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Did the Darn Thing: Krissy & Danny

October 26, 2010

This is our first real wedding on the blog, and I’m pumped to introduce my cousin Danny and his wife Krissy. A little, tiny intro because I know both of them – Danny and Krissy met in college when we all attended school together in Illinois. Although Isaiah and I couldn’t make the wedding, we’re so excited to share the ins and outs of the big day with you…Krissy definitely kept her head on straight during the planning process and there’s a lot to learn from their beautiful wedding! Their wedding had about 180-190 guests, all of whom reported having an excellent time!

Without further ado…The lovely Krissy.

I always wanted a more simple wedding.  I really just wanted a place that would let us have dancing because my church doesn’t allow that.  So when I started looking for reception halls I quickly realized the cheaper route was if they did not have their own caterer and I could find someone I liked.

Since Danny’s family was coming from so far I did want to make sure we had a dinner and cake.  I ended up going to the same place my older sister had her wedding reception.  It was at a beautiful park that had one building for rent. (Sidenote – They didn’t allow alcohol because it was a park…so if alcohol is a must at your party a park would not be a place for you.)

Change in Vision

The biggest thing that I changed from my vision was having silk flowers from (a friend of our family’s) Judy.  It turned out to be the most amazing thing ever.  I had a meeting with a florist and for the basics (bouquets, boutonnières, communion flowers, cake topper, and flower girl petals) I was quoted around $1100.  That was insane to me for something that was going to last a week!

I started looking online for a place to order silk flowers.  I actually made an order for some from Budget Bride and then Danny told me about Judy. Yeah, he didn’t think to tell me earlier! Judy offered to make what I wanted to go along with what I ordered.  After many emails, the flowers from Budget Bride never came and they gave me my money back.  (I definitely wouldn’t recommend them!)

I sent Judy some pictures of what I liked and talked with her.  Then she bought some stuff and sat down with me and I got to help her decide what I liked in the arrangements. It was amazing! I got to see it come together. About a month before the wedding, Judy showed me some of the things she had put together and I loved it all because I got to help her decide what I wanted.

The day of the wedding was the first time I saw my flowers though and I was blown away! She did an amazing job.  I actually have them still on my table! I ended up spending $500 for the flowers.


I  made all the invitations myself.  I also made thank you cards for each table and we ordered really cheap puzzles (the metal ones you have to get apart) for our favors. With the puzzle theme, Danny and I decided to paint puzzle pieces orange and silver and those were our confetti for the tables at the reception.  It was time consuming, but it was a great way for Danny and I just to spend more time together and talk or I got my bridesmaids to help and I just spent time with them.

The meal was catered but I did have a candy table that my mom gifted to us and we put together. My grandma offered to make her famous cheese-ball for the reception and we bought crackers! It was perfect to give the guests something to munch on while everyone was arriving and Danny and I snuck out to the park to take some pictures.  Also all the drinks were bottled water or two liters that we bought on sale.

Our guest book was a photobook we made on Snapfish and it was pictures from when we met to when we got engaged and everyone signed around that.  I would rather keep that, with our pictures in it, than just a book with signatures.

I also surprised Danny with a groom’s cake that was all Chicago sports and then I got a small Colts cake for my family. That actually helped because our wedding cake wasn’t as extravagant.  We also got different kinds of cake that way.


I had orange shoes that I bought from Payless and then had dyed for me.  It was a little more expensive then I would have liked –  I think maybe $50 – but I loved them and I knew I wanted them from day one, so it was well worth it.  Danny decided if I had orange shoes he was going to have orange socks.  During communion he lifted up his pants and showed off his socks.

We did pictures before the wedding and that showed who are too. I wanted it to be a fun day, and I knew if I didn’t see him until the wedding I would have been more nervous and overwhelmed.  We had a private moment (first-look) before the wedding with the photographer in the balcony of the church taking pictures.  Then we did the pictures before the wedding.  That helped me not stressed about people waiting on us at the reception hall.

Staying on Budget/Friendors

I would say, to stay on budget and keep your head straight, decide what is important to you and try to fix that into the budget and then go small on everything else.  I knew I wanted food and my church so that took some of the budget off the top.  I also knew about the shoes and a honeymoon.  From there everything else was how to save money and not go overboard.  My mom bought my dress so I didn’t have to worry about it being in my budget but I used my sisters bra from her wedding and that saved $60.

Oh, the suits! Danny and I went to Men’s Wearhouse and looked at suits.  I wanted charcoal grey suits but they didn’t have any to rent. I couldn’t find any that I liked around, until I went to Target!  The guys all went to Target to get some super cheap suits that looked good.

The thing I was most worried about was a photographer.  I wanted the pictures to be amazing because those were going to last forever.  We looked around and then Brittany (Danny’s sister-in-law) offered and said she would give us the rights to the pictures and we could print them as we like.  That saved so much money! Being able to print our own was a huge money saver.  If you look for a photographer, look for one that will give the CD of photos and the copyright to them.


I was always told the honeymoon was very important so we did and all-inclusive and paid the money upfront, which helped. After the wedding, you just want to get away.  I don’t recommend doing a next day brunch that just impedes on your time and adds more cost to feed people.

Danny and Krissy saved a lot of money by realizing what was most important to them and going the cheap-route on everything else. Krissy definitely kept her head on straight while she was planning and the wedding turned out lovely! They also used an impressive list of friendors and showed off who they were throughout the wedding and reception. So glad to have a new member of our family and such a smart, creative, budget-savvy one at that!

Wedding Location – Indiana

Ceremony – Bride’s church

Photography – Brittney (Groom’s sister-in-law)

DJ – Groom’s cousin

Pianist – Mutual friend from college

Flowers – Friend of the family

14 Comments leave one →
  1. October 26, 2010 9:14 am

    Great tidbits of advice here! The personalized cakes and puzzle pieces are great touches. Nice job!

  2. October 26, 2010 10:12 am

    Yay for Chicago weddings! This looks like a beautiful wedding and like a really good time. Very cute.

    One note about photography: you don’t need to own the copyright to be able to print your own photographs. You only need a photographer that gives you “personal” rights to print and share the photos with your friends and family. Owning the copyright means the photographer no longer has any rights to them and that the client can use the photos for commercial reasons along with personal. Very few photographers will give all of their rights away.

    • October 26, 2010 2:20 pm

      Definitely – agreed. I’m sure that’s what she meant, it’s all good. 🙂

  3. October 26, 2010 11:15 am

    Beautiful, and excellent advice!

  4. October 26, 2010 4:37 pm

    Horray for your first “real wedding” post-and what a great one! I love all her budget-friendly ideas!

  5. October 26, 2010 7:13 pm

    Such a beautiful wedding! What a lovely couple!

  6. October 27, 2010 9:13 pm

    beautiful couple! I loved that they went to Target for suits. Target saves the day again!

  7. October 29, 2010 7:24 pm

    I love the puzzle piece confetti. Lots of great advice and tips on how to keep a budget. A beautiful wedding. I love her bouquet it is gorgeous.

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