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Anyone care to share what was a total waste of £ in hindsight?

(82 Posts)
MandaraSugar Tue 09-Jan-18 15:38:07

NB: I don't mean "I don't understand why people spend £25K and the rest on one day..." but things you/someone you know chose to do that looking back wasn't worth the £ or time that went into it.

Several years ago I was my friend's bridesmaid - we spent many hours in the run up to the wedding making handmade soaps as favours (including wrapping and putting twine around them the night before) for 100+ guests, people appreciated the gesture but at the end of the night at least 75% of them were just discarded, unwrapped on the tables. We were talking the other night about how, effectively, they were a waste of time and £.

DNiece got married last year and spent a tidy sum getting a graphic designer to layout artwork for the seating plan, name for each table and place name for each guest etc so all in the same font and colours - looked really lovely, however she said she wishes she would have just taken the venue up on their offer to put the table plan up on a big screen (almost like a powerpoint slide I guess) and do basic table and place names as when it was all over and she asked friends/family if they liked it most said they didn't notice/didn't remember the seating plan, or anything that was nicely graphic designed and printed blush Nevertheless, they had a great day. Think she was just grumpy it was all over and they still owed a couple of invoices to suppliers.

Don't know of anyone who has done this, however I see buying a veil from new as a waste (unless there's a v.specific one you want) as so many people sell them 2nd hand after only wearing them a few hours.

OP’s posts: |
Justmuddlingalong Tue 09-Jan-18 15:48:14

The recent weddings I've attended had
Sweet stall,
Photo booth,
Personalised wedding guest comment book,
Personalised wedding card postbox,
Overnight stays for guests required at remote venues.
Each to their own, but all that extra expense? confused

AlbusPercival Tue 09-Jan-18 15:49:42

Agree on favours - no one cares,

Hoppinggreen Tue 09-Jan-18 15:50:43

The only thing I regret was making my bridesmaids have specific shoes, they wouid have been fine with gold sandals of their choice.
We had a fantastic wedding ( people still talk about it 15 years later as being one of the best they went to) and it wasn’t very expensive so I can’t think of anything else I wasted money on apart from that

Notreallyarsed Tue 09-Jan-18 15:53:19

My soon to be SIL is planning the wedding of the century apparently. Personalised wine glasses for the bridal party already (2 years away) including my 3 and 4 yo children!
Personalised pyjamas for the entire bridal party.

Fuck it, personalised everything you can think of to make it all about the bride.

Thank fuck I’m not a bridesmaid, DD is 4 and she’s scunnered with wedding planning already! She asked if she can be sick that day. It’s bloody tempting!

Notreallyarsed Tue 09-Jan-18 15:53:52

I should clarify I actually really like my SIL, just can’t be arsed with mood boards and frippery.

Frouby Tue 09-Jan-18 15:59:38

Following with interest!

We get married in may. Havent done anything apart from book the registrar and a venue yet.

I won't be spending £100s on a photographer for the sake of maybe 2 or 3 photos to display at home and an album we look at when I clean the cupboards out. Am going to ask family and friends to take photos and share them to a fb album or something.

I won't be doing favours.

My auntie is doing my cake and flowers.

I will spend about £150 on a dress. 1 bridesmaid (dd) and 1 pageboy (ds).

Tableplan will be whatever the venue can provide.

Wont need cars as service at venue.

Food for day in our package which is sit down meal for 50, buffet for 80. Fizz for toast included as is dj. And room dressing whatever that bollocks is. Package costing 2.5k which still seems a lot of money to me but it is what it is.

If it's not in the package we arent having it. And I bet no one bloody notices!

MrsMoastyToasty Tue 09-Jan-18 15:59:48

I've been to weddings where it's at single venue (rather than wedding ceremony in one place then move onto reception venue ) and cars have been hired despite the fact that all the guests are indoors so don't see the bride arrive or leave.

thecatsthecats Tue 09-Jan-18 16:01:43

Hopping maybe I know you :D

My friends had a moment of quiet fury about the coordinated shoes they were asked to wear, that all of them switched out of immediately after the ceremony. They were literally worn for 45m - enough to get them in and out, and they'd already made two of them bleed and weren't very nice anyway.

Based on observation, I can back the sweet stall thing. I've seen plenty, and seen them advertised for £200+ from vendors, but they seem to be hardly touched.

ICanTuckMyBoobsInMyPockets Tue 09-Jan-18 16:02:02

Favours - my DSis spent ages wrapping little individual chocolates and was a bit put out that no-one took them when they left their tables. The kids are the lot though.
So I didn't bother with favours.

Fancy table decs and centre pieces - just been to one where I just assumed the venue had provided them, but they were all in the brides mothers house the next day. Turns out she spent an age and a fortune on them, but they were a bit cack. I got cheap shit from Home Bargains but they looked lovely. The venue actually bought them off me ☺️

Cake - biggest waste of money ever. We didn't have one and no-one noticed.
I asked 2 people if they liked the cake. One said " ooh yes it was lovely" 😁 and the other (my bridesmaid) said " did you have one? I can't remember" So glad we didn't spend another several hundred pounds on it.

People don't notice if your invitations match your menus, or your bouquets are from your birth month.

Honest, they don't notice or care.
Save your cash for your honeymoon!

Mattresstestermax Tue 09-Jan-18 16:02:51

I had hand made soap as favours at my wedding, it used to make me really happy to see them in various relatives houses as decorations for the next few years 😄

I think anything new, that can be bought easily second hand is a waste, but you have to balance out time spent hunting for bargains with costs!

MILstrikesagain Tue 09-Jan-18 16:08:04

My dress. Spent a fortune getting a bespoke silk dress when in fact the 7 fittings were a huge hassle and on the day it didn’t look as good as one I’d tried on in a shop (at half the price!)

RicStar Tue 09-Jan-18 16:16:24

I don't think we had too much but mainly as we had been to loads of weddings so knew what we liked / didn't like we:
Had postcards printed instead on invites (I did the artwork at a fraction of the price).
Had no favours but did have big jars / vases of sweets as centre pieces - all from charity shops / pound land.
Let bridesmaids wear whatever shoes - we didn't pay for them.
Had no wedding car - we hired a bus as got married on church and hitched a lovely ride with our guests.
We did pay for an excellent photographer but had no posed and only very few group pictures.
We did seating plan and all printing ourselves.
The only thing I would have loved to save money on was suit hire. DH wanted formal suits - the whole lot cost more than my and bridesmaid dresses.

SeaLionsOnMyShirt Tue 09-Jan-18 16:16:57

My dress. I hated it on the day, it cost a fortune (I'm too ashamed to admit how much) and 10 years on, it's still screwed up in a bag in the attic. I wish I'd just got something for £100 from Monsoon. Oh and definitely agree with you OP about the veil - I took mine off before I even left the house as it just wasn't me. It's still sitting unused in the bag with the dress.
Also the DJ - he was shiter than the worst DJ in the world from Love Actually, and we should have kept the live band for an extra few hours or put on our own playlist and saved the money.

itsbetterthanabox Tue 09-Jan-18 16:20:47

Shoes for the bridesmaids. Glad they were cheap as they didn’t wear them on the day!
Getting eyelash extensions. It’s bad luck as usually they are fine but one eye went so red. Just regret having them!
Having as much food in the later evening buffet. I’m glad we had it but could have scaled it back a lot.

The things I didn’t feel were a waste that I know others do were:
.The favours- we had cds with the songs from the wedding- all during ceremony and first, second and last dance. Small wedding so everyone actually knew us well. They had a customised cover too with everyone who attended faces on it too. They still mention it.
.cake- it was beautiful and delicious it was our dessert. We served it with pouring cream so it was like proper pud. 3 different flavours. I love the pics of it and the cake cut as it went perfectly with our theme.

BawbagBiggins Tue 09-Jan-18 16:21:41

We saved money on favours and made heart shaped cookies instead - each one had the guest name on a tag on it so it doubled as a place name too! Plus it gave the guests something to chew on whilst they were waiting for their meal to be served.

Ginnotgym Tue 09-Jan-18 16:21:47

Favours are generally only worth having if they're too amazing to leave behind (which quickly turns into £££££ for whomever is paying and pissed people will still leave them behind!) or if they can be consumed there and then - eg, after dinner mints, truffles, booze.

TammySwansonTwo Tue 09-Jan-18 16:22:32

Definitely favours - no one cares!

I actually did a huge amount myself for my wedding - saved an obscene amount of money and it was much more personal and lovely. The venue and photographer cost a lot, wouldn't have scrimped on those but I did scrimp a lot elsewhere....

- I bought second hand chair covers and sashes and then sold them on afterwards, for about the same as I paid

- I ordered a plan white 3 tier cake and decorated it myself

- I bought vintage metal cake stands and candlesticks on eBay (not all the same but similar). I had some elegant little cupcakes made and had those on cake stands on the tables to double as decorations and dessert (again, sold all the stuff online afterwards)

- Had one big flower display made up for the ceremony which was then moved to the top table for the meal

- I made favours using drawstring organza bags, made tags for them using an embossing machine and die cutter, so these doubled as place names

- Designed the table plan in InDesign (you could easily use MS Publisher), had it printed on A3 card and bought some flat backed crystal embellishments to decorate it. Bought two lovely frames and had a couple of mounts cut - one big aperture one for the table plan, one with a small aperture for a signing frame. Both now hold nice wedding photos on the wall of our house

- Designed, printed and made pocketfold invitations myself

- Bought damask fabric and made table runners myself, which looked lovely

I'm lucky that I have some design background but it's minimal, and there are so many templates and downloads available online these days. Everything looked a lot more expensive than it actually was, I really enjoyed doing it all (although I had a really full on job at the time so it was tough to manage) and it set me off on a new career designing and making things myself as it was the first time I really spent time making things. I am a crazy perfectionist though, which is sort of essential if you're going to make a lot of stuff yourself and have it look decent!

My absolute best purchase was my dress - I went to school with an amazing fashion designer, who made me an incredible dress for £600. Best money I've ever spent, but I got very lucky there!

QforCucumber Tue 09-Jan-18 16:23:40

We are using eBay for a seating plan at £20.
Invites are bloody expensive - paying £50 for 50.
Just been quoted 600 for 2 cars doing 1 x 12 mile journey so if anyone has ideas on that id love it!
Not paying for makeup and my moh is a hairdresser, is doing my hair as my wedding gift.
Centrepieces buying off eBay, sashes too as cheaper than hiring!

TammySwansonTwo Tue 09-Jan-18 16:25:24

Oh yeah, definitely DJ - I don't exactly have the most "dancy" group of mates so there was minimal dancing anyway! These days I'm sure most venues have facilities to play from an iPod or similar, some lighting would be good but otherwise I probably wouldn't bother with that again.

I loved having a harpist, and an ice cream cart - just a pity it rained after a while and we all retreated inside so there was a lot of ice cream left over!

ItsNiceItsDifferentItsUnusual Tue 09-Jan-18 16:31:15

Annoyingly I'm the opposite - there are things I wish I'd spent more on. Mainly a better photographer, and better suits for the grooms + best men. We rented really cheap ones, and it showed.

And I wouldn't have had my honeymoon in the UK in March!

userabcname Tue 09-Jan-18 16:37:23

I would agree on the favours - we just had sweets for ours.
My friend had a magician at her wedding - total waste of money imo as I think he was there for 2 hours while photos were being done and no one was particularly interested.
Photo booths are a waste - set up your own camera and ask to borrow props like wigs, glasses etc. (poundland also do stuff like that you could buy).
We had a pianist which DH loved but personally I thought it was a bit of a waste as he played after the wedding breakfast but before the DJ and most people went to the bar so missed him.
I did pay a lot for my dress but I borrowed the veil, the tiara was my mum's and I bought hair accessories from Accessorize quite cheaply.
I also paid a lot for a hair stylist for me and my bridesmaids and quite honestly, yeah, our hair looked nice, but it was nowhere near worth the amount she charged! Plus she pushed a grip really hard into my head (accidentally of course) in the morning and it hurt for the rest of the day.
Small details like seating plans are really quite forgettable for guests so don't stress about stuff like that.
Finally, check Groupon - we got our venue including a 3 course meal and 4 glasses of wine per guest for £1500 which was an absolute bargain.

TeaandHobnobs Tue 09-Jan-18 16:37:51

We didn't have favours - I agree that they often get left behind - BUT:
- one couple had favours which were tiny pots of honey made from the bride's father's bees, which we kept and used;
- another couple recently did tiny bottles of homemade (by them) damson and sloe gin, some of which was drunk at the wedding, and we both brought our tiny bottles home for the drinks cupboard.
So those two ideas bucked the trend in my eyes!

Elmosmum Tue 09-Jan-18 16:40:54

Hmmm we over ordered on the evening buffet and it hardly got touched.

I had a wishing tree that nobody did anything with so that was a waste of time.

I'm glad I spent £££ on the photographer as he was amazing. Same with the DJ (and stick to good old party tunes to fill the dance floor!)

I realised that you'll have a brilliant day no matter what as you're surrounded by family and friends.

Justmuddlingalong Tue 09-Jan-18 16:42:56

What's a wishing tree?

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