Veteran Asheville Wedding Photographer (and Design Aficionado) shares Top Money Saving Tips for WOWing your guests with your Wedding Decor!
Next to Photography, Design is probably my second favorite passion!! I am so in love with details, colors, textures and mood! My enthusiasm for these elements often bleeds into my styled sessions. Helping my couples to select timing, locations, wardrobe, textures, colors, mood and other visual elements of their Engagement or Bridal Sessions and even their Weddings when they ask for my advice is SO, SO FUN for me!! When I show up for a Wedding and the Details and Decor are a Visual Feast, it seriously feels like Christmas!! Photographing interesting and unique details on a Wedding Day is like — my favorite thing ever, next to shooting those epic newlywed portraits of course! (my other favorite part!) 😉
From your Ceremony Space to your Reception Decor, you’ve got quite a lot of space to fill with Wedding Decor! If you’re a Design Junkie (like me), it would be real easy to go overboard purchasing decor for your Wedding! And, that could get out of hand and over budget very quickly!
Having been a Wedding & Family Portrait Photographer for the last eleven years, I’ve shot more Styled Engagement, Bridal, Family, Children & Baby Sessions than I could possibly begin to count! Whether it was incorporating a super cool velvet chair that I found at an antique shop or designing and decorating complete mini session sets! It would be super easy to go broke doing it! (It’s especially hard to reign it in on Newborn Props! ;)) So, what I started doing a lonnnnnnng time ago was looking for furs, fabrics, baskets, furniture, and other prop items that could be re-purposed as home decor after the shoot was over! And that’s exactly how you should be thinking about this too! 😉
Tip # 1 – Look for Wedding Decor items that you can incorporate into your Home Decor after the Wedding! DUH! Right!?
This is quite literally two birds, one stone girl! Especially if you’re not already living together / if you plan to make a home together after your Wedding! Or, if your existing decor just needs a little upgrade! From the inside of your home to your outdoor living spaces, everyone always has some living space that they think needs makeover, am I right!? As an added bonus, you’ll get to sit out on your deck, listening to the crickets and looking at that pretty little lantern there on the table, smiling, remembering that it was tiny piece of what made your Wedding Day perfect!
My favorite places to shop for Props that Double as Home Decor?
- HomeGoods (always has amazing stuff at reasonable price points!)
- Pier 1 (sign up for their emails so you get coupons & know when there’s an insane sale!)
- IKEA (Look for some amazing DIY hacks at the end of this post!)
- Etsy (Amazing for Signs, Backdrops, Invitations, Menus, Programs, Table Numbers, Escort Cards, Card Holders, Ring Boxes, Cake Toppers, etc! and you’re supporting artisans/small business!)
- Amazon (this is where you’ll go to get things in bulk — like 20 acrylic table number signs!)
Also, keep in mind: not every reception table’s centerpiece has to be the exact same, ya know! You really just need one statement piece & you’ll accentuate that with floral and candles! You want to keep them in theme but each table can be different! Makes them more unique and interesting in my opinion!
I would 1000% use these little beauties from Pier 1 as home decor after my wedding! 😉
Stay tuned for a Gold IKEA Lantern Hack at the end of this post!
Tip # 2 – Re-Sell what you can’t Incorporate into your Home Decor!
Obviously, nobody needs 14 rose gold, sequins table runners, I get that! So, for the things that you can’t incorporate into your home after the wedding, re-sell them! To who? I’m so glad you asked! If you’re serious about get’n this money, it’s gonna take some effort but there are a few different avenues that you should definitely try! 😉
- Other Brides – This is the obvious route, trying to sell wedding items to other bride’s planning their weddings! You might list them on Ebay & Facebook Marketplace (& offer free shipping if you really want them gone!) 🙂 Side Note: If you’re in the market for rose gold sequins table runners, you might try searching on Ebay or Facebook Marketplace before you buy them new! This method is also eco-conscious! ;))
- Wedding Planners – There are two ways to approach this. You could look up all the Wedding Planners in your area, send them a mass email, short and sweet with (nice/bright) images of what you’re trying to sell and ask if any of the Brides that they are currently working with are searching for what you have! This is most likely to work if whatever you’re selling is on-trend for the season. For example, Macramé Backdrops for Ceremony Arbors or Bride/Groom Chair backs at the reception were all the rage last season but that boho vibe is still in (and in my opinion always will be! lol), so you could give it a shot! 😉
- Event Rental Companies – Have 20 Acrylic Table Number Signs to unload? Local Event Rental Companies might take them off your hands! OR
- Venues – Some Local Venues (especially the All-Inclusive variety) might be interested in purchasing them from you, to have in stock as option for events at their venue!
- Local High Schools – Call your local high schools and ask to get contact info for the Prom Committee Advisor, it’s possible that your local high schools might have the budget/want what you have to use for their prom! 😉
You can get (20) of these Sweet, Clear Acrylic Table Number Signs on Amazon Prime for the low, low price of $38.99!
Then, you ask a friend with amazing handwriting or hire a calligrapher to write table numbers on them OR I loved what they did with the dried flowers and the printed menu in the image below!
Link: Get it Here
Tip #3 – DIY what you can!
I know, I know, this is old news but I’m here to tell you: you’re going to be surprised by what you can do yourself!
Example: You want 20 Rose Gold, Sequins Table Runners & you have an aunt with a sewing machine.
Side Note: You can get this little beauty for your cake table on amazon for $14.99 Link Here: Get it!
The point I was trying to make is: You can buy yards of this fabric much cheaper in bulk online and give aunt Linda a project and save yourself around $150 rather than paying $10 per runner @ 20 tables!
Next thing: USE WHAT YOU ALREADY HAVE!! Seriously, Look around!
Example: You want a sweet Welcome Sign for your Wedding? Do you or does your mama already own a pretty, ornate mirror or picture frame like this? No? If you bought a fancy mirror or picture frame, after the wedding, it can double as home decor but if ornate, golden mirrors aren’t your thing, hit up some antique shops! Spray paint, girl. Spray paint! AND you can order this Sweet, Custom Vinyl Art Decal from Amazon for $18.99 to put on the mirror for the Wedding! You can do this for seating Charts or Menus, etc. The sky’s the limit!
MORE DIY IDEAS TO SAVE YOU MONEY:
IKEA LANTERNS: Remember those pretty lanterns (at the beginning) from Pier 1 at a price point around $30 for the larger ones? Well, multiplied by 20 reception tables (or 20 ceremony seating rows) that could get pretty expensive. Check this out! Ikea has some very affordable lanterns and this Ikea BORRBY lantern is one of the most popular. Spray painting it gold as seen in this hack from Ruffled is a great way to add some glamour to your wedding decor.
OMG, Can you even!?
Lucky for you, I’m way into Pinterest Boards and Created a DIY Wedding Decor Board to get you started! You can check that out here: LINK TO DIY DECOR PINBOARD
I can’t wait to see what you Create! XO