How To: #ShopSmall for Your Wedding

It's no secret that weddings can be one of the biggest expenses of your life. The months of planning and sometimes thousands of dollars spent culminate into one single day that will most likely be a blur. You'll tell yourselves that of course it's worth the money. It's your wedding, after all. But you might not be able to help feeling a little bit guilty for investing so much in your big day, no matter how meaningful the occasion.

Luckily, there is a way to have your dream wedding and feel extra good about watching a whole house down payment disappear: shop SMALL!

It's not just a trendy hashtag. Supporting small businesses means supporting dreams, and with all the purchases involved in a wedding, you can support a whole lotta dreams.

While typing what you need into Google and buying the first things you see is convenient, taking the time to find small businesses who offer quality, unique products and services is worth the extra digging. You'll probably wow your guests a whole lot more if you use obscure but very talented vendors rather than the obvious big-name companies.

Here are 5 ways you can shop small for your wedding:

1. The Venue

An inn.

Choose mom and pop bed and breakfasts (like The Black Dolphin Inn above) over big chain hotels, and choose family-owned venues over corporate-owned ones.

2. The Invitations

Wedding invitation with succulents on it.

Instead of turning to Shutterfly or Vistaprint, support small business owners and artists by getting custom invitations directly from their shops. That way, you can rest easy knowing your invitations are in the hands of an expert designer.

Custom invitations don't have to be too pricey, either. When you sign up for our email list on our website, you can save 10% off of your first order.

3. The Food

Skillets full of dessert on a table.

Photo by @lrecatering on Instagram

Choose a small, reputable catering company or local restaurant over a chain. This will diversify your menu options and allow your guests to discover something new.

4. The Cake

A three tier geode cake.

Cake by Laura Marie's (@lauramariescakes on Instagram)

Instead of ordering from your grocery store, find a local baker whose work you admire. Chances are, your cake will be a lot more unique that way (and not to mention extremely #instaworthy).

Even if you are going for a nontraditional wedding dessert like donuts, cookies, or ice cream, you can almost always find an artisanal shop or small home bakery that has what you are looking for.

5. The Decorations

A mirror with letters spelling "Welcome to Our wedding" on it.

Sign by @lovelyletteringcorner on Instagram

Three words: Etsy and Instagram. Not supporting small businesses because you "can't find them" is not a valid excuse thanks to Etsy. It's a virtual marketplace where you will find some of the most talented crafters and artists that create handmade wedding decorations. With so many sellers, it's likely that you will find several different shops that carry products that fit your style, meaning you can support even more people and help them keep doing what they love.

You can also discover new vendors via Instagram by searching under wedding-related hashtags like #weddingdecor and #weddinginspiration.

We regularly share the products of fellow small businesses on our Instagram, so follow us @beckyjinvitations for more inspiration!