MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Wedding season is in full bloom! If you're planning a big day of your own, you may be able to learn a thing or two from one of our own.
Southern Bride magazine featured WMC Action News 5 Meteorologist Brittney Bryant's rustic, outdoor wedding in its latest issue. Judging from the photos, it's easy to see why they chose her wedding to showcase.
We got the scoop on how Brittney saved money throwing her dream wedding -- do-it-yourself style.
Brittney and her new husband, Andy Chiuppi, were married in September 2016 at Cedar Hall in Bartlett.
"We had a cold front move in the day before," Brittney said. "The wedding temperatures were in the 70s. It was not hot. It was the most beautiful day you could possibly ask for weather wise."
A perfect weather wedding was serendipitous for the new couple, whose love of meteorology brought them together.
"We'll argue about who got the forecast right and who didn't, and, 'My high temperature was right and yours wasn't,' but it's all in good fun," said Andy, who works for National Weather Service.
This love story began when Andy and Brittney met at a weather conference back in 2014. Now, they get to indirectly work with each other on a regular basis.
"We are the ones issuing the warnings that go out and come here to Channel 5, as well as to emergency managers that fire off sirens and those kinds of things," he explained.
Now, they're happy newlyweds who continue to bond over their love of the skies.
"We really do make each other better meteorologists," Brittney said. "Most couples can't say they make each other better in their jobs."
Though Brittney can't guarantee perfect temperatures for your big day, she wanted to share how she pulled off hers, at a fraction of the cost, without a wedding planner.
Pick your splurges, then cut back on the rest.
"You want everyone to have plenty of things to drink, really good food, and a great band," Brittney said. "That's what people remember about the wedding."
Brittney also said she splurged on her wedding dress, but helped her bridesmaids save on their dresses by choosing a color (black in her case), and allowing them to pick out their own, pending the bride's approval. Now, her bridesmaids have something they will wear more than once.
You can save a lot just by cutting back on the guest list.
"Decide how much you will spend per person," Brittney said. "I always say, if you haven't talked to that person in a year, you probably don't need them at your wedding."
Save on flowers using bulky blooms that are in season to take up more space.
"I found when you add 'wedding' to anything--so instead of a cake, if you add 'wedding' cake--all of the sudden, instead of being a few hundred dollars, your cake is thousands," Brittney said. "Get a normal white layer cake, don't say you want a wedding cake, then get the florist to add flowers to it."
Online is the way to go instead of using a traditional brick-and-mortar store if you're looking to save some money. Brittney suggested using websites like Minted and Etsy.
"I got 200 save the dates for about $7 total," Brittney said. "We went on Etsy, found a really cool template you can download for $10-$15 depending on what you're looking for, put in your own information, go online, get it printed, and delivered to you."
Don't be afraid to ask vendors if they are offering any discounts.
"If you ask them, 'Hey, if I pay you in full (up front) for the photography or whatever it is, will you give me a discount?'"
According to a wedding coordinator Brittney spoke with, "At the end of the night, most of those favors are picked up off the table," she said.
Brittney suggests using that money to rent a fun photo booth instead. That will give guests pictures to take home from the night.
Brittney says hiring a day-of wedding coordinator, rather than a wedding planner, is worth every single penny.
"The last thing you want is to be running around and trying to communicate with the florist, and the band, and the pastor, and everyone showing up that day," she said. "You just want to be able to relax with your bridesmaids and not worry about everything else."
Remember, things can and will go wrong on the big day, but Brittney reminds you that you are marrying the person you love and starting an incredible journey together. This is just one day.
"Live in the moment and find a little bit of time for the two of you," Brittney said.
You will be pulled in several different directions, so don't forget to soak it all in and embrace the moment with your new spouse.