Believe it or not, you can plan a wedding without throwing yourself and your families into debt for the next decade. Here are a few suggestions and guidelines to make this possible without having to cut corners. All it takes is a little discipline and the willingness to stick to a budget.

The first thing you can do is make a list of things that are "required" in planning a wedding. This includes your dress, his tux, guests, a cake, flowers, decorations for the reception, food, music, drinks, photographers, and whatever else you feel are the bare essentials. Then sit down with your fiance and decide on the five most important things on this list. This is where you can splurge a bit. Five may sound like a very small number, but there are an awful lot of decisions that need to be made while wedding planning, even if you are keeping it simple. If you can identify the five most important things before you start, it will keep you from letting all the "minor details" get out of control. Trust me, things can easily snowball if you don't have a solid plan before you set yourself free into the world of wedding planning.