When the fancy papered wedding invites start piling up, getting inviting to a friend’s wedding can be more stressful than exciting. C.K. Alexander, wedding expert and creator of “Love Ink” and “The Single Bride Blog” shares her tips for getting through spring's wedding season without going into debt.
Start a wedding season fund
Prepare your bank account for the wedding season by starting to save as soon as you can. Alexander suggests making a wedding fund, putting $10-20 each week or month so that at the end of the year, you have a nice chunk.
How to save on wedding gifts
Alexander's first tip about wedding gifts: stick to the registry. The good thing about a registry is that the bride and groom really want everything on it. So even if you can only afford to get something small, they'll be pumped.
Alexander also says not to rule out DIY gifts. “One of my favorite DIY ideas is making a wine box," she says. Decorate the box however you want and include the couple's favorite bottle of wine inside. "To make it extra special, ask the bride and groom to each write a special note to the other person. Slip them in the box and they'll have a sweet surprise to read while enjoying the wine."
How to get your bridesmaid's dress for next to nothing
“Think of renting a bridesmaid dress on a specialized site, such as RentTheRunway.com," Alexander says, adding that some dresses can be rented for only $20. Another great tip: plan way ahead. "Shop outside the wedding season as prices are lower and remember the September sales in big department stores offer big discounts."
If you have multiple wedding to attend, don't let social media stop you from wearing dress more than once. "Just update your outfit by wearing different accessories for each wedding," Alexander stresses.
Saving on bachelorette parties, bridal showers and more
It stinks to be the one responsible friend fronting the money for all the obligations leading up to the wedding. One person alone should not be responsible for covering any entire bridal event, including bachelorette parties and bridal showers. "The bridesmaids should know upfront all the costs that are associated with the wedding and instead of buying individual gifts or accessories, share the costs of one big gift split into the bridesmaids,” Alexander says.