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Cut Down Number of Guests

Size matters. "The number one thing you can do to keep your wedding costs down is to keep your guest list down," said Dena Davey, director of marketing for the Association of Bridal Consultants.

Average spending per guest reached $204 in 2012, according to the wedding website theknot.com, which conducts an annual survey of wedding costs.

If that sounds like a lot, remember that each invitee gets an invitation, a catered meal, a piece of very pricey cake, and a whole lot of champagne—and that's without a lot of frills.

(Read More: How to Tie the Knot on a Shoestring)

So the potential savings from a smaller ceremony are clear.

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