This is a 3-part series to demonstrate that you can get married 3 times for less than the Canadian national average of $31,685. In part 1 of the series I showed you that Mrs. T and I only spent $764 for our perfect wedding. This amount was only only 1.9% of the average wedding spending in 2014!
Since only my parents and my brother attended our first wedding, Mrs. T and I thought we needed a reception to celebrate our reunion together. We invited about 50 guests to our second wedding.
Frugal ways to get married – How to plan a frugal wedding
To keep the second wedding cost as low as possible, we kept things easy and simple and did a lot of DIY.
Home-made item #1 – Wedding dress
Mrs. T made her wedding dress and decided to alter a little bit for the second wedding. Since she had left over materials, the alterations didn’t cost any extra money.
Home-made item #2 – Wedding Cake
Just like the first wedding, Mrs. T made a wedding cake all by herself.
Home-made item #3 – Flower Bouquets
Like the first wedding, Mrs. T made our flower bouquets by going to a flower store to purchase the flowers and then make the bouquets herself. We saved tons of money by not buying already made wedding bouquets.
Home-made item #4 – DJ
We wanted to celebrate the wedding by having a dance party at end of the night. A dance usually requires a DJ but we didn’t want to hire someone just to play some music off an MP3 player. Luckily my brother volunteered. We carried my stereo set with massive speakers from the 90’s, hooked everything up to a laptop, and had an awesome music system. My brother had a lot of fun creating a playlist for the dance party.
Home-made item #5 – Decorations
The decorations consisted of free orchids from a family friend of ours, nicely folded pink napkins, and tea light candles floating in the water with flower petals. It’s simple and elegant.
Think back to any weddings that you attended, do you remember the decorations? Probably not.
Home-made item #6 – Alcohol
This wasn’t really “home-made” but I suppose it falls under the category. Mrs. T and I went to the liquor store and purchased all the alcoholic drinks ourselves. Because we bought in bulk, we received a little bit of a discount.
Home-made item $7 – Wedding Invitation
We made the wedding invitation as a PDF file and send it to all the guests via email. No paper invitations were sent out. The electronic wedding invitation was free and it was good for the environment because no paper was used.
For the second wedding venue we looked around in many places in Vancouver. Most of the venues that we found charged a minimum amount and required us using their own catering company. After a quick calculation, we determined that the food cost would always exceed the minimum charge. We didn’t feel like spending over $10k on catering plus wedding venue so we started exploring other options. Luckily we were able to rent a community centre hall for a small fraction of other venue costs. For catering we hired someone that I knew, whom made the tastiest beef short ribs ever. Even 3.5 years after our second wedding, many of the guests still talk about the beef short ribs. Yes they were that good!
Since I’m a wedding photographer myself, it took an extensive search to find a wedding photographer that I liked. Luckily we were able to find a wedding photographer that just graduated from a photography program and was just starting out in the wedding industry. Because the photographer was just starting out, we were able to get a reduced price.
To make the second wedding as real as the first one, we asked one of our friends to be the “fake” wedding commission so we can exchange our wedding vows again. Mrs. T’s parents and part of my family and close family friends were able to join the celebration from outside of Canada which made the second wedding extra special.
Frugal Wedding #2 – Cost Breakdown
Community Centre Rental – $636
Food & Catering – $3000
Photography – $672
Alcoholic and non-alcoholic Drinks – $320
Flowers, napkins and candle lights – $20
Mr. T’s makeup & hair – $150 (hired a makeup artist that I worked with several times)
Total cost of wedding #2 – $4,798
Total cost for wedding #1 & #2 – $5,562.
You can read about our 3rd and final wedding here.