Want to get married in style on a super tight budget? Our £6k wedding series is here to help. We’ve got six fully-costed wedding concepts for under £6000 for you to choose from, complete with a superstar list of suppliers.
To plan a rock n roll wedding followed by a warehouse party that friends will remember forever, read on…
Who is this wedding perfect for?
This is the wedding for party people to celebrate their love and marriage. And what better place than on the dance floor? This is a celebration on an industrial scale. Just find a venue with no neighbours that will let you bring your own booze and party all night with 200 mates… Then watch the sunrise together as newlyweds.
This wedding is all about fun and that means removing all elements likely to cause stress. So just remember keep it real, stay cool, be creative and resourceful, rely on your mates to help and get ready for the party of your lives.
Morning: Enjoy your last morning ‘living in sin’ with a long, lazy lie-in. Then head to your favourite greasy spoon for a proper wedding breakfast before jumping on the bus to your local registry office – making sure you take a few selfies along the way.
To stick within your budget and to make the evening celebration feel like the ‘real thing’ it makes sense to keep your official ceremony deliberately casual. Just the two of you dressed in jeans and t-shirts with a couple of strangers as witnesses will feel low key and yet appropriately rock n roll in advance of your wedding party, so no need to splash out on expensive outfits. If you do want to make a sartorial, personal and political statement buy matching Choose Love t-shirts produced by Katherine Hamnet in support of the the charity Help Refugees. Then head to the pub for celebratory pints and a couple of packets of crisps. No need for a professional photographer at this point – the registrar and your pub landlord will do nicely.
Afternoon: In the afternoon head to your venue to meet mates bringing PA equipment and decks, take delivery of booze and set the stage for the evening. To keep stress-levels to a minimum, make sure you have a plan, a list of jobs to delegate and your most practical friends on-hand to help. And keep things simple. One of the great things about having a late night warehouse wedding is that you save yourself the cost and stress of seating plans, table decorations and the need for detailed styling. If you choose an appropriately industrial space with exposed brick, white walls and concrete floors and ensure you have flattering low lighting, then all you need to do is decorate with large statement pieces in specific areas for maximum impact. Choose hot pink, silver and petrol blue for a simple yet powerful colour palette and add to the disco vibe with neon signs over the bar, helium balloons on the stage and glitter balls above the dance floor.
Once you’re confident everything is under control, leave your most organised friend in charge. Then head to a unisex salon for blowdries, beard trims, neck massages and manicures – whatever gets you both feeling relaxed and radiant for your big night.
Back at home, get dressed in separate rooms so you can enjoy a big wow moment when you set eyes on each other all glammed up. This is an un-wedding, so no need for traditional outfits, instead invest in whatever makes you feel fabulous and shoes that you can dance in all night.
Evening: Ask your guests to arrive at 8pm, giving them time to eat in advance. Then book a taxi to take you to the venue for 8.30 so your friends, family and photographer and are ready and waiting to celebrate your arrival.
The great thing about being officially married beforehand is that neither of you will have to experience the nerve-wracking wait and walk down the aisle. Instead, you’ll enter a room full of all your loved ones together, holding hands as you walk through the cheering crowds and onto the stage to declare your love and marriage.
It’s unlikely that a warehouse, archway or industrial building is going to have a marriage license. But that doesn’t mean your friends and family have to be denied a ceremony. Hiring a celebrant means you can create the marriage service you want without any constraints. Just find a professional that you connect with creatively and agree the words and rituals that you want to include in your own unique celebration. If you’re having an evening party and people are standing to witness your marriage it makes sense to ask your celebrant to include all the other formal wedding rituals within your ceremony. It’s usual for your celebrant to tell everyone about your love and life so far, for friends to give readings and then for you to exchange vows, rings and kiss in front of a cheering crowd. But you could also add your speeches at this point, get everyone to sing along to your favourite song and then cut the cake with a champagne toast before stepping onto the floor for your first dance. A great way to bring people together and ensure all the important bits are witnessed and captured by your photographer before the party begins.
For this concept to work within your £6000 budget it’s going to be difficult for you to pay for a wedding photographer yourselves. But with the average gift list being valued at £3000 you could ask your guests to chip in towards an amazing wedding photographer instead of buying gifts from a department store list. Find a creative photographer like Babb Photo to capture the colour and energy of your warehouse wedding and then use a cash gift list like Patchwork to collect cash contributions from your guests.
Bringing your own booze is a great way to provide a free bar on a budget but to reduce stress and mess make sure you have at least two helpers to serve drinks until midnight. At which point your aunts and uncles will have left and your mates can cope with beers in buckets for the rest of the night.
If budget allows, pay for a burger van to arrive at midnight to give sustenance to those party people planning to dance all night. And if you’re super hardcore, organise a coffee van to turn up with caffeine and pastries at 6am.
Then avoid the post wedding comedown by checking yourselves into a super-luxe hotel to freshen up and flop around in fluffy towelling dressing gowns for 24 hours. Room service. Box set. Heaven.
Invites FREE: Choose one of many free templates on Paperless Post to send free digital invites and keep track of RSVPs.
Wedding breakfast £10: Cheap, cheerful and definitely fried.
Bus tickets £5: Back seats. Top of the bus. True romance.
Marriage service and certificates £50: The charge for a registrar to perform a registry office ceremony costs around £45. A printed marriage and civil partnership certificate costs £5
Matching t-shirts £38: ‘Choose Love’ is the perfect slogan t-shirt for conscientious couples wanting to celebrate their wedding with a personal and political statement. This modern twist on the iconic 80’s Choose Life slogan is a collaboration between Help Refugees and Katherine Hamnett. It’s printed on soft organic cotton and helps to raise funds and awareness for people caught up in the refugee crisis.
Celebratory wedding drinks £10: Depending where you live, you might just about be able to get two pints and a packet of crisps for a tenner.
Wedding jumpsuit £55: This gorgeous jumpsuit is super sexy. So a definitely winner for a warehouse party wedding. And as it’s from ASOS it’s great value too.
Statement purse £380: Just enough room for your phone, lipstick and bank card this stunning silver leather Miu Miu is worth the investment. A stunning party piece and a daily reminder of your amazing wedding day.
Head piece £30: Forget the veil. This wedding concept requires a headdress worthy of a High Priestess. Dance all night and then worship the sun as it rises wearing this gorgeous feather headdress from Hapuska.com.
Rings £126: Break tradition and just buy matching rings that mean something to you. The silver triangle band from Zoe & Morgan costs £63 and is unisex. So you can buy two and have them engraved with your own crest or symbol.
Transport £10: If it’s dry and nearby enjoy a walk or take public transport and enjoy the attention of passersby. Otherwise budget for a cab.
Venue £2200: The cost of venue hire will depend hugely on your city, day of the week, time of year and your individual requirements. But even in our super expensive capital it’s still possible to find an amazing party space at a reasonable price. As an example, Motel Studios in Shoreditch has a super stylish and versatile space under the railway arches on Long Street that can accommodate 200 people for an all night party. You can hire the space during the day to prepare, bring your own booze, set up your own bar and have vans turn up to supply street food with hire costs starting at £2,200 + VAT for a Saturday night.
Celebrant £500: Costs will depend on your location and requirements. But expect to pay around £500 for a professional celebrant.
Cake £150: Hosting an evening wedding, without the cost of a sit down meal, means you can afford a statement cake. Check out The South East Cakery for ‘the Hip Hop of cakes’ starting from £150.
Wine £550: Naked Wines have an excellent selection of red, white and sparkling wine from independent suppliers at wholesale prices. Budget £550 for 200 people.
Beer £500: For a variety of craft beer from a range of independent brewers arrange a delivery from Beerbods. £500 should fill enough ice buckets buckets to keep 200 people happy.
Burgers £500: Budget £500 and ask a local independent business to serve up burgers, tacos or jerk chicken from their van. For street food inspiration check out Street Feast.
Coffee van £200: If you’re planning on partying all night make sure you’ve got hot coffee to welcome the new day. You’ll find mobile coffee companies all over the UK and prices will vary so do your research but expect packages to start at £200. In London, Bean About Town will supply coffee from a gorgeous grey Citron van and can be with you at 6am.
Night in a hotel £150: Recovering from your Saturday night wedding will mean you can get a good deal on your Sunday night sleepover. As an example The Hoxton in Shoreditch has ‘Roomy Rooms’ with super king sized beds for £119 on a Sunday night.
Gifts vs. Photographer: We have a readymade photography fund that lets your guests choose to whether to pay for the confetti shot, the moment you cut the cake or your first dance. And then you to get to send everyone the photos to say thanks.
Laura from Babb Photo is based in Bath but happy to travel. Wedding commissions start from £2195.
TOTAL COST: £5664
COST TO GUESTS: £0 – £50
As you’re providing beer and wine there really are no fixed costs for your guests. If you want spirits at the party you can ask guests to bring a bottle and they can contribute towards your photographer if they want to give a gift.
See the rest of the wedding concepts in our £6k wedding series here.