Staying Within Your Wedding Budget: Invitations

Well, it’s officially been {almost} a year since our wedding day! I have decided to reflect back on our wedding day with a series titled, “How to stay within your Wedding Budget when it’s less than $20,000”!

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My dad gave me a very strict budget. My sister had gotten married two and a half years before me, and he wanted me to stay within the same budget as her. My dad set a budget for each category of my wedding. He was not going to go over that budget, and it was a pretty low budget compared to other weddings in the DFW area. I was determined to stick to it though, and worked really hard to stay within the budget! My dad budgeted pretty much every category possible, but I was allowed to move money from category to category. So if I overspent in one category but underspent in another, it was ok!

When planning a wedding in the DFW area, it is very hard to stay within a budget that is under $17,000! My budget was $16,519. The average cost of a wedding in Dallas is $28,810. That means I had about $12,291 less dollars than the average bride in the DFW area. However, I was determined to stretch this money as far as it would go, and that I did! Therefore, I want to help any other brides who might appreciate the tips and tricks!

Here is a breakdown of my budget:

Category Budgeted Amount
 Invitations/Envelopes/Stamps 400
 Wedding Dress 1700
 Photographer 1500
 Videographer 1300
 Wedding Cake (Bride’s Cake)  575
 DJ 600
 Flowers  700
 Alterations  150
 Shoes  54
 Hotel Rooms  700
 Wedding Ring for Matthew  400
Chapel & Reception 300
 Security  210
Wedding Coordinator 375
 Venue Rental 955
Food 6000
Bar 600
Grand Total Budgeted: $16,519

Today I am going to focus on the first category: Invitations, Envelopes, and Stamps!

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I found that invitations were one of the most overwhelming decisions I had to make in the wedding planning process. When a bride starts to look into invitations, they are immediately bombarded with thousands of choices. The average cost of wedding invitations is $443, but there are couples who have spent upwards of $2,000! My budget for this category was $400– including stamps and envelopes! This category stressed me out at the beginning, but in the end I was under budget at only $262.50! Here are my tips on spending the least amount possible on your wedding invitations:

  1. Find a friend or family member who is a graphic designer! Many times they will offer to design your invitation for you as your wedding gift, you just have to ask! My cousin, Amanda, is a graphic designer. I sent her ideas of what I wanted my invitation to look like, and she designed it for our wedding gift! It turned out even more beautiful than I could have imagined. Cost: $0!

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2. Print your invitations yourself! Don’t pay for an invitation company to print them! They will charge you way more, and that is where a lot of the cost comes in! Also, if you have friends in family in the printing business- look into them printing for you as your wedding gift! My dad has a friend in the printing company, and he printed them for us as my wedding gift. Cost: $0!

3. Buy your envelopes at a local store that accepts coupons. I knew I wanted kraft envelopes to go with our rustic theme, so I headed to Hobby Lobby! I got these envelopes and bought them when they were 50% off! I needed 250 envelopes, so that was only 5 packs. Cost: $17.50.

4. Address the envelopes yourself, or again ask a friend or family member to do it as your wedding gift! It is expensive to pay for someone else to address your envelopes. I’ve seen people who spend as much as $10 per envelope to get them addressed! That is insane. I personally just practiced my handwriting and I addressed them myself! I would do a few every night while watching TV, and it was over really quickly. I got so many compliments on them too. Cost: $0.

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5. The last part of this category is stamps, and honestly, I didn’t have any ways to save money on stamps. However, I had only spent $17.50 on the rest of this category! I had to buy stamps for both the envelopes and RSVP cards, so that was the biggest part of this category. Cost: $245.

Total Cost for this Category: 262.50

I hope some of these tips help another bride save money in this category! I’ll see you next time for the next section of “How to stay within your Wedding Budget when it’s less than $20,000”!

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