Some ideas for a cheap, small wedding include choosing an off-season date on a weekday and at an unusual time for a wedding ceremony and reception. Another way to save money is to use large tables for the reception so fewer centerpieces and tablecloths are needed.
Holding the ceremony and reception in the same place saves vendors travel time and reduces the number of hours for setting up and tearing down. Asking a reputable photographer if he has an associate shooter available for the wedding day reduces the cost of photos. This ensures the photos captured are quality photos edited with professional equipment and software.
Decorating with more greens and flowers that are in season reduces the cost of flowers while ensuring the decor does not look sparse. There are good deals on extra decor after certain seasons. Black vases and decor are on clearance after Halloween, for example, while fall colors are on sale after the December holidays, and pinks and reds are on sale after Valentine's Day.
Serving entrée duets or appetizers and drinks saves time for the cooking staff and reduces labor and food costs. Serving beer, wine and a signature cocktail is cheaper than a full bar. Additionally, skipping the champagne toast or only serving champagne is more budget-friendly than offering both champagne and other types of alcohol. The cake is made more affordable by skipping excess decoration, using fresh flowers instead of sugar flowers and keeping it small.