed to carry a few of my favorite styles, but it turns out those “Find it in Stores” features are not at all accurate. They only had three dresses under $1k in the whole store! I did find a strong contender, but was excited to get to the next salon, who actually had the Watters bridesmaid dress I was thinking might be The One. It was completely on the opposite side of town, so after an hour’s drive in traffic, I was more than ready to get my dress on. Once I told the owner my budget, though, her welcoming attitude disappeared. She did let me try on two bridesmaid dresses, but refused to let me even touch anything else in the store, including the sash that she physically held around my waist. She tried to push onto me the ugliest dress I’ve EVER seen (a short-sleeved, heavily beaded mock turtleneck), saying it was going to be the only “real” dress within my budget. The whole appointment lasted no more than 15 minutes, and I had steam coming out of my ears. To add insult to injury, I hadn’t even liked the dress I’d been fantasizing about for weeks.
Seriously. Imagine this covered in beading and a full skirt. (Image via http://www.undershirtguy.com)
I knew I’d spend the rest of the day seething if I went home then. We passed a David’s Bridal on the way to the previous salon, so we stopped in to try a few more things on. I did NOT want to buy a dress at David’s; I’d bought my prom dress there and remembered how generic so many of their bridal options were, and no one wants to be generic on their wedding day. I knew they were one of the few places that would take a girl on a whim, though, and I needed to try on a few more gowns. I think the third dress in was the one that gave me tingles. It actually ticked off all but one of my requirements, and when the salesgirl told me that it was on clearance, I took it as a sign and bought it on the spot. Never say never!
For the next few weeks, I obsessively stared at pictures of myself in my dress. My non-refundable, final sale dress. I looked it up online and found that there were over 100 other brides who had reviewed it, over 100 other women who were going to be the same as me. Had I made a huge mistake, been blinded by a bargain? The more I looked around, though, I kept coming back to the details that drew me to the dress in the first place (so many tiny buttons!). I had to accept that I loved this darn dress, along with all the other women. The missing requirement though was straps, which I knew are a relatively easy addition to strapless dresses, and a way to make the dress even more “me.” After months of Photoshopping over my lunch breaks, harassing my beleaguered bridesmaids about “which strap design looks more vintage,” I revisited a dress I’d pinned ages ago, before I was even engaged. After a quick Photoshop mock-up, I decided my latest idea was going to be perfect, and took the dress and photo to my seamstress in late January.
I went in for my first official fitting this past Saturday. After weeks of anxiety about trusting my vision to someone else’s brain, I pulled my dress out of its bag and slipped into the straps. I turned to the mirror; it was not what I’d envisioned. My brain took a few moments to reconcile the idea with the reality, even as my best friend gasped in excitement. I’m being purposely vague about the changes I made to it in case my fiancé reads this, but I decided it turned out really, really great. Much more unique than I had even imagined. For only a few hundred dollars, I’ve basically got a custom dress that has all my ideal elements: straps, pretty skirt, all the tiny buttons, and best of all, individuality.
So fellow BABs, I think I’m hooked on tailoring now. I also brought in an ivory maxi dress that I hadn’t yet figured out how to wear, and am having it shortened to a midi for my rehearsal; the combined purchase + alterations cost is still half the cost of the J.Crew clearance dress I originally splurged on for the day before the big day. With just under three months left before the wedding, I can think of a lot of places to use that extra money!
My bridemaid caught this moment after I saw my altered dress for the first time. Otherwise it’s under wraps until June!
Spring is upon us, BABs, and you know what that means: wedding season is just around the corner! In honor of this fabulous time of year, I reached out to some of my favorite former BABs to ask them for their tried-and-true wedding planning advice. Every bride’s wants and needs are different, and it really shows in their answers. Needless to say, each one of them gives great advice!
Erin & Eric: Northampton Country Club, 6/14/2014
What is something you splurged on? I was honored and blessed to have an opportunity to wear my mom’s wedding dress. It ended up being the project that never ended, with the small tweaks and additions rapidly adding cost to the bottom line. I would never dream of changing a thing and I truly believe that it turned out perfect, however, it did end up going way over my originally estimated budget. I’m glad its the “something I splurged on.” I hope the dress will be considered a worthy option for future generations in my family.
Did you skimp on anything? What and why? I wouldn’t qualify this as “skimping,” but I ended up choosing a venue that was all-inclusive. My original vision was a venue that allowed for the selection of my own caterer, decorations, etc. However, I quickly learned that the a la carte wedding can be quite pricey.
Is there anything you wish you had spent less money on, or tossed out all together? I wish I would have done my own makeup. The makeup artist I hired was lovely, but I ended up wiping off quite a bit of the makeup after she was finished. I read all the articles but for some reason the desire to up the ante for my wedding trumped my common sense. I also spent stupid money on robes for myself and my bridesmaids. It was part of the gift I gave to each of my bridesmaids, but I doubt any of us have ever worn them since my wedding. They sure looked cute in pictures though!
Do you have any money-saving tips when it comes to wedding planning? Take advantage of personal connections. My in-laws had a close friend who was a florist who was just starting to do weddings. Due to her recent entry to the industry and relationship to my husband, she kept mark-ups low and went above and beyond in many ways. I had 180 guests at my wedding. The “display” cakes at my reception only had 60 servings. The rest were in sheet cakes that were kept in the kitchen. You wouldn’t believe how much this cuts down on cost!
Corrie & Jim: Spring Mill Manor, 10/4/2014
What is something you splurged on? I really splurged on the photographer because of a problem I had early on in planning. I had signed a contract with a company for a photographer and videographer. The package came with free engagement photos, however, the session was rushed and I wasn’t happy with how they came out. And to top it off, the session wasn’t free! I was offered two 8x10s for free and the rest of the package was over $650, a lot for someone who is planning a wedding and did not budget for that extra session. As it turned out, I absolutely loved working with Lynda Berry Photography, who ended up doing my wedding. It was totally worth every cent! I can’t stop looking at these beautiful, Pinterest-worthy pictures.
Did you skimp on anything? What and why? We didn’t skimp out on much due to the financial help from my parents. One thing I wanted and wound up turning down was having a calligrapher do my invitations. I’m not sure why people spend money on that.
Is there anything you wish you had spent less money on, or tossed out all together? I wish we would have spent less money on DIY items. For example, the centerpieces were made up of silk flowers by my mom, my sisters and myself. By the time we had finished with the centerpieces and made many, many runs to the craft store, they ended up costing us way more than if we would have just paid the florist to create our centerpieces.
Do you have any money-saving tips when it comes to wedding planning? I would say plan far in advance so you have time to save up or pay for things as you go without taking too much of a hit. Also, I would suggest picking the top two or three things that mean the most to you and make sure you have budgeted enough to spend what you want on those items.
Any other advice for brides? I found that when you look back on the day, it’s a blur. You don’t remember the details and it’s probably better that way. There are probably a bunch of little things that went wrong or you would have changed, but on that day, none of it really matters. So don’t drive yourself crazy — you only get to be a first-time bride once, so enjoy every single crazy second!
Meridith & Kyle: Fonthill Castle, 10/5/2013
What is something you splurged on? My own personal beauty prep. I really embodied the nature of “treat yo’ self.” I got custom nail art in NYC to match my decor, had a facial and wax, had my makeup/hair done for my shower, had individual eyelash extensions – the works! I felt that it was the only time in my life that I had to be the center of attention and I wanted to be the best “version of myself,” if you will.
Did you skimp on anything? What and why? I only spent $20 on shoes for two reasons. 1) I was wearing flats because of my height. 2) my dress totally covered my feet so they couldn’t be seen anyway. We also opted out of a cake and had friends and family bake and make various desserts for a sweets table. Our guests were able to grab a cookie here and there and keep dancing! Last, we did not provide transportation for our guest after the wedding. Our ceremony and reception were on the same site and I had it in my head that we needed to be responsible for everyone getting back to their respective hotels when the night was over. I went so far as to price out school busses, but the costs were outrageous. In the end, I has to trust that my guests were responsible adults and that they take care of themselves after taking the time to celebrate with us.
Is there anything you wish you had spent less money on, or tossed out all together? I (via my mom) impulsively spent way too much money on a custom veil. I fell for the famous rookie move where the seamstress put a veil on my head at my fitting and then I just had to have it. It’s still one of my favorite things from my wedding and the photos are beautiful, but I could have been smarter in my choice.
Do you have any money-saving tips when it comes to wedding planning? Despite my aforementioned veil story, my advice would be to avoid snap decisions unless you’re really sure. The first dress I tried on was the one I chose — I just knew and was ready to pull the trigger. I think trusting your gut on things that feel right doing the due-diligence to research and educate yourself on other things creates a good balance in wedding planning. It’s different for everyone. You may have something that you just can’t live without and it could be totally impractical, but it’s your day, and if you can juggle the budget to squeeze it in, I say go for it. Also, if you can, avoid anything custom! Personalization, “made to order,” catered to you = big bucks. There are ways to bring in your wedding theme or your personal touch without adding monograms to everything.
Any other advice for brides? Have the best day. You will probably never again be in one place with literally every person you love most in the world. Everyone is so happy for you and it’s like being wrapped up in a big blanket of happiness. And you will notice things that go wrong or didn’t pan out the way you wanted them to, but you won’t even care. If you have to, spend a few minutes of your honeymoon venting to your new husband about how the champagne was flat and they forgot someone’s vegetarian entree. When you’re wearing the dress, in a circle of all of your favorite people, screaming your lungs out to your favorite song, never stop dancing.
If your blood is whisky tinged and you’re swelling with pride today, these gorgeous green details might be perfect for your Irish self. Etsy has a huge dearth of St. Pat’s inspiration (y’all get their newsletter, right? Because the wedding one is RIDICULOUS for inspiration. Be prepared to drool), so after much deliberation, I picked some of my fave pieces that would be rad for your wedding — whether it’s on this v. rad holiday or you just want to show off a little of your heritage.
Triangle Mountains Wedding Invitation and RSVP Card, download or print starting at $39 by LucyLovesPaper
I know the BAB debate rages on about kids vs. no kids, but HOW CUTE IS THIS???
Guys, I have no idea how you’d use this little dude, but he’s TOO FREAKING CUTE to not include.
I hope you all have a wonderful St. Pat’s! Be careful, and may the road rise up to meet you. Sláinte!
Does that sunshine look amazing to you and almost unrecognizable? N.C. has had a winter for the books this year I am soooo over it. I am getting excited for this 2015 Wedding Season and I know the warm weather and sunshine are near. Thank goodness.
So out of hibernation I come and I am ready for wedding and DIY fun.
I am starting you guys off with a simple $20-$30 ceremony decor piece. This is from a wedding I did floral and ceremony design for in 2014. The bride and groom were getting married outdoors under this gorgeous tree. This little touch was the backdrop for their ceremony. It made a sweet statement and did not break the bank or take much time to make. Most off all, it did not take away from nature’s beautiful backdrop.
I played off the main backdrop, what was already there … a tree.
Rather than digging a sharp object into the arbor already on the venue grounds, I made a sweet heart with Cupid’s arrow and the couple’s initials to affix to the moss wreath.
This wreath would be great for outdoor ceremonies, hanging from a tree or arch, or indoors as your backdrop or hanging from a door.
1 Styrofoam Wreath ( I used an 18″)
1 Wood Heart =
1 Small Acrylic paint in color of your choice
1 Piece of fabric or craft paper in color or print of your choice
1 Piece of ribbon
1 large bag of green shade of Spanish Moss for a more bushy full look or 2-3 bags of the sheet moss (I tried the sheets of moss and it was kind of easy just to wrap around and glue in sections, but I have made one with Spanish moss too and loved it)
1 Glue Gun and many glue sticks
1 Small container of Mod Podge
1 Bundle of Twisted Paper Cord in brown (like a brown bag/brown paper)
What you will Do:
Plug in your glue gun and get it warm (don’t forget a drop cloth/paper plate/anything that can catch dripping glue). Paint your wood heart first, so it can dry while you work on the wreath.
Next, remove your moss from the bag (it’s messy — eeewww). Glue moss around your styrofoam wreath. Make sure there is no white space and its nice and full. Protip: if you use the sheets make sure you line up all the seams where it meets in the back of the wreath and none in the front.
While everything else is drying, start on the letters. I did not use stencils, I just hand traced and cut, but use a stencil if you like. You will need the first letter for each person’s name in the couple and a plus sign. Once you’re done cutting, glue the letters on the heart (make sure your heart is dry!). This is where the Mod Podge comes in handy — for adhering the letters and plus sign to the heart. Much easier than using the glue gun. Make sure you place the Mod Podge on the back of the fabric or scrapbook paper you use and not on the heart.
Leave all that to dry and work on your arrow. The twisted paper cord makes it easy, because its already twisted. Take a twisted piece and cut it to the length you prefer. Protip: Lay your heart over top of it so that the cord is long enough to have the heart in the middle. Then, cut two small pieces for each side of the arrow at the top. I loosened the twist, then re-tightened to my liking. I used the glue gun to glue each side to the top. You now have the point of the arrow. I worked on loosening the tail of the arrow by untwisting, until I felt it looked right.
You’re almost done! Glue your arrow to the back of your heart with the glue gun and make sure you center your heart. While that dries, you can work on making the bow for the top. You need to tie it around the top of your wreath and hold the wreath up to decide the length you want. I made it longer than I need, so I could cut on-site and be sure it was the right length. It’s always easy to take away material, but much harder to add it back. If you feel more comfortable you could do this part on-site, just bring the ribbon roll and scissors with you.
Now find the place you like best to attach your heart and arrow to your wreath. Definitely use your glue gun for this. Remember when that glue hits that moss it is STUCK, it’s really hard to rip it off. So, be careful and slow to place it.
Tah dah! You’re done. I believe I spent around $28 to make this wreath.
Good luck! Would love to see any wreaths out there you make or have made, just comment to this post with a pic for others to see too.
“Limit your wallet, but never your space!”
Glitter + cupcakes already wins, but you add in Mickey Mouse? Yep, that’s a solid victory. Inspired by Dis shares a how-to for making these sparkly cupcake toppers.
Looking for a great alternative to the traditional bridal show? Budget Fairy Tale has a writeup of her experience with the awesomely offbeat (it is partially run by Ariel of Offbeat Bride, after all) LoveSick Expo.
Budget Savvy Bride strikes with Budget Wedding Tip #25.
If you’re worried that your wedding is going to look like a mish-mash of ideas, head to Aisle Perfect for a guide on creating a cohesive wedding theme.
We love punchy colors on BAB, but Brenda’s Wedding Blog has a beautiful inspiration board featuring softer, more romantic colors that you’ll totes swoon over.
Wanna get fancy? Check out this amazing DIY floral napkin ring on Tidewater & Tulle. Probz better (for your sanity) for an intimate dinner wedding.
Do you know what to pack for your honeymoon? Kiss My Tulle compiled a fantastic list to help.
Newly engaged? Marry Me Tampa Bay has a list of post “yes!” steps.
This rose gold and black wine bottle DIY on B.Loved is gorgeous and toooottallly easy.
Winter may be nearing an end, but it’s still fairly frigid through much of the US. Austrian photographer Karin Ahamer schemed up this gorgeous, intimate sparkly shoot that brings a whole new beauty to even a dreary snowless winter. Using items found, thrifted or bought for very little money, this styled shoot epitomizes the BAB idea living up to your wedding vision on the budget you have by thinking creatively. Here’s what Karin has to say:
The inspiration for this shoot came from our own love for blue tones – especially Tiffany blue – and the beauty of all things sparkly. Winter can be bleak at times, missing colours and sunlight – but it is also full of beauty, strength and the perfect time to enjoy the company of loved ones. We wanted to show potential brides that getting married during the winter can be beautiful, even if there is no snow and no blooming flowers on the ground.
It is a simple concept that conveys beauty, romance and the love for nature, all in one. Various shades of blue — the colour of harmony, faithfulness and infinity — combined with sparkles and silvery elements symbolize elegance and sophistication. And lets be honest, what bride doesn’t love a little bit of sparkle on her special day?
The bride’s look sparkles with Swarovski crystals set around the eyes and glistening blue branches in her hair. The beautiful secondhand, vintage dress was only $100 and is perfectly rounded out with a gorgeous blue chiffon shawl. The complementing dark blue shoes with crystal elements were bought at a discount shoe store for only $30. And would the exquisite earrings are handmade and still will only set you back by around $40 – $80!
The groom wears his own slim-cut blue suit and suede shoes, with only the blue shirt as a new purchase for the wedding day – still a very handsome and perfect match.
The wedding ceremony is being held at a beautiful open field near the woods – just have a look around your area where you live, you might be able to find an area where you are allowed to hold your reception or maybe a friend or relative has a big back yard you can use.
The table is set on a big granite stone, beautifully decorated with a gleaming blue tablecloth made from the same inexpensive blue chiffon we used for the bride’s shawl. Set with white dishes and silverware from our own home, and precious crystals and silvery-white fir cones that we dug out from our Christmas decoration Box. Soft candles and rustic lanterns, set along the pathway to their wedding ceremony, emphasize that usually hard and edgy colours and materials can indeed be romantic.
All decorative elements were either sought out from inexpensive stores like IKEA, collected during walks through the woods, borrowed from friends and family or dug out from our own collections.
The only splurge was the contemporary white wedding cake that thrones majestically over the table setting. Beautifully tied blue ribbons bring a little bit of romance and the clear-cut and airy decoration completed with the stylish stationery in its various shades of blue and its silver crystal elements.
And whilst the newlywed couple enjoys a few loving moments alone, guests can write their wishes on the Wish Cards are fluttering from the perch of the nearby lodge.
Photography: Karin Ahamer
Decoration: Raphaela Ramler
Hair & MakeUp: Alexandra Condopoulos
Stationery: Cordula Weißensteiner
Wedding Cake: Christina Krug
Accessories: Yerida Göschlberger
Models: Lily & Christian
Hey-o! Our darling homies over at Hoopla House are back for the third (!) installment of free goodies just for you, darlings! After a gorgeous weekend here in North Texas (which was preceded by snow), I’ve definitely got spring fever … not that it ever leaves me. Hoopla House’s Botanical Bliss design helps give me a little dose of flower power, even on this dreary, rainy day. And for you amazing, wonderful Broke-Ass Brides, these goodies — perfect for your engagement party, bridal shower or reception — are free, and the complementary wedding invitation can be found over on Hoopla House’s website starting at $1.88 for 100 and customizable with your wedding colors.