Cut that Budget!

Continued (page 2 of 2)

Go green. For centerpieces, pick up flowering plants like tulips, paperwhites, or violets, and inexpensive clay or ceramic containers. It takes less than a minute to repot them.

There's still time to make small changes that can help you save big.

Slice and dice. Here's what the experts recommend cutting in a pinch: favors; ceremony flowers (if you can, move in some reception centerpieces); programs; extras like fans or flip-flops; limos for the bridal party (they can drive themselves); printed menus; calligraphy for escort cards, place cards, and table numbers; overstuffed welcome bags. "And skip the expensive shoes," says Sheofsky. "No one sees them if your dress is long."

Borrow. Most married folks are happy to see their barely used wedding items (shoes, headpiece, ring pillow, handbag, jewelry) given a second life.

Be honest. If you're super-strapped, tell your vendors; you may be surprised at the outcome. "Even if you signed a contract, it never hurts to ask if they'll renegotiate" says Book. "They want you to have a positive experience."

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