5. Floral centerpieces. Flowers and décor made up almost $2,000 of the average wedding budget in 2012. Consider reusing arrangements from the ceremony, such as putting bridesmaids' bouquets in vases, or skip the floral centerpieces altogether to cut costs. Some brides, like Katherine Reynolds Lewis, get creative with centerpieces. For her 2001 nuptials, Lewis used two goldfish in a bowl as centerpieces for her reception. Not only were goldfish less expensive than flowers, they are a Chinese symbol for abundance.
Meanwhile, Norcross had a client who used candles and family photos as her centerpieces. "It was simple, pretty and a great conversation-starter as people passed around the photos on the table," she says. Norcross says another bride planning a holiday wedding filled glass vases from Ikea with Christmas balls of various sizes and LED lights to create a festive centerpiece.
The bottom line: With a little creativity, you can still have your dream wedding at a budget-friendly cost.