Big-day_name_article_xyzWeddings can be expensive, which is why it’s essential to manage your money carefully – after all, you don’t want to start married life with masses of debt. Of course, buying a sparkling rock from the likes of 77Diamonds or tying the knot at one of the UK’s most luxurious country estates would be great, but you should only do what your budget will allow. There are plenty of ways to plan a great day without spending a fortune, after all, so here’s how to keep your finances in check.

1.Be realistic

When planning a wedding it’s important to accept there are some things you cannot do or have due to financial constrains – but don’t make this into a big deal. Rather than focussing on what isn’t possible, try to adopt a more positive mind set and concentrate on all the great things you can do with your money. If a particular venue is too expensive, for instance, look for places of a similar style that are perhaps smaller or in a different part of the country as you might be able to get yourself a better deal. Similarly, if you’ve found a stunning location but summer weddings are out of the question due to the seasonal price hike, perhaps just accept that you might have to marry off peak.

2.Think about the time of your wedding

As well as thinking carefully about the date of your wedding, you should also think about what time you want to get married as details such as this can affect costs dramatically. Getting married in the morning, for example, tends to be cheaper than getting married in the afternoon/evening as you can simply put on a breakfast brunch, filling out the menu with fresh fruit, omelettes, breads, juices and other delicious treats, avoiding the expensive meats and fishes that would probably be served later in the day.

Moreover, to avoid paying for a full sit-down meal you could also invite guests to a wedding and cake reception serving up an array of goodies including alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Use your wedding cake as the main sweet treat to keep costs in check and add a few economical extras like a chocolate fountain which will not only last and last but will look great alongside marshmallow and fresh fruit skewers. To save even more time as well as money buy cakes online and customize them to your liking.

3.Ask for help

Is your friend the best cake maker in the world (according to you)? Perhaps you know someone who takes original, innovative and quirky snaps? Maybe you’re even lucky enough to have a makeup artist on your doorstep in the form of a housemate or relative? Whatever the case, don’t be afraid to ask your friends for help. While many people will be happy to do specific jobs for free, others will probably ask for a rate much cheaper than professionals you’d find elsewhere. Calling on people you know could free up a large chunk of your budget, so always recruit those nearest to you first.

4.Get creative

While it can be tempting to buy everything you need from the shops, making your own accessories will give your big day a unique and special touch. There are many things you can do from putting together your own invites to popping a DIY sweet jar on every place setting, but making a brooch bouquet has to be one of the best pre-wedding activities. Not only can you use an array of nostalgic and sentimental jewels to form a fabulous decoration, but you’ll have something to keep forever – unlike traditional flowers which die.

Saving money on your big day and staying within budget is not as hard as you might think, so give these tips ago and enjoy an affordable wedding.