A smart and savvy bride has shared her budgeting tips after planning her dream wedding for less than £2,000.
She even purchased her wedding dress for only £10.
Charlotte Deering, 27, always dreamed of tying the knot in an Alice in Wonderland-themed party. However, she and partner Caine, 26, did not want to pay thousands of pounds for their August 2023 event.
Instead, the frugal pair decided to set themselves a tight budget of £2,000, which also included their £120 honeymoon to Sand Le Mere, Yorkshire.
‘I wanted to do it as cheaply as possible and I scoured everywhere for the best deals,’ Charlotte explained. ‘I love to be frugal and show people that you don’t need to spend thousands to have what you like – with a little extra work, it’ll come together without the huge price tag. It’s all for one day after all and for me, it’s not worth getting into debt and stressing over.
‘I wanted to enjoy every second and know we had done it all our way while ensuring to cut costs. I haggled for cheaper prices, used coupons and free trials, as well as any sales, including Tesco, where I found the perfect wedding dress for £10.’
Charlotte and Caine decorated their wedding venue themselves and hired the local hall for just £100. To keep costs even lower, they asked guests to pay for their own drinks.
Meanwhile, to still stay connected with the chosen theme, the couple purchased fake flowers, jar lights, and candles from discount site, TEMU, and searched through various cash back websites for extra savings.
Charlotte also asked her sister to make the cake, her sister-in-law to make 100 cupcakes, and haggled with the catering company to serve 90 guests with street food for £760.
For entertainment, they used a free trial of Spotify premium and bought their wedding rings for £30 from Argos.
To save even more cash, the ceremony took place at the registry office, costing £150, with only their parents and daughter present.
Charlotte and Caine had no bridesmaids or a best man and asked friends to snap photos of them at their local park to avoid paying for a photographer.
‘Instead of sending out invites, I created a Facebook group, which saved us hundreds of pounds on postage alone,’ Charlotte added.
‘I was able to keep everyone up-to-date and message people easily. I bought some Alice in Wonderland bits from Amazon, such as teapots, which really made the whole day feel unique and brought the Mad Hatters’ Tea Party to life.
‘I also searched for any discount codes available while shopping around, which helped with keeping the decoration costs low.
‘For the sweets table, I bought a tub of them from B&M and dished them out into jars which we gave to children as party favours.
‘I popped to Iceland and grabbed some frozen bits for snacks in the evening, which only cost £30. I wanted a certain hairstyle, so I watched tutorials online and used an old sock to fix a bun in place.’
YouTube was Charlotte’s best friend for all things makeup, nails, and hair.
‘With a bit of practice, it’ll save you a fortune,’ she added. ‘I felt so relaxed on the big day, as I didn’t have the rush of getting into the hairdressers.’
Despite the stress of organising such an event, Charlotte said she wasn’t worried and enjoyed every step along the way.
‘I didn’t expect so many lovely comments, but everyone was absolutely amazed,’ she noted.
‘The people who run the venue took pictures and said it was the nicest wedding they’ve ever had. Our family and friends thought it cost us a fortune and I had so many compliments on my dress.
‘People were in disbelief about how cheap it was and quite a few said it’s given them inspiration for their own wedding dress.
‘I’ve been wearing it throughout summer, so it’s gotten plenty of use out of it – it was important for me to buy something I could wear again.’
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