Beautiful Church Wedding Decoration Ideas on a Budget

Your big day is fast approaching, and you know what that means: planning, planning, planning!

Most brides-to-be dream of a fairytale wedding with romance, elegance, and sophistication in the air. But not everyone has the budget to achieve that.

If you’re tight on funds and don’t have a lot of money to spare but still want to create a church wedding no one will forget, here are some incredible — but affordable — ideas you can try.

elegant stylish cute groom and bride  on the background old gothic church

Find a Church With a Picturesque View

First thing first: start with choosing the perfect venue for your church ceremony.

Find a quaint chapel or elegant cathedral in the vicinity that offers picturesque views, impressive architecture, or head-turning features.

Doing so can help you cut down on the wedding décor requirements because of the venue’s natural beauty and exquisite splendor. You won’t have to worry about splurging on accessories to create a gorgeous wedding.

church decorated for wedding ceremony

Select a Versatile Theme

Next, select a versatile yet specific theme with a cohesive color palette. Your wedding theme is the anchor for your church wedding decorations.

In addition, it will also guide you to achieve the overall look and feel on your wedding day.

Your theme should be easily accomplished — not too extravagant or highly opulent. Rustic themes are typically more budget-friendly and have more greenery, simple floral arrangements, and organic touches.

If you’ve already locked down the ideal church wedding venue with a scenic landscape, you can use the idyllic backdrop as inspiration for your interior decorations. You can bring the outside in by incorporating some flower buckets or potted plants and using them as an unconventional (but also unique) aisle runner at the end of each pew.

Small to medium-sized potted plants cost around $20 to $50 a piece, which is affordable in terms of wedding expenses. But if you want to allot that amount to something else, you can bring plants from home or borrow some from your friends and family. 

Use the Church Venue’s Existing Decorations

Another great way to save money on your special day is to utilize what the church already has. Since churches often host special occasions, they typically have decorative elements stored away. Whether they be bolts of fabric, pillar candles, or candle holders, make sure to use the available church decor to your advantage.

Although you may be asked to pay a small rental fee, it will likely be more affordable than buying all the decorations yourself. Your church may lend you everything you need for free if you’re extremely lucky! 

Details of the wedding day. Church Wedding decorations with plants and candles. Fine film grain texture.

Place Decorations Strategically

Having a tight budget means you may be unable to splurge on your venue’s design. For this reason, you need to be strategic in your planning.

Don’t aim for a complete transformation. Rather, place your decorations strategically in a way that will make the most impact. 

To achieve this, three of the key areas in the church you may want to consider are the altar, the aisles, and the entrance. These are the prominent sections of the venue where people will pay the most attention during the ceremony.

The Altar

Many church altars are quite magnificent. But you can add little touches here and there to make it stand out more.

For instance, you can place some flower arrangements around the altar or integrate vintage lanterns to illuminate the ceremony space even more. In doing so, you can make the altar your focal point and act as the perfect backdrop for all of your wedding and family photos.

The Aisles

In terms of decorating the aisles, there are so many cheap wedding decorations you can explore. For example, you can add pampas grass at the center of the aisle to achieve a contemporary yet rustic look. If you’re going for more sophistication, placing classic flower vases is an elegant way to achieve it. 

The Grand Entrance

The entrance is the first thing you and your wedding guests will see when they enter the venue and the last thing everyone will see as they exit the ceremony. It needs to leave a lasting impression. One of the great ideas you can try is to incorporate an entrance arch. 

In the wedding industry, two of the most popular choices for this decorative element are the floral and balloon arch. If you have enough money in your budget, you can even combine these two concepts to create a beautiful decoration for your entrance.

wedding bouquet flowers and ceremony on a blurred background

Scatter Flower Petals Along the Aisles

If there’s one thing you need to remember about wedding planning, it’s that simple decorations go a long way. That said, if your budget doesn’t enable you to spend on eye-catching decorative elements, you can make do with what you can afford. One of which is flower petals. 

Even if you don’t have a flower girl, you can still scatter flower petals along the aisle leading to the altar to achieve an enchanting and charming aesthetic. To elevate this idea, even more, you can include a variety of flowers. This will add more character, color, and texture to your venue. 

You can play around with the flower petals you scatter depending on your style. You can start with pink or red rose petals since these are arguably the most iconic wedding flowers.

Then, you can gradually add other varieties like white flowers, baby’s breath, and daisies. You can also scatter leaves if you want to add a hint of green to the mix. You’ll be surprised at how something as simple as scattering flower petals can transform the space completely. 

The vases with candles stand for wedding ceremony

Modify the Lighting To Create a Romantic Atmosphere

In addition to flowers, you can also leverage lighting to set the mood and establish a romantic atmosphere. Many churches have chandeliers, light bulbs, and wall sconces that you can use as a basis. However, if you want to take it one step further, you can add candles, hang lanterns, drape Christmas lights, or combine all three. 

Having multiple lighting sources can add more depth and drama to the overall scene. Plus, they’re perfect for photos.

Despite this, you might be wondering: Is doing so going to break the bank? The good news is, investing in lighting is a whole lot cheaper than investing in intricate flower arrangements. What’s more, lighting can often be more romantic.

Just remember, if you plan on using candles, consider safety, like placing them in enclosed glass containers to prevent fire hazards or in hard-to-reach areas.

Pro Tip: Candles do more than illuminate the space. They can also bring aromatic smells to the space. Buy a few scented candles and place them tactically around your venue to achieve this effect. Just make sure they don’t interfere with the smell of dinner if you’re serving it.

Blur, defocused background of public exhibition hall. Business tradeshow, job fair, or stock market. Organization or company event, commercial trading, or shopping mall marketing advertisement concept

Find Great Deals at Wedding Bazaars

It’s true that wedding decorations can be expensive. While the individual elements may be cheap, adding the cost of each can accumulate to a large sum, from your wedding party invites, wedding signs, and wedding favors to your wedding reception, floral centerpieces, and wedding cakes.

One helpful tip is to plan out what you need for your marriage ceremony and buy what you can at bazaars. You can speak directly with vendors and find great deals for your wedding wishlist there. 

At these bazaars, you can also get your hands on elegant wedding dresses you can find for only a fraction of the average retail price. It’s one of the great places to look for when you are still on the lookout for the perfect dress. 

picture of a blank checklist paper on a clipboard

Create a Comprehensive Checklist

Before shopping for your big day, it may help to create a comprehensive checklist that covers everything you need.

Include items like your wedding dress, color scheme, fabric covers, lighting options, and aisle decorations. Planning out the details can help alleviate stress down the road and ensure you include everything you want.

To help you get started, here are some essentials to consider when making a list that’s necessary for all types of weddings, be it a casual wedding, royal wedding, garden wedding, or destination wedding:

  • Attire
  • Hair and makeup
  • Wedding cake
  • Church venue
  • Wedding favors
  • Flowers
  • Outdoor wedding decorations
  • Wedding invites and save the dates
  • Music selection
  • Wedding photography and videography
  • Reception venue
  • Reception food and drinks
  • Transportation 
wedding planner

Hire a Wedding Planner

There’s no doubt that planning an indoor or outdoor wedding ceremony can be overwhelming. Add to that your limited budget, and you may find yourself in a bit of a pickle. One solution to help you with your problem is to hire a wedding planner. 

Some brides think that hiring a professional to manage all their wedding requirements will only add to the total cost of the event. But little do they know that doing so can help them save time and money in the long run. Here’s how. 

They Can Unlock Exclusive Links to Wedding Vendors

Believe it or not, a reputable wedding planner can serve as a gatekeeper to accessing some of the best vendors in the industry. Wedding planners often have a wide network of professionals to help them curate the perfect wedding day. By tapping into their expertise, you can also benefit from their connections and get the best items at the best price. 

They Can Keep Track of Your Budget

Doing all the budgeting and planning on your own can be quite tedious. With so much on your plate, you might have missed something important or gone over your budget by accident. To avoid such complications, a financial planner can help with your financial matters. All you have to do is share your realistic budget and expectations, and they can do their magic for you.

They Can Handle All the Stress on Your Special Day

The last thing you want on your wedding day is to stress over last-minute details. Lucky for you, a wedding planner can take all your worries away and help you celebrate your special day in the most perfect way possible. 

Photo of author


Kristen is the founder and content creator at Mom Managing Chaos where she teaches busy moms how to simplify and organize their life and finances. She writes about frugal living, budgeting, productivity and organization.