A $2,000 Wedding Doesn't Mean Missing Out On the Rings

It wasn't just a matter of money that kept Sara Cotner and Matt Bradford's wedding budget down to $2,000. The couple wanted to have the small, intimate wedding of their dreams, without getting caught up in the usual planning brouhaha. With just seven months of planning, they held the wedding, which included exchanging gold wedding bands, and a reception for 80 people... and came in under budget


Fighting against what they call "Wedding Industrial Complex" the couple had a list of principles to aid them in their planning, including:  


·        Make this a celebration of love, not a show.

·        Ensure that the celebration is connected to nature and kind to the environment.

·        Keep the focus on friends and family.


To help cover the costs of their wedding bands, the two invited friends and family to contribute broken and unwanted jewelry, from which their wedding rings would be made. They sent the cast off pieces to ecological jeweler greenKarat, which refined it and made it into new rings. The final retail value of the rings was $1,275. The final cost after the credit for gold submitted was $109.


The wedding rings also embraced the spirit of the challenge. Not only were they made with post-consumer recycled gold, the gold used had emotional value, too. Said Sara, "They were made from the recycled gold of our friends and family, so they have a ton of sentimental and symbolic value. It's as if we took all of their influence and are now shaping it into something new."

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