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  • Writer's pictureWedding Day Diamonds

Ways to Save on 5 Wedding Essentials

Updated: Aug 5, 2019

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Every wedding is different, but there are a few essentials that seem to appear on every couple’s big day.

Here are our favorite ways to save money (without compromising a thing!) on five of those absolute Wedding Day essentials.

Cheers to your big day, and to saving big while you’re at it!

1) Open Bar

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No doubt, the open bar is important. Not only will it help your guests feel celebratory, it will also loosen them up, ensuring that the two families actually, you know, mingle…with each other.

Cash bars really are not a good option. For one thing, people travel a long ways, and often have to take time off work to attend a wedding. The travel costs aren’t nothing, and an open bar is perhaps the best way to signify to the guests that they are on vacation and can feel taken care of.

But, open bars can be expensive. Crazy expensive. Some estimates put them as high as 20% of the total wedding cost, and that may not even include top-shelf premium liquors. What’s the best way around this?

Signature cocktails.

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This is a trend we love. Choose a few base liquors… a white, a brown and an aperitif will usually cover your bases. Make extraordinary, creative batched cocktails, and offer these in lieu of a true “open bar.” You’ll save a fortune, and have added yet another personal, unique and memorable touch to your wedding.

2) Cake

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Photo credit: @celisiastanton

You know that saying about all beauty and no substance? Okay, we aren’t saying all wedding cakes are like that, but we have had our share of dried out sponges with frosting flowers hard enough to make your tongue bleed.

That can be hard to swallow, given that cakes generally cost anywhere from $6-12/slice.

For an average sized wedding (130-150 people) this can easily mean over a grand on cake.

That’s some pretty expensive sugar and flour!

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Cupcakes, on the other hand, typically cost a dollar to $2.50 per piece, with the fanciest designs still coming in at only about $3.50 per cupcake.

Considering how few people actually finish their slice of cake, this is a sweet way to save some money!

3) Flowers

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When it comes to flowers, be a locavore.

Remember, people travel to come to your wedding, so what is old-hat to you will be absolutely charming, and maybe even exotic, to your guests.

Be as hyper-local as you can. Showcase flowers that grow in your area, and choose those that are in season now. This will ensure that your flowers are at the peek of their blooms on your big day, and it will save you a fortune on the shipping costs.

Bringing in rare buds costs a florist, and those charges will be passed straight on to you.

If you want to really be a local-queen, send a few bridesmaids or family members to a farmers market to pick out the absolute freshest blooms.

4) Dinner? Let’s Brunch!


Dinners are fine, but as everyone knows… millennials love to brunch. Hey, judge us all you want but avocados are just better with breakfast and lunch fare.

Here’s the thing: wedding dinners are never going to be the best meal your guests have ever had. (They can’t be, given that the kitchen is trying to turn out 150 perfect plates in the space of 10 minutes.)

But they still cost as much as a lot of gourmet restaurants, averaging $70-$150 per head once all the catering charges are accounted for.

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Photo credit: @celisiastanton

An early-in-the-day wedding will save you on the cost of food, but the savings don’t stop there: Your venue will likely be able to offer you a cheaper rate for a daytime affair, and since your guests are day-drinking, they will tend to drink less, cutting your bar costs significantly. Families will appreciate the earlier hours, and perhaps best of all, this keeps your night free to after-party with your nearest and dearest.

Wear your dress out on the town. Collect compliments like it’s your job, and live it up!

After all, you saved enough on the actual event to be able to afford a night out, and that alone is worth celebrating!

5) Photographer

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To save here, don’t skip the planning.

Know what details you want photographed. If your choice photographer works as a pair, be honest about whether you really need two people covering the event.

After all, this is the day of digital photography. Guests will bring cameras, and everyone will be snapping on their cell phones. Save your big ticket photographer for your list of must have shots, then hire them for the hours necessary to get those shots.

Having a photographer there until the very end seldom ever makes sense. Once the party is in full swing, guests are often drunk and dancing and the pictures start to look like a lot of the same.

At this point, let cell phones and selfies take over. You’ve got the shots you’ll treasure. Why pay extra for the ones you won’t?


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