We all work on a budget when planning a wedding. Whether the budget is huge or small, if you spend a dollar on flowers that is one less dollar you can spend on cake. We all must be budget conscious. If you are looking to save some cash, here are a couple of really reasonable budget tips for planning a Hill Country wedding.
– Consider getting married on an off day (example Thursday, Friday or Sunday) or in an off season. Off-season will vary depending on location, but for a Texas Hill Country Wedding this is likely going to be December-February, or July-August. This can save you up to $1000 in some cases, and if you have a lot of family or friends flying in for the weekend anyway, this typically doesn’t extend their travel plans, just changes them. This can also save on lodging and flights, since you won’t be traveling at peak times.
-Cater buffet style. Plated style incurs more staffing, serving pieces, and china then buffet style. Buffet style is also a lot less work. There are no extra time or money costs of collecting menu selections from your guests and guests can choose their own portions. Station and Family style will likely fall between the buffet and plated menu prices as there is more setup required, usually a specialized menu, and sometimes extra serving pieces and staff.
-Stick to beer and wine, and maybe a signature drink. Open bar weddings are awesome, but rarely do the guests remember them, because they had one too many of their favorite cocktails. Feature unique beers and wines (maybe local or sentimental) or consider a signature drink that shows your style. This is plenty of alcohol for your guests to have a good time.
-Re-use flowers, as much as possible. If you are getting bouquets for all of your bridesmaids, plan to use them as floral centerpieces for the head table, gift or cake tables. After photos and the ceremony they are going to set them down on a table somewhere, where they aren’t in water and they aren’t being displayed. Make good use of them! This will save you the cost of arrangements for those tables. If you have aisle arrangements they can double as flowers for a fireplace mantle or staircase you want to decorate.
-Re-use, really as much as possible. For example, buy mason jars for guest favors, but have them use it through the evening as their glass! If you are using baby succulents for décor on the tables, have the guest take them at the end of the night as favors (provide care and travel instructions).
-Consider using high-end plastics instead of china. Clear plastic plates and silver plastic flatware are perfectly acceptable for casual weddings. If you are having a buffet the plates and flatware will likely be stacked at the end of the buffet tables. This obviously isn’t okay if you are serving quail, but if you’re menu is an eclectic Mexican buffet or a southern bbq, it fits perfectly. In this case put your favors on your place settings for each guest, request a 3D napkin fold, or print up menu cards, where the plate would be, to make the table look full and beautiful! This isn’t the most “green” option, so consider getting recycled bamboo plates like these and recycle them after the wedding!
-Get a wedding planner! Believe it or not, wedding planners can save you tons of money. Let a planner know up front what you are looking to save money on and they can usually make it happen. Often, planners have vendor discounts they can pass on to you and will know who the best and most affordable vendors to work with are. They also know tricks of the trade that you can’t find on Pinterest!
These are just a few of the most basic tips for saving a buck on your Hill Country wedding. I hope some of you can buy a couple more margaritas on that honeymoon to Cabo!