I'm getting married in May '09 and want to get some cheap ideas for our rehearsal dinner. Should I do it at home or should I pay more and go out?
Becky from FL
I recently got married and we had our rehearsal dinner in our backyard BBQ style. Each member of our wedding party or immediate family brought food, drinks, plates, etc. It was great and everyone had a wonderful time with little, to no cost for us. (02/01/2009)
I am an event decorator and coordinator. I find that many people get caught up in spending money, and trying to impress. The best times are the ones where you put your heart into it, and not your pocket book. A simple easy dinner at home is just fine. There doesn't have to be a lot of fuss with decor either.
Why not make this a celebration of two families coming together. Think of ways you can let the bride's parents know how much you are looking forward to expanding and melding your families. In the end, this is what it's all about. Not money, not decor. No impression for them or the attendants at the wedding is more important than the love that you show at this time. (02/02/2009)
My son and his wife were paying for most of their own wedding and wanted a nice one, so I told them what I would contribute and let them decide if they wanted it to go to the rehearsal or wedding. They chose to have a nice backyard picnic, where the families could get to know each other, and use the rest of the money toward the wedding. Best part is, all I had to do was make some pasta salad, they did the rest. (02/03/2009)
Honey we were broke and I took my party to McDonald's it was a small wedding party and hubby said it was a good idea. Turned out to be a great night. (02/04/2009)
When we got married, our rehearsal dinner was hosted by my husband's sister-in-law in her finished basement. She bought rolls, made a large meat and cheese platter, had condiments, potato salad, macaroni salad, a nice tossed salad, drinks, etc. Several family members made potluck dishes. No one had to work in the kitchen for hours, we had no huge restaurant or catering bill, and we were all free to relax and visit. We took leftovers home to eat for lunch the next day before our evening wedding.
For a friend's rehearsal dinner, we decorated tables at her parent's home, bought flowers for centerpieces, ordered pizza, made a large salad, and everyone bought a bottle of wine or beer to share. It was just an evening of relaxation and fun. (02/04/2009)
We had our rehearsal dinner at the site where we planned to get married, and it was very do-it-yourself: frozen lasagna and garlic bread along with salad, soft drinks, and cupcakes. Our wedding was in the fall, so I decorated the rehearsal dinner with plastic autumn-themed tablecloths (total of $3) and put our centerpieces for the wedding (silk flowers) down the tables (free). Everyone loved it and it was a great meal. (02/07/2009)
When our son got married last September, almost all of the guests were from out of town. We gave them a choice of a nice dinner at a restaurant for the wedding party or a beach barbecue for the entire guest list. The beach party was the choice and I think we had a low-key, great fun, afternoon and evening. While we splurged on catered barbecue, we could have purchased it for much less at Costco. The beach didn't allow alcohol which saved tons of money. Instead we supplied tubs of ice full of bottled sodas and iced tea. I don't think anybody even missed the beer. For dessert each person made their own smores over the fire. Add volley ball and a couple of kites and it was a blast. (02/21/2009)
So I know that the wedding dinner is the traditional thing to do, however, for our wedding we're actually just doing a dessert. We have a lot of guests from out of town that we didn't want to exclude, but couldn't afford dinner for everyone. So we decided that after the rehearsal we're going to just have different tables set up around the room with desserts, that way people can mingle and talk and just hang out.
There are tables to sit down all around and this way we can have all of our family and friends there without having to worry about going over budget. You can make cookies extremely cheap, and buy some bundt cakes from Sam's Club, Costco, or Walmart all for very cheap. We're having our friends from in town make some desserts to bring to take the stress off of us. You only need 1 1/2 desserts per person that is coming to have enough, it will average out just about right. (02/23/2009)
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