7 Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget For Your Dream Celebration

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Are you looking for small wedding ideas on a budget? Planning a big day on a budget can be challenging, but you can create a remarkable and delightful experience with the right approach. In this article, we’ve compiled practical tips and ideas to assist you in organizing an unforgettable wedding without exceeding your financial constraints. We’ve covered everything from unconventional venues to cost-effective decor and catering options. Let Viva Wedding Photography show you!

Importance Of Having Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget

Small wedding Ideas on a budget can be an excellent option for couples who want to celebrate their special day in an intimate and meaningful way without breaking the bank. Besides, with rising wedding costs, a small wedding may be a more practical and financially responsible option.

On the other hand, a small wedding on a budget allows for a more personalized and unique wedding experience.

Here are the benefits of having a small wedding on a budget:

  • It can assist you in saving money and allocating your resources more effectively.
  • Allows you to select the most cost-effective location, design, food, and entertainment alternatives.
  • May plan a beautiful and memorable party without going over budget
  • It enables you to prioritize your beliefs and plan a meaningful celebration.
  • A smaller, less expensive wedding might be less stressful to arrange.
  • It allows you to spend quality time with your loved ones in a more comfortable environment.
  • It may give you and your visitors a more genuine experience.
  • It can be a great option for couples who prefer a low-key or non-traditional wedding celebration.

How To Plan Your Dream Wedding On A Tight Budget

It may appear difficult to plan your dream wedding on a limited budget. Still, with the correct strategy, having a beautiful and memorable party is possible without breaking the bank. Here are some pointers to help you arrange your dream wedding on a budget:

1. Wedding Venue

Choosing a non-traditional wedding venue can help you save money while adding a unique touch to your big day. Here are some non-traditional wedding venue suggestions:

Indoor Venue

Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Indoor Venue
Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Indoor Venue – Photo by: Wedding Wire
  • A community hall or cultural center:

Large spaces in community halls and cultural centers can often be rented for events cheaper than traditional wedding venues.

Outdoor Venue

Selecting a non-traditional wedding venue is a practical and creative way to create an unforgettable and affordable wedding experience representing your individuality and interests. It offers a distinctive ambiance that deviates from the nature wedding settings, leaving a lasting impression on you and your guests.

Ideas For Wedding On A Budget with Outdoor Venue
Ideas For Wedding On A Budget with Outdoor Venue – Photo by: Parade
  • A backyard or garden:

An outdoor wedding can be charming and cost-effective, especially if you have access to a large backyard or garden, either of your own or a family members. It offers a picturesque backdrop for your big day while saving you from the exorbitant costs of booking a conventional venue.

  • A park or beach:

Numerous parks and beaches have allocated areas for hosting weddings, which can be a more economical alternative to conventional wedding venues. These designated areas offer picturesque backdrops for your special day while also being relatively less expensive, allowing you to stay within your budget while creating cherished memories.

2. Wedding Decor

Natural Or Existing Decor

Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Natural Decor
Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Natural Decor – Photo by: The Knot

Here are some ideas for wedding on a budget using natural or existing decor:

  • Embrace the Outdoors:

Take advantage of the natural beauty of the surroundings if your wedding is in a park or backyard. Create a beautiful, organic backdrop for the ceremony and reception using trees, shrubs, flowers, and other foliage.

  • Repurpose Existing Decor:

Examine the surroundings to see what existing decor you can use to your advantage. For example, if the venue has lovely lighting or interesting architectural features, draw attention to them with strategic decor choices.

  • Use Natural Elements:

Incorporate natural elements, such as wood, stone, and water, into your decor. You could, for example, use tree stumps as centerpiece stands or create a focal point with a small water feature such as a fountain or pond.

  • DIY with Natural Materials:

Make your DIY decor from natural materials such as branches, leaves, flowers, and rocks. For example, you could create a lovely rustic archway out of twigs and branches or a lovely table centerpiece out of pinecones, acorns, and other natural materials.

  • Let the Scenery Speak for Itself:

Sometimes, the best decoration is none. Don’t overdo the decorations if your venue has a beautiful view or scenic landscape. Allow the natural beauty of your surroundings to take center stage instead, and keep your decor simple and understated.

DIY Decor

Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget
Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget – Photo by: Country Living Magazine

Here are some DIY decor ideas for a small wedding on a budget that is simple to make and inexpensive:

  • Paper Flower Backdrop:

Handmade paper flowers make a lovely backdrop for your ceremony or photo booth. Besides, numerous tutorials are available online for making various paper flowers from simple materials such as tissue paper or crepe paper.

  • Mason Jar Centerpieces:

Mason jars can be used to make a variety of simple and charming centerpieces. Besides, fill them with flowers, candles, or small trinkets like sea glass or shells to add a personal touch.

  • Chalkboard Signs:

Make wedding signs with chalkboard paint or adhesive chalkboard paper. So, you may use them to display the menu, greet guests, or set up a photo booth. Finally, you only need a chalk marker to add your text and designs.

  • Photo Displays:

Make a photo display of you and your partner or family members. Photos can be printed on your home printer or at a local photo center. Use simple frames or string them with twine and clothespins for a rustic look.

  • Balloon Garlands:

Budget-friendly balloon garlands are popular DIY wedding ideas on a budget. Multiple balloons are strung together to form garlands that can be hung from walls or ceilings or used as a backdrop. Balloon garlands are available in various colors and styles and can be tailored to match any color scheme or wedding theme.

Remember that DIY decor does not have to be difficult or expensive. So, you might create beautiful decor elements that will make your small wedding feel special and unique by using simple materials and incorporating personal touches.

3. Food And Drink

Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Food Stations
Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Food Stations – Photo by: Brides

Here are some food and beverage options that are affordable for small wedding ideas on a budget:

  • Buffet or Family-Style Meal:

Buffets or family-style meals can be a great option for a low-cost wedding because they allow guests to serve themselves and eliminate the need for servers. Besides, choose simple and hearty dishes like pasta, roasted vegetables, and salads to save money.

  • DIY Food Stations:

DIY food stations such as taco bars, pizza stations, or sandwich bars for a small wedding can be a fun and cost-effective option. You can buy ingredients in bulk and set up stations where guests can create their meals.

  • Brunch or Lunch Reception:

Brunch and lunch receptions are less expensive than dinner receptions because breakfast and lunch items are cheaper than dinner entrees. Besides, consider serving quiches, sandwiches, or fruit platters.

  • Signature Cocktails:

Instead of a full bar, offer one or two signature cocktails within your budget. This can add a unique touch to the reception without costing a fortune.

  • BYOB:

Consider having a “bring your own beverage” policy if your venue allows it. This can significantly reduce the cost of alcohol while also allowing guests to bring their preferred beverages.

  • Choose In-Season and Local Foods:

Foods that are in season and locally sourced are less expensive than foods that are out of season or imported. To save money, select menu items that use ingredients in season and are locally sourced.

  • Simplify the Menu:

Simplify the menu by selecting dishes requiring fewer ingredients or less preparation time. This can help reduce the cost of ingredients and the labor cost of food preparation.

  • Offer Vegetarian or Vegan Options:

Because vegetarian and vegan dishes are less expensive than meat-based dishes, consider including vegetarian or vegan options. This can also accommodate guests who have dietary restrictions.

  • Prioritize the “Must-Haves”:

Prioritize the “must-haves” on your menu and consider eliminating unnecessary items. This will help you save money while providing a satisfying meal for your guests.

Remember that cutting costs does not imply sacrificing quality or flavor. You may provide your guests with a delicious and satisfying meal while staying within your budget with careful planning and creative thinking.

4. Wedding Entertainment

Creative Activities

Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Creative Activities
Small Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Creative Activities – Photo by: Making Joy and Pretty Things

Here are some small wedding ideas on a budget for activities that guests can enjoy and that won’t break the bank: 

  • Lawn Games:

Integrating lawn games into your wedding reception, such as cornhole, giant Jenga, or croquet, can be a delightful and interactive way to entertain your guests while encouraging socialization and mingling. These games can be enjoyed by people of all ages, providing a fun-filled experience that leaves a lasting impression on your guests. So, consider including these activities in your reception to create a memorable and engaging atmosphere for everyone.

  • DIY Photo Booth:

Photo booths are practical and affordable DIY wedding ideas on a budget. You may set up a simple photo booth with a backdrop, props, and a camera mounted on a tripod. This allows your guests to take pictures with their loved ones and create cherished memories of your special day. It’s an excellent way to add a personal touch to your wedding and give your guests a fun keepsake to take home with them. So, consider setting up a DIY photo booth at your wedding to capture unforgettable moments.

  • Flower Crown Station:

Creating a DIY flower crown station can be an engaging and entertaining activity for your guests at the wedding. Your guests can design their flower crowns using affordable materials such as floral wire, floral tape, and artificial flowers. This is a budget-friendly option, adds a personal touch to your wedding, and serves as a cute photo prop. So, consider including a flower crown station at your wedding to create an interactive experience for your guests that they will remember for years.

  • Group Dance Lessons:

Hiring a dance teacher to instruct a simple group dance, such as the cha-cha or the electric slide, can be an excellent way to get your guests involved in the celebration and break the ice. It provides a fun and unique experience for your guests to learn new dance moves and an excellent way to get the party started. This activity can create a lively atmosphere and encourage guests to hit the dance floor, making it a memorable experience for everyone.

  • Wedding Mad Libs:

Creating your wedding-themed Mad Libs game and distributing printed copies to guests during the reception can be a playful and enjoyable way to entertain and engage your guests. It’s a lighthearted activity that can add fun to your wedding celebration. Your guests can fill in the blanks with funny or silly words, making it a unique and personalized game that everyone can enjoy.

  • Movie Night:

Hosting a movie night for your guests can be a fun and unique activity, especially if your venue has a projector and screen available. You can choose to screen a romantic comedy or a classic movie that everyone will enjoy. It’s an excellent way to provide your guests with some entertainment and a chance to relax and unwind after the wedding ceremony and reception. Additionally, it can be a memorable way to cap off the night and create a cozy and intimate atmosphere.

Ideas For Wedding Music

Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Music
Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Music – Photo by: PCDJ

Here are some budget-friendly music and entertainment options:

  • Hire a Local Band or DJ:

Consider hiring a local band or DJ who is just starting instead of a well-known band or DJ. They may have lower rates while still providing excellent entertainment for your guests.

  • Create a Playlist:

Making a playlist of your favorite songs and playing them through a sound system can be cheaper than hiring a band or DJ. You can also ask guests for song requests ahead of time to ensure that everyone hears their favorite songs.

  • Have a Karaoke Night:

Set up or rent a karaoke machine and have guests take turns singing their favorite songs. This can be fun and interactive to keep guests entertained and involved in the party.

5. Wedding Attire & Wedding Accessories

Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Accessories
Diy Wedding Ideas On A Budget with Accessories – Photo by: Brides

Here are some ideas for a small wedding on a budget for wedding attire and accessories:

  • Rent Your Wedding Attire:

Consider renting your wedding gown or suit instead of purchasing a new one. This can save you significant money, especially if you only intend to wear the outfit once.

  • Shop Secondhand:

Shopping secondhand is another way to save money on wedding attire. Look for gently used wedding dresses or suits in thrift stores or online marketplaces like eBay or Facebook Marketplace.

  • Go Simple:

You don’t need an elaborate wedding gown or suit to look stunning on your wedding day. Choose simple, elegant, less expensive styles while remaining stylish and sophisticated.

  • DIY Accessories:

Making jewelry, shoes, and hairpieces may help you save money on these items. Look for DIY tutorials online, or get creative and make your one-of-a-kind accessories.

  • Borrow from Friends and Family:

Consider borrowing wedding attire or accessories from friends or family members who have recently married. This is a sentimental and cost-effective way to incorporate borrowed items into your wedding.

  • Shop End-of-Season Sales:

Wedding attire and accessories can be discounted during end-of-season sales. Check bridal boutiques, department stores, and online retailers for discounts.

  • Skip the Designer Brands:

Designer wedding gowns and accessories can be expensive. Instead, consider going with a less expensive brand or a similar, less expensive style.

6. Wedding Guest List

Ideas For Wedding On A Budget with Digital Invitations
Ideas For Wedding On A Budget with Digital Invitations – Photo by: The Budget Savvy Bride

Here are some ideas for wedding on a budget for a wedding guest list:

  • Prioritize:

Begin by identifying who is most important to you and your partner. This could include close family members, best friends, and others who have significantly impacted your life.

  • Cut Plus Ones:

Limit the number of plus ones permitted. It’s common practice to provide plus ones for all your guests, but this can quickly add up and make your guest list longer than you intended.

  • Cut Co-Workers:

Consider restricting or removing coworkers from your guest list. While you may interact positively with some of your coworkers, they may not be as close to you as your family and close friends.

  • Consider the Wedding Venue Capacity:

Before finalizing your guest list, keep the capacity of your venue in mind. You don’t want to invite too many people, which would result in a crowded and uncomfortable reception.

  • Have an Adults-Only Wedding:

Consider having a wedding for adults only. This reduces the number of guests and lowers costs because you won’t have to provide child-friendly activities or meals.

  • Use Digital Invitations:

Instead of traditional paper invitations, consider digital ones. This can save you money on printing and postage while making RSVP tracking easier.

  • Host a Smaller Wedding:

Consider hosting an intimate wedding. This will allow you to invite only your closest friends and family for a more intimate event.

Remember that your wedding guest list should reflect your preferences and financial constraints. Focus on inviting those who are most significant to you and your partner.

7. Wedding Favors

Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Favors
Ideas For A Small Wedding On A Budget with Favors – Photo by: Brides

You do not need to spend a fortune on wedding favors to express gratitude to your guests. Here are some memorable, inexpensive wedding favor ideas:

Personalized wedding favors such as bookmarks, keychains, or mini photo frames can be inexpensive yet meaningful.

  • Homemade treats:

Consider making cookies, brownies, or other treats and presenting them in a pretty box or bag.

  • Potted plants:

Small potted plants, such as succulents or herbs, are eco-friendly and useful wedding favor that guests can take home and enjoy.

  • DIY candles:

Make your scented candles and place them in adorable jars with personalized labels.

  • Local specialties:

Give out local specialties like honey, jams, or maple syrup to share a piece of your hometown or wedding location.

  • Photo booth pictures:

Install a photo booth and provide guests with a printed copy of their photos as a keepsake.

  • Donation to charity:

Consider making a charitable donation in honor of your guests and providing them with a small card or token to acknowledge the donation.

>>> Read More: 6 Most Popular Wedding Months – How Come They’re So Well-Liked?

Planning a small wedding on a budget can be difficult, but it is not impossible. So, couples may have a beautiful and memorable wedding day without spending a fortune by incorporating these small wedding ideas on a budget. Furthermore, Viva Wedding offers many other informative articles related to weddings, which we hope you’ll find enjoyable and informative.

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