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Wedding Planning

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
We've finally set a date - October 17th of 2009. That gives me about 14 months, but... I'm so overwhelmed already How do you do it?! There's so much to think about and coordinate! We're doing this on a tight budget, so there's a lot of DIY (or DIO - do it ourselves) involved...

I've put together a huge binder divided into sections to try and organize myself. We've already reserved the ceremony site. We're looking into affordable reception options... my cousin's wife is going to cater for us... so I'm really ahead of the game, I guess.

It just feels crazy!

Anybody have tips, tricks, experience, etc. to share? I could sure use it! I'm not a "wedding person," so this is totally not my bag... and I'm freaking a little
post #2 of 13
It will be ok. You have alot more time then we did when we got married. Are you going with a theme? We almost got married in Oct but the places were full so we picked Dec. Do you know where the wedding will be at? Have you picked your colors? I would start settng things up now one at a time so you wil not be in a rush when it gets close.
post #3 of 13
Well I am not married nor have I planned a wedding, but I've sure thought about it!

There is a great site,, that you should join. It will help you organize and remind you when to do things and help you out a lot!!!
post #4 of 13
Congratulations!! How exciting!!

I did my own wedding. We had a decent budget, nothing big and we paid everything at one time.

First, what is most important to you. The dress and tux, pictures, food, ambiance what do you spend the most money on. Prioritize what is important, it is easy to get carried away with the little things and by the time you spend $50 here and $100 there you are going broke.

Things I did to reduce costs: I bought my dress at Nordstrom. On sale after prom season. It was an off white strapless that was just beautiful.

My husband is a caterer so we did the food for our wedding but we did a couple of high end passed hors d'eourves such as shrimp and lamb lollipops so it looked fancy and then for dinner we had a buffet we just roasted a ham and turkey with rolls.

I am pretty crafty so I made my own invitations. Printed them out on my sisters computer. And we made our own decorations. I would get the 40% of coupons to Micheals and every week would go there and get anouther bolt of tulle or some of the other more expensive items. I had plenty of time to plan all my decorations. We got married in a mansion so I made it look like a home by putting up picture of hubby and I and of course picture of the kids all around. Easy and fairly cheap deco.

Most of all have fun. Easier said than done. I had everything planned out with organizing list and I still got stessed out.
post #5 of 13
Ok, first of all breathe! You have plenty of time to get things organized. If you've already reserved the wedding site, that is the most important part.

What kind of wedding are you having? Casual or more formal? Do you have colors picked out? Colors aren't necessary, but if burgandy and pink are in your color scheme I have 10-12 candle rings that are yours for the asking.

BTW...ebay is a brides' best friend! I got all my flowers from there as well as my invites, jewelry (for me and bridesmaids) groomsmen gifts (engraved beer mugs) plus wedding favors.

Here are a few links: (for favors)

Just do a search on ebay for what ever you need and you will probably find it an it will save you a ton!
post #6 of 13
As everyone has said before Congrats, breathe, you have a good amount of time for planning. When I did my son's wedding we got alot of things for Very nice stuff, and not too pricey. There is another website but I can't think of it just now, I will post again when I get home.

As far a reception site, I found a really nice country club that was publicly owned and it was really inexpensive also, only went to look to appease daughter in law, turned out it was one of the most beautiful & inexpensive place in town.

In closing all I can say is enjoy
post #7 of 13
I'm sure on the net you can find a list of things to do/when to do them regarding weddings. I've seen one. Its like "6 months before, 3 months before, 2 weeks before".etc.

That should help you out. Also some churches (if you are planning a church wedding) has a "wedding coordinator" that may help you out.

Biggest thing is to start making out the list - because that will tell you how many to plan for and if your budget is small, you will have to limit your relatives/friends for reception. IMO the reception/food costs is the biggest expense!

You can make it as simple as cake/punch/lunchmeat sandwiches to one meal per person to a buffet style.

For our son's wedding, they paid for the chicken dinners; he asked us to provide fruit plates for everyone to help cut costs. We wound up getting $150 worth of fruit and had 8 platters full (and still some fruit that was in other pans to put out). There was a lot left over; we were pushing people to take home a big plate/box of fruit
post #8 of 13
The only advice I can give you is as a cake person:

No matter how many times you read it, renting a dummy cake and buying sheet cakes is not always cheaper. In fact, many bakeries are onto this "secret" that they will probably charge you enough that it'd be cheaper to get the nice cake. Also, cupcakes are not guaranteed to be cheaper either.
post #9 of 13
Well, when DH and I were first married, we got married at my Aunt and Uncle's house in the Catskills. The reception was at our cousin's restaurant so the food was good. We had a DJ in the bar area for dancing. We didn't have colors or anything. A co-worker of Mom's and her husband owned a liquor store so our favors were little bottles of Mateus Rose. Mom and I attached ribbons with DH's and my names and date on them.

When we remarried - never divorced, just renewed, we threw ourselves a party on our big deck. We hired a DJ. For the food, I bid on a catering package on our PBS station. I first called and asked if they had the date available and they did. I told them to reserve it because I was going to win and I did. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme (how could I resist one with Rosemary in the name took care of everything and it was beautiful.

post #10 of 13
Congratulations sweetie! Weddings can be fun to plan if you organize Try not to let the small things stress you out! It will all come together and work out

A few websites that helped me:

I recently got married so i definitely understand what you're going through! If you need any help or suggestions feel free to pm me especially if you want some money saving tips! - there's a section of the website devoted to weddings -they have TONS and TONS of great ideas (especially DIY) and the fourm people are very friendly and kind!

Also - if you need favors for your attendants or other things- this website is very inexpensive on a lot of things and I had a great experience ordering from them!
You can also get favors on too! (Don't go too crazy on the favors and customized napkins though- i promise you that you will not use nearly as many as you think you will!! I had soo many left over from my wedding that I have all the leftovers to my friend Abby for hers- and she STILL had leftovers (and i didn't even order that many!)

(If you need any help with your ceremony planning- i've still got all of my stuff saved that you can "cheat" off of if you want)

Also if you want a really amazing cake topper (one of the only things i splurged on really- but it was worth it!)- this woman is incredable!!!! (I can show you pictures of mine if you like.)
post #11 of 13
I agree with some of the others. I got married a year ago and we had a fairly tight budget. We did a lot of DIY and some "unconventional" stuff. is great. If anything, it can give you great ideas on everything...colors, dress styles, hair styles, wedding invites, etc etc! Also, they have great checklists as far as when to do what, which just helps make sure you aren't missing anything!!!

And Michael' WONDERFUL for DIY! And the coupons they give out weekly are amazing!

We made our own invitations...using ideas from the knot, paper and accessories from Michael's, and equipment form Target Copy!

For catering, we looked at local restaurants instead of catering companies. We saved about $15-$30 per person and had better food!

We made our own center pieces and they totaled about $2.50 each...again we went to Michael's for everything, and I borrowed stuff from friends.

Just don't stress about it, things WILL come into place and everything will work out great!
post #12 of 13
Oh, man! I wish I lived closer to you! I would love to have my own catering/party planning business.

My advice is to not let it get to you (I know, easier said than done) too much. I was 100% engulfed w/my wedding for months but now I can't remember too much about the details.

Just remember, it won't be 100% perfect no matter how hard you try, so don't be too "bridezilla-ish". Just have fun!!
post #13 of 13
My best advice is...get a wedding planner book with the timelines that you should do things..and just stick to it one thing at a time.

You will be fine! And CONGRATS!
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