Dress to Impress (for Less), Thriftster weddings

Secondhand dressed

The other day, I eavesdropped on a conversation between two mothers. One was telling the other how hard it was to find a decent wedding dresses for under a thousand bucks. Yep, it’s common knowledge that wedding dresses are expensive, a fact that the wedding industry tries to perpetuate with its talk of ‘couture’, ‘bespoke’, and ‘chantilly lace’.

For a mustbethrifty bride, however, the wedding dress is an opportunity for some genuine savings. Unless you DIY, it’s hard to skimp on food, drinks, and entertainment, whereas it’s relatively easy to be parsimonious with wedding dresses, especially if you’re not afraid to wear something secondhand.It also makes sense. I MEAN, IT MIGHT BE A ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME DRESS, BUT YOU’RE ONLY GOING TO WEAR IT ONCE, SO WHY SPEND HUNDREDS/THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS ON IT IF YOU’RE ONLY GOING TO WEAR IT ONCE…YOU’RE PLANNING ON WEARING IT ONLY ONCE, RIGHT? Continue reading

Dress to Impress (for Less), Gen DIY-er, Thriftster weddings

Shoe bling

Need some fancy-schmancy shoes for a special occasion? Instead of buying a new pair, why not invest in some shoe bling?

Thanks to the T-bar design, I’m able to add some sparkle to my ballroom shoes with brooches from Diva:

For T-bar-less shoes, try shoe clips from eBay or Etsy.

If brooches and shoe clips are too big an investment, make your own shoe bling. Continue reading

Dress to Impress (for Less), Gen DIY-er, Thriftster weddings

Improv, 1940s style

I read somewhere that I should be treating this wedding as a chance to learn new skills. While most DIY types take on this opportunity to learn the art of floral arrangement or how to crochet wedding toppers, I thought I’d spend my time (and mullah) learning how to do my own hair and makeup*. After all, isn’t that what Kate Middleton did?

Chrissy Keepence from the Lindy Charm School For Girls has been helping ladies achieve vintage glamour for years; I was fortunate enough to attend her three-hour workshop at the Vintage Emporium in Tyabb. Most of the three hours were dedicated to pincurls, victory rolls, do-rags, and snoods, but Miss Chrissy also spent some time demonstrating 1940s makeup and the importance of structured undergarments.

What I love about the 1940s is how natural and versatile the makeup is. The only ‘pop’ of colour is the red lipstick, allowing ladies to go from day to night, casual to glam without needing to alter their look or rely on a multitude of products. Super Kawaii Mama’s Candice DeVille has made an excellent video putting together the look:

Continue reading

Reviews, Thriftster weddings

Let’s make it personal: Offbeat Bride (2nd edition)

Most how-tos read like recipes, deconstructing the Heston’s Feast that is a wedding into the main ingredients, dumbing it down for homely brides-to-be who just want to recreate a traditional dish. Catherine Yarnovich Risling’s Pretty Weddings for Practically Pennies is one such book: a series of craft projects, including place-card holders, boutonnieres, and confetti cones. Kelly Bare’s The DIY Wedding: Celebrate Your Day Your Way is another, giving lip-service to the personal touch with little personality between its covers.

Attempting to ‘encourage contemporary brides to feel good about their less-than-traditional wedding choices’, Ariel Meadow Stallings’ Offbeat Bride: Creative Alternatives for Independent Brides, on the other hand, is autobiographical. Continue reading

Footnote Frivolity***, Gen DIY-er, Money Matters, Thriftster weddings

Mustbethrifty challenge for 2013: plan a wedding under $15K

Last year I posted about Josephine and Patrick’s thrifster wedding. Theirs was an incredible effort of beg, borrow, or buy secondhand and they ended up spending just over $7K, less than a fifth of the average Aussie wedding budget.

Cheap Geek and I are now organising our big(ish) day and we’ve set our budget at $15K. It’s an amount that we can save in the upcoming months, preventing us from starting our marriage with communal debt*.

With my copy of Kelly Bare’s The DIY Wedding – Celebrate Your Day Your Way and Ariel Meadow Stallings’ Offbeat Bride – Creative Alternatives for Independent Brides, I will tackle the big ticket wedding expenses such as venue, catering, flowers, attire, and photography in the typical mustbethrifty fashion, i.e. by blogging about it. Continue reading