Real Weddings: California Backyard Bliss

Real Weddings

This is such a lovely wedding and the taco truck may or may not be my most favorite reception food idea ever. Ok, it definitely is my favorite. Amanda and Erik tied the knot in the bride’s parent’s back yard in May with 70 of their closest friends and family there to be a part of their celebration.       Real Budget Weddings: Amanda & Erik Oakdale, California May 15, 2015   What was your budget? Our budget was $10,000 and we came in just above $8,000, not including rings Venue: Free, Bride’s parents’ backyard Save the Dates and Invitations: $125 Amanda found a template online and her mom printed them. The Dress: $700 Mori Lee, Bianca’s Bridal Hair and makeup: $250 Sherri Stall, Pinups Salon  Grooms Apparel: $180 for Tux Rental Catering: $1,000 Taco Truck, Taqueria El Maguey Alcohol: $500 from BevMo Table and chair rental: $40 Photography: … Continue reading

Real Budget Weddings: Florida Bay Bash


I love this wedding! Planned around family and friends, including the four-legged kind, Kathie and Tony’s Florida waterfront wedding was filled with personal touches that made the day fun for them and all of their guests. Real Budget Weddings: Katherine & Tony Destin, Florida October 13, 2013   What was your budget? Our budget was $20,000 including the honeymoon Venue: $4,000 Destin Bay House  Save the Dates and Invitations: $445 Wedding Paper Divas Officiant: $150 The Dress: $2,000 Simply Elegant Hair and makeup: $250 Lanna Bloodworth Grooms Apparel: $500 Men’s Warehouse Catering: $3,000 Culinary Caterer 365 Alcohol: $400 Photography: $2,500 Sunset Images  Flowers: $350 Friendly Florist Music: $400 DJ Vaughn $500 Shane Curle Decorations: $400 Cake: $200 Neau Cakes Rentals: $300 Premier Rentals  Bridal Party Gifts: $200 Honeymoon: $2,300 What personal or creative aspects did you incorporate into your wedding? I loved making things! I made banners using wooden letters and fabric … Continue reading

DIY Carnation Bouquet

diy carnation bouquet

Carnations are overlooked and underrated in the wedding world but a few simple tricks turn this budget bloom into a gorgeous gathering of color and texture. They are great for DIY Brides because they are easy to work with, super hardy, and very affordable! Plus, they come in a huge selection of stunning colors! And when you bunch a lot of them together, they really do look like an expensive bloom. They really are underrated, but don’t take my word for it, Marina from Fifty Flowers shows us how to create a lovely bouquet using these super budget friendly blooms. What You Will Need: *Carnations from *Greenery (Optional) –Try Honey Bracelet or Maidenhair Fern for a softer feel, or Horsetail for a super cool modern look! *Sharp Shears or Knife *Floral Tape *Ribbon or Fabric of your Choice *DIY Floral Pins Steps: 1. To make the Bouquet, begin by crossing … Continue reading

How to make Paper Lanterns


Now that Spring is here (finally!) I get to post about some of my most favorite things ever…. Lovely weather, outdoor weddings and DIY projects.  First up, how to make paper lanterns! I love these illuminated lovelies and the many things they can be used for. Hung from a tree or a tent or even used as part of your centerpieces, there is so much they can bring to the table. Literally. The paper lanterns themselves are very inexpensive, and strung or hung even just as they are will make your space truly beautiful.   But if you are looking for something a bit different, want to complement your theme or add a personal flair, here are some great ideas on how to do just that. Isn’t this seriously lovely? The ladies over at Ruffled share the DIY behind this beautiful and expensive looking lantern. You won’t believe how easy it … Continue reading

Weddings on a Budget: Rachel and Ryan

Real Budget Weddings

    Weddings on a Budget: Rachel & Ryan Raleigh, North Carolina March 23, 2013   *What was the date of the wedding? What city, state and venue? Our wedding date was March 23, 2013. We got married in Raleigh, NC at Trinity Baptist Church–the Church I grew up at. *What was your budget? Our budget was CHEAP! LOL! No, but seriously, we didn’t want to go over $1500. Budget Breakdown: Save the dates—$80.00 Invitations–We made our own invitations. Our friend drew Lumiere (from Beauty & the Beast) on our wedding invitations for us, and she normally charges $200 per photo. The paper, stamps, etc ran us roughly about $60-80. Venue–The venue was roughly about $200, with a $150 deposit. Dress–Believe it or not, I got my dress during the David’s Bridal $100 dress sale! They didn’t have it in my size though, so after alterations, cleaning, etc, the dress … Continue reading