Wedding Decor You Can Reuse After The Big Day

While planning your big day is unbelievably exciting, you may see your budget as ever-expanding, and your super simple wedding list will suddenly become complicated when you realize your vendors don't supply cocktail napkins and candle sticks. This is totally normal but still overwhelming. Around 28% of Americans take on debt to pay for their weddings, either with credit cards or personal loans, according to Business Insider, which is no small number. In addition, many of the things you buy for your big day are only good for one-time, one-day use, especially in the décor column.

But all is not lost — many of your wedding decorations can be used in your home after the big day. We'll help you find objects you can enjoy through time and not just a single day. That way, you have some special but practical reminders of your wedding and keep your housewarming gift registry focused on the big stuff.

1. Picture frames

Picture frames can display engagement photo shoots, bridals, and other special memories from your relationship right at your wedding. You can even display photos of your family members and loved ones. The Knot writes that one of the loveliest ways to honor lost loved ones who can't be on the big day is to display favorite photos of them. But they don't have to just be used for photographs — picture frames have a million different uses, especially for the eclectic couple. Cruise for discounted but stylish options at stores like Ross and TJ Maxx, and just print your photos off at your local Walgreens for an affordable set of wedding decorations. You can also use frames to hold escort cards or seating assignments or create a unique guest book sign-in.

Once the wedding day is done, you can keep the photographs as is or replace them with photos from your big day. After all of that wedding spending, you may also be looking for cheap but thoughtful gifts for the holidays — framed family portraits from the big day make for an excellent present that you won't have to spend much on at all.

2. Flower vases

Many couples choose to use rental vendors to decorate for their wedding — this isn't a terrible option. Still, it can leave you with generic wedding decorations and make you unable to take keepsakes home with you. You might be stuck at the venue, making sure the vases are stored carefully, clean, and free of flowers instead of enjoying your night as newlyweds.

And since the average American couple spends between $700 and $2,500 on flowers alone, reports Weddingwire, we definitely encourage you to make the most out of this costly decoration. Instead of the huge jars you see on magazine covers, try going for an eclectic assortment of bud vases and unique glassware at local thrift stores, or just snag a multipack of amber glass bud vases. This is a low-cost décor choice overall, and you will certainly be able to find a purpose for these darling flower holders in your home.

3. Lighting fixtures and accessories

How much and what type of lighting your venue provides can vary greatly. Of course, we aren't saying you should order a spotlight or any industrial lighting. But in addition to overhead and dance floor lighting, you should incorporate more whimsical lighting throughout your wedding scape. Bistro and fairy lights offer a romantic, whimsical touch and look phenomenal in both industrial loft venues and natural outdoor celebrations.

Brides calls real candlelight a necessity at any wedding, too. So hit up your local thrift store or big box home store (TJ Maxx, Big Lots, or At Home are all great choices) and snag some tapered and pillar candle holders, lanterns, and other unique votives to give your wedding that touch. Then, you can use these same accessories at home for special meals, decorating your patio, or creating a romantic atmosphere even after the wedding day. Candelabras also work beautifully on bookshelf displays.

4. Bar cart

Bar carts are a perfect cross of function and fashion and often come with wheels for easy transportation around the venue. Even if you have a proper full bar at the wedding, a bar cart can be a bonus space, like a dessert and candy bar, a place for your guest book and gifts, or a designated driver bar filled with fun, festive, and alcohol-free beverages. So while the bar cart is definitely a bit extra, it can be a thoughtful, unique detail plenty of people will notice.

Even though there are plenty of wedding booze calculators out there, you'll probably end up with a few extra bottles at the end, A Practical Wedding notes. They'll look right at home on your bar cart, and you'll get to feel like Don Draper when you pour your evening drink. However, when you select it for the big day, be sure to choose one that fits with your home décor.

5. Succulents

If you consider yourself an official plant parent, then cut flowers that will crumple and die, sometimes before the reception has even ended, may not be your cup of tea. Instead, look to the water-conservative succulent plants. Succulents can include prickly cacti, agave plants, aloe, and jade plants. Succulents and Sunshine recommends several ways to incorporate these tiny plants into your wedding, including as cake toppers and table centerpieces. Since many wedding favors have special significance for the bride and husband but aren't used by the guests, you could even use them as such.

Even holding the roots in a tiny bit of soil for a few hours is enough to keep these hardy plants happy, so if you've already got a stellar succulent collection at home, be sure to use it to supplement your wedding décor. Just make sure your wedding venue knows they need to go home with you. And since these can go without water for long periods, you can take them home and won't have to worry about them all from the wedding day to the honeymoon.