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March 8, 2013

Wedding Under $6,000.00 - The Dress

You get engaged - or in my case - your boyfriend merely mentions the words "marriage" or "wedding" and you lose your flipping mind. You buy a bunch of wedding magazines and flip through the pages over and over and over, just in case you missed something. All the while being bombarded with high end product, some of which you don't even need.

Let's face it, it's hard to shop for a wedding dress when you've been spending months looking at designer gowns worn by models. Can I squeeze my lumpy, stumpy body into a strapless mermaid gown? It's probably physically possible. And while you do want to look beautiful on your wedding day, isn't it possible to do it without spending a few grand? Yes!

I've never been a fan of short wedding dresses. To me, they just don't look like wedding dresses. But then I saw this cute little number and I swear it spoke to me. Maybe I am going a little nut-so from working with the budget all week, but I'm telling ya, this is the one.

This dress is under $600! And I LOVE it... in my HEART. And I can't wait to wear it and dance in it. A great thing about short dresses, I have realized, is that they are a great opportunity to show off your SHOES.

March 7, 2013

Wedding under $6,000.00 - Food and Venue

Although my original wedding budget was $5,000.00 I decided that I would probably need to budget in an extra $1,000.00 for unforeseen circumstances, impulse buying, general loss of mind, and possibly a day of coordinator to hold it all together. I have increased my budget to $6,000.00, but if I can cut savings anywhere, I won't be reallocating them back into the budget.

First off, my mom has agreed to do the food. I'm sure she will enlist some help from friends and family members so she doesn't have to work all day on my wedding day. We decided to have the following menu buffet style:

  • Pulled Pork Sandwiches
  • Hot Dogs
  • Baked Beans
  • Potato Salad
  • Coleslaw
  • Cornbread
  • Seasonal Fruit Salad
  • Lemonade
  • Southern Sweet Tea

If it sounds a little rustic and down-home; that's because it is. We have been looking around at several BBQ joints for catering. The least expensive we could find was $14.75 a head and it was just for drop off, not full catering. My mom says she can do this for $6.50 a head, but I think that is too good to be true so I budgeted it at $7.75 a head. Again, if I can save anything on it, I won't be reallocating it back into the budget. It will go right back into the savings account from whence it came.

The Marshall Center
An all day event at "Portland's Best New Wedding Venue, 2011", The Foundry At Lake Oswego? Whoa, yeah, that was our first pick. Did we want to have a wedding on a Tuesday in October so we could afford it, or would we rather have our family and friends available to join us? We're going with the guests.

Bouncy Houses, Swimming Pools, and Paddle Boat rides at Alderbrook Park? We wanted all that too. It's not totally un-affordable, if you don't mind sharing the park with a million other people. And hey, for a cool $10,000 you can have the whole park to yourself for the day. I'm unwilling to blow my budget on the place. I decided that a grange hall or community center like The Marshall Center in Vancouver, WA would work just as well and cost a lot less. $120.00 an hour, a refundable deposit and a full kitchen are awesome! Even better is the stage and piano that are included! Perfect wedding venue for us and it fits in our budget.


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