Should You Rent Or Buy Your Wedding Decor?

 February 13, 2017

Our production assistant, Patrice, is recently engaged and taking you along on her wedding planning journey. Check back every other Monday for more real-life wedding planning insights – or follow along here!

There are SO many options for wedding decor, and the more you search, the more you find! Whether your day is rustic or glam, there are decor options a plenty. So how do you sort through it all? Not to mention, how do you determine what you should buy and what you should rent? 

When we started thinking about our wedding, the one thing that my fiancé and I knew immediately is that we wanted to keep it simple. We didn’t want to have a ton of extra decor, and we wanted the decor that we did have to be detailed and meaningful. As we thought about what we would want and whether we should rent or buy, here are the guidelines we followed:

1. Anything you need in bulk: RENT
There are going to be a ton of things that you need A LOT of – mostly pertaining to your reception table settings. Tablecloths, napkins, plates, silverware, glasses, etc. I have to say, I was skeptical at first. We thought for sure we could buy something more affordable, but it turns out that even disposable place settings would have been more expensive! And don’t forget to calculate the cost per item. Even if the price seems lower initially, you also have to consider the cost of re-selling after the wedding. Rental companies offer these items at an unbelievably affordable price, and you won’t end up with 150 place settings after the fact!

2. Anything you can use afterwards: BUY
There may be some items that you can find a place for in your home after the wedding. Maybe you feature a cool cake stand and some romantic candles on your dessert table, or a custom sign with your names and wedding date. For the most part, these are going to be one-off, or small groups of items. 

3. Large items: RENT
Large items such as tents, seating, and lighting definitely belong on the rent list. Not only will it save you a ton of time and money, the rental company will get everything set up for you. Talk about easy!

4. Unique/statement pieces: IT DEPENDS
If you want a major statement piece, you may be able to rent it or buy it. You would be surprised at some of the amazing unique items you can get from local rental companies. From velvet chairs to antique vases to letter boards, there are some really cool items you can rent! You may also want to buy something that is super custom but will make a significant statement, like a custom menu board, or mismatched antique frames. 

In the end, just think about what will be easiest and most affordable. You don’t want to spend months after your wedding surrounding by wine glasses you’re trying to resell on Craiglist, but you also want to make sure you have some keepsakes from your big day that will last a lifetime!