Frugal VS. Cheap Weddings Part 1

“I’m searching for a cheap but great florist, any one have recommendations??”

“Where can I find an incredible venue that offers chairs, tables, linens, and seats 300 people for under $1,000?”

“Anyone know of a good _______ whose just starting out and would work my wedding for free???”

Nearly every single day we see some variation of these questions posted in online wedding groups we’re a part of. Well-meaning couples who have a tight budget but still want the highest quality possible. It’s not something unusual to us, but what is is the high-expectation couples put on these highly discounted services.

Just as often we hear stories from married friends that they wish they would have spent more on X, Y, & Z for their wedding. They wanted that discount service and are upset when they got a low quality result.  Cheap is cheap y’all; you get what you pay for. So how can a couple know where to invest a little more? How can they skate the line between having a straight up cheap wedding versus a beautiful but frugal day?

Cheap Vs. Frugal | Birmingham Alabama Wedding Photographers Katie & Alec

First, let’s say it now, cheap and frugal are two totally different things. We love how this article from U.S. News differentiates the two, “Being cheap is about spending less; being frugal is about prioritizing your spending so that you can have more of the things you really care about.” There’s a big difference between the two.

Cheap weddings prioritize saving money over everything else. Frugal weddings want to honor the guests in attendance, preserve memories from the day, and leave people wowed! What the couple values most gets a little extra attention, even if that means spending a little or a lot more money. Other areas may be more focused on saving to make up the difference.

Frugal weddings see what they’re spending as an investment. Cheap weddings see it simply as an expense. The big difference here is perspective. In this situation frugal minds tend to think big picture and long term. How will their photos & wedding video be impacted? What will their guests remember? Etc.

People with a cheap mindset think about how it impacts them now, what are they giving up for one day that’s over in 24 hours? Think of your wedding day and how you’ll pass down photos and videos to your children and grandchildren as family heirlooms!!

Cheap Vs. Frugal | Birmingham Alabama Wedding Photographers Katie & Alec

We think it’s all about having the right attitude going into your wedding planning. Having perspective and remembering that your wedding day is a celebration with the people who love you most. The guests who encouraged you along the way, blessed your relationship, and supported you. How much you and your fiance love each other. The promises you’re making and the family you’re starting with those promises. It’s so much bigger than a few dollar signs.

As we say all this, we’re not judging anyone for their wedding spending decisions!! We totally get that everyone is in a different time & financial season of life. Our hopes for this is that even if you’re on a shoe-string budget that you’ll have a frugal, values based mindset. It will serve you well and help you immensely along the way!



Katie & Alec


Look out for part two of this blog next week where we’ll share our tips for a frugal wedding!

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