Big wedding parties have been a thing in Nigeria for many years, so much so that intending couples often find themselves agitated about meeting up to the status quo of lavish weddings parties. Many have gone into debt trying to attain this status while several others still find organising smaller, more pocket-friendly weddings, elusive.
In recent times, several factors working in tandem are precipitating paradigm shifts in wedding planning. The most obvious two are the prevailing economic realities and the COVID-19 pandemic that has forced many circumspect individuals to question the overall essence of large gatherings and big wedding budgets.
Summarily, people are learning to cut their coats according to their cloth. Moreover, who says it’s impossible for intending couples to have beautiful, memorable weddings on a relatively smaller budget? This article shows you six simple and practical ways to plan your big day without breaking the bank.
Start planning early
The first thing to do if you want to plan a wedding on a low budget is to start planning early. Planning your wedding early gives you room to put all things into consideration and check out the market price for everything you need to get for your wedding ceremony.
Be strategic about your location and venue
Many event halls, especially in Lagos, cost an arm and a leg to rent. Agreed, they offer some pretty fantastic ambience and comfort, but who says your wedding reception must be held in these kinds of halls? The key is to think outside the box!
For instance, have you got relatives or friends or even neighbours with large spacious homes? This is the time to ask them for a favour. The one thing you can credit Nigerians with is compassion especially if they stand to get some accolades or recognition from their acts of generosity. Plus, if you don’t get around to asking, you may never know just how willing people might be to help you.
Since your wedding list will obviously be pretty “streamlined” lookout for these spaces and let your creative juices flow in making them conducive for guests. This takes us straight to the next point.
Keep the guest list short and keep gatecrashers away
The economic realities do not quite support what the Yorubas call “Mo gbo, mo branch,” which simply means gatecrashing. By all means, keep gatecrashers out. People have successfully held weddings “strictly by invitation,” so it’s not an impossible feat. Plan your wedding so that the IV admits only a specified number of people into the venue and make sure your invitees know that the rules would be enforced at the point of entry.
Ask for wedding help instead of wedding gifts
Another way to spend less on your wedding ceremony is to ask your family and close friends for help. How about asking your friend who is great at making people laugh to be the MC at your wedding reception? Is it really wise to pay a caterer when your great aunt Maria’s culinary skills can do wonders for you? What about music, photography and even costumes? Are there people within your circle or network that can save you money by helping with these things?
Design your invitation
The internet has made it relatively easy for people to do almost everything themselves. Tools like Canva, for example, can help you design your wedding invitation card instead of paying someone to do the job. Another good thing about creating your invitation card yourself is that you get to design exactly what you want. You can use the colours you like and explore your creativity.
Go for discounted items and avoid unnecessary expenses
Look out for businesses running sales promos or offering discounts on items you need for the wedding and take advantage of their offer. Again, planning early is key if you intend to make the most of this strategy.
This is a great time to rethink the concept of the white, fluffy, elaborate wedding dress with all manner of adornments. Is it really necessary especially where it turns out to be more expensive than you can comfortably afford? Remember that the dress has no much use after the wedding day. Would it be such a bad idea to rent a dress instead?
You can have a beautiful wedding without breaking a sweat, or the bank for that matter. Start by ditching the old belief that beautiful and memorable must necessarily translate to lavish and expensive. The world is now being ruled by small things. Cheers to your fantastic wedding!