A round-up of my 5 favourite posts from 2018


A Round-up of my top 5 blog posts from 2018 on sayidoonabudget.com

As 2018 draws to an end I thought it would be nice to look back over the posts I’ve published during 2018 and create a round-up of my 5 favourite posts from the past year. Tomorrow is New Years Eve when we will be ringing in the new year, a time when we all get a fresh start, a chance to make changes if we so wish.

I don’t talk about my personal life much on this blog, but if you follow me on Twitter, you will see me talk much more about my life, and if you do follow me on Twitter you will know 2018 has been a year of saving hard for my husband and I. We have been saving to buy our own home together. We have made a lot of sacrifices in a bid to build up a deposit, and the saving has been made even harder by the fact we both made big career changes in 2018 too!

I am incredibly happy to be able to report that in November we had an offer accepted on a house and are planning to complete and get the keys before the end of January! Meaning I already know 2019 will bring a big change for us, a very positive and exciting, if not slightly terrifying change. We’ll be #realadults then? I’d you’d like me to a blog post to document our moving in please let me know in the comments.

So, without much further ado, let’s move on to my 5 favourite Say “I Do” On A Budget posts from 2018. In no particular order…

Tips on how to get the most out of selling on Etsy from Origami By Russell

This post was a collaboration between Russell and I. I had wanted to showcase some of Etsy Tips from Origami by Russell bought to you by SayIDoOnABudget.comthe origami Russell creates for a little while such as his origami fortune cookies and his origami lily fairy lights, then when he said he would kindly share some tips on how to get the most out of selling on Etsy, I thought it would work really well to combine the showcase of my favourite creations of his with his tips. Check out this post to read his 9 fabulous tips on how to improve your selling success on Etsy such as how to avoid a foreign currency fee from your bank.

Supplier Spotlight: An Interview with Kelly of Sparkle Vines

I was thrilled to be able to feature a dear friend of mine when she decided to set up a business designing and hard-crafting hair accessories with Brides, Bridesmaids and Sparkle Vines Supplier Spotlight blogFlower Girls in mind. Kelly started Sparkle Vines after hand-making the hair accessories she and her Bridesmaids wore to her own wedding in June of this year. You can order from her Etsy shop or by DM’ing her through her Facebook page, and an choose from her pre-made range or can put in a special order for a custom piece.

Bring an Old Wedding Custom Back With Herbs

A couple months ago I created a guest post for Rachel’s blog site, ‘Veiled Productions’ on the topic of wedding traditions and where they come from. After creating the post for Garden Herbs for your Weddingher on the origins of wedding traditions and customs I was inspired to create a post on how to bring the custom of carrying herbs in wedding bouquets back. I did quite a bit of research on the topic in the hope of inspiring others to consider using herbs in their floral arrangements. Within this post you will find a piece from a lady called Sarah who used bee friendly herbs in her floral arrangements which gave a nod to the fact she grows herbs in her garden and loves using them in her cooking.

How to plan a wedding for £10,000! – A Guest post from Polly May

Polly May (of Polly May Blogs) and I decided to arrange a blog swap with each other and this is her post for Say “I Do” On A Budget. Using her experience as a weddings and How to plan a wedding for 10k by Polly May. A guest for sayidoonabudget.comevents planner for a hotel Polly May talks you through how you can break down a £10,000 budget to allocate for each part of your wedding. Many couples find budgeting one of the hardest parts of the early stages of wedding planning, so this post from Polly may should hopefully be very helpful for many who are trying to work out how to get started. If you read this post and then read some of my real budget wedding features you will get a brilliant idea of how you can make your dream low cost wedding a reality.

Finding Suppliers

I’ve mentioned a few times in various posts about how difficult the husband and I found Header - bid serviceshunting for suppliers. An engaged friend of mine who is currently planning her August 2019 wedding also confided in me that she was struggling to find wedding photographers let alone, find one she and her Fiance wanted to book. This gave me the inspiration for a post on the websites you can use to aid your search for wedding suppliers, from photographers to florists.

Tim and Kate’s 6.5k Festival Themed August wedding in Bath


Tim and Kate's 6.5k estival theme august wedding in Bath


Bride and Groom: Tim and Kate
Tim is a Head of Early Education and a blogger and Kate works as a School Lunchtime Assistant.

Ceremony Venue: Bath Guildhall
Reception Venue: Radford Mill Farm 

Wedding Date: 23rd August 2018
Number of Guests: 100
Wedding Colour Scheme and Theme: We had a colourful Festival theme. Lots of the guests camped on the farm and we had a circus skills workshop and a fire show as well as lots of flags and a campfire area. We had afternoon tea with a vintage tea set (rather than a sit down meal) and then served a giant paella later in the evening.

Total Wedding Budget: £6,500


Tim and Kate’s fabulous wedding suppliers: 
Photographer:
Tanya Hazell Photography
MUA / Hairdresser: Jodie (a friend of a friend!)
Cake: My sister runs a cake business (Lucy Loves Cakes in Bristol) and made our wedding cake as a present
Flowers: My Mum did the flowers!
Having family supply the cake and the flowers for us really helped us reduce costs, as flowers and cake were going to add up to quite a bit if they hadn’t done them as gifts to us.
Fudge table: we had a fantastic fudge table from Talbot Handmade 

How did you decide on your budget?
Kate and I had been together for 17 years, engaged for 16 years and have four children. We felt like this was about celebrating our lives and futures, rather than starting a new life, so choose a budget which we felt was comfortable for our financial situation.

What elements of planning were the hardest with your £6,500 budget?
Initially the venue costs were the reason we kept putting things off, but when we found Radford Mill Farm we knew it was a perfect fit, and fantastic value. We saw the farm in March and two days later we booked it for August! Everything else we just started from the budget and looked at our options.

In what ways were you really able to crunch the budget?
I’m very good at planning, and finding good hacks (hence my blog!), I think we also choose our suppliers wisely. We found local people, none of whom had glossy websites or sales pitches, but all of whom were friendly, passionate and recommended by others. We got good value, and good service, from everyone and it all had a very local, sustainable and friendly feel – there was nothing commercial about it whatsoever.

Tell us about the Bridal outfit…
The dress was from ‘Light in the Box’. Kate wore a veil and an earring and necklace set. She tried on something very similar in a wedding store, then bought online for much less. She was a bit worried about buying online, but was very pleased with it when it arrived.

What about the beautiful Bridesmaids? 
We had both our daughters as our Bridesmaids. They both wore dresses from Monsoon.

And What did the Groom and Groomsmen wear?

I bought a decent suit in the TM Lewin sale for about £200, which I really liked. I wasn’t comfortable with buying something I’d only use once, so I choose something I could wear as a 2 or 3 piece and that I knew I would use again.A

We all love a bit of bling, what’s the story behind yours? 
My wedding ring is a gold band which belonged to my Grandfather who passed away a few months before the wedding. Kate chose hers after lots of research!

How did you get your DIY on?
We decorated the marquee ourselves with bunting and festoon lights we bought. We made the invitations (which were like festival tickets) and we hand painted wooden signs for the site and made a giant wooden ‘LOVE’ sign. Kate also made a photo tree with our favourite pictures on.

What was the biggest hurdle you ran into during planning?
We set ourselves a relatively tight timescale. For awhile we were worried we weren’t going to be able to find a live band we liked who would be available, but we managed to sort that once we put enough energy into searching. We had to align availability for the Guildhall and the reception venue, and get a temporary event notice ourselves, but it was all do-able with a bit of planning.

What was your blow out spend for the wedding?
I’m not sure we really had one! We spent a few hundred pounds on a bus to ferry people between the ceremony and reception, as we thought that was important. We also really prioritised entertainment, we spent £650 on a live band and my parents booked the fire show and circus skills as a present for us! At the last minute we also added a few unplanned extras like festival wristbands – these were so popular!!

Was there anything that didn’t go as planned?
Not really. I camped on site with family the night before the wedding and it absolutely poured down – we were waiting to wake up to a very soggy marquee (and I was really worried because Kate had put so much effort into decorating it the night before). But the sun came out, and everything important was dry! It didn’t rain again until the morning after the wedding.

So now you’ve had your own fabulous small budget wedding what tips or advice would you give to others planning on a small budget?
Don’t get swept along by wedding sales and marketing. We just focused on the bits which were important to us and set a budget we stuck to. It’s so easy to get drawn in by advertising for ‘must haves’, but just treat your wedding as unique and decide your own must haves. Also, remember that very glossy websites, brochures and sales pitches cost businesses money – which means they’ll likely need to charge more!

Thank you to Tim for sharing his wonderful budget wedding with us!

Tim is a UK travel hack blogger over at Take Me To The Points and you may be very interested to know that Tim and Kate’s honeymoon was almost entirely paid for by points earned on the wedding spend! You can see how he did that in his post ‘Earning Hotel Points: How I Travel Hacked My Honeymoon!’

If you like the sounds of Tim’s wonderful budget wedding and you think you’d like to read more of his travel hacks then you can check out his blog and follow him on Twitter.

My Guest post for Polly May: Manage the stress of wedding planning and avoid those post-wedding blues!


Manage the stress of wedding planning and avoid the post wedding blues - a guest post for polly may

On 26th November I published on Say “I do” on a Budget, a guest post from Polly May. In her guest post, Polly May gave advice on how you could allocate a £10,000 budget for your wedding and then gave tips on what to think about when planning each section. Her post was absolutely brilliant, and a lot of you have been giving it a lot of love already. If you’ve not read it already, then definitely go and give it a read here.

In return I wrote a guest post for her, which she published on 29th November over on her blog. The blog post I wrote for her was all about how to minimise stress when you are in the midst of wedding planning and how you may be able to avoid getting the post-wedding-blues. I’m really pleased with how the post has come out over on her blog. If you are currently in the throws of planning, or if your wedding is fast approaching, the no nonsense advice I’ve given may be just what you need to read right now. Check out the post here.

Polly May is relatively new to the world of wedding blogging, but not new to the world of weddings, as she is an events and wedding planner. We’ve clicked really well, and have really enjoyed working together on these posts, so much so that  I don’t think these posts will be the last time we feature on each others blogs!

Manage the stress of wedding planning and avoid the post wedding blues - a guest post from sayidoonabudget.com for Polly May Blogs

How to plan a wedding for £10,000! – A Guest post from Polly May


Polly May Blogs Guest blog post for SayIDoOnABudget.com
Polly May started her blog, ‘Polly May Blogs‘ after her fiance popped the question on 12th December 2017.  Through her blog, Polly May shares with her readers her planning journey, whilst sharing her tips & tricks to help others plan their perfect day… without unleashing the inner Bridezilla!
A wonderful Yorkshire based, 20 something Bride-to-be, who loves colour, performing arts and her career as a events and wedding planner, I know you’re going to love her!
As Polly May is an events and wedding planner by profession I thought she was definitely qualified to create a guest post for Say “I do” on a Budget on how you can plan your wedding for £10,000. In the blow post, Polly gives you an indication of how to allocate the £10,000 budget and provides some advice on what to consider to help you achieve your wedding for £10,000.
How to plan a wedding for 10k by Polly May. A guest for sayidoonabudget.com

Wedding budgets come in all shapes and sizes; whatever yours looks like there are loads of tips and tricks to use to make sure you don’t spend a penny more than planned. Here’s a few ideas to help make sure you stay on track to an affordable but perfect wedding day.

Venue – £2,400

Now, a lot of couples get caught in the idea that hiring a ‘room only’ venue is the best way to save money, but this isn’t always the case. Don’t get me wrong it could be the best option for you however, make sure you get the total costings of everything. Be sure to take all aspects into consideration like catering, drinks, furniture, table linen, cutlery and perhaps even a portable toilet if you have hired an outside space! Alternatively, why not look at hotels or other specialised wedding venues that offer affordable packages that suit all price points. Think about having a mid-week wedding because (trust me) from personal experience, this can save thousands!

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Shortlisted in the Individual Wedding Blogger Category – UK Blog Awards 2019!


I'm in the shortlist for the Individual Wedding Blogger Category of the UK Blog Awards 2019

Today the public vote has gone live for the UK Blog Awards 2019, and much to my joy, I am one of the nominees up for the Individual Wedding Blog category!

The public vote will close on 21st December and the shortlisted finalists will be announced on 4th January 2019.

The UK Blog Awards is in their 6th year and was created to recognise and celebrate individual and business bloggers across various content categories.

Each person can vote for 1 blog in each category and as there are 27 categories, if you choose to vote for one blog per category you can make a total of 27 votes.

ukblogawards19

I started ‘Say “I do” on a budget’ 7 years ago, when I thought it might be nice to document my small budget wedding planning. Over the last 7 years I’ve made a number of changes to the blog, as it has grown and as I’ve developed my blogging knowledge and skills. I get such a buzz out of helping people see they can have their perfect wedding day within any budget. I have had the pleasure of featuring some wonderful, creative and inspiring real frugal weddings, as well as featuring fabulous wedding suppliers who work with couples on a budget.

Why vote for me?

  • The Supplier Spotlight posts I publish help couples find suppliers who will work to their budget which can be really tricky in a market that is flooded with suppliers like the wedding biz is
  • I feature real weddings to help provide real life inspiration to those still in the planning stage on how they can create their ideal wedding day within their budget. The real weddings featured are all people who have got married within 10 years of the feature being published and who have spent a total of 10k or less on their wedding.
  • ‘Say “I do” on a budget is my much loved hobby, everything I do is for you, my readers. I’ve not monetised this blog in any way, the only thing I pay for is my domain name; I’ve occasionally considered looking into spending more money on making this blog more professional, but have decided against it, because, I am living life on a budget, and want to stay true to my message of frugality.
  • Because, you love my blog and will be really happy for me to receive recognition for the content I’m creating?

To vote for me, click any of the links in this post or click the image below, then click the red heart.

Vote for me! Badge 2 #UKBA19

Bring an Old Wedding Custom Back With Herbs


Garden Herbs for your Wedding
Recently I connected with Rachel from Veiled Productions during the #weddinghour chat on Twitter. During the chat hour I tweeted some historical information regarding where some wedding customs come from. Rachel loved the insights I had shared and asked if I would write a guest post for her blog on the origins of wedding traditions. I thought it was a great idea, and the post recently went live on her blog.
Writing the post on the origins of wedding customs for Rachel gave me an idea for a post I really wanted to write up and share with all of you here. What got my creative juices flowing for this post was the section I wrote on why Brides carry a bouquet. The section about the bouquet carrying custom is below:
In the middle ages, people stank. Harsh, but true. Really, up until the end of the 19th Century, and even into the 20th Century, people’s attitude and access to cleanliness was very different to now. Depending on the era in history the custom of carrying a bouquet changes slightly, which means the history behind this wedding day tradition isn’t as clear cut as some of the others, however there is a continuity to the theme, which is that the bridal bouquets purpose was to mask odour.
If you were to ask your parents or grandparents how often they used to wash when they were younger, it is quite likely they will tell you that they always had to wash their hands before dinner, but they only got a full body wash once a week. Go back a bit further, and people didn’t wash monthly let alone weekly! In the 15th century people took their annual bath in May. For this reason, weddings tended to happen in June. This is why late Spring to early Summer is the traditional time of year for getting married. Getting married the month after your annual bath, helped you to be smelling fresh on your wedding day. As an extra insurance to make sure the Groom thought the Bride smelt good, she would carry a posy of herbs and flowers.
Over time the use of herbs in Bridal bouquets and table centrepieces has disappeared, yet wouldn’t it be lovely to use herbs?

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