It’s all about the money…

Our facebook poll last Friday threw up some really interesting thoughts on what people would like these days as a wedding gift from their guests. When I first posed the question ‘would you prefer your wedding guests to give you money as a gift, or a specific item from a gift list’, I had no idea that the overwhelming majority of you would choose to have money as a wedding gift.

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Times have changed hugely since our parent’s and Grandparent’s eras when it was the norm to have a ‘bottom drawer’ of useful items for the newlyweds to have in their new home together as man and wife. This tradition meant that bundles of towels, cutlery sets and crockery would be common items to request as wedding gifts, as it would help so much in setting up the new home together for the newly weds. But now, as around 80% of us decide to co-habit before marriage, the likelihood is that you will have everything that you need already. Picture frames and wine glasses are likely to be a lot less useful to you than perhaps some cash or a contribution towards your honeymoon. With this in mind, we have had a look at some of the options available if you have decided to go down the route of asking your guests for money as a wedding gift… asks you as a couple to make a one off payment and then you are able to list all of the lovely things that you would like to do on your honeymoon, along with a price, for your guests to choose from. Once they have selected the honeymoon activity or gift of their choice, they can select and pay for it and the money goes straight into your account. You get the cash, and your guest gets to see what their money will go towards. Perfect!


Photo Credit: is another easy to use honeymoon registry website allowing your guests to donate to your honeymoon fund and enabling them to print off gift certificates. allows you to write up a list of all kinds of items that you would like as a gift and also gives you the option to break larger items down into smaller payments so that more of your guests can pay a smaller amount each in order for you to get one large gift. is an easy to use site enabling you to ask for money as a gift from your guests in a straightforward way. There is a one off fee for you to pay and then Star Weds provide you with invitation inserts that you can give to your guests. It is then easy to pay direct into your account to spend the money as you wish!

If you would prefer for your guests to be able to bring you money on the wedding day, you could make a ‘money box’ where your guests can post through the envelopes along with their cards for you. These are straight forward to make and you can style to match your wedding theme…


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Or perhaps you would like to donate your gift money to charity? Marie Curie and other charities can supply donation envelopes for you to place on your wedding breakfast table. Alternatively, you can direct your guests to the charities website to donate directly there instead. Have a look at and


What will you be opting for on your wedding day?


Laura xx

Old School Glamour Wedding Inspiration

When I was a little girl, my Grandmother seemed like the most glamorous woman in the world to me. Wafting around in a cloud of Chanel Number 5, wearing beautiful fitted dresses and wrapped in fur coats (and always with a cigarette in one hand), she was the pinnacle of Glamour to me.


We had to get our number one Hollywood Glamour Lady in pretty quickly, right? There’s a reason that Marilyn Monroe became such an icon. Playing up all of her womanly assets to the max and knowing how to dress, style her hair and her strong make-up combined packed an amazing punch.


Women in the 40s, 50’s and 60’s had it sorted style wise. Hair in curls, slicks of red lipstick and feline black eyeliner with a smudge of rouge, the look was pure bombshell – especially when teamed with the beautifully fitted dresses and stilettos that were the rage over these decades.


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Today, old school glamour has made its comeback in a big way. Dita von Teese, Gwen Stefani and Scarlett Johansen all now how to work this feminine look to its max – what’s not to like?!


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This year, old school glamour is big news for weddings. A fantastically flattering look teamed with incredible opportunities for venue decoration, favours and music, this theme is definitely one to pick up and run with!


 The Look

So as a bride, the style opportunities here are too good to miss: bombshell hair, make-up, dresses and shoes. This is one fantastic way to rule the roost on your big day!! And the retro vibe to this style means that you can go crazy for shopping in charity shops and on ebay – keeping costs down and your look unique!


£499 on


 1940s style wedding shoes: £30 from Girls of Elegance.


Magic Ink Black Eyeliner £14.50 from Benefit

Rouge Edition Lipstick from Bourjois


The Transport

Opting for old school glamour makes choosing your wedding transport a lot easier. This will narrow down your options and means that the most cost effective option will stand out easily for you. Or perhaps you know someone with a classic car? Whatever you choose, make sure you arrive in style!


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The Photography

Choose your photographer carefully. You will need to be as comfortable as possible with your photographer and will need to be reassured that the quality and style will totally show off your incredible day. Talk about your theme with him or her and see what suggestions they have for pulling the Glamour theme through into your photographs.


 Image courtesy of Laura McFarlane Photography – packages from £500


The Favours

To pull your glamour theme through to your favours for your guests, how about a gorgeous red lipstick for each of the girls and a bow tie for each of the boys?! We love the red lipstick here for £1.25 each and the bow ties from here are only £1.75 each!


The Venue Decoration

Old school Glamour = roses and lilies, twinkly lights and red carpets. We love the idea of old styled champagne glasses – how about creating a display?

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The Hen Do

We love the idea of a fun burlesque class for you and your hens – dress up and learn some new slinky moves before heading off for some old school glamour cocktails! Try The Academy of Burlesque and Cabaret


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Let us know if you are going full on glamour for your wedding day – we would love to hear all of the glossy plans!


Don’t forget your beauty spot girls!

Laura x

Easy like Sunday Morning…

Morning all! Hope that you have had a great first week of 2013! Did you get engaged over the holidays? If so – BIG congratulations to you, and I hope that you are getting excited about planning your big day 🙂


We ended 2012 and began 2013 down in Brighton (a yearly tradition!)After being completely spoiled eating at The Ginger Dog and shopping till we dropped in the Lanes, it was time to head back home to the Midlands.

It’s been a great week for all round wedding inspiration and here is our roundup of the weeks top bits…


Waking up on Saturday morning to find that The Budget Bride Company has now got over 2000 followers on Facebook – it’s great to have you with us you beautiful people!


♥  Being inspired by old school glamour… We want Marilyn Monroe hair!!


♥  New sale at Oliver Bonas – need I say anything more?!


♥  Thrilled with the fantastic suppliers that we have at our first Budget Bride Live Wedding Fair – have you booked your place yet? We can’t wait to see you there!


♥  Loving the new collection at BHS – look at this lovely dusky pink bridesmaid dress for £80



♥  Making new years resolutions including getting a dog (the office needs a mascot!) and swapping the usual glass of red wine for a Pukka Tea in January!




♥  The amazing new Budget Wedding Dress Collection from Estilo Moda – these beautiful wedding dresses start from £300.



Have a great week all!

Laura x

Brighton Wedding Inspiration

Brighton has long been one of my favourite places to visit. From my first ever mini break away at the age of 18 (we signed our names as Mr and Mrs Smith in the guest book!) through to making a habit of visiting at least once a year these days, there is something about the atmosphere, amazing shops and friendly people that I just LOVE!

So, in search of some bohemian wedding inspiration, Team Budget Bride Company made their way down to the South Coast for a few days of beach side fun!

What trip to Brighton wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Choccywoccydoodah?! This chocolate wonderland hosts some of the most incredible cake designs we have ever seen… Whilst some of the designs come in a lot pricier (what I wouldn’t give for the Las Vegas wedding cake!), you can have a Choccywoccydoodah designer wedding cake – such as this stunning orchid creation  to feed 40 guests for £199. Hurrah!


And here’s a couple of the creations we saw on our visit to the shop…






We loved wandering through The Lanes , spending our afternoons gazing at the beautiful unique engagement rings in the antique jewellery shop windows. There are more wonderful designs than you can shake a stick at - my favourites are definitely the ones including a sapphire!


And look at these beautiful white roses that got caught in an afternoon downpour!



We fell in love with the cakes at Cloud 9 – they have some great designs from £150, and the staff are so friendly!


We had a fantastic visit to Snoopers Paradise  – perfect for retro styled weddings, with plenty of vintage crockery, jewellery and even copies of Vogue from back in the early 90’s for some classic fashion inspiration. The place is enormous and you can easily spend a couple of hours snooping through the treasures!



We had a great day on The Pier on New Years Day. With a clear blue sky and warm sun, it was easy to see why it might be an idea to say ‘I Do’ there! This would make an incredibly fun and different wedding venue – just think of the photo opportunities!


Brighton is such a fantastic place; whether you are using wedding suppliers from here, holding your wedding here, or both - you will truly be spoiled for choice. Brighton – we love you!




Laura xx

And a Silver Sixpence in her Shoe…

And so we come to the last section in our series on this tradition of Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue. It is the part that is usually dropped from the end of the rhyme, but nonetheless it is still something worth giving a nod to on your wedding day! The thought of having a silver sixpence in your shoe may seem like a slightly odd idea, but traditionally was a symbol for future wealth and prosperity; so we say go for it!!

We absolutely love this little keepsake pin, it not only has a silver sixpence but also encompasses all of the other elements of the rhyme for good luck. You can pin it to the inside of your dress or handbag or perhaps even pin it to a ribbon round your waist if your wedding dress has one. This lovely accessory is £25 from Betty’s Glamour Box on



As an alternative to placing the lucky sixpence in your shoe, how about wearing one on a specially made anklet instead? This one is £18.99 from The Lucky Sixpence Company



You could try customising a pair of heels to include the silver sixpence. You can buy the coin from online stores such as from around £20 upwards. Then by working out your own design, you can incorporate the coin into the detailing on your shoe, or even superglue it the sole.


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If you want to follow the tradition completely, then you should get a silver sixpence and place it under your foot in your left shoe.
The Royal Mint sells the coins in presentation boxes for £30 that you can order online here.


Whichever elements of the tradition you decide to follow, we wish you the very best of luck on your wedding day and in your new married lives together!

Laura x

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue… Part 4

I must admit, my favourite colour has been blue for as long as I can remember. I always wanted a blue sapphire engagement ring, I have always owned blue cars and my bedrooms have always been decorated in various shades of… blue! So this was always going to be a nice blog piece to write. Below, we have researched all of the wonderful ways you can incorporate Something Blue into your Wedding Day look.


Hair flowers

I love the idea of winding some pretty blue silk flowers through your hair. You can keep your hair loose, with some flowers wound in at the side, or if you are having an up do, pin them up into the style. With lots of outlets to buy silk or faux flowers from, you can choose the exact shade and flower to work with the rest of your look. Try Dunelm Mill or




Are you a drop earring or stud earring kind of girl? Wearing simple pearl studs can be a good idea for your wedding day – simple and understated, they won’t detract from your wedding hair and makeup. However, a small flash of colour on your earrings can look gorgeous. We absolutely adore these delicate Kalila Earrings from Oliver Bonas for £9



Mascara / coloured makeup

Blue mascara is so flattering on almost all skin tones. Keep it bang up to date (and avoid any 80’s nightmares!) by using Blinc Dark Blue Mascara £15.75 from or Max Factor Eye Brightening mascara in Blue for £6.99






Are you going to be wearing a necklace on your wedding day? By wearing a necklace incorporating the colour blue, you can go for a big chunky statement piece, or something pretty and delicate like this 70’s Delicate Blue Gem Necklace from Bohemian Rose Vintage for £10.

We also love this Blue Floral Pinwheel necklace by Matin Lapin on for £11.




Do you prefer charm bracelets or slinky bangles? Work Something Blue on your wrist with this beautiful silk twine Ju Ju Triple Star Bracelet, £16 from Oliver Bonas.


Nail varnish

This is an easy, no fuss way to use blue on your wedding day. Whether you do your own nails or get them done professionally, choose your colour carefully – are you going to go for midnight blue or a bright sky blue?

We are seriously in love with this blue nail varnish duo from Ted Baker at Boots for £8.50.



Want to keep warm on your way to the ceremony and are daring to flash a bit of colour? We were pretty much blown away with this incredible Marabou Ostrich Feather Shrug for £85 from Euphoria.


With Swarovski pearls and crystals, this delicate tiara is £46.80 inclusive of P&P from Flutterby Weddings. I especially love the little heart worked into the detailing!




There are so many beautiful blue flowers that you can choose from to go into your bouquet. Ask for miniature irises, Blue delphiniums or grape-hyacinth and you can mix them in with your other blooms to make a gorgeous bunch.



Kate Middleton opted for a hint of blue ribbon sewn into her wedding gown, but would you want to be equally as discreet or perhaps go for a bolder blue ribbon around your waist or even a blue wedding dress?

This elegant number is £159.44 from



We love the silhouette of this Ghost Dress in Tiffany Blue - £195 at John Lewis.



Every girl loves new underwear, right? Treat yourself (and your newlywed!) with these beautiful pieces of blue wedding lingerie.

This sky blue and charcoal bra is £38 from Elle Macpherson at Figleaves. The matching briefs are £25

This lacy blue bra is £7 from H&M and the matching briefs are £4.99.


And last, but by no means least are our Something Blue Shoe options! As you have probably noticed, we love a good colour splash here at The Budget Bride Company and the glimpse of a fabulous pair of blue shoes to round off your look would certainly get a round of applause from us!

These strappy blue sandals are £42 from ASOS


Or you could go all out glam with these super sparkly peep toes from Red Herring at Debenhams for £18.


We would love to know what your Something Blue is going to be! Are you going subtle or all out for a blue colour scheme?

Laura x

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue – Part Three

We started off this series of blog posts on the tradition of wearing something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue on your wedding day. Today we are going to be looking at some ideas for what to Borrow as part of the tradition.

Something Borrowed… 

We all know that Kate Middleton borrowed the Queen’s Tiara (a 1930’s Cartier Halo tiara no less) for her Something Borrowed on the Royal Wedding day, but that might not be so easy for the rest of us… Choosing what to wear for your Something Borrowed will probably involve you going to your close family and friends and choosing the right item to fit with your wedding day look. Below are some Budget Bride Company suggestions to help you on your way!



Borrowing your wedding dress from a similarly sized relative or friend will not only be massively flattering to the person who has lent you the dress, but it will save you a massive chunk of your wedding budget. Make sure that you try on the dress and that any necessary alterations can be made in good time by a reputable seamstress. And as you are going to be saving so much money by borrowing your wedding dress, make sure that you splash out and treat yourself to some amazing new jewellery or shoes for your big day!

Another alternative would be to hire your wedding dress. This is a fantastic cost effective way to get the gown you want for the big day and will be a great way to encompass your Something Borrowed.

Going to a Vintage Bridal Boutique such as Abigails Vintage means that you can ‘borrow’ your dress from another decade whilst getting yourself a dream wedding gown! Prices rom £300.




Borrowing a gorgeous necklace from a loved one is a great idea. You can go vintage and interesting by borrowing from an older family member or perhaps more modern and simple from a younger sister or friend. Make sure that your necklace is flattering and that it sits well on the neckline or strap lines of your wedding dress.



Are you planning on wearing a veil for your wedding day? Veils can add a sophisticated edge to your look and a veil borrowed can be great idea. Pair it with a beautifully embellished comb or tiara to add some glamour.



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Tiaras can be the finishing touch to your wedding day look. A crowning glory, they show off your wedding day hair and genuinely make you feel more ‘Bride’ than any other accessory (apart from maybe the ring)! See if one of your recently married friends has a gorgeous tiara that you can borrow, or again have a nod to decades goneby by opting for an older piece.



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This is a tricky one – but possible! To find a beautiful pair of shoes to borrow for your wedding day that both fit comfortably and look fantastic with your wedding dress may be a challenge but if you are lucky, it is a possibility! Are you aiming for strappy, peep toe or court shoes? Do you want colourful or classic? Make sure that you give the shoes a test run by walking around in them for a day to ensure they fit well and will carry you through your full wedding day without blisters!


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Borrowing a beautiful handbag for your wedding day will be both useful and an asset to your outfit! Are you thinking of a clutch bag? Something simple and monocolour or something to contrast with your dress with lots of embellishment? The great thing with borrowing a wedding day handbag is that it doesn’t strictly have to be from a wedding – you can go for any colour or material that you like which opens up your possibilities!


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Silk Flowers

Silk flowers for wedding bouquets are very much on their way back in! First popular decades ago, silk wedding flowers are now becoming the choice for a lot of brides due to the fact that they are guaranteed to keep their shape throughout the day and you have the option to keep them to remind you of the day in years to come! Perhaps your Mum had silk flowers for her wedding? You could borrow the full bouquet, or pinch one of the blooms from it, to add to your own bouquet.

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Most importantly, using Something Borrowed on your wedding day reinforces those bonds between you and your family and friends. Enjoy this time choosing what to borrow and make sure you let the person who you have borrowed from know how much it means to you.


We would love to know what you will be borrowing on your wedding day – have you decided yet?


Laura xx

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue – Part 2

Last week, we started off this series of blog posts on the tradition of wearing something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue on your wedding day. You can catch up with the Something Old post here and today we go on to have a look at my personal favourite – something new!


Part Two – Something New…

Finding your Something New to wear on your wedding day should be a complete treat! If you have time on your side, you can pull together lists of your favourite things to choose from, or save pictures on your Pinterest  page from all of the different catalogues or websites that you have been checking through.


I think the best Something New that we could start with is probably the most obvious one; your Wedding Dress! We absolutely adore this Trudy Lee knee length taffeta dress from Calm Weddings for £500


Jewellery is another great area to incorporate Something New into your look. Perhaps your beau is planning on buying you something new to wear on the wedding day? How about hinting for this stunning pair of handmade cluster pearl earrings from the gorgeous Supernova Gold - £23


Are you going to be investing a gorgeous new pair of shoes to complete your outfit? Choose a fantastic pair that will be both glamorous and comfortable on the day. And if you are able to dress them down to wear again perhaps with a pair of jeans another time, then all the better justification for buying a new pair for the big day!! We’ve fallen in love with these Jenny Pacham Peep Toes for £35 from Debenhams.


Is your wedding hair do going to be up or down? We love this pretty daisy hairclip; with a Swarovski crystal centre, it will add a gorgeous bit of sparkle to your wedding hair style at £10.80 from Flutterby Weddings.


There is nothing quite like the luxury of indulging in new makeup! Going to a makeup counter can be a great idea as you will benefit from the assistants knowledge. You might be able to get a free makeover along with some expert advice on how to apply the makeup. You can also ask for guidance on what colours will work best with your skin tone and the colours you are planning to wear on your wedding day. It is also worth checking out on-line tutorials like the Beauty School at Benefit to get some inspiration on colours and how to apply. For the best prices, shop around on-line on sites such as Pique Perfumes and The Cosmetic House.


Do you want to make sure you make it to the church on time? A brand new watch will be a lovely reminder of your wedding day that you can wear every day after the big day if you want to! We love this delicate stone set silver watch by Oasis for £19.99.

I hope you are enjoying shopping for your Something New… Let us know what you will be including with your wedding day outfit!


Laura xx

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue – Part 1

Over the next five weeks, we are going to be looking at that tradition of wearing Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue (and a Silver Sixpence in your Shoe!) on your wedding day. We thought it would be a good idea to find some inspiration and give you a Budget Bride Company guide on what to wear and where to find it…

Something Old...

Have you spoken with your family or friends about what they wore on their wedding day? It might be that they have just the thing to let you use as your Something Old on your big day! Have a chat with your Mum, Grandmother or to be Mother-in-law and find out if they might have anything suitable. We’re not necessarily talking about the whole wedding dress, but is there a necklace or tiara or maybe even a veil that could be your Something Old? With the current trends for vintage being so strong, this could be an ideal way to work this style into your wedding day look.

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Customise your bouquet… We love the idea of button bouquets here at The Budget Bride Company and there is a great opportunity here to have lots of fun creating your bouquet and working the Something Old theming into it. Start early and decide on your colour scheme first – do you want to go for one bold colour with hints of a complimenting colour alongside? Are you going to go with pastels? Whatever your colour theme, you can start looking for buttons, brooches and gems to go into your bouquet  as far in advance as possible. This way, you can scour car boot sales, eBay and charity shops to get hold of the materials that you need. Another fun way to work Something Old into your bouquet would be to purchase some vintage lace or to use some old ribbon to wind between your blooms – have a chat with your wedding florist to find out how this could work.


Photo credit: Castaway in Scotland / Foter / CC BY-NC



Finding a vintage purse or handbag to match or compliment your wedding dress would be a great look. This is a functional and useful way to work Something Old into your wedding day. Again, a great opportunity to go bargain hunting at car boot sales or rummaging in charity shops, you’ll never know what you might find. Another favourite is the Etsy Vintage Category where you can find beauties like this for a snip!



If you are wearing a strapless wedding dress, try going for a vintage clutch bag – the lack of a bag strap will not detract from the line of your wedding dress.


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Vintage charms are also a very cute idea. You can find vintage charms from sites such as and can end up with something really unusual from about £24.

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Have you thought about how you would like to wear your hair on the big day? Old hair pins can be beautifully ornate and look fantastic. This original vintage crystal hairpin dates back to the 1950’s – absolutely beautiful at £47:

Or for some real unique bargains, try typing ‘Art Deco Vintage Hair’ into Ebay and just look at the treasure trove of original pieces that come up – a lot of them for under £20!

We would love to know what your Something Old will be – let us know about any gorgeous antique or retro pieces you will be using!


Laura xx

Top Five Wedding Reception Money Saving Tips

When you've organised, paid for, and participated in your wedding ceremony, you will want your reception to run as smoothly (and as cheaply!) as possible. To assist you with your planning, some of these tips (provided by Gregory Pennington) could help…


Choose an inexpensive wedding venue

Venues that are tailored specifically towards weddings can be expensive, and will typically charge you per head for your reception. Many venues also insist on providing the catering, sometimes tying you in with their preferred catering company.

It may therefore be cheaper to choose an alternative type of venue to hold your reception. You could look into local pubs, village halls or even (if the weather allows) holding your reception outdoors in a marquee! This will mean that you are in charge of the suppliers that you use and this can give you more control over where you are spending your wedding reception budget.



The food

Not everyone expects a three-course sit-down meal when they are guests at a wedding reception. It's likely that a tasteful buffet, with a wide variety of foods and some more filling options will be a great cost saving solution.

Your guests will be able to serve themselves (which cuts down on the cost of having waiting staff) and they will be able to take as much or as little food as they like. It doesn't have to all be cold dishes either; you could ask your family and friends to chip in to make a large pots of curry, chile or pasta dishes to share on the buffet table.


Skip the free bar

Having a free bar is a wonderful and very generous gesture, but most of your guests will come fully prepared to pay for their drinks. If having a free bar is really important to you, consider limiting it to a certain timespan - or a certain number of beverages per guest.




If you are going to be having a lot of guests at your reception, it is quite likely that at least one of them will know of a good wedding band or DJ. Why not make the most of this and find out if you can set up a discounted rate for the entertainment? Or even better, perhaps one of your close friends is a talented entertainer and would be able to provide their services as their wedding gift to you! It is always worth asking…



Limit your guest list

It’s easy to get carried away when drawing up your guest list for your evening reception. This is the time to be super strict with yourself and really only invite the people that you want to be there. It’s too easy to end up inviting your Mum’s best friend’s hairdresser, or perhaps some acquaintances who you went to school with but wouldn’t really class as friends... It’s your party, so only invite the people who you want to celebrate with!

If you have any relatives or friends who would have to go well out of their way to make it to your reception, consider setting up a Skype account. That way you can say hello and they'll get to see you on your wedding day - without actually having to be there!



With a bit of creativity and some organised forward planning, you will be able to throw a great wedding reception for your friends and family. Let us know what you will be doing to make your wedding budget stretch further at your reception!