Budget Wedding Reception
 
 

Budget Wedding Reception

Images of beautiful wedding receptions with magnificent cakes, a live band, and romantic decorations appear to most starry-eyed brides but the reality is that most brides-to-be are on a budget. If funds for the wedding reception of a lifetime are low donít despair Ė a budget wedding reception can be yours for less.

Begin by selecting a low-cost location. If the wedding is to be held at a church, temple, or synagogue, ask if a reception facility is available. Many religious buildings have a parish hall, social room, or other spot where a wedding reception can be held. The cost is nominal and the facilities often include tables, chairs, and a full kitchen, all assets for the budget conscious bride.

If the wedding is to be held elsewhere, consider a wedding reception held at a local park. Many parks offer picnic shelters that can be transformed into a romantic reception with a little imagination. Other possibilities include a private home, a historical site, or local service club building. Ocean view brides might consider the beach as a possible budget wedding reception location.

Since wedding receptions donít have to be formal affairs, choose a theme. Casual themes that can suit the lifestyle of the newlyweds include Western, Hawaiian, Old-fashioned, Victorian, Sixties, or Old World. Let imaginations run wild to find the theme that fits and create a budget wedding reception around it.

Cake choices are important to most brides but it isnít necessary to spend hundreds of dollars on a cake. Forget the cakes that include waterfalls, bridges, and multiple sections that cover a tabletop. Opt instead for a two-layer wedding cake. Choose a local supermarket bakery over a top bakery or wedding cake specialist for the best price. If more cake is needed, order a large sheet cake with the same colors. The cost will be considerably less and the guests will enjoy the cake just as much.

Punch is easy and inexpensive to make. Ginger ale and fruit juice makes a simple punch. Another easy option is to use a lemon-lime-carbonated beverage poured over frozen sherbet. Make your own and save or serve another beverage like iced tea or soft drinks.

Forget about hiring a caterer and have a do-it-yourself budget wedding reception dinner if one is desired. Order multiple meat and cheese party trays from a deli or supermarket or make your own. Another option is to have the family provide home cooked delights that guests will savor. Many ethnic families have a long tradition of home cooked dishes. If the reception will be held outside, consider firing up the grill for barbecue or even cooking a pig in the ground for the ultimate roast pork.

If alcohol is to be served, donít hire a bartender or set up a bar. Have one "spiked" punch bowl and one plain. If serving wine, visit a discount liquor retailer to find a good vintage at a low price. Donít buy wineglasses Ė use plastic throwaway versions instead.

If music is desired, donít hire a live band. Bands can cost $1,000 or more for a one-time performance. Utilize family and friends with musical talent or set up a stereo (even a boom box) and play CDís. Brides can select the music they want Ė anything from waltz to rock Ė and dance the night away for much less.

Decorations can transform a drab church basement into a bridal wonderland. Supplies from a craft, card and party or art store can cost little but can do wonders in creating a romantic space. Supplies for almost any theme are readily available. Silk flowers, streamers, candles, and confetti are just a few of the items available. Look for tissue paper wedding bells or other wedding theme decorations for your budget wedding reception.

Donít buy items like candelabras Ė rent instead from a party supply store. Ask for help from friends with artistic talent. Be sure to ask if the church or host has vases that can be borrowed. Vases or candles on every table can create a special ambiance for any budget wedding reception.

To top tables in a festive yet inexpensive way, look for paper lace tablecloths that can top temporary or linen cloths of any color. These can be found at craft stores as well. To make the cake table look impressive ask around and borrow real heirloom lace tablecloths.

Seek advice from previous brides, moms, grandmothers, aunts and other relatives. With a keen sense of style, imagination, and a little work, any bride can have a beautiful, charming budget wedding reception.

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