I also got married at a a nature center amphitheater in a local state park

It didn’t cost anything to reserve it and it had an overlook where you had the most beautiful picturesque view of a valley in bloom with the incredibly beautiful fall foliage. We were married during peak leaf weekend in October so we needed little decoration outside except for some mums that we also brought to the reception hall (at the state park park lodge immediately following the ceremony) and later planted in our yard as a wonderful souvenir.

I wore the dress my two sisters wore before me so I only had alterations as an expense and the added benefit of following a wonderful tradition. I scoured magazines (Brides, JCPenney bridal issue etc) for bridesmaid dresses and found the perfect dress. Unfortunately it was over a hundred dollars. My sister convinced me to look at this outlet store in her neighborhood and the had the exact same dress, in the sizes I need for under 20 bucks a piece! I was very lucky but I do suggest looking everywhere once you have an idea of what you are looking for because you never know.

We ordered our invitations from a discount catalog and also ordered treat boxes imprinted with our names and the wedding date. We filled these ourselves with nuts and mints and used these at each place setting. We also made the rice/birdseed bags from netting and ribbon.

We asked the lodge where we had the reception about possibilities for the cake and they gave us the name of a local woman. We went to her house and saw pictures of incredible cakes she had baked so we went with her. Her price was about 50 percent less than a bakery.

I made the unity candle myself and it was just as nice as the 30 and 40 dollar ones but mine cost less than 6 or 7. I bought a large white candle and some pretty white flower and bead pins. I took my invitation and used the pins to secure it to the candle. I then hot glued beads around the edge for a border and added a few white silk flowers here and there.

I still have it and it is still beautiful.

my biggest recommendation is to scour every magazine adn bridal shop you can find to get a general idea of what type of wedding you want and then leave no stone unturned to find what you want as cheap as you can!

Well this is already getting to long so good luck!!

Theresa in IN