Easiest ways to save money on a wedding:
* Limit the guest list. A large guest list means larger hall, more table and chair rentals, more centerpieces, more food, more favors, more waitstaff, more alcohol. We had a FABULOUS wedding with 76 people.
* Limit the attendants. We had one each, with a reader. Much easier and less stressful to coordinate opinions.
* Schedule for a weekday, if at all possible. Our dating and engagement anniversary was Nov. 3rd. We got married on Nov. 3rd. It was a Monday. We got the hall ALL day, for the half the cost of what was normally a 4 hour reservation.
* Find a caterer who will allow you to provide the alcohol. And limit it. We served sparkling wine only - no open bar. So no bartender cost either.
* Hire a DJ with a DO NOT PLAY list, rather than a band.
* Have the wedding and the reception in the same place.
Congratulations, and enjoy the planning. Our engagement year was awesome, fun, and culminated in one of my favorite weddings ever.