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how to decorate a wedding on a budget

How to Decorate a Wedding on a Budget

From streamers to balloons and flowers, there are endless ways to decorate for your wedding day. Although there are countless options for decor, you have a limited budget. So what are some wedding decoration ideas that won’t break the bank?

You can have elaborate and beautiful decorations to enhance the excitement of your celebration without exceeding your wedding budget. Here’s a look at some of the ways you can save big on decor while creating a magical atmosphere at your wedding. Learn how to decorate a wedding on a tight budget!

Tips for Decorating Your Wedding on a Budget

After you book your wedding venue, it’s time to start thinking about how to decorate it. There are plenty of options when it comes to decorating, and you can cut costs through DIY decorations.

Your decorations include centerpieces, wedding table decor, and backdrops for unforgettable pictures and memories with your friends, family, and loved ones.

DIY Decorations

diy wedding decor

If you’re crafty enough, there are plenty of great decorations that you can make yourself at home! Check out Pinterest ideas, research how to recreate your favorite wedding decor, and find tutorials to create gorgeous wedding decorations on a budget!

Use Decorations from Your Home

lounge area

If the decor around your house matches the decoration ideas you have for your wedding, consider pulling pieces from home to decorate for the big day! Your favorite plants, picture frames, centerpieces, and even furniture can make an appearance at your wedding.

Let Your Location Be the Focus

wedding ceremony

Certain wedding venues are beautiful enough that you won’t have to provide much extra decor. If you’re planning an outdoor wedding, a gorgeous landscape view could provide the perfect backdrop for all of your pictures. With indoor venues, they may have their own unique look or on-site decorations that will do half the job for you!

Ask your venue if they have any decorations they can provide, but prepare for the possibility that they may charge a fee to use them. Otherwise, look for features at your wedding venue that you can accentuate with minor touches or use as a backdrop.

Consider Your Flower Budget

Wedding flowers can be expensive. They don’t have to be, however. If flower arrangements are important to your wedding style and theme, search for wholesale flowers online. Buying wholesale can significantly cut the price tag – you’ll just have to arrange the centerpieces and bouquets yourself.

centerpiece flowers

Another way to cut your flower cost is to create bouquets and centerpieces with a few gorgeous blooms surrounded by cheaper fillers. Leafy greens and wispy flowers like baby’s breath are cheaper than peonies and roses, so you can frame a few focus flowers or even a single bloom with these cheaper options.

A third idea is to focus more on greenery than florals. Greenery like trailing vines, garlands, wreaths, and potted plants can take up plenty of space to fill your venue, and they’re cheaper than flowers.

Shop Secondhand

Depending on what kind of decorations you’re looking for, you can find plenty of secondhand options in thrift stores, pawn shops, or even online resale platforms.

Search local listings like Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, or your local thrift shop for unique decoration ideas. You’ll save money and you may find one-of-a-kind decorations for your wedding!

Rent Decorations

There are plenty of wedding rental companies out there, and renting for a few days is certainly cheaper than buying decorations outright. Check out wedding rentals to see if their prices and decorations fit with your wedding budget and theme. You can rent anything from furniture to dessert displays and more!

Reuse Decor Throughout the Day

wedding arch

If you’re ceremony and reception are at different venues, or even in different areas of the same venue, consider reusing the same decorations. Your ceremony decorations can be recycled and repositioned to work as reception decorations as well!

Use the trays or displays from cocktail hour for your desserts later in the night. Let your ceremony backdrop function as a photo backdrop at the reception. Get creative to make the most out of every piece you rent or buy.

Research Free Printables and Templates

There are plenty of affordable or even free online resources to help you create decorations. Many artists on sites like Etsy will offer printable decorations, so you can buy the template for an affordable price and then print it at home.

Find inexpensive, printable invitation templates, table numbers, seating chart displays, wedding booklets, labels for favors, and much more online!

Enlist Help

women crafting

DIYing all of your decorations can be tedious and time consuming. You’ll have more fun and more success if you enlist the help of your bridesmaids, groomsmen, family, and friends!

Ask members of your wedding party to help create decorations – you can make it a fun craft night in with drinks and snacks to sweeten the deal. Your bridesmaids and groomsmen should be happy to help you out, as will your close family members and others in your circle!

Affordable Wedding Decoration Ideas

These cheap wedding decoration ideas are sure to impress your guests and keep your budget in check.

Inexpensive Centerpiece Ideas

Wedding centerpieces are often large and elaborate, but if that’s not your style, then choose something else! Enormous bouquets of flowers come with a hefty price tag, but there are other inexpensive ideas for centerpieces, even ones that still include plants and flowers as the focal point.

Forget expensive floral arrangements place succulents in terrariums at the center of your table. If you’re going for a rustic wedding, greenery really does the trick. Succulents and air plants are a twist on traditional floral arrangements, but they can look just as elegant.

If you do prefer floral arrangements, try going a more minimalist route. By putting a few flowers in a thin vase, you can have flowers as the star of the table without spending a fortune on large bouquets. Use a flower guide to decide which ones are just right for a centerpiece.

To create a whimsical and playful feel, use balloons as your table centerpieces! Giant balloons fill up the space, especially if your venue has high ceilings. Match the balloons to your wedding’s color scheme or use different colors. Either way, this is sure to give your wedding a bright pop of color.

mason jar

Use mason jars to create the perfect centerpiece. You can buy mason jars in bulk, and they’re super versatile. Paint and decorate them to your heart’s desire, fill them with flowers, or put candles in them for an ethereal glow.


Candles are another cheap yet captivating item that you can add to your centerpiece and wedding decorations. They don’t have to be exclusively a part of your centerpiece; candles can look fabulous anywhere in your reception venue! Just make sure you ask your venue if you can have open flames first.

Cheap Wedding Table Decorations

Besides the centerpiece, you can add bits and pieces of decor on your tables at your reception to add more flair. Whether you decide to keep it more minimalist or spruce up your venue down to the tables, you can stay within your budget with these ideas for cheap wedding table decorations.

wedding table

Table runners take your seating to the next level. Just a simple piece of cloth can make a table seem that much fancier. If you want a more down-to-earth feel, burlap is a great and cheap option. Sprinkle some flower petals or confetti over your table runner for an extra festive look!

Napkins with patterns add more whimsy to your wedding decorations. This is a way to decorate and bring more excitement without buying extra items as decor. Linen napkins can set you back, but keep your eyes open for cheaper napkins. By folding your napkins into bows or other shapes, you can add another layer of decor.

Use food as decor! Your guests will be impressed with your decorations, but they’re also here to enjoy the food. This is a fun way to combine both aspects of your wedding. Mason jars come in handy here, too. Fill up jars with colorful candy and snacks.

Cheap Wedding Backdrop Ideas

Fun backdrops give your guests a place to take pictures and remember your wedding day. If you want to go with something simple and cheap, hang up tulle. This works as a backdrop, but you can also hang tulle around your venue for a more classy or mystical feel.

tulle wedding decor

Like tulle, string lights are also another option for creating a magical atmosphere. String lights are inexpensive, but there are even more ways to save money. Instead of buying lights, you can use white Christmas lights. That being said, rose gold lights do add a nice touch to a wedding.

String lights fit rustic themes and elegant ones, so from banquet halls to barns, they fit all types of venues.

string lights

If you’re a fan of balloon centerpieces, you can also use balloons for a backdrop and photos. Instead of using plain balloons, find letters to spell out “love,” “congrats,” the initials of you and your partner, or whatever else you like. You can also use numbers to write out the date of your wedding.

As a backdrop, you can also hang up photos of you and your partner. Whether it’s engagement photos or pictures you’ve taken together over the years, your wedding day is the perfect time to look back at your relationship together.

DIY Wedding Ideas for a Tight Budget

Planning a wedding already consumes a lot of time, but if you can squeeze in a little bit more, making your own decorations is another way to save big. Plus, there are numerous DIY projects that are quick and easy. Enlist the help of your friends and family or ask your maid of honor or best man to see if they can pitch in as well.

Start your DIY journey with a quick search on Pinterest. Wedding idea boards are all over the site, so you can find all the decor ideas possible. Since many DIY projects use paper, they’re an affordable option for lovely decorations. Although some DIY projects can take a lot of skill, there are basic projects for everyone of any craft level!

origami birds

Take your paper-folding (or cutting) skills to the test. A simple sheet of paper can do wonders. Add little origami swans to your tables, make paper flowers to drape on the walls, or cut out paper lanterns to hang from the ceiling. Match your decorations to your theme by using solid colored paper or use patterned paper to make your celebration more lively.

Do you know someone with gorgeous handwriting or calligraphy skills? Ask someone to help you draw custom chalkboard signs or banners! You can use a large sign to welcome guests to your wedding and point them in the right direction for seating at the ceremony or reception. Hand-lettered chalkboard place cards can add a personal touch, too.

calligraphy wedding sign

From the bride’s bouquet to centerpieces, flowers are everywhere at a wedding. If you want to add even more, consider pressing flowers to use as decor. Since pressing flowers takes some time, make sure you think about this in advance! If chalkboard place cards aren’t your thing, you can glue pressed flowers onto place cards to personalize them instead.


No matter the theme or budget for your wedding, there’s affordable decor for everyone. Although wedding planners and decorators are an asset, you can still set up and create gorgeous decorations on your own.

With these ideas for centerpieces, table decorations, backdrops, and DIY projects, you’re on your way to the picture-perfect wedding. Now that you’ve got the decor down, it’s time to look at wedding dresses!

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