We hear of multimillion dollar weddings and think it is absurd until we plan our own ceremonies and receptions. While we don’t have a stratospheric budget, we can certainly see how that much money could be spent! When working within your own budget constraints, it is important to know what you can splurge on and what you should save on.

The dress, for most brides, is one of the most important aspects of the wedding and should own a large share of the budget. The food is another big expense that directly impacts the quality of your wedding

But there are several places where you can save. One of the easiest and most effective is the reception decorating.


One of the best ways to save is to use what nature, and your geographical location, gives you. For example, if you are getting married in the fall, you can buy mini gourds in a variety of colors and shapes, as well as some inexpensive wooden baskets. Your centerpieces can be gourds, mixed with beautiful autumn leaves. You can sprinkle more leaves, acorns, and straw flowers or mums to fill in the look. It is simple, inexpensive, and tremendously effective. You chose to get married in the fall; let fall work for you now!

Meeting Room


Sprinkling small items on your tables can help you minimize the size of your centerpieces and create a wonderfully festive look. Choose items that complement your wedding theme. For instance, if you chose blue and silver as your colors, you could find blue and silver glitter or confetti to sprinkle on the tables or around the centerpieces. Glass beads, mini flowers, small seashells, and other items are also great accessories.


There is nothing more romantic than candlelight, and your lighting is the best way to set the mood. If you have an archway, trellis, or posts, you can wind small twinkle lights around them. If your reception is outside, why not string some in the trees or shrubbery? They will not look “Christmasy.” Instead, they’ll lend a summer wedding a wonderfully magical look. You can also use floating candles for your centerpieces. Fill a square, cut glass container with slices of lemons, oranges, and lime, and water, until it is about 2/3 full. Float a candle in the top, and you have an elegant centerpiece and lighting fixture. Rice paper lanterns, and lots of them, are also elegant ways to provide lighting and visual interest.


Pay attention to your tables. Besides the centerpieces, you can create a look of luxury for a relatively small price by upgrading your china and glasses. This lends your reception a much more glamorous appearance. You can also opt to rent colored glassware, which can make your tables vibrant and bright. Adorn each chair with a ribbon, or if you can afford it, chair covers, which will give the room a pulled-together look.

Use What You Have

Enlist the help of a friend or family member and use your alter flowers as wedding centerpieces. No one will notice, and you’ll save a fortune. You can also incorporate your bridesmaid’s bouquets into the centerpieces for the head table and parents’ tables. If guests get to see a gorgeous wedding dress, drink a few glasses of champagne, and eat a piece of cake in comfort, your wedding is a success. Splurge on the must-haves and save on the decorations that they likely won’t remember.

Author Bio

Sarah is a writer with a passion for event planning and weddings. She also frequently contributes to the Wedding Favors Unlimited blog, where you can find more fun ideas for your wedding centerpieces.

Photo Credit: robleto