8 Ways to Save Money on Wedding Rentals

Rentals, they are a necessity for many weddings and the receipts can add up very quickly.  Even when choosing the basics the tab can be steep, but the options are limitless these days, and add delivery charges on top of that and your budget can go quickly.  Here are a few tips and tricks I have learned to get the look you want while sticking to your budget.  

How to Save Money on Wedding Rentals

1. Choose one piece to make a statement.  Instead of choosing special linens, high-end dinnerware, fancy glassware and farm tables,  choose one item to splurge on.  Maybe it's a special charger to add color your table, or chairs that really set the scene and allow it to be the showstopper.  

2. Rent from one vendor.  By renting from one vendor, you will avoid multiple delivery/pick-up fees.

3. Rent one set of chairs that work for your ceremony and reception.  Of the basic needs, chairs are one of the more expensive rental items.  You may have to pay a labor charge for moving the chairs from ceremony to reception, but it will most likely cost less than renting two sets of chairs.

4. Check with your venue for delivery and pick-up flexibility.  You can save significantly on the delivery fees if you don't have specific delivery and pick-up times.

5. Dress up the head table.  As a vintage glassware collector myself, there's nothing I'd like to see more than a room filled with beautiful, one-of-a-kind pieces, but that can be very pricy.  You can go full out for the head table, which will be stunning in the photos, then choose just an element or two to tie the other tables back to the head table.

6. Make custom table runners.  My secret to dressing up tables is custom made table runners.  I've even hand-made runners for clients.  Runners are relatively inexpensive, and can dress up standard linens, as well as naked tables. 

7. Stick to bistro lights.  Strung lights are less expensive than larger light options and add ambiance to every party.  

8. Go with the one-piece chair option.  Cushion choices, chair covers, ribbons, and other decorations can all add up, go with the simpler option.   

photo credits: photography: Kathy Davies Photography / coordination & decor: I Love Love Events / florals & rentals: Passion Flowers / venue, catering & cake: Zingerman's Cornman Farms

Reader Question // Wedding Gowns under $750

It's been a while since I answered a reader question and this is a great one to jump back in.  A bride on a very tight budget asked me to recommend bridal gowns under $750.  This is definitely a challenge if you're looking to traditional bridal shops.  I you're not in the market for a crystal-incrusted ball gown, or a Chantilly lace  mermaid silhouette, you can find lots of beautiful gowns at that price point.  Knowing where to look is key.  Many online shops including J.Crew, Free People and ShopBop now have wedding shops.  BHLDN has a few beautiful options at this price.  I also included a few pretty gowns from super affordable shops like ASOS. But $750 is a good chunk of change and can buy you some gorgeous designers gowns from department stores.  They make it easy to search by color, length and price.  I love number 4, the beautiful Rachel Zoe dress in the Lace category below,  and numbers 7 and 8 in the modern category, Badgley Mischka and 3.1 Philip Lim respectively.  Many of these online shops offer free shipping and free returns, so while you don't get the traditional bridal experience, you get to try them on in the comfort of your own home and take as many photos as you like.  One tip, be aware of alterations.  Fitted and complicated silhouettes can increase the price of the gown by $100+ for alterations.   

One final note, if you are in the market for a ball gown or something grander than the above, check out the wedding gown resale shop, Nearly Newlywed