How To Decorate a Wedding Reception Hall On a Budget?

Centerpieces, candles, floral arrangements – check!

Planning a wedding reception can feel pretty overwhelming.

Whether a garden-inspired spring affair or a cozy autumn celebration, it’s often the personal details that make a fancy party unique and memorable.

Once you add up the costs of decorations, the venue, and food, the pressure is on.

However, take a deep breath. You can have your cake and eat it too!

There are many ways to plan a wedding that still looks like you spared no expense.

All you need is a little creativity and thoughtful planning to pull off a breathtaking big day.

Do you want to know how to decorate a wedding reception hall on a budget? Say “I do” to these eight budget-friendly ideas.

How To Decorate a Wedding Reception Hall On a Budget?

To decorate a wedding reception hall on a budget you’ll have to resort to your DIYDYI skills (or someone else’s), rent the most expensive items, buy second-hand pieces, and choose a theme where you can use a natural background (e.g., snow or spring flowers).

Now let’s talk about these options in more detail.

8 Tips for Decorating Your Wedding Reception on a Budget

Are you planning your wedding on a budget?

Are you wondering how to decorate your reception without spending a lot of money?

Here are some tips for decorating your wedding reception on a budget.

1. Gather Objects From Your Home

Something old, something new, something borrowed for your venue!

The first tip is to decorate for free using objects you already have. You can make quite a few decorative things using household items like picture frames, vases, china, pillows, linens, and more.

Are you noticing the recent trend of brides collecting items for their wedding décor? It brings such a personal touch to the reception and can be memorable for years.

2. Make DIY Wedding Décor

Whether you’re very crafty or a budget-friendly beginner, DIY wedding decorations are a great way option to add personal touches to your dream wedding.

Going the DIY route can even be an enjoyable and satisfying activity.

Check out some unique ideas:

  • Wrap ugly flower pots with decorative fabric held with a rubber band.
  • Upcycle furniture drawers to display desserts or favors on tables.
  • Display a bike with floral blooms in a basket at an outdoor entrance.
  • Search for a wedding program template online.
  • Write the cocktails on a chalkboard sign at the drink station.
  • Spray-paint wine bottles gold and place long candlesticks inside.
  • Suspend paper lanterns above tables or around the venue.

3. Create Your Own Centerpieces

For DIY centerpieces, it is incredibly beneficial to choose your theme, set a budget, and recruit someone to help that is particularly crafty.

Sometimes a simple jar or pitcher of flowers is all you need. However, centerpieces can be as simple or extravagant as you desire.

Try these ideas!

  • Before you say no to cheap faux florals, try removing the blooms and allow them to float in a bowl of water.
  • Scattering tea lights around trays of vegetables or fruits.
  • Fill tall glass hurricane vases with willow branches for wildflowers from the outdoors.
  • Fill fish bowls or glass vases with personalized candy.

4. Go Candle Crazy

One of the best ways to create that magical vibe at your wedding is with lighting.

While candles are crazy romantic—some venues have restrictions on lighting to prevent potential fires.

Whether you are using real candles or flameless, there are plenty of ways to create a beautiful glow in your reception hall.

Just arrange a cluster of flameless candles on a platter, then weave strands of wooden beads around the base. If you’re decorating for a wedding during the holiday, add evergreen branches for some festive feels.

Another idea is to display cream pillar candles to create a warm glow along the center of the table and add visual interest with gold metallic potpourri.

5. Shop Secondhand

Are you looking for affordable wedding décor?

While you can find budget-friendly decorations by comparing prices, shopping sales, and using online coupons, one of the best ways to save big is with pre-owned items.

Before you buy new, try visiting your local thrift stores or an estate sale to find used wedding decorations for your big day.

Thanks to the internet, there is an additional way to shop for affordable, used items through wedding resale sites like Wedzee or with some luck on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.

Purchasing pre-owned items and reusing them is also good for the environment and creates less waste. You can save hundreds of dollars buying used while embracing your eco-friendly side.

6. Use Christmas Lights

Deck the reception halls with string lights!

Lighting can have an impact on the way your guests feel in a reception space. Many people use white Christmas lights all year round on their patios or bring them out of storage for special occasions.

They are a simple, elegant affordable detail to incorporate in any style, whether an outdoor camp theme or a glamorous ballroom celebration.

String lights can be hung from the ceiling, around tables, over sheer drapes, or to highlight trees outdoors as a stylish statement.

Make sure there are ample power outlets and extension cords at the venue to get the job done.

7. Rent Items

There are endless rental opportunities—from table decor to dance floors.

Wedding rentals are a budget-friendly option to ensure every detail is at your whim at a fraction of the cost without having to find everything yourself.

As a bonus, you don’t have to worry about transportation on the wedding day.

Are these items on your rental checklist? 

  • Floral accouterments
  • Backdrops
  • Up-lighting
  • Head table decorations
  • Arches & aisle runners
  • Dinnerware, flatware, and glassware
  • Canopy tents
  • Chairs and chair covers
  • Bar rentals
  • Cocktail tables
  • Stage décor

8. Choose a Convenient Theme

Small intimate weddings are trending now because they are a budget-friendly way to save money without sacrificing everything on your list.

Whether you are willing to downsize or not, you can kick off your celebration in style, with a minimal approach, simply by choosing an easy theme.

Make sure it is fresh, elegant, and appropriate for you and your spouse-to-be.

As a result, you will simplify the process, make decisions easier, impress your guests, and save money.

Here are two theme examples:

Black & White

There’s nothing more timeless than a black-and-white wedding.

It is a great starting point for any reception décor or couple’s style.

The colors are easy to find in retail stores and make cheap items look chic.


Seasonal themes help bring you inspiration as the planning on a budget begins.

Why re-create a winter wonderland wedding venue when you are already living in this type of scenic location?

You can also save money on decor by using the flowers and pastels of the outdoors for a spring wedding or the fall foliage for a cozy autumn reception.