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Ways to reuse wedding items – and save costs!

Every couple wants their dream wedding. And they deserve their dream wedding.

But things can quickly add up and suddenly the budget isn’t playing nice.

Today I want to give you options on ways to save costs, cut out unnecessary items, and how to reuse them so you don’t need to rent or buy double what you already have. This can go a long way the total tallies up!


Photography: Motion House Weddings


Chairs

Yes, you absolutely need chairs and I’m not going to tell you to cut them out haha! But you also don’t need to order two sets – one for ceremony and one for your seated dinner!

Once ceremony is over, and your guests are having cocktails, your furniture vendor can then take your chairs from the ceremony area and place them at reception. This way you’re paying for only one set of chairs, not two. And considering the ceremony generally only goes for about 20-30 minutes, it’s a total waste to have chairs just for that moment.

Not having a sit-down dinner? Then cancel the chairs all together! I promise I’m not crazy.

Use your cocktail furniture to act as seats, at lease for the front few rows. Bench sets I feel are essential to any wedding, and these look just as great when used for ceremony seating. Often times you’ll find many guests prefer to stand anyway so ensuring immediate family and those who need or want to sit have a bench to sit on, there’s no need to hire chairs.

During the group photos, the furniture vendors can take the benches and arrange them with the rest of the cocktail furniture just in time for your guests to come in and enjoy the cocktails and canapes!


Photography: Flipmax


Wedding Arbor

SO much effort and time goes into constructing your wedding arbor. Whatever design you choose, it takes a lot. And when sometimes you feel that floristry costs a lot, consider the fact you’re not just paying for flowers. You’re paying for the florist’s expertise in arrangement, having an entire team to get your whole day done in a matter of hours, the days before your wedding prepping and arranging as much as they can so they can be efficient on the day and focus only on what needs to be done on the day, the list goes on.

This is why I feel so sad when the wedding arbor – the feature of the floristry – is only used for ceremony time. It can be so much more than that.

Once your ceremony is over, you can repurpose it so you can get maximum usage and value.

I often suggest using it as a backdrop for photo opportunities for your guests. Move it to the cocktail or reception area and put a sofa in front, your guests will love to have photos with it.

If you’re having a bridal table, use it behind the bride and groom chairs or, if it’s a pillar arch, use it on the sides of the table. It’ll add so much more wow-factor for no extra cost.

Other options include using it as the backdrop for your dj, band or bar. Definitely re-use your arbor.


Photography: Motion House Weddings

 

Aisle flowers

Basically the same concept as wedding arbors. They’re there to line the path for you to say your vows, and they make your ceremony look so beautiful. But they shouldn’t be forgotten about either.

You can repurpose these as décor for around the dancefloor, on the dj booth, on the bar, add to the end of tables (if you’re doing long tables), use as centerpieces for tables (if you’re using round tables…and provided there's enough of course), or as in a recent wedding I did, deconstruct them into mini posies and gift them to your guests as thank you favors.


Photography: Motion House Weddings

Signage

Fun Fact – you don’t actually need as much signage as you think you need.

Unless you want everything in hard copy form, apart from a welcome sign and a seating chart, you don’t need anything else.

Your bar vendors include what drink options are available on their own signs that they bring to the event.

Most caterers are happy to print out menus to put on tables, you just need to ask.

Order of the Day? Again, don’t need it. Create a PDF form on your wedding website and those who do want to know what is happening when can print it themselves to keep. But if you’re having an MC, they’ll guide your guests throughout the day anyway.

I understand the couples who want everything stylized in a certain way. And im not against it. I’m merely pointing out that if you want to cut costs, these are things you can do without or use in another format.



Photography: Diktat Photography


Transform your DJ booth to a DIY bar.

Live music curfews in Bali are generally at 11pm. This means any band or DJ has to stop and you need to switch to Spotify or similar.

If your venue allows a later curfew for your guests though, meaning that they can stay beyond midnight, unless you pay extra for the bar to stay on which can be costly, your bar services will still finish at midnight.

To keep the festivities going, order cartons of beer and premixed drinks in advance, and ask your planner to keep them cold. When the DJ is finished, you can set up the drinks there with a bottle opener, allowing your guests to use it as a DIY bar and keep the party going!

 

xx


Photography: Vargamurphy


Don’t limit entertainment to only music

Music is what ties the day and night together. It’s the symphonic glue that can wordlessly escort your guests from mellow cocktails to pumped up dancefloor. You and your guests will naturally alter your state based on the beats and rhythm of the night. But remember, not all entertainment comes in the form of music, and not everyone likes to dance.

Ensure you have other forms of entertainment so that guests of all ages and personalities can enjoy themselves. They can come in physical forms such as lawn games and I Spy cards that are handed to guests, or it can be interactive extras such as photo booths and audio registries.

My point is, keep it varied. Having something for everyone really makes a difference.


Photography: Motion House Weddings


Dance the night away

For those of you who do have a guest list who you know will hit the dancefloor, then you may not need to invest in the add-ons mentioned above, and instead put that towards a fantastic band or dj (or both!) and that’ll be one of the best things you spend your money on at your wedding.

A good entertainer will know when to lift the mood, when to keep it chilled for dinner, and know how to get everyone out of their seats and burn holes in the dancefloor.

A great way to increase the chance of everyone dancing is when you send out your invitations, have a space where each guest can put in a favourite song request. This way, you’ll know that everyone will dance at least once when they hear their song! It also makes them feel valued and more included on your big day.


Photography: Kadek for Diktat Photography

 

Lastly, wedding favors – yay or nay?

I’m getting asked this more and more these days.

It’s not as common to have wedding favours as it used to be, particularly for destination weddings.

Its an extra cost on the couple’s side, and its an extra thing to bring back for the guests that they may or may not have space for – depending on what it is.

My tip for this, is if you are going to give out favors, make sure they fit into one of these categories: functional or consumable.

Functional – make them useful. Whether it’s a handheld fan they can use to combat the heat or a wall of themed sunglasses, having something they can use there and then is much more appreciated than a random keyring.

Consumable – if they can eat or drink it on the night, it ticks the box of having given them something personal, and they don’t have to bring it with them or have an issue remembering where they left it. Things such as personalized sugar cookies on their place setting, mini bottles of alcohol or even cupcakes to eat on the way home, all work well.


Photography: Flipmax Photography

 

So there’s my lates thought and tips on making sure your big day is fun for all.

There a loads more ideas, but honestly I’d never stop typing.

Hoping this helps some of you in making your special day the little bit more WOW.

 

xxx


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