Broke-Ass Category: 5K Or Less Budget Weddings

6/15

Affiliate Disclaimer NewHey, Broke-Asses! I’m way too excited about becoming a contributor to this awesome project. I found “The Broke-Ass Bride’s Wedding Guide” through a simple Amazon search, and could not have been happier with Dana’s approach to planning. I was honestly never sure if I would marry at all (my mother is extremely anti-marriage, and I grew up rejecting the idea!), but here I am — lost in a sea of Pinterest boards and unending questions from family and friends.

The questions came literally days after we got engaged this past February:

“When’s the big day!?”

“What’s your theme?”

“Have you chosen a venue?”

Don’t get me wrong — I was thrilled that so many of my loved ones were eager to know details and get involved. But all these questions really freaked me out. They freaked me out so badly that I refused to start planning until about a month ago. Luckily the date isn’t until May 13, 2017, and now that I’ve done some research and was graced by The Broke-Ass Bride’s wisdom, I actually think I can do this whole wedding thing.

But before I suffocate you with wedding details, I’ll let you know a little more about myself. I’m a 23-year-old college dropout and soon-to-be licensed cosmetologist. I enrolled and began cosmetology school in September last year and in just seven short weeks I’ll be finished! The past year of my life has honestly felt like one single day. I have grown so much as an artist and really settled into who I am. Plus, I’ve already scored my dream job at a salon two blocks away from our apartment!

My super handsome fiance, Josh, is due most of the credit in helping me become who I am today. In August we will have met one year ago. We had both just escaped (wish I were exaggerating when I use the word “escaped”) pretty horribly manipulative relationships and neither of us planned on dating anytime soon. But when we met, we just could not get enough of one another. I have never felt so loved and have never loved the way I love him. I know I’m young, but I have a lot of dating experience under my belt — and I truly did not think I would ever find the type of partnership I wanted with someone.

After just seven months of dating, Josh and I took a vacation to Charleston (our first date was a day trip to Sullivan’s Island!), where he proposed on the steps of the Customs building. It was awkward and cute and nothing short of perfect.

 

Real Bride BreAnna's now-fiance on their first date

BreAnna and Josh at the beach

We are now five months into our engagement and growing more and more excited about marriage every day.

Our personal styles are mixtures of minimalist, vintage, indie, with a splash of hippie. (I grew up in a weird artsy town in the mountains, what can I say?) And we definitely want our wedding to reflect that.

So far my vision for the wedding is sort of a big, fun BBQ with tons of friends and family, yard games and dancing — all decorated in a thrifty, vintage style. We’ll be renting a large tent and having the wedding on Josh’s grandfather’s farm. Our budget is going to fall somewhere between $3,000 and $5,000. I have plenty of faith that I can pull off a pretty ballin’ wedding with the help of the Broke-Ass Bride’s book, as well as the generosity of friends and family. I have already had FOUR photographer friends offer free engagement sessions and my super sweet graphic designer friend is designing our save the dates and invites as a wedding gift. It is so amazing to realize the amount of love and support we will have throughout this process. And now I’m ready to share my process with you!

Welcome to the team, BreAnna!

 

  • 8/7

    When this super sweet, laid back wedding from Lauren Lindley Photography fell into my lap, I spent some serious time living vicariously through the subjects of the photographs, with sand between their toes, mountain air surrounding them and pops of color livening up this sweet, family-oriented South Lake Tahoe wedding. The couple, whose sons played part in the ceremony, chose the destination because the bride grew up in the area. Summer and Peter, who planned from their home in Eugene, Ore., hosted 25 guests for a lakeshore wedding celebration complete with a (super colorful!) knot-tying ceremony, buffet-style dinner and a chandelier-adorned arch on the beach (whaaatttt???? YES. This, you guys). Let’s join them, shall we?

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    Name: Summer & Peter
    Occupation: Oncology Nurse
    Wedding location: Round Hill Pines, South Lake Tahoe
    Wedding Date: 7/3/2014
    Budget: $3500
    How would you describe your wedding (civil? Traditions? Write your own vows? Etc.): Casual, intimate.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    What was your favorite part of your wedding? I loved it all! If I have to choose my favorite part it would be the reveal. Five quiet minutes with my soon to be husband

    What did you splurge on? Airbrush makeup!

    What did you save on? A reception venue, we had it at the rental house.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    Was there anything you would have done differently, in retrospect? I would have hired live music for our ceremony.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    What was your biggest challenge in planning? With it being a destination wedding, I had to rely on the Internet, and pictures. I had to have faith that my ideas came across clearly to people I had never met.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    What lessons did you learn from planning or from the wedding itself? Although sometimes you can’t wait for the planning to be over, it is a precious time, and should be enjoyed.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    What were your top 5 favorite things about your wedding? My amazing husband and children; the beautiful scene my mom created for us; the rental house Stonehenge, South Lake Tahoe; our photo booth at the reception; and the knot tying ceremony.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Top 5 least favorite? Timing: the sun was burning our eyes, and I felt like I was melting! Would have had it 30-45 minutes later. Our wedding venue: Although gorgeous, it was one of their last weddings and I felt like they were “not in to it.” Really I can’t think of anymore dislikes 🙂

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    What was the worst piece of wedding advice you received? To go traditional, and not do the reveal. Good thing I didn’t listen-Loved that part!

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    The best? Enjoy every minute, and get your hair and makeup done professionally.

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding

    Real Wedding: Summer & Peter's Family-Friendly Destination Tahoe Beach Wedding
    Photography: Lauren Lindley Photography

    Flowers: A Floral Affair

    Caterer: Racheal K’s Home Cookin

    Ceremony: Round Hill Pines

    Rental House: Stonehenge Tahoe

    Decorations: Kathie Giove — My Momma

    Hair and Makeup: Rah Hair Studio

    Bride’s Dress: Rosebud’s Boutique (Junction City, Ore.)

    christen
  • 5/8

    You guys, did you know that the unofficial state slogan of Kentucky is "Kentucky Kicks Ass"? Welp, now you do. And this real wedding (geez, it's been a hot minute since we've had one of these hasn't it?) does just that. The ceremony was held on a cliff, in Kentucky, and was full of family and love and general creativity. This is one broke-ass, kick-ass wedding…

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    3/18

    Angela and Jay had their beautiful wedding in January of this year, incorporating meaningful locations, the support of their community, and some Arizona flair. Seriously, how cute are these cactus favors? It goes to show that you don't need to spend $30,000 to have a beautiful, memorable wedding day...and since their family and friends were involved throughout, they were able to start their married lives…

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    3/17

    Previous recaps: (First Look and Ceremony) After we officially tied the knot, we took some brief family photos while our friends helped do last minute prep for the reception.  I'll only bore you with the one awesome whole-family shot! I absolutely LOVED how our reception decor turned out!  The dip dyed tablecloths and Mexican prayer flags looked awesome with our super amazing floral arrangements made…

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    2/27

    Your "I dos" are a moment of gravitas, a quiet but weighty culmination of your decision to spend your lives together. In honor of their serious decision to make this commitment, Destry and Lanny decided on a similarly intimate wedding ceremony and reception: 40 invited guests, immediate family and the closest of friends. By this decision, they were able to spend more time with the…

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    2/10

    Coming up with a meaningful wedding ceremony from scratch proved to be quite the challenge!  We ended up using many sources...traditional Christian ceremonies, literature we both loved, inspiration from wedding blogs, and my amazing Grandfather/officiant.  In the end, I'm so so so happy with how personal and emotional our ceremony was!  Here are a few highlights! We used "Sigh No More" by Mumford and Sons…

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    7/25

    Saying “I do” should be a celebration shared with those you love. Jeremy and Nagehan decided to invite only a small group of family and friends – 24 people who traveled from different states and even across an ocean – with whom to share their Manhattan journey to become man and wife. With a small guest list and a $5,000 budget, this pair both kept…

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