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Wedding ideas on a budget

Enjoy a fabulous wedding right from home. Check out our best tips for wedding decoration ideas on a budget!


Wedding lanterns

Key steps:

  • Decide where to host the wedding – indoors or outdoors?

  • Plan your food.

  • Hire chairs, tables, and more to save money.

  • Create zones for different wedding activities.

  • Add cameras, guest books, and more to record memories from your day.

If you’re looking for cheap wedding ideas, hosting your wedding reception at home is a relaxed, intimate, and affordable option. With the right preparation (and post-wedding cleaning strategy!) you can bring your home wedding ideas to life, making it just as special as a private venue wedding. Read on for our best wedding ideas on a budget, DIY backyard wedding ideas, and how to manage the clean-up afterwards!

Save money on your home wedding by skipping non-essentials, like wedding planners, and choosing cheaper alternatives – such as a tower of cupcakes instead of a wedding cake.

Plan a home wedding with these cheap wedding ideas

  • Decide whose house will host the wedding. Planning a home wedding doesn’t necessarily mean your home, especially if it’s not big enough for your guest list. Consult with your family and determine who will lend their home for your special day. Consider the size of your guest list and how elaborate you want the reception to be.

  • Decide how you want to decorate. Once you have the location, you must swift through the various wedding home decoration ideas. First, ask yourself if you want your wedding to have a theme. Your wedding’s decoration will depend on what theme or atmosphere you’re trying to convey – whether it’s vintage nostalgia, whimsical, or ‘Winter Wonderland’. 

  • Use what you’ve got. Hedges and water features can be great additions to your home wedding décor.

  • String up fairy lights. Fairy lights are a great way to turn up the romance and the lighting in an outdoor atmosphere.

  • Choose table settings to match your theme. From snowflake confetti for a ‘Winter Wonderland’ theme to bright hibiscus flowers for a tropical theme, ensure that your tables area aligned with your wedding theme.

  • Choose your menu. The great thing about the food is that it can be as expensive or cheap as you like. If you’re leaning more towards wedding ideas on a budget, opt for a more intimate wedding reception with a smaller guest list. Depending on how small the guest list is, you can cook up a buffet right from home for your entire family and closest friends to enjoy. If you want a larger reception or simply don’t want the stress of cooking, choose a catering company wisely to ensure you’re in line with your budget.

  • Consider the weather. When browsing backyard wedding ideas, you must consider the weather. Because if there’s one thing for certain, it’s that the weather never is! So make sure you always have a back-up plan for any small wedding ideas at home that include the use of outdoor space. A gazebo is a great way to offer some cover in the event of rain. It can also double up as a shelter from the sun or a dance area in the cooler evening.

  • Rent your décor. If you’re looking for wedding decoration ideas on a budget, you’ll want to rent as much as possible. Avoid buying any items that can easily – and more cheaply – be rented for the event, such as tables, chairs, lighting, and a dance floor.

  • Add some personal touches. Hosting your wedding reception at home may be a budget-friendly option, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be special. Make your wedding as unique as you want with some DIY backyard wedding ideas. Create a display of other family members’ wedding photos or baby pictures of you and your spouse. Decorate everything with memorabilia or themes that are special to you and your partner. There are plenty of cheap wedding decoration ideas that will make your day unforgettable without breaking the bank.

  • Create zones within the garden space. One of the most practical wedding home decoration ideas is to dedicate sections of the garden to different activities: a game area, tables for dining, a quieter area to chat, and a temporary bar.

  • Invite guests to create memories. Nothing says cheap wedding decoration ideas than making your guests the photographers at your wedding. Rather than spending a lot on hiring a photographer, leave disposable cameras on the tables for guests to capture moments themselves. Or, you could paint a tree trunk on a canvas and set up a stamp for guests to add thumbprint leaves and sign to say they attended your wedding. The list of wedding decoration ideas on a budget is endless!

  • Set up garbage stations. This step is especially important if you are self-catering. Make sure that all your guests know where the garbage areas are to minimize the clean-up after the celebration. Place plenty of garbage bins and bags throughout the reception so that guests are less likely to leave their trash on tables and counters. Limit the post-party damage by reading more tips on how to make clean-up easier

  • Recruit a clean-up crew. The last thing you want to be doing before heading off on your honeymoon is cleaning up from the reception. And what better wedding gift could there be than your friends doing the dirty work for you? Organize a group of friends and family to oversee the post-party clean-up. Be sure to equip them with good quality products like Cif, as well as gloves for picking up trash, bin bags, and a rake for the grass. Leave them a few bottles of wine and some yummy leftovers to say thank you.

With a little creativity and advanced preparation, you can plan a wedding that is both fabulous and inexpensive. Try these small wedding ideas at home to enjoy a day that you and your partner will never forget!

Do you want to learn which household cleaning tasks cause the most stress?  Then read our Heated Household data analysis. 

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