Having an on-trend wedding doesn’t mean you have to bust your budget – this A-Z of wedding trends is full of hot ideas that could even SAVE you money!
A is for At-home festivals
Not so long ago, opulent country houses and stylish hotels were the wedding venues of choice, but more couples are holding their festivities at home or at the home of a family member. A back garden reception suits the popular vintage, festival and tea party wedding themes perfectly, and although you’ll need to factor in expenses like marquee hire, this style will significantly reduce what is known to be a huge chunk of your overall wedding cost. With this you will also have more flexibility with food, drink and entertainment, rather than being tied to pricey wedding packages.
B is for Brunch
Brunch weddings are a new trend in Stateside weddings that we’re expecting in the near future. Getting married mid-morning, followed by a relaxed breakfast buffet with a juice bar, hot coffee and celebratory cocktails is an unusual way to celebrate with your guests, and is also one of the most cost-effective ways to tie the knot. Your catering costs will be lower and venue hire is often cheaper in the daytime, too.
C is for Calligraphy
Forget fancy fonts and printed motifs: a continual trend for last year, this year and beyond is the return of elegant calligraphy. “To save money why not take an inexpensive calligraphy course, and DIY your own stationery,” suggests Alexandra Merri of thebijoubride.com
D is for DIY photobooth
Photo booths show no sign of waning in popularity. The downside is that they can be an expensive addition to your wedding budget, costing upwards of £500. For a budget alternative that is just as fun, smart brides are making their own DIY photo booths, creating their own makeshift backdrops with colourful wrapping paper, paper flowers and lights. Teamed with funky and cheap as chips accessories or even some you might be able to borrow from people who have had fancy dress parties. All that is left to source is a digital camera! Sorted!
E is for Easy evening munchies
In recent years, couples have replaced the traditional evening buffet with late-night snacks, comfort foods and classic British combinations like bacon sandwiches, warm muffins or milk and cookies – they’re the perfect hangover-busting bedtime snack as well!
F is for Faux
“If you’ve fallen in love with floral garlands but are lacking in extra budget, faux garlands are a brilliant alternative,” says Katrina Otter of Katrina Otter Weddings & Events. “They can be used to create everything from statement tablescapes and ceremony backdrops to detailed cake tables, bars and arches for half the price of real flowers!”
G is for Grandeur
You may not have thought about the advantages of choosing a more period venue with dramatic features, characterful in and out and most importantly, well preserved opulent decor that could mean your wedding decor budget is taken to the minimum! Let the venue speak for itself entirely because not all of them need anything else!
H is for Hydrangeas
Hydrangeas are one of the most elegant spending-savvy solutions with a whole spectrum of colours and varieties to choose from for any element of your day – ceremony decor, bouquets, table centres, flower walls…the list could go on! They’re also a proper powerhouse flower – big and blowsy, you’ll only need a few stems to create a show-stopping bouquet or table display, delivering more blooms for your buck.
I is for Instagram
One way to keep costs down would be to send your official photographer home slightly earlier, and get your guests to Instagram your evening celebrations instead. Create a sign inviting people to share their mobile photos with your own personal wedding hashtag and you’ll end up with a fantastic collection of candid snaps of your big day.
J is for Jigsaw guest book
A plain jigsaw makes an unusual blank canvas where guests can write their messages on individual puzzle pieces. These can be framed as a lasting souvenir of your big day and symbolise the collective importance of the guests who were there to wish you well on your big day!
K is for Kids’ entertainment
If you’re having lots of littler guests at your wedding, finding a cheap way to keep them amused can be a challenge. Providing it is a family-friendly wedding and your venue is ok with it, set them off on a little treasure hunt for a list of objects to find in and around your venue – a feather, a pinecone, a shiny penny? An inexpensive prize or sweet treat will provide their motivation to win and you’ll earn substantial socialising time for the adults, uninterrupted! Everyone is happy! Alternatively Wedding Ideas shop could provide you with some easy entertainment packs and fun ideas to keep the smiles coming on the kids table during the wedding breakfast.
L is for Lighting
3D stars, bulb lights, giant illuminated letters or even a room filled with tea lights… lighting technology and effects can be one of the most cost-effective ways to make your wedding dazzle! Using light can also help reduce your overall expenditure, as you can create a statement look with fewer of the flower displays, trimmings and decor extras. Try filling glass vases with battery-operated fairy lights for a sparkling alternative to floral table centres. And whether your venue is compact and cosy or extravagant and echoing, pretty twinkling lights and candles will enhance the illusion of space by creating a warm and glowing atmosphere.
M is for Mismatched maids
Dressing your bridesmaids individually remains a popular look! “Choosing the same style of dress but in different colours – either complementary or on the same spectrum – is a good way to make sure your bridesmaids are dressed to suit their own personalities,” says Sinclair Sellars of maidstomeasure.com. Alternatively, pick one colour but different designs of dress. If your maids are happy with their style and can wear it again, they may be willing to contribute to the cost also if budget is tight or you have an unusually large number of bridesmaids!
N is for Naked cakes
“They’re always sponges, and can be filled with anything from Summer berries to edible flowers,” says Celeste Batten of The Organic Wedding Cake Company. “A naked cake will always cost less than an iced cake, as there’s less labour involved.”
O is for Origami
“Why not use paper to create the wow factor on an affordable scale?” suggests Alexandra. “We love pom poms, but pinwheels and oversized metallic streamers are also hot right now”
P is for Ponytails
“Glossy blow-dried hair is set in a ponytail with the tail polished and bouncy or ruffled up for modern texture,” says Anna Baker, senior stylist at Errol Douglas Salon. The added bonus is that this chic style works best without a veil, so will save you pennies on your bridal headgear.
Q is for Quizzes
Following the trend for relaxed, informal celebrations, ice-breaking quizzes are a popular option for filling those lulls in the running order and helping fuel conversations – plus they’re easy to DIY. On-trend options include pub quizzes, name that tune and who’s who, where guests have to find someone who’s a doctor, someone who lives abroad, someone who’s run a marathon…
Alternatively if you are lacking in inspiration, these trivia favour boxes are themed to your guest and can be placed on each place setting!
R is for Relaxed dining
“There’s no better way to get conversation flowing than by offering sharing platters over individually plated dishes,” explains Sarah Sowerby, marketing executive of Hedsor House. “We’re seeing more couples choosing informal options, such as shared antipasti starters to keep the formalities unpressurised and enjoyed at the guests pace.”
S is for Sashes
An inexpensive way to jewel up a simpler wedding dress is to add an on trend embellished sash or bridal belt. Not only are these an affordable alternative to a dress already adorned in gems but often a its the little details that go a long way in personalising your look!
T is for Tents
Festival-esque tipis and katas provide the most elegant outdoor space for countless ceremonies and receptions. BUT they’re not necessarily the cheaper choice…
If you’re on a budget, a marquee style instead may be a better option to look into? Modern and surprisingly spacious, they can seat 80 guests from as little as £500. If you can find a low-cost space to pitch it on – such as a friendly farmer’s field you can get your venue sorted at a snip.
U is for Upcycling
Upcycled wedding decorations are perfect for a shabby chic celebration. We’re loving jam jar and tin can lanterns wrapped in twine, paper flower garlands made from coffee filter papers, old books for table centres and vintage frames used for seating plans and DIY photo booth walls. Think outside the box when you’re planning your decor – even the unlikeliest of items can add detail to your day! Make it your mission to source your style via charity shops and car boot sales. If you have vision, someone else’s junk could be your treasure!
V is for Virgin drinks
You don’t have to get your guests legless to have a good time! Cloudy lemonade, non-alcoholic fruit punch and signature mocktails all look pretty, taste delicious, and are so much kinder to your budget than booze. Running a cash bar as well means that your guests can buy their own harder drinks if they choose to!
W is for Walking
Who needs a Bentley or a Jag when you’ve got a perfectly functional pair of legs? The popularity of relaxed village or countryside weddings means you can dispense with the pricey hired wheels and walk between your wedding venues. Strolling from church to reception venue surrounded by your guests is a lovely interlude on your big day, and presents some fantastic photo opportunities – wellies and umbrellas optional!?
X is for Xtra large bouquets
When it comes to the bridal bouquet, supersize is the new sought-after look. The key to making this style work for you without blowing the budget is to opt for large blooms, such as overblown roses, hydrangeas, heather and leafy foliage so you need fewer stems to make an impact. Choose in-season flowers to keep costs down, and add fresh herbs or cheap gypsophilia from the garden to create a statement piece that’s right on trend.
Y is for YouTube choreography
Ever fancied being on Strictly Come Dancing? Your wedding reception is the ideal time to show off your moves, with show-stopping first dance routines being a sure-fire way to impress your guests. If you can’t stretch to personal dance lessons, explore YouTube for choreographed routines that you can practise at home, ready to wow on your big day.
Z is for Z-listers not invited!
One of the best ways to reduce your wedding spend is to whittle your guest list down to your nearest and dearest online – no distant great aunties or plus ones. “A few years ago, the average couple invited around 100 guests to their wedding, but now it’s more like 60,” says Daniel Gill, Managing Director of events company Dine. “Couples are being increasingly selective about who they invite, and opting for quality over quantity when it comes to guests.” This attitude helps to create a more personal and intimate atmosphere, as well as saving you a tidy sum!