Wedding planning for me was a mix of craziness, nerves, stress, excitement, creativity and a careful use of finances. Throughout the process, I kept telling myself not to stress, to enjoy the moments and that too quickly it would be gone. I can't say that I miss it, because having free time again is wonderful. But I loved planning my wedding, right down to the tiny details, and I look back on that time fondly. Read all about my wedding and check out some of our fantastic photos in this post.

I have a passion to share what I learned about wedding planning with other brides. I don't think anyone should have to break the bank to have a beautiful wedding, but too often brides get suckered into paying more than they should. I hope to serve as an example of how to have a lovely, customized wedding on a budget.

Leading up to my wedding, I wrote blog posts that I hoped will help other brides and would give my friends and family a peek into the process. Now that the wedding has passed, I plan to add more details I learned along the way. I invite you to check back anytime and take a look at what I have to share!

Check out all my wedding planning posts here including:
>> Why and how to create a custom hashtag for your wedding guests
>> FOLLOW-UP POST: Wedding hashtag success
My tips for wedding planning on a budget
>> The how, why and what of creating a wedding website
>> How to create a wedding slideshow
>> DIY Wedding Crafts: Gift bags and paper fans
>> DIY Weddings: Adding custom touches 
>> Honeymoon Planning: Packing + Traveling Tips 
>> How to plan a well-organized wedding and rehearsal

You can also read my guest blog posts on weddings for Lindsi Rian Photography:
>> Meet Elise, our new guest blogger! | Tips and Tricks Tuesday

>> The DIY Bride | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> First Things First | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> Booking Your Vendors | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> Wedding Attire & The Honeymoon | Tips and Tricks Tuesday 
>> Odds & Ends | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> We're Going DIY | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> Getting the Down-Low to Your Guests | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> DIY: Decorative Paper Fan Circles | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> #PhotoOp | Tips and Tricks Tuesday
>> Little Personal Touches | Tips and Tricks Tuesday

Find my inspiration and get some new ideas on my Pinterest page:
>> My favorite reception decor ideas

My Wedding Directory

For those who have asked, or are interested, here's the list of what, where and who helped make our wedding what it was. This is also my visual reminder of why we were able to do our wedding for under $5,000. Because when you set out to save money and look for ways to do so, you absolutely can.

* Items we (Nick, I, family, church, etc.) already owned prior to wedding planning which we used/borrowed.
** Items we found on sale, were given a discount on, were given as a gift, or used a coupon to receive money off.

Dress: White by Vera Wang via David's Bridal**
Veil: Complements of my mom (yup, she and I made it!)**
Hairpiece: David's Bridal**
Necklace and earrings: Givenchy via Von Maur
Shoes: Maribelle by David's Bridal in "pool"

Dresses: David's Bridal in "pool"
Maid of Honor: Brandi Santos (friend of bride)
Bridesmaid: Jenae Loyola-Gibson (cousin of bride)
Bridesmaid: Jessica Hilgenberg (friend of bride)
Bridesmaid: Joykrystyna Mance (sister of groom)

Tux: Skeffington's via Boegel's Menswear**

Vests, etc.: Via Boegel's Menswear**
Best Man: Stephen Mance (brother of groom)
Groomsman: Joshua Mance (brother of groom)
Groomsman: Elliot Larimore (friend of groom and bride)
Groomsman: Michael Loyola (brother of bride)

Flower Girl.
Dress: Marmellata via Kohl's**
Headpiece: Floral Sense
Basket: Purchased at Hobby Lobby, customized by me
Flower girl: Olivia Butler (family of bride)

Ties: Boegel's Menswear
Processional/giving away officiant: Tim Loyola (uncle of bride)
Presiding officiant: Tom Loyola (father of bride)

Ushers: J.P. Watts and Sean Hansen (friends of bride and groom)
Guestbook attendants: Hannah Bolen and Lindsey Norman (friends of bride and groom)
Director/time keeper: Missy Bolen (a friend who attends our church)
Bride's attendant: Angie Gabriel (friend of bride)

Photographer: Tim at Tim Tab Studios
Flowers: Floral Sense (my cousin Crystal Butler did an AMAZING job)**
Decorations: Done by Nick and myself with tulle**, silk flowers** and columns** from Hobby Lobby and Christmas lights from Target
Programs: Designed, printed and cut by me with help from Nick (paper**)
Location: Clinton E-Free Church**

Music (ceremony).
Prelude: Photo slideshow featuring Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, My Wish by Rascal Flatts, Falling for You by Colbie Caillat
Seating of family: I Love NYE by Badly Drawn Boy
Processional: Better Together by Jack Johnson
Bride's processional: Customized instrumental rendition of A Thousand Years by Christina Perri, performed by Michael Loyola on piano
Specials: God Bless the Broken Road by Rascal Flatts, performed by Gayle Honeywell, accompanied by Michael Loyola on piano // Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us, performed by Joykrystyna Mance on piano
Recessional: I Do by Colbie Caillat

Flowers: Floral Sense (also acquired chair covers)**
Location: Clinton E-Free fellowship hall**
Food: All food was prepared by our wonderful friends at Clinton E-Free
Cupcakes: Jewel**, silk flower toppers from Michael's craft store**
Favors: Drawstring bags** decorated with customized tags** made by Nick and me, filled with M&Ms
Centerpieces: Antique blue glass mason jars**, antique doilies (some*), homemade paper fans, small glass bottles (some*), flower confetti**, small votive candles**
Head table: Blue jars for bouquets*, gold monogram letters*, ceramic birds*, "Just Married" banner from Michael's craft store**, tulle**, Christmas lights
Dance floor: Rental**
Ceiling: Tulle**, Christmas lights, tissue paper pom poms** (via Martha Stewart) hung with the help of fishing line, 3M hooks and many friends (who also did things like ironing table cloths, tying chair covers and picking up rentals)

Music (reception).
Background (during the meal): Customized Pandora station of big band-era music
Dance: Playlist created by Nick and myself using iTunes (some*)
  - Cupid Shuffle by Cupid
  - Good Time by Owl City
  - Yeah 3x (Clean Version) by Chris Brown
  - Celebration by Kool & The Gang
  - Footloose by Kenny Loggins
  - Don't Stop Believin' by Journey
  - Brown Eyed Girl by Van Morrison
  - I Do by The Marvelows
  - Save the Last Dance for Me by Michael Buble
  - Just One of Those Things by Frank Sinatra
  - Lucky (Album Version) by Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat
  - Count on Me by Bruno Mars
  - Ho Hey by The Lumineers
  - Hey, Soul Sister by Train
  - Forever by Chris Brown
  - Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen
  - Brokenhearted by Karmin
  - Cha Cha Slide by Mr. C The Slide Man
  - Good Feeling by Flo Rida
  - We Found Love by Rihanna
  - Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars
  - You and I by Michael Buble
  - Make You Feel My Love by Adele
  - The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra
  - Ain't That a Kick in the Head by Dean Martin
  - This Will Be (An Everlasting Love) by Natalie Cole
  - Firework by Katy Perry
  - I Gotta Feeling by The Blackeyed Peas
  - You Always Make Me Smile by Kyle Andrews
  - (I've Had) The Time of My Life by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes
DJ: John McClung (a friend and pastor on staff at our church)

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