It’s the most wonderful time of the year! If you’re getting married during the holidays, congratulations! You’re in for a treat. A Christmas wedding comes with all of the joys of the season: twinkling lights, cheerful music, and cozy family gatherings. But it can also come with a hefty price tag. If you’re looking to save money without sacrificing style, read on for some budget-friendly tips on how to make your Christmas wedding magical.
1. Get Creative with Your Holiday Decorations
One of the best things about having a Christmas wedding is that you already have an abundance of holiday decorations at your disposal. Get creative and repurpose some of your existing Christmas decor as wedding decorations. For example, hang sparkling string lights around the perimeter of your reception space or use red and green ribbon to adorn your ceremony chairs. You can even use real pine cones, poinsettias, or evergreen trees as part of your centerpieces or alter decorations. If you’re looking for something more fun and whimsical, try filling clear glass jars with candy canes or Christmas baubles. Top it off with a bow for an extra touch of holiday cheer. Where we did have to buy decor- we focused on purchasing stuff that could be reused the rest of the season (like real wreaths).
2. Focus on Quality, Not Quantity
When it comes to your wedding stationary, resist the urge to go overboard. A few well-designed invitations, programs, and place cards will suffice. Stick with classic holiday colors like red and green or opt for an elegant winter white. And don’t forget that you can also find beautiful (and affordable!) holiday-themed Save the Dates online or at your local craft store. Incorporate simple holiday touches by embossing your invitations with holly leaves. You can also use holiday-themed stamps on your envelopes or include a small sprig of mistletoe with each invitation. It’s the little details that go the farthest.
3. DIY Wherever Possible
If you’re feeling crafty, there are plenty of ways to add personal touches to your big day without breaking the bank. Get friends and family members involved by asking them to help with DIY projects like donating old jewelry for a jeweled heirloom bouquet. There are tons of great ideas available online—just do a quick Google search for “DIY Christmas wedding decorations” or “cheap Christmas wedding ideas” for inspiration!
Our floral arrangements were quoted at over $250 PER TABLE. So enough Google Searches, led me to be served a Facebook ad that was JUST what I needed. Ling’s Moment foam flowers were elegant, pliable, and easy to recreate the look we wanted at ¼ of the cost. Add in some Walmart candelabras that we spray painted from silver to gold, and a simple and beautiful winter wonderland centerpiece was born.
4. Think Outside the Box on Wedding Favors
Get creative with your wedding favors by giving guests homemade cookies or candied fruit as gifts. Or, send guests home with miniature bottles of eggnog or cinnamon Schnapps as a tasty holiday treat. You can also save money by making your own favors or doing a Secret Santa gift exchange instead of traditional wedding favors or gifts for each guest. We opted for Blue Spruce Christmas Tree Plugs (AKA baby Christmas trees). They were super affordable at around $2.90 each, and made a gift that everyone could enjoy indefinitely (as long as they have a green thumb or followed our included instructions).
5. Consider an Off-Peak Venue
Getting married during the holidays? You’ll likely have your pick of venues since most couples opt for summertime weddings. To save even more money, consider getting married on a Friday or Sunday instead of a Saturday—you may be surprised at how much venues will discount their rates for weekday weddings. We saved a whopping 75% by booking our wedding in December.
6. Add Simple Bar Decor to Go the Extra Mile
Add some holiday flair to your reception by hanging strings of cranberries or popcorn along the bar area. You can also garnish cocktails with candy canes or cinnamon sticks. Be sure to have plenty of non-alcoholic options on hand as well, such as mulled cider or hot chocolate (Hot Cocoa bars are SO in). We opted for a couple of pre-lit initials that were super affordable at Walmart, and I made our signature drink sign with the calligraphy feature on my Cricut Explore Air 2. These little details throughout our entire reception space really drove home the theme and elevated the entire guest experience.
7. Get Resourceful with the ”Altar” Decor
For a beautiful winter wonderland look, drape your altar in sheer white fabric and string up twinkling white lights. Or, try hanging a wreath made of evergreens and red berries above the altar. If you’re getting married in a church, a lot of times the altar is already decorated GORGEOUSLY at this time of year– that’s a win win for you!!
8. Elevate the Space with Little Details and Whimsy Touches
Scatter small pieces of holly around the reception area or use sprigs of rosemary as place cards at each table setting. You can also hang mistletoe above doorways or set up a photo booth with props such as Santa hats and reindeer antlers. For us, romance and elegance was key – and what better way to set the mood than with candles!!! Twinkling lights at the holidays are so magical, so we opted for dozens and dozens of candles EVERYWHERE!!! To save money, I grabbed some off of Facebook Marketplace from another bride (because literally, who would ever know they were used!!), and then opted for bulk boxes of battery powered candles off of Amazon. It added the perfect element, especially for the reception – Every corner had some sort of simple holiday touch.
9. Keep the Guest Book Simple
Let’s all be honest, the Guestbook is one of those things that we will probably not look at again until 10 years post wedding. I’m seeing more and more people cut it out of the budget entirely!!! But I suggest getting creative with your guest book by having guests sign ornament balls that can be used year after year on your tree, or stacked in a glass jar for lots of fun memories. We made a budget friendly Shutterfly book with pictures of our venue in its full glory back in 1902 and asked guests to sign it with gold sharpies. This way you have the memories, but in a more functional way that you can enjoy for years to come.
Planning a budget-friendly Christmas wedding is definitely possible—it just takes a little bit of creativity and holiday magic! By following these tips, you can have the beautiful winter wonderland wedding of your dreams without going broke in the process. Tis the Season to be MARRIED!
**All photos were done by Simply K Studios and are not for reproduction or unauthorized uses.
***Also note, some links included in this post may contain affiliate links. That means I earn a small commission if you decide to make a purchase. It does NOT make the price higher for you. It is just a small thank you kickback from retailers for including a proper link to their sites.