Looking for ways to save on your big day? Here are some easy tips:

Looking for ways to save on your big day? Here are some easy tips:

Be your own DJ. Creating your own iPod playlist for the evening saves cash and makes sure you won't hear the "Funky Chicken" for the third time. Make it a brunch or a cocktail party. If you want a cheaper menu, switch up the time of day or stick to finger food. A buffet isn't always cheaper than a sit-down meal. Raise the bar. An open bar is a big expense, even though most guests will stick to champagne and wine. Instead, create a specialty cocktail or two and choose a mid-level wine. Try to work out a deal to return any wine your guests don't drink. Use simple flowers. Maria McBride, author of "Party Basics for New Nesters," suggests spreading an affordable flower like daisies or babies breath everywhere, creating foliage-only centerpieces, or putting small plants into an affordable clay or glazed pot. Or make your own vase out of recycled tin cans or wine bottles. Create your own centerpieces. Candles or fruit can save money and look pretty in batches. Think rustic. Decor that looks cheap in a hotel ballroom can be charming in a backyard, farm or vineyard. Just pick a spot that specializes in special events, or you'll be saddled with unfortunate extras, like port-a-potties.