I think you've got a great plan, budget, etc. set up! I even remember reading about some of your AHP details before and thinking the same thing. I actually wish I could have an event more similar to yours than mine... lol But I won't complain. I'm thankful to be able to do anything "extra" beyond our DW at all.
Originally Posted by clgriffi7
Our AHP (at home PARTY) will cost about $3500. We set aside $3K to $4K. (approx costs = $750 for the hall rental, $450 for DJ, $250 for wine, $500 for beer, $250 for cupcakes, $700 for other food, $200 for photographer, $300 for tablecloths/decor, $500 just in case)
We are having a big party. Since we are having a reception in Mexico, we didn't want to have a repeat. Our party will be at a reception hall (not a fancy one) on a Friday night (MUCH cheaper) that allows you to bring your own alcohol in. We will also have a DJ - we want a big sing-along and dancing party.
Our wedding is on a Saturday (Nov 5th) and we are staying in Mexico through the next Thursday morning (Nov 10th). Our AHP will be a week and a day later on Friday the 18th from 8pm to midnight.
We intentionally are having the party starting at 8pm so we don't have to serve dinner. We will have lots of hors d'oeuvres to help soak up the beer and wine.
Since we are having a dancing party I don't want to wear my formal dress again. Instead I will have a 2nd dress that I will wear first for our legal wedding (at home before the DW) and then again for the AHP. I haven't found this dress yet, but I would love a tea length dress.
About 1 or 2 months out we will send out a postcard invitation (think cheap on Vistaprint) and request an RSVP to a wedding email address we set up. We will request the RSVP before we leave for Mexico (so I can send out follow up emails).
We have a local photographer that did our engagement pictures that we decided to take to Mexico with us. I am thinking of asking him if he will accept $200-$300 to cover the party as well. I don't know if my fiance will approve, so I may have to sneak around and use my money instead of our wedding money.
In order to keep costs down (think cake cutting fees) we will be doing cupcakes for the AHP. The local "caterer" (not your traditional wedding caterer, think downtown shop that has lunch and baked goods that provides catering for corporate functions) does cupcakes a lot more cheaply than a wedding cake baker.
Decorations will be VERY minimal. I think we will likely use pictures in frames for centerpieces. We might also bring something back from Mexico (not sure what at this point though). Big thing is that I don't want to spend too much money decorating - luckily the reception hall is painted red and has some brick, so the place itself isn't "plain". I will bring back my table runners from the wedding to add some color.
10. DW Photos.
A local store closed and sold everything cheap - including the plastic stands that hold sale tags. So we bought quite a few 5x7 stands to put DW pictures in. Also, we will be adding pictures of the rehearsal, wedding day, TTD, and rest of the trip to our slideshow. I love the idea that traditional weddings can only have baby through engagement pictures, but ours can include wedding pictures!