Welcome to the final post about our wedding! Last week we talked a little bit about how a rustic/vintage theme can be a way to keep you below your budget as well as keep you on schedule even at a destination. And with surveys reflecting American weddings typically costing over $40,000 - $50,000, we certainly take alot of pride in our do-it-yourselfer wedding pieces. Below are just some of the key items that brought our whole event together without even thinking about how much it was costing us! Cause let's face it, what use is spending all that money and planning an entire year just for one day? At the end of it all, there's really only one thing that matters, each other.
There was nothing more important to me than saying our vows in a church. Swedish Churches are really like no other. They are filled with so much history and beauty. I was blessed to be able to wed in this gorgeous 400 year old church where many of my husband's family and friends have also married. If you're members of a church, your ceremony venue typically won't cost you anything.
Who could have asked for a better home-made wedding cake?! Our dear friend Lina Makhoul was gracious enough to bake and design our cake as a gift. Simplicity can go a long way. It also tasted as good as it looked! The base for the cake was personally hand-chopped and delivered by an uncle from one of the trees on their farm. And Our handmade wedding toppers were purchased online from a local vendor at Etsy.com for no more than $20
With reception venues costing at an average of $5,000 in the wedding industry, we decided to spend nothing. Since our church was conveniently situated by a beautiful lake, we decided to make use of our beautiful surroundings and asked to have our reception right outside the church yard. Our biggest expense was renting the furniture for about $600 that seats 80-100 guests. We were able to accentuate the reception further by decorating with thrifty buys from local second hand stores or borrowing from friends & family.
Ok so we did have to spend a little more on the gifts, but who better to splurge on then your parents, bridesmaids, and groomsmen! Since I'm a sucker for pearls (I donned a genuine pearl necklace, earrings, and engagement ring on my wedding day) I decided to extend that theme to my girls. Mothers received beautiful pearl necklaces while the bridesmaids received the pearl earrings. We gave the boys gorgeous Calvin Klein ties, who graciously wore them on the wedding day <3
My bridal garter was given as my bridal shower gift by none other than my sister, Coco! I believe she also bought this online from a local vendor at Etsy. This piece was handmade and of course is covered with my two favorite design pieces, lace and pearls!
Wedding Dresses are undoubtedly one of the most expensive wedding pieces a bride spends on, ranging from $2,000 - $10,000 (on average!) Mine? a whopping $100, yes you read right, one hundred dollars. I'm a huge vintage fanatic so I always knew my dress would be vintage, but I never expected my dress to find me. I spent absolutely no effort looking for a wedding dress. My mother and I simply stumbled upon a local vintage/second hand boutique called Magnolia Gowns. We went in with the only motive to window shop. My mom suddenly saw the dress, almost beckoning her to come and bring it to me. I instantly fell in love. The owner was a kind and funny middle-aged woman who offered the genuine 70's vintage dress for $100 even. Without hesitation, I paid her cash and took it home with me the same day. She altered the back a little to bring in the shoulders and sewed a ribbon in the back to tie them together. Other than that, the dress was ready to be worn. I never looked at another wedding dress since and have no regrets to this very day.
Of course, none of this would've been possible without the support of our loved ones. As midnight came around, the only thing on our minds was who can do the best salt & pepper shake. Sigh. I wish we can re-live these moments every year but sadly, we only truly have one chance to live it out. So let go of the bridezilla instinct (i know it's hard ladies), and prepare for the marriage of your lifetime more than the wedding of once upon a time.