Bride and Groom: Vicky and Mike
Mike is a Site Supervisor and Vicky is a Hairdresser by day and a creator of beautiful hair accessories by evening. Vicky and Mike live in the Stockport area of Manchester.
Wedding Venue: The Joshua Bradley, Stockport
Wedding Date: 17th March 2012
Number of Guests: 80 day guests, and a total of 130 guests for the reception
Wedding Colour Scheme: Orange, Green and Gold
Total Wedding Budget: £8,000
Vicky and Mike’s fabulous wedding suppliers:
Photographer: Mike Petch of M Photography, he is a brilliant and fairly priced photographer. Mike was with us all day until the first dance.
DJ: The DJ came with the venue. Dave was brilliant and he took photos of the evening reception.
Cake: Was made by Vicky’s Grandma. Mike and Vicky gave her some flowers as a thank you for making the cake.
Hairdresser and MUA: A friend and colleague of Vicky’s did Vicky’s hair and make-up for her as a wedding gift.
Flowers: Vicky made all of the flower arrangements herself using faux flowers purchased from Country Baskets. Vicky hand-made 5 bouquets, 8 button holes, 8 table centrepieces and 2 candelabras. The total cost of all the faux flowers was £250.
How did you decide on your budget?
We originally decided on a budget of £5,000 as I was off work on maternity leave at the time, but we did go over, pushing our total spend up to £8,000. We had just 5 months to plan too!
Tell us about your Bridal outfit?
As we had just 5 months from booking the venue to the wedding date I started shopping for a wedding dress at Christmas time, meaning in theory I only had 4 months to pick one and as it was so close I had to get my dress from the sale rail. I did’t mind at all as I love a bargain. I tried on about 10 dresses and couldn’t decide at all! I was getting worried, until one of my Bridesmaids picked out a dress for me to try. I wasn’t sure on it as the dress was a size 18 and I’m a size 6 in a wedding dress and when they’re such different sizes they look completely different. However, I tried it on and loved it! I had to go back the week after to see the seamstress to see if she could alter it down to fit me. I purchased my wedding dress from Once Upon a Bride in Hyde for just £600.
and your beautiful Bridesmaids?
Mike and I agreed that we would pay for my 4 Bridesmaids dresses and ask them to purchase their own shoes and accessories which they were all very happy to do. They picked out the dress from Bank and they only cost £50 each. We had our daughter as my Flower Girl and we got her dress from BHS which I picked up in the sale at Christmas time.
How did your dapper Groom dress himself for the wedding?
Mike picked his suit and the Groomsmen’s suits from Once upon a Bride in Hyde. We paid for the suit hire of Mike’s 2 Best Men and our Fathers. We requested the other Groomsmen to pay for the hire of their suits themselves.
I’d love to know about your bling!
We purchased our rings online for £100 each.
You bought ‘thank you’ gifts for your Bridal party?
For our Bridesmaids gifts we got them all engraved hip flasks from eBay and I did a special poem for the 3 sister-in-law’s. For my Father we got a nice bottle of whiskey and for the Best Men we gave them signed Manchester city footballs. Both our Mothers and Grans were gifted bouquets of flowers as it was Mothers Day the next day too.
What budget purchases are you most proud of?
The budget purchase I’m most proud of was our photographer because he was with us from me getting ready till the first dance and he put all of our pictures on a USB for us. Some photographers can charge so much more yet do the exact same thing.
Also, we didn’t have traditional arrival drinks, instead we had our 2 Groomsmen had out drinks tokens so everyone could pick their own drink. Every guest had a drinks token on their table too so they could purchase a drink of their choice for the toast drink.
Which elements of planning did you find hardest?
Planning the wedding was really easy to be honest. We wanted it to be a laid back kind of wedding no stress just a big get together party, as we’d been together for 7 years already, but the biggest hurdle was arranging the seating plan as my family are really broken apart on both sides so that did get me upset some days.
How did you get your DIY on?
I did quite of lot of DIY for the wedding, as well as all our floral arrangements which I handmade using faux flowers, I also made our invites myself. I got all the stationary from eBay as there was a really big choice. We just had a play about with the items we’d purchased until we came up with a design we both liked.
Now you’ve had your own low cost wedding day, what advice would you give to recently engaged couples and those starting their own wedding planning?
If you can do a lot of it yourself you can save a lot of money. Getting help from other people can also reduce costs a lot, such as my Gran making our wedding cake for us. We were so grateful my Gran did that for us. Also eliminate the need for wedding cars by getting ready at your venue. We got ready at our venue in the morning, meaning we could go straight down to the ceremony saving us the need for, and cost of wedding cars. Another piece of advice I’d give is to decorate your venue yourself the day before if you can. I decorated the room the night before and we forewent chair covers as the venues chairs we nice enough we didn’t feel the need to cover them.