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As you consider with excitement how wonderful it will be to be married and to begin a new life with a life-time partner, you probably do not dream of beginning that new life mired in debt. As tempting as it may be to so many people, over-spending on your wedding and the reception that follows simply makes no sense.

Think about it… would you rather sink thousands of dollars into having one amazing day where you spare no expense and feel like a princess who has the best of everything for a day, and then wakes up to normal life – and a ton of bills? Or would you rather have one amazing day where you used restraint and saved money wherever you reasonably could, still feel like a princess, and then wake up to a normal life full of promise – and without the stress of wedding debt?

The mantra of smart and thrifty brides to be is “whenever you can, do it yourself.” There are many things that you can cut out of the wedding payroll and do yourself.

Begin with do it yourself wedding invitations and wedding RSVP cards. There are all kinds of resources online that enable you to design, create, and even print your own wedding invites and RSVP cards. They will say the same things as the expensive cards, they will use the same fancy fonts as the custom alternative. But they will cost way less and you will keep money in your bank.

Do not feel like you need to hire a pro to come and apply your make-up and style your hair. You can get yourself looking gorgeous by enlisting help from friends and relatives. Find a friend whose look you like and ask her to do the honors of glamming you up for the big day. She will not only be free, she will be honored to be trusted with such an important task.

Also, do not feel that you must offer a sit-down dinner at your wedding reception. A classy buffet full of an assortment of your favorite foods is just as enjoyable to everyone. Plus, people will not feel pressured to sit and eat at a certain time, but can enjoy mingling with you and your guests. Besides, when is the last time you heard someone complimenting the food served at a catered wedding reception or banquet? Usually it is mediocre at best.

Forget about trying to impress your guests with an open bar – that is a quick way to immediate financial ruin! Rather, offer a cash bar and maybe a champagne toast. Or, you may choose to offer wine to guests free of charge, but other drinks they must pay for.

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