How to do a wonderful wedding on a tight budget

3:05 PM, Nov 12, 2013   |    comments
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KUSA - The average cost for a wedding in Colorado is $27,000. But there are great ways to make weddings much more affordable.

There's a big wedding gown sale at a Goodwill Bridal Showcase that opens to the public for just four hours at 7 to 10 a.m., on Feb. 22, 2014. The event will take place at the Goodwill Store at 21 S. Broadway. Organizers say they're expecting the line to start forming early.

Here are some other great tips from Amy Ventura, one of the brides in our story. Amy says these are additional ideas on how she and her new husband saved money, without feeling like we were sacrificing anything important.

1. With today's huge wedding industry, there are a lot of expectations placed on couples getting married. Instead of following all the expectations, we discussed early on what was important to us: food, drink, friends, and family. With this as our focal point, we were able to simply say "no thanks" to all the other stuff - big dresses, limousines, flowers, party favors, DJs, photo booths, etc. At times, saying "no" took a little bit of patience and persistence on our part, but in the end, it was worth it, I think. We managed to host a ceremony; serve 150 guests appetizers, dinner, and dessert; and have an open bar - all for about $5,000. We spent another $1,000 on my dress and shoes, his suit and tie, and some other small incidentals.

2. In addition to not having to worry about creating ambiance and decor, another advantage to having the wedding at a restaurant - as opposed to a banquet hall or wedding-specific venue - was that we didn't have to pay for equipment rentals, like chairs, tables, table cloths, dishes, etc. At Kaos, the use of the venue, food, soft drinks and service gratuity, were all part of a single affordable ticket price. We paid extra for an open bar but kept it to beer and wine, which made the bill more reasonable.

3. Many people swear that a DJ is essential to a good wedding, but we opted for a few iPod playlists, some musician friends, and friend who agreed to serve as emcee - and it worked out great. There was a nice variety of live music, pop music, and guest toasts, and our emcee friend only had to be "on duty" for about 10 minutes total.

4. The name of the boutique I ordered my dress from is Spool No. 72: http://www.spool72.com/. The name of the friend's printing company that printed our programs for free is Superior Printing & Graphics: http://bit.ly/1fzFaOL.

5. A lot of women do the lion's share of the wedding planning, but I really can't take all the credit. My husband, Tom, and I were both very involved in the planning and decision-making. Let me know if you'd like to speak with him, as he'd be happy to help, as well.

Another 9NEWS viewer Lindsay Johnson sent these following tips:

1. I did the big camp out and was able to get a spot in City Park. We were married facing the bandstand and the reception was in the Pavilion. We saved thousands having our wedding there.

2. I found my $3,000 dress from some girl in Boston and purchased it for $600. It was a sample so people had tried it on, but it was never worn for a wedding.

3. When I took it to the dry cleaner I said it was a cocktail dress (as it was short) and not a wedding dress. I was charged $35, and I have a feeling it would have been a lot more had I said wedding dress.

4. I made all the decorations myself, with some help from my sister and a few friends. Pinterest is your friend for finding ideas, but start early. I can send you all of the crafts I did if needed.

5. I bought a giant thing of flowers and my mom and I arranged them ourselves the day before the wedding. We saved thousands this way.

6. We cut out having a champagne toast as most people do not drink it.

7. We skipped wedding favors and a sign in book. I've not kept one favor from other weddings and we had photos of all of our guests so want to remember them that way.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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