Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Environment, Your Wedding, and Your Budget

I remember watching Dr.Phil - don't judge me, it was like ten years ago and - and he was trying to counsel a woman who refused to save money, not even for her daughter's education. This boggled my mind, considering I'm the opposite. (This woman was convinced her three year old was a genius and would get a scholarship.) It was an interesting show and as you can imagine, her husband was pissed off, frustrated and on the verge of asking for a divorce. This is an extreme situation (you don't really make it on to Dr.Phil unless it's extreme), but it's an important reminder that differences in financial attitude is a major cause of marital distress.

The best thing to do to avoid this is sit down with your significant other and make sure you're both on the same page. Your husband most likely doesn't want to spend his next five paychecks helping to finance your fluffy pink dream closet (or maybe he does, in which case, rock on!) and you most likely don't want to spend a month's salary to purchase his motorcycle with a sidecar (or maybe you do and if so, rock on!) Whether it's for a wedding or for household expenses, the key is to communicate what your monetary expectations are. The next step is to find a website that helps you create a budget, preferably for free, such as the's wedding budgeter or, for home expenses, Dave Ramsey's budget forms and tools. Once a budget is in place, do whatever you have to to stick to it.

My husband and I are in the process of doing this for our household expenses and it feels good to have things outlined and organized. Fortunately, I have found that being eco-conscious and budget-conscious usually go hand in hand. Doing things like buying in bulk and using re-usable sandwich bags help save money and cut down on wasteful packaging. Buying and selling clothes on consignment is a great way to save some extra cash and essentially "recycle" your wardrobe.

When it comes to wedding expenses, there are plenty of ways you can cut back. 

For instance, use a wedding website to inform guests of directions, hotel information, and if you are brave, you can requests guests RSVP online, all of which cut down on paper and costs.

Skip the super-duper-keep-hair-in-place type of chemicals and high cost hairdressers and opt instead for a messy hairdo or a long, romantic, and flowy look.

Cut your wedding dress budget in half by opting for a used dress. Pre-owned dresses are usually in good shape, considering they were only worn once.

Skip the flowers. Flowers can be expensive and they are usually grown with pesticides. Look for interesting flea market items that can be upcycled into unique centerpieces.

OR grow your own flowers or succulents. Beautiful wildflowers make for stunning table decor and succulents are extremely hardy, making them a great choice for not only decor, but for favors as well.

Go on a staycation honeymoon. Consider visiting a beautiful, national park

Looking for more ideas on how to be kind to the environment and your wallet? See this post about having a budget friendly wedding too! 



Kate said...

LOVE these ideas. I'm utilizing most of them - the biggest nail biter for me was the online RSVP, but it actually worked out beautifully and I highly recommend it! Our biggest "footprint," unfortunately, will be the honeymoon - we're flying to Ireland. Our challenge is to keep things as eco-friendly as possible while we're there.

Kate said...

LOVE these tips. The biggest nail biter for me was the online RSVP, but it worked out beautifully and I highly recommend it! Our major "footprint," unfortunately, will be the honeymoon since we're flying to Ireland. But I look forward to the challenge of making our stay as eco-friendly as possible.

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