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  1. #1

    • Proud US Navy Wife
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    Getting married.. for cheap?

    Ok so, we have gotten the craziness settled down and things are going. decently.. but now I have to figure out how to plan a wedding for next month.. now.. and as cheap as it can get.. we don't have much money at all. and we have to get married soonish because he cant enlist in the navy without us being married (something about single parents..) so we have plans to get married on the beach, everyone bring there own towel or chair and maybe go out to dinner after and everyone pay there own way.. how does that sound? any ideas? (And thank you for your help with my other thread, I dont want to post in there again because im afraid ill cry again)

  2. #2

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Cheapest is what we did... civil service (we did it at a park, at the courthouse might be cheaper).That's all. But if you want others to celebrate it, as we did, then have a dinner afterward - we paid but you can def. have everyone pay if you are that hard up. (I don't remember your other thread, so please don't take that as a diss! I couldn't afford to do all that at this point in time either)

    For your plan... just make sure that you have permission to do it on the beach and to bring chairs. They might charge you. Also realize you will probably have "looky loos" (or innocent crashers like we did!). Make sure everyone is OK with paying their way - but it seems like they would probably understand your situation and be OK with it.

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  3. #3

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Ettiquette dictates that it's in poor taste to invite people to a wedding and then ask them to pay their own way for anything: even dinner afterwards. I suggest you two get married in a civil ceremony now (at the courthouse) and then throw a "real" wedding and reception when you're better able to afford it. Good luck and congratulations!
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  4. #4

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    For decorations, check out Craigslist. We got all our decorations on there for under $100. Also there are several amature photographers on it who will photograph your wedding for free just so they can expand thier portfolio.
    Growing older is manditory
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  5. #5

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    I say definitely check with city hall to make sure you won't be fined for having the wedding on the beach. If it's not a big "to do" then, they probably will just tell you to go ahead with it.

    I think it would be cute to have a small wedding on the beach...with a few close friends and relatives. What would be cute.....have it right at sunset...go barefoot and you and your fiance stand right in the tip of the water. Have everyone sit as close by as they can without getting wet...and have them hold lit candles. You can buy votives at the dollar store (20 for $1) and you can buy cheap little glass holders at someplace like Walmart for around $.33 a piece. That way...people have a little souvenir to take home after the vows. And you have a romantic twinkling and the sound of the waves. Awwwww.

    I say...keep it as small as possible. Just your very close friends and immediate family. The ones that will know your situation and not mind paying their own way to be sharing in your special day. Those who love you, will understand....and just want to be there. But, just be sure you aren't choosing an expensive restaurant. Everyone these days has a budget. Choose someplace nice, quiet. Someplace that wouldn't mind you bringing your own dessert. You will want a small wedding cake to cut and share with everyone.

    As for a wedding cake...check with grocery store bakeries. They should be able to make a very pretty sheet cake for relatively cheap.

    For flowers...you could go ultra budget conscious...and go to the grocery store or flower shop the night before...pick up a bouquet, and rearrange them yourself. Something like...lilies would be beautiful with just a little greenery and a big white ribbon hanging from the bottom.

    Something like this would be super budget ffriendly, and super easy to put together. I know a bit about planning rush weddings. I planned mine in two weeks. (hubby came home on leave from Air Force tech school)....so,. Good luck...and feel free to pm me with any questions or problems!




  6. #6

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    I wouldn't worry too much about etiquette at this point since time is of the essence and it's obviously important to you to have your close friends & family around to celebrate. With the economy the way it is and so many people out of jobs, there wouldn't be very many weddings taking place right now if everyone stuck to Emily Post's guidelines.

    Like some of the earlier replies, do look into the various licenses/permits required to have your ceremony at the beach. Beach cities are notorious about being sticklers about violations. I don't think that its too much to ask that everyone pay their way. If it makes you feel a little funny about asking them to do that, then maybe you could include something in the invitation about not wanting wedding gifts because their presence is more than enough.

    Good luck and congratulations

  7. #7

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stitchy View Post
    Something like this would be super budget ffriendly, and super easy to put together. I know a bit about planning rush weddings. I planned mine in two weeks. (hubby came home on leave from Air Force tech school)....so,. Good luck...and feel free to pm me with any questions or problems!
    My wife and I beat you! We planned ours in one day!

    We woke up Saturday morning, decided that we wanted to get married ASAP after being on perma-engagement and tried to do it the next day. We couldn't make it happen so we settled for a week later.

    We did ours for a total of 20 people for about $2500 with food and location included.

    Bree's aunt bought us my Hawaiian shirt and her matching dress from Hilo Hatties as a wedding gift. I wore black pants and shoes that I already owned. She found a pair of white flip-flops and glued seashells to them. The flip flops were the best deal for a total of $3 when everything else we were looking at was about $25.

    Flowers were bought at an island store in Seal Beach. We paid about $150 for her bouquet, her headpiece, and both our lei's.

    The cake came from a little mexican bakery down the street from us. 3 tier plane white cake that we decorated with plumeria's and lilacs supplied by the florest for $80. WAAAY to much cake, but she wanted a layered cake. We used a Disneyland bell for a cake topper.

    The island store recommended a person that could perform a themed wedding for us. I think that was the biggest expense, besides food, that we had at about $250. If we had more time, we would have had one of our friends get ordained and perform the ceremony for us.

    Universal Life Church Free Online Ordination - Become A Minister Online

    We went to a Polynesian restaurant called Sam's Seafood. They were able to do a complete dinner for 20 people, a room, fully dressed tables and room with a pair of waiters for a great deal because we did a Sunday evening wedding. The nice thing was as we were talking with the restaurant manager, the lady from the island store walked in to deliver flowers to them. She ended up delivering all of our flowers along with a few other things to the restaurant so we didn't have to worry about picking them up.

    For music I ripped my home theater out of the house and loaded up a playlist on the iPod. I gave one of my buddies the responsibility of pushing play. She walked to From this moment by Shania Twain and we left the room to Your my best friend by Queen.

    We were going to ask all of our friends to bring their cameras and take pictures for us, but we were surprised with a photographer as another wedding gift. They found a new photographer that gave a great price and supplied us with all of the photos taken on disc.

    The big thing is to be flexible and use your imagination. Do a beach wedding and then have a bbq afterwards to celebrate. Also, in the Mexican culture, it's not uncommon for people to give parts of the wedding as gifts. Somebody buys flowers, someone else buys cake. We were given our photographer.

    Don't be afraid to ask for help. It's better that people give you things for this day than crap you don't need or can't take with you when you enlist.

    Good luck and if you have any questions, please pm me or my wife, SimplySabrina.

  8. #8

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stitchy View Post
    I say definitely check with city hall to make sure you won't be fined for having the wedding on the beach. If it's not a big "to do" then, they probably will just tell you to go ahead with it.

    I think it would be cute to have a small wedding on the beach...with a few close friends and relatives. What would be cute.....have it right at sunset...go barefoot and you and your fiance stand right in the tip of the water. Have everyone sit as close by as they can without getting wet...and have them hold lit candles. You can buy votives at the dollar store (20 for $1) and you can buy cheap little glass holders at someplace like Walmart for around $.33 a piece. That way...people have a little souvenir to take home after the vows. And you have a romantic twinkling and the sound of the waves. Awwwww.

    I say...keep it as small as possible. Just your very close friends and immediate family. The ones that will know your situation and not mind paying their own way to be sharing in your special day. Those who love you, will understand....and just want to be there. But, just be sure you aren't choosing an expensive restaurant. Everyone these days has a budget. Choose someplace nice, quiet. Someplace that wouldn't mind you bringing your own dessert. You will want a small wedding cake to cut and share with everyone.

    As for a wedding cake...check with grocery store bakeries. They should be able to make a very pretty sheet cake for relatively cheap.

    For flowers...you could go ultra budget conscious...and go to the grocery store or flower shop the night before...pick up a bouquet, and rearrange them yourself. Something like...lilies would be beautiful with just a little greenery and a big white ribbon hanging from the bottom.

    Something like this would be super budget ffriendly, and super easy to put together. I know a bit about planning rush weddings. I planned mine in two weeks. (hubby came home on leave from Air Force tech school)....so,. Good luck...and feel free to pm me with any questions or problems!
    That's pretty much how my brother and sister-in-law got married. Right on the gulf, at sunset (but candles - possible bad idea due to the wind when lit) but you can give them as a souviner and write initials and date on them in colored fabric paint, it'll be cheap that way and they turn out cute.

    They picked up grocery store flowers, jewelery (necklace and veil/headpiece) from Claire's, found a minister online and everyone was going to pay their own way for the dinner afterwards if they wanted to come, but someone else picked it all up. No cake due to no time.

    If you know a family member who is good at taking pictures, pay them cheap to take pictures, but if you do get married on the beach, take pictures before you go out or else you will have wind-blown hair and outfits in the pictures. To keep it cheaper, don't have Bridesmaids or groomsmen or anything.

    Like Stitchy said, keep it simple as possible and that way you spend as little as possible. Then, when times are good again and you have more money (maybe after a year or two), you can renew your vows with a bigger ceremony.
    Press today is so concerned with cool vs. not cool that they're starting to forget good vs. bad. I'm not sure I'll ever be "cool", but I will always tirelessly strive to be "great". - Josh Groban

  9. #9

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    If you didn't want to do dinner or felt weird about having people pay their own way why not do a simple cake reception? At certain stores right now they're having $1 days for cake mixes. You could just do cake, punch, and that's it. You could even do that at a picnic table on the beach. And if you're like "ack I can't decorate a cake..." Maybe ask one of your craftier friends to make it as a wedding gift. Maybe at the same time of the cake making, make extra cupcakes as a souviner?

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    If you need ideas...Good luck!

  10. #10

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    As my grandfather would say ... Not CHEAP - Inexpensive. Cheap and Marriage is not something you want to use in the same sentance.

    We got Married in Vegas for all of about $600 or $700 including a suite where we had a little reception, cake, etc. Granted, this was 13+ years ago, but still.

    We had every intention of having a "Real" wedding and reception down the road when we could afford it. Were still waiting.


  11. #11

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    I think the beach idea with family and close friends sounds wonderful as long as you go through all the steps. I also think going out to dinner beforehand or afterward is a great idea. if it were my friends getting married, i'd have no problems paying for my own dinner, as long as they picked somewhere affordable and fun as opposed to expensive (in disneyland restaurant terms, i'd be there in a minute's notice if it were riverbelle terraace for dinner, i could probably swing cafe orleans if i knew about it a little bit ahead of time, but i might be a little distressed if i had to go to blue bayou, and i definitely could not ever afford club 33.).

    I think this sounds like a charming wedding, personally. everyone likes to think about throwing this huge event and reading all the magazines to find every detail that's just perfect, but you don't need that at all, and weddings without that I think can even be more meaningful. When I was like 6th grade, I told my mom that I was going to elope and get married on a beach somewhere in my swimsuit and sarong. She said, "what, you're not going to invite me?" and I told her no, because I wanted it to just be simple.
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  12. #12

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Quote Originally Posted by NeverNeverland View Post
    Cheapest is what we did... civil service (we did it at a park, at the courthouse might be cheaper).That's all. But if you want others to celebrate it, as we did, then have a dinner afterward - we paid but you can def. have everyone pay if you are that hard up. (I don't remember your other thread, so please don't take that as a diss! I couldn't afford to do all that at this point in time either)

    For your plan... just make sure that you have permission to do it on the beach and to bring chairs. They might charge you. Also realize you will probably have "looky loos" (or innocent crashers like we did!). Make sure everyone is OK with paying their way - but it seems like they would probably understand your situation and be OK with it.

    Good luck!!
    As I remember it you had an awesome reverend.

  13. #13

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    Also, there are some bakers out there who will also make cakes for nearly nothing simply so they can get the experience. All they'll charge you for are the supplies and that's it. I know there's a baker in Vegas that does this, I don't know about elsewhere. And I like the idea of hosting the dessert reception. Along sunnyg's lines, I think the happy couple shold host their guests, and the dessert reception would be the perfect fit for you. Just the cake, a few bottle of champagne or wine ($2 Chuck would work!), and maybe some hershey kisses spread on the table, and there you go. Perfection!

    I hope your wedding materializes beautifully!

  14. #14

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    That's not a good idea I think...You should shoulder the food...
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  15. #15

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    Re: Getting married.. for cheap?

    well, my wedding was basically the dessert reception. Our little town did not have any decent restaurants that catered....and it was too short notice to have someone from out of town come in. So, we had the church's reception hall decorated...and served groom's cake, wedding cake, and punch. It gave us a chance to say hello to everyone, and thank them for coming. It lasted about an hour...just long enough for us to do the ceremonial cake cutting, toast and bouquet/garter throw. It was very nice.




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