Hot Summer Wedding Tips

Curvettes share their tips for planning a wedding and getting married on a budget.


Summer is the season when many lesbian couples decide to celebrate their devotion to each other with a marriage or commitment ceremony—but all of the planning and spending can get out of hand. So how do you say "I do" without going broke or losing your sanity? Take a few tips from our contributing writers and staff members, or as we like to call them, the Curvettes.

“Remember, favors often come with strings, especially when family is involved. Mom may be all smiles when she hands you the check, but when you refuse to invite her boss, her dog groomer or her college roommate, she’s got that money to throw in your face.” — Briana Hernandez, editorial assistant

“Stay a bridesmaid, but insist on picking your own fabulous outfit and be brazen with the other guests. The lovely couple aren’t the only ones who deserve to consummate the evening.” — Queerie Bradshaw, blogger

“Always the Bridesmaid, Finally the Bride” is a cool theme for a wedding where the guests all wear the bridesmaid dress that they made you wear for their respective weddings. Between me and my girl, we have at least 10 bad dresses that we would love to see some on former brides. We would, of course, save the two worst dresses for ourselves to wear during our own nuptials. It is kitschy, thrifty and a great way to clear out the closet, so to speak.” — Michele Fisher, contributing writer

“If you’re going to break the glass, make absolutely sure one of you leaves the stilettos at home and wears the Doc Martens.” — Sheryl Kay, contributing editor

“Remember: What happens during the bachelorette party does not stay at the bachelorette party.” — Ainsley Drew, editorial assistant

“Get your friends to give you gifts in kind. Instead of a toaster or a set of towels, get them to bake the cake, or arrange the flowers, take photos, or make a wedding song mix tape for the reception. The results won’t always be as ‘professional’ (unless your friends are professionals!), but they’ll be heartfelt and much more meaningful.” — Lori Selke, contributing writer

“Have someone else in charge of turning on the music—we forgot until it was time to clean up!” — Sassafras Lowrey, contributing writer

“Why spend oodles of money on a wedding? Invite a bunch of friends to a theme park. You can take the plunge there, on one of those roller coasters, and have some wild fun at the same time.” — Mary McGrath, contributing writer

“Have your dog or cat be the ring bearer. They don’t want to miss your happy day either.” — Mary McGrath, contributing writer

“Why spend the money on a single day? Get a courthouse wedding and then go on fabulous honeymoon abroad, like backpacking across India or sunbathing on a beach in Thailand.” — Mandy Van Deven, contributing writer

“Pay cash for as much as you can. You’d be surprised at how many discounts are available for just about everything. From flowers to venue to clothing, you name it, we got sometimes as much as 30 percent discounts because we said we were paying in cash. Also, on the other end of this tip, we simply asked for cash as gifts from wedding attendees, which more than paid for our honeymoon and some new furniture for our home together!” — Myra Lavenue, contributing writer

“Nicole and I had our civil union in New Hampshire, by ourselves, with only a photographer and the rabbi who did our service. It was low key, stress-free and fun.” — Gillian Kendall, contributing writer

“Remember to eat all that food you spent hours picking out.” — Elizabeth Stark, contributing writer

"Bridesmaids may be corny, but I discovered all too late that the 'wedding party' serves a purpose. I decided no bridesmaids—just my best friend from grad school to be man-of-honor, and Margie's best friend (a trans-man) to be best man. All our friends and the family who came were great helpers, but because these two had official titles, they went above and beyond and saved what could have been a disaster of a wedding. We planned for a garden wedding—it rained—my dad was an hour late, the DJ got lost, etc. So, enlist your closest friends and give them titles. They don't have to wear those tacky (and expensive) outfits, but they will help you keep the wedding and the reception running smoothly in ways you can't even foresee." —  Aina Hunter, contributing writer








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