TIPS TO STAYING WITHIN YOUR WEDDING BUDGET

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Wedding planning is stressful enough without thinking about budget...add finances into the equation and it's enough to send a girl over the edge! Below are our top three tips to staying within your wedding budget, regardless of what that budget is.

IDENTIFY THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS

Pick the top two or three most important aspects of your wedding and book them first. If an incredible photographer is something you can't live without, find that professional first and add them to your budget. Maybe it's the venue or the open bar that will make your day perfect - select those items at the beginning of your planning. Once those really priority items are identified, you’ll know how much you have left over to spend and can, perhaps, compromise on the other details now that you know the really important stuff is taken care of.

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EMBRACE YOUR INNER HUNTER/GATHERER

There is nothing wrong with searching dollar stores, bargain bins and novelty shops for the items you want for your wedding. It's amazing what sort of centrepiece decorations can be created out of a dollar store vase! And who knows what sort of gems you'll find in the department store clearance rack - not bad stuff, just potentially mis-matched sizes, outdated branding on your favourite products or seasonal sell-offs. Thrift shops, vintage shops and other antique-related stores often have incredible items at low prices. Of course, you can't go wrong purchasing pre-loved, gently used clothing and decor from other people, using online sites like Wedding Recycle (insert shameless plug here!), Kijiji or even eBay.

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NOTHING WRONG WITH A LITTLE DIY

Gone are the days when Do-It-Yourself really meant doing it yourself. With YouTube, Pinterest, basic Google and a huge variety of books and magazines, inspiration and instruction is everywhere. And if you're not confident in your skills, invite your friends and family to participate! A girl's night in with your bridal party or a bonding experience with your fiancé, sharing the excitement...and sometimes pain...of the creative experience can often be an adventure in itself.

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Staying within your budget is totally possible, regardless if your budget is $5000 or $50,000. Be practical, ask for help and dedicate a balanced amount of time and creativity to planning your dream day.