Sunday, June 30, 2019

10 Best Money Saving Wedding Tips

So you just got engaged and began to go Pinterest crazy. Like pinning hundreds of pictures of cakes to venues, to invitations, and it gets you thinking...how much is this going to cost? Well, this happened to me, so I began to draft this list of my favorite wedding saving tips & tricks because hey a wedding is expensive and I am one frugal fiance. Below is 10 of my best money saving tips from saving money on bridesmaids dresses, to flowers, to cake and even venues!

bride and groom wedding


Save Money/ Earn Money
First up is a list of my favorite ways to earn a little extra cash to help pay for my wedding festivities and honeymoon. 
  • Free airline tickets to your honeymoon destination for free! Consider opening an airline credit card (such as Alaska or American Airlines), use your card to pay for some of your wedding expenses and qualify for two free round trip tickets to your honeymoon destination. (Please research & use responsibly) 
    • I am opening a credit card with Alaska Airlines and using that card to pay for initial wedding expenses, by doing so I will be able to use the bonus miles when I sign up to get free airline tickets!
Free Wedding Invitation Samples
free wedding invitation samples from vista print
Sample kit from vistaprint.com

Some of these companies also send out free samples of Save the Dates, Thank you cards & more! Get an idea of what style you like and use that as you search for the right invitations.
DIY Invitations
  • Or even better DIY your invitations by creating them on Canva.com (a free online program), upload them to Vistaprint (pick the premium soft-touch option for the best quality & feel) and buy envelopes & stamps at Walmart. These basic DIY invitations could cost around $100 ($50 worth of stamps!) for 100 wedding invitations. The average cost for wedding invitaitons is over $1000!

Free (or almost free) Wedding Venues
free beautiful wedding venues
Photo by Peary Photography from Chapel Dulcinea website

  • Chapel Dulcinea- If you live near Austin, Texas this would be an amazing free venue option. Weddings are available 7 days a week and book up fast, so make sure and make your reservation asap. Note: a $200-$400 refundable fee is required to hold your spot.
  • Your Local Parks- Weddings happen all the time at local parks and are simply beautiful, much less of a hassle and free!
free beautiful wedding venues barn farm


  • Local Farms- Farm weddings are suppeerrr trendy right now. Although advertised farm venues can be expensive, try reaching out to local small farms and see if they would be willing to rent for a small price space for your wedding. Imagine a ceremony outside of a barn or in a field? It's worth a shot!
  • Backyards of Friends or Family- Another great idea is utilizing backyards and properties of family and friends. 
  • Reach out to Facebook- Stumped on a cheap or free venue? Reach out to local Facebook groups and ask around for free or cheap wedding venues, someone may even let you use their backyard for a small fee! 

Free (or cheap) Food Items for your Wedding


potluck wedding food
  • Have a potluck- This one is always a goodie, have your family and friends bring one of their favorite dishes and have the reception be filled with incredible homemade dishes. 
  • Buy food from Costco- Grab a couple carts and fill them up with your favorite Costco foods. Bring your friends and family together and have a food making party for the wedding! The average cost of full-service catering is $12,000, your Costco trip would be a lot less expensive. 
  • Buy drinks from Costco- Way less expensive they purchasing through a catering company or bar service.
  • Pick up a Costco cake- A Costco cake costs $18.99 and serves 48 people. That's 39 cents per slice! This might be the cheapest possible way to serve a cake at a wedding (possibly even cheaper than making a cake homemade with all the ingredients). Costco offers both vanilla and chocolate half sheet cakes with 2 lbs of filling. Order in store with at least a 2-day notice. You could even DIY your Costco cake and add fresh fruit or flowers for a more expensive look. 
  • Free cake tastings- Some bakeries offer free cake tastings if you purchase your wedding cake through them. 


cheap wedding cake


  • Don't mention a wedding- Weddings drive A LOT of sales and upcharging (wedding cakes on average cost about $200-$400), so instead of mentioning your wedding simply order a cake from your local bakery. At my local bakery, I was quoted $35 for a simple one tier cake with basic decorations. Use this cheaper cake as the cake that will be used for cake cutting and served to the wedding party and then buy a Costco cake and cut it up in the back for a very inexpensive way to have a wedding cake. 
Free (or cheap) Wedding Dresses


cheap wedding dresses

  • Offer up/ Craiglist/ Facebook Marketplace- Some brides sale their wedding dresses for quite cheap on sites such as Offer up, Craiglist and Facebook marketplace. 

Free (or cheap) Bridesmaid Dresses
cheap bridesmaid dress
  • Have bridesmaids choose to wear any dress in a color range. That way bridesmaids can pick dresses in their own closet, borrow from a friend or even check out second-hand stores and online marketplaces. 




Free (or cheap) Wedding Decor 
  • Facebook Marketplace- I see brides offer up their wedding decorations on Facebook for super cheap after their wedding. 
  • Goodwill and Second Hand Stores- Sometimes you can find the cutest decor for super cheap. 
  • Friends/Family- Ask your family and friends to use their wedding decorations, most of the time they probably would be willing to share!
  • Amazon- Find great deals on decor with free shipping using prime!
just married banner cheap wedding decor

chiffon fabric wedding decor


Cheap Wedding Day Flowers 
  • Plant flowers way ahead of your wedding- The most affordable option would be to plant your very own flowers such as roses and cut them before your wedding. Watch a few DIY flower arrangement videos on Youtube and tackle your own flowers for your wedding!
  • Local Farmers Market- Have a friend pick up large bouquets of flowers at your local farmers market for the centerpieces at your wedding. At $15-$30 a bouquet, its a steal!
diy wedding flowers arrangement
  • DIY Flowers- Check out this online floral shop that sends you handpicked themed flowers for your wedding. You put together your arrangements and bouquets but get a great deal on flowers. 
  • Fake Flowers- Another option is to buy fake flowers from your local Micheals, Walmart, Dollar store or Amazon

Cheap Photographer
  • Family or Friends- Have a camera savvy friend? Ask your friend to take photos of your wedding in exchange for a small fee. 
  • Local college- Photography students tend to charge less because they are building their portfolio. Check out local college bulletin boards or post on Facebook to see if any students are willing to photograph your wedding for cheap. 
  • Check out Wedding Wired, a website filled with vendors for weddings. I saw photographers on this site for less than $1500 for full wedding photos. 

Free Wedding Planning Websites
Free Other Wedding Resources

Well, there you have it! The ultimate list of wedding freebies, budgeting tips, offers and more! I will continue to add to this list as my search continues <3

Love, 

P.S. This blog post contains affiliate links. This simply means that this blog could earn a small portion of a sale, however, this does not affect your cost of any items. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Ultimate List of Wedding Freebies & Samples+ More

You just got engaged to the person of your dreams and it was everything. After the initial shock and celebratory champagne, you sit down on your couch and open up your laptop and begin to Google and Google. Like scroll through hundreds of pages of wedding searches from the cake to the venue to invitations, and it gets you thinking... wait I wonder if there is anything free I can get for planning a wedding? Well, this happened to me, so I began to draft this list of the ultimate wedding freebies, samples and offers because hey a wedding is expensive and I am one frugal fiance.

bride and groom wedding

Ultimate List of Wedding Freebies, Samples & More
Save Money/ Earn Money

Free Kitchen/Household Items for Opening a Wedding Registry
 free wedding freebies and bonus giftsfree wedding gifts and freebies

  • Macy's- After registering at Macy's you can qualify for free bonus gifts such as free wine glasses, knives, mixing bowls, pans and more. Even a $50 visa gift card! Up to $2300 worth of free kitchen and household items!
  • Amazon-Free bonus gifts such as a free crystal bowl, free griddle, stir fry pan, and elite blender! 
  • Dillards- Free bonus gifts such as18 wine glasses, luggage, and visa gift cards! 
  • Bloomingdales- Free bonus gifts such as a French skillet, engraved photo frame, knives and more!
  • Bed Bath and Beyond- Free bonus gifts such as free knives, ramekins, cake serving set and more!
  • Crate and Barrel- Bonus gifts from 14 brands! Including Wustholf, Vitamix and more!

Free Wedding Invitation Samples
free wedding invitation samples from vista print
Sample kit from vistaprint.com

Some of these companies also send out free samples of Save the Dates, Thank you cards & more!


Free (or almost free) Wedding Venues
free beautiful wedding venues
Photo by Peary Photography from Chapel Dulcinea website

  • Chapel Dulcinea- If you live near Austin, Texas this would be an amazing free venue option. Weddings are available 7 days a week and book up fast, so make sure and make your reservation asap. Note: a $200-$400 refundable fee is required to hold your spot.
  • Your Local Parks- Weddings happen all the time at local parks and are simply beautiful, much less of a hassle and free!
free beautiful wedding venues barn farm


  • Local Farms- Farm weddings are suppeerrr trendy right now. Although advertised farm venues can be expensive, try reaching out to local small farms and see if they would be willing to rent for a small price space for your wedding. Imagine a ceremony outside of a barn or in a field? It's worth a shot!
  • Backyards of Friends or Family- Another great idea is utilizing backyards and properties of family and friends. 
  • Reach out to Facebook- Stumped on a cheap or free venue? Reach out to local Facebook groups and ask around for free or cheap wedding venues, someone may even let you use their backyard for a small fee! 

Free (or cheap) Food Items for your Wedding


potluck wedding food
  • Have a potluck- This one is always a goodie, have your family and friends bring one of their favorite dishes and have the reception be filled with incredible homemade dishes. 
  • Buy food from Costco- Grab a couple carts and fill them up with your favorite Costco foods. Bring your friends and family together and have a food making party for the wedding! The average cost of full-service catering is $12,000, your Costco trip would be a lot less expensive. 
  • Buy drinks from Costco- Way less expensive they purchasing through a catering company or bar service.
  • Pick up a Costco cake- A Costco cake costs $18.99 and serves 48 people. That's 39 cents per slice! This might be the cheapest possible way to serve a cake at a wedding (possibly even cheaper than making a cake homemade with all the ingredients). Costco offers both vanilla and chocolate half sheet cakes with 2 lbs of filling. Order in store with at least a 2-day notice. You could even DIY your Costco cake and add fresh fruit or flowers for a more expensive look. 
  • Free cake tastings- Some bakeries offer free cake tastings if you purchase your wedding cake through them. 


cheap wedding cake


  • Don't mention a wedding- Weddings drive A LOT of sales and upcharging (wedding cakes on average cost about $200-$400), so instead of mentioning your wedding simply order a cake from your local bakery. At my local bakery, I was quoted $35 for a simple one tier cake with basic decorations. Use this cheaper cake as the cake that will be shown at the wedding and then buy a Costco cake and cut it up in the back for a very inexpensive way to have a wedding cake. 
Free (or cheap) Wedding Dresses


cheap wedding dresses

  • Offer up/ Craiglist/ Facebook Marketplace- Some brides sale their wedding dresses for quite cheap on sites such as Offer up, Craiglist and Facebook marketplace. 

Free (or cheap) Bridesmaid Dresses
cheap bridesmaid dress

  • Have bridesmaids choose to wear any dress in a color range. That way bridesmaids can pick dresses in their own closet, borrow from a friend or even check out second-hand stores and online marketplaces. 
blush long flowly bridesmaid dress


Free (or cheap) Wedding Decor 
  • Facebook Marketplace- I see brides offer up their wedding decorations on Facebook for super cheap after their wedding. 
  • Goodwill and Second Hand Stores- Sometimes you can find the cutest decor for super cheap. 
  • Friends/Family- Ask your family and friends to use their wedding decorations, most of the time they probably would be willing to share!
  • Amazon- Find great deals on decor with free shipping using prime!
just married banner cheap wedding decor

chiffon fabric wedding decor


Cheap Wedding Day Flowers 
  • Plant flowers way ahead of your wedding- The most affordable option would be to plant your very own flowers such as roses and cut them before your wedding. Watch a few DIY flower arrangement videos on Youtube and tackle your own flowers for your wedding!
  • Local Farmers Market- Have a friend pick up large bouquets of flowers at your local farmers market for the centerpieces at your wedding. At $15-$30 a bouquet, its a steal!
diy wedding flowers arrangement
  • DIY Flowers- Check out this online floral shop that sends you handpicked themed flowers for your wedding. You put together your arrangements and bouquets but get a great deal on flowers. 
  • Fake Flowers- Another option is to buy fake flowers from your local Micheals, Walmart, Dollar store or Amazon

Cheap Photographer
  • Family or Friends- Have a camera savvy friend? Ask your friend to take photos of your wedding in exchange for a small fee. 
  • Local college- Photography students tend to charge less because they are building their portfolio. Check out local college bulletin boards or post on Facebook to see if any students are willing to photograph your wedding for cheap. 

Free Wedding Planning Websites
Free Other Wedding Resources


Well, there you have it! The ultimate list of wedding freebies, samples, offers and more! I will continue to add to this list as my search continues <3

Love, 

P.S. This blog post contains affiliate links. This simply means that this blog could earn a small portion of a sale, however, this does not affect your cost of any items. 

Friday, February 15, 2019

Top 5 Amazon Fashion Finds

My latest obsession? Amazon fashion! I am kinda of obsessed with not having to leave the house to purchase items AND that two-day day shipping with your Prime membership really it's it out of the ballpark for me.

Without further ado, I have compiled a list of my favorite Amazon fashion finds from accessories to shoes!

1. Blue Light Blocking Glasses
These have been a life saver for me since I am constantly on my computer and phone. Blue light blocking glasses block the unwanted blue light which helps you fall asleep faster and minimize headaches!

2. Winter Hat
Back when I lived in what felt like Anartica, I always purchased these winter hats off of Amazon. I loved how cheap they were but also super cute and warm
3. Swimsuits
I always purchase on trend swimsuits from Amazon. I love having lots of options, so picking up a few inexpensive swimsuits from Amazon really does the trick.
4. Shoes
Amazon has a huge selection of shoes (insert heart eyes). I love picking up the latest sneakers from Amazon.
5. Scarf
I am a little addicted to scarves, I just love how warm, fluffy, and cute they are. Amazon has tons at affordable prices. 
I hope you enjoyed this list of my top 5 Amazon Fashion Finds. What are some of your favs? Let me know down below!
love,
P.S. this post may contain affiliate links 

Sunday, December 2, 2018

How I Went Viral on Tik Tok in One Day- 5 Steps for Success

I never expected to go viral, especially on a brand new app with only a 15-second video, but crazier things have happened. I really couldn't believe it when the views went from 250 to 2000 before my eyes, in a matter of seconds. In less than 24 hours the video had over 700,000 views, 100,000 likes and over 1000 comments, all while gaining me tons and tons of followers. I'll break this whole "going viral" thing down for you, so that you can too, go viral on Tik Tok.

Here is the Tik Tok video that went viral.


(you can watch without having an account)

Here is the quick synopsis of the video: I did my moms makeup while she was about to go on her first fancy date since getting divorced. It's fun, it's quick and gives a quick glimpse of how I did her makeup. The end shows her all dressed up. Yep, all that in 15 seconds. Set to the song, Mom. Watch for yourself.


So how did this all happen?

First, I headed over to the App Store and downloaded Tik Tok, without knowing literally anything about it besides it's a new video app (this app was originally Musically and then changed to Tik Tok), that's it. I created an account, tried to get the hang of it and then started posting videos of doing my makeup and other trendy videos/challenges that I had seen on the "for you" page. I was excited to make a video with my mom because she loves when I do her makeup and we were excited for her date. I then posted that video, and then I just couldn't keep up. My notifications were insane; thousands of views, likes, comments, and follows all within 24 hours.


<------------
The one on the left is after posting the video for about 10 minutes. At the time I had 210 fans (followers) and about 3000 views.



                                        ------------->
The one on the right is today. I have ovre 6400 fans and over 774k views on the video. That's about a 24500% in 24 hours.






My Tips for Going Viral on Tik Tok 
(based on my own personal experience)

#1 Post Quality Content Every Single Day
Spend time recording videos within your nitch every day. Occasionally, add in some trending or challenge videos for the possibility to be noticed more. For me, my niche is makeup/beauty so I tried to post one of those videos every day. Within a week one of those went viral.

#2  Pick Your Music With Purpose 
You can use 15 seconds of virtually any music you can think of. Although you may want to use your favorite song (for me that would be Party In the USA), instead try to think about what song would work best with your content. For this video, I instantly knew that the song Mom, by Meghan Trainor would be perfect, not only do I love this song, the lyrics, and the meaning, but it makes others feel good too. To me, that seems like the perfect combination.

#3 Use hashtags
Hashtags have a lot of pull on Tik Tok partly because you can't include too many in a single caption which gives each individual hashtag more weight. Usually, people use between 3 and 5 hashtags. Make the meaningful and right to the point, no need for filler hashtags such as "like for like." For this video, I used #mom #momgoals #mymom #makeup which all fit perfectly with what my video was about.

#4 Caption Caption Caption
This might be the most important part of the whole video. The caption is the first thing (along with a cover photo of your video) that someone will notice while scrolling through thousands of videos so make it count. Make you caption engaging such as (comment your favorite pair of shoes), drive curiosity (omg I almost burnt myself on that curling wand), or give a descriptor caption (doing makeup on my mom). For this video I went with: "Mom's first fancy date out since her divorce, give her some love." This was mostly a descriptor caption with a little bit of a call to action.

#5 Tell a story
I promise you that the reason my video went viral is not because of my amazing makeup skills (haha I wish) but rather, people were fascinated with my mom's story, how she was getting ready for her first fancy date out since she got divorced and how her daughter was helping her. I got hundreds of comments that ranged from "hope you date goes well", "what a sweet mother/daughter duo", "get it girl," and "we need an update on the date!" They were almost all curious about my mom's date and also who doesn't love a feel good story? Storytelling is one of the best ways to engage your audience and get people to stick around.

I hope this helps you also go viral on Tik Tok! Feel free to leave your Tik Tok handle in the comments and I'll give your video a like!
  Follow me on Tik Tok: @sincerely_maddy

See Ya on Tik Tok,
Maddy 

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Huge Kitchen Clean With Me + Kitchen Tour + Fall Decor


Who finds cleaning and watching people clean super relaxing and motivating?! And by watching, I mean watching "Clean With Me" videos on YouTube. If you're like me than you will love my latest video which takes you into my kitchen cleaning countertops, floors, cabinets & more!

Monday, October 15, 2018

Must-Have Fall Fashion From Amazon


Although Amazon is known for having a little bit of everything from electronics to household goods, I have been obsessed with Amazon Fashion lately. Not only do I love the super fast two-day shipping, easy and free returns, but also the gorgeous fall fashion selection. I have included some of my favorite Fall Must-Haves from Amazon that don't break the bank all while being effortlessly stylish.

Monday, October 8, 2018

What to Wear to the Gym

gym fashion, gym clothes
Let's be real: even though we go to the gym for a good workout, we can't resist wearing a cute outfit. Here are some of my favorite basics that everyone should have in their gym drawer.
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