We haven’t covered a backyard wedding in a long time, so we are super excited about this one! This couple had a smaller budget to work with, so decided to have the wedding at their home and recruited their friends and family for help.
You’ll see that much of the wedding expenses were donated and gifted, which saved them money on their costs. Also, their smaller guest count saved them on food and drink. We think they did a great job and had an awesome backyard wedding!
Married In Milwaukee Family Used:
As always, we were excited to see that they used Married In Milwaukee Family Members for their wedding. Check them out below and please consider them for your wedding:
Quick Facts – Backyard Wedding:
- Guests: 68
- Ceremony/Reception: Couple’s Home in Enderis Park
- Total Costs: $15,741
Wedding Essentials ($4,170):
- Invitations: $50
- Cake: $70 (gift from parents)
- Desserts: $60 (gift from parents)
- Photographer: $3,990
- Flowers: $0 (gifted by family – included: bride’s bouquet, 3 bridesmaids bouquets, groom’s boutonniere, 3 groomsmen boutonnieres, 4 mother and grandmother corsages, 2 father boutonnieres, large floral arch, 12 table arrangements, 16 lantern toppers, guestbook table decoration, cake table decoration, 2 aisle barrel tops)
Reception and Ceremony Costs ($5,872):
- Food: $2,749
- Drinks: $634 (12 cases craft beer, 3 cases of wine)
- Non-Alcoholic Drinks: $90 (4 gallons lemonade, 4 gallons hibiscus tea)
- Officiant: $0 (groom’s father)
- Servingware: $294 (platter, drink dispensers)
- Tableware: $186 (plates, napkins, cutlery, glasses)
- Table Linens: $91 (made by mother of the bride)
- Unity Ceremony: $162 (hydrangea tree, ceramic pot, watering can)
- Rentals: $1,666 (included: whiskey barrels, glass table tops, harvest tables, sideboard table, whiskey and cigar bar work bench, sweetheart table, round dinning tables, paddeed chairs, highchairs and other decor)
Attire, Jewelry and Beauty ($3,470):
- Dress and Alterations: $1,609 (gifted by family)
- Bride’s Accessories: $166
- Groom’s Attire: $525
- Rings: $1,055
- Hair, Make-up, Nails: $115
Other Costs ($2,229):
- Rehearsal Dinner: $120
- Hotel Suite: $205
- Favors: $250 (Donation to MACC Fund)
- Wedding Party Gifts: $575
- Transportation: $20 (Uber)
- Lighting: $162
- Signs: $258 (made by bride and bridesmaid)
- Yard Games: $339
- Cigar Bar: $300
A Note from the Bride and Groom
We asked the bride and groom to tell us about their planning and budgeting process, and this is what they had to say:
Hi! We are Rob and Nicole. We have just celebrated eight months of marriage and wanted to share the details of our day with those of you in the planning stage. We had an amazing day that was tailored to be exactly the wedding of our dreams. We met some amazing vendors along the way that we want to share with you. Here’s our story.
Using Their Home:
We knew when we bought our home that we were spending a good portion of what could be our wedding budget. We made the choice to apply our savings to our home rather than have a lavish wedding, knowing that would be the foundation of our future family. When we started planning our wedding, it only made sense to us to celebrate our marriage in that home with our closest family and friends.
Help From Friends and Family:
Due to the quick timeline and our smaller budget, we recruited our talented family and friends to help out with their many skills. Invitations, signs, floral arrangements, and table linens were all crafted by loved ones.
We also had a whole host of helpers who cleaned, ran errands, decorated, prepped, prepared, and served appetizers, dessert, and beverages, performed the ceremony, managed the music, and handled clean-up. In return we had the most amazing day filled with so many loving touches that money never could have bought.
All of our hired vendors were nothing short of amazing. Our vision was an intimate, laid-back, “pintrest-y” industrial/rustic (“rustdustrial” ? “industric”?) celebration.
A photographer we loved was at the absolute top of Nicole’s list no matter the cost. We come from different states and have family and friends across the country. In our choice to have an intimate home wedding, we realized that meant the only glimpse that some of our loved ones would have would be through our photographer’s lens.
We found the most amazing photographer, Brandon, of Roost Photography, while browsing MIM. We never felt like we were just another job to Brandon. We got to know each other, and valued his advice on all things wedding related. We had a couple of non-traditional items in our wedding that have special meaning to us. Brandon picked up on what was important to us and made sure to include all the special items and events. Brandon’s passion and experience is evident in his work.
Comfort food in portions ensuring no one would leave hungry was the top of Rob’s must haves. A large portion of our budget was dedicated to food vendors who made that happen. We love to grill, but were looking for a unique twist – Nicole set her heart on a meal served from a food truck.
Iron Grate BBQ owner Aaron worked with us to customize a menu of our favorites. The portions were enormous, service was fast, and there were choices to keep everyone happier (Grandmas, children, and even vegetarians). The food truck was super fun and we are still getting compliments.
The Cake and Desserts:
Neither of us are big cake lovers, so we adapted the tradition into something much more meaningful. Our family’s much loved strawberry shortcake – baking powder biscuits, crushed strawberries, and Nicole’s hometown “Plainwell Ice-cream” was “cut” and served as dessert instead. Grandma’s shortcake recipe was baked by the Groom’s mother, and the famous ice-cream was transported 400 miles on dry ice the day of the wedding; a perfect addition to the August day.
In having our wedding at home we saved on venue or facility fees. This allowed us to price shop and use whichever providers we preferred for food, alcohol, and dessert. The downside to this option is having to plan for all the details one might take for granted included in a venue price.
We had seemingly endless lists of supplies to rent or purchase. Relics Vintage Rentals and Brookfield Party Rentals (both found on MIM) were easy to work with and helped us determine what we needed in terms of tables, chairs, statement pieces, and décor. Drop-off and pick-up by each company was seamless.
With a little planning and coordination our day turned out perfectly.
– The Bride and Groom
A BIG thanks to the bride and groom for sharing their beautiful backyard wedding and to Roost Photography for the amazing photos!
If you’re currently working on your wedding budget, make sure to read through our previous articles featuring real Milwaukee wedding cost breakdowns.