5 DIY Wedding Planning Blogs You Should Follow

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Let's face it: Weddings are expensive. In fact, according to The Knot, the average wedding cost is $31,213 — and rising. To put things in perspective, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that in 2013, the average household income was $52,250. What does this mean? Well, for starters, on average, Americans are spending over 59 percent of a household income on the cost of a wedding alone!

Those numbers are shocking, to say the least, and could serve as an eye-opener when it comes to wedding planning. The truth of the matter is, even if the household in question is earning more than the average annual U.S. household income, $31,213 is still a lot of money to spend on one event, regardless of its significance. As a result, financial worry could leave couples looking into alternative wedding options.

However, wedding planning can be difficult for an inexperienced couple to take on alone. Finding a cheaper venue, hiring bartenders and servers, and other vital details are easy to overlook without the help of an experienced professional.

One of the most difficult aspects of wedding planning is the reception. Due to growing wedding costs, more couples are opting for outdoor, low-key receptions in order to relieve some of the financial burden that weddings create. Although this is a great option, without budget know-how and forward-thinking, the happy couple's outdoor, low-key reception can easily reach or even surpass the cost of an expensive venue, specifically when it comes to food and beverage.

Thankfully, there are professionals who have not only seen it all when it comes to self-planned weddings, but also offer their advice for free so that couples can plan like the experts. The trouble is that sorting through the thousands of blogs and websites out there to find legitimate, sound advice can be challenging for a newly engaged couple. That is why I have created a list of the best five blogs and websites to follow when planning a wedding feast!

The Knot 

I believe it goes without saying that The Knot is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to wedding planning. With endless planning tips, real-life wedding inspiration, a huge database of vendors, and much more, The Knot truly is a one-stop shop for wedding planning. Are you looking for a caterer or bartender for your event? The Knot has a Venues and Receptions section on their website that allows users to narrow down their search by price, specialty, and location. The database even includes customer review so that users know what to expect.

A Practical Wedding 

The name pretty much says it all. If it is practicality that you seek, then look no further. A Practical Wedding is a blog that offers sound advice, DIY projects, a vendor guide, and several other juicy tips for wedding planning on the inexpensive side. They even offer free printable tools, such as budgeting spreadsheets and checklists, for couples who are planning the event on their own. To top it off, this blog has added several articles on alternative wedding planning and rehearsal dinners that include options like backyard dinners, barbecues, and potlucks.

The Budget Savvy Bride 

The Budget Savvy Bride is a great place for any couple working on DIY wedding projects. This blog offers free printable tools, wedding resources, planning tools, DIY projects, and even has an area on their website devoted to weddings by budget. This area of the website is fantastic for couples looking for inspiration and wedding tips from real-life weddings that followed a specific budget. Simply select the desired budget and read how actual couples pulled off their own weddings under the same restrictions!

The Broke Ass Bride 

The Broke Ass Bride is a blog devoted to wedding planning on a budget. What makes this blog a favorite is the fact that they promote the idea of brides taking the budget they have and using their creativity to make the most of it. This website is an inspiration to brides everywhere who have always dreamt of that A-list wedding but cannot afford the hefty price tag. The Broke Ass Bride offers advice, alternative wedding planning options, and even a book, called The Broke Ass Bride's Wedding Guide, which includes all of the above and delicious wedding recipes for any DIY couple!

The Daily Meal 

Looking for a nerdy wedding cake? How about a DIY centerpiece option? The Daily Meal is the holy grail of DIY wedding food and beverage. With clear DIY and assembly instructions and even video tutorials, Pinterest fails will become a thing of the past. There are even articles available for vegetarian wedding menu ideas in the event of any non-carnivorous guests! Plan that wedding menu ahead of schedule with fabulous recipes and fun food-related projects.

Wedding planning doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg. Creating inspired wedding centerpieces and a menu that will leave guests drooling is completely possible for any couple.  With the aid of these websites and blogs, guests will wonder which top-notch chef catered your memorable and delicious event!