How one couple kept wedding costs down by staying personal

COLUMBIA (WACH) - Stu and Emma have been dating for five years, but have known each other since high school.

Self proclaimed "adventurers", their relationship has taken them everywhere from national parks to Machu Picchu.

And it's that exploratory spirit they want to bring to their wedding this June.

"Our wedding theme is travel. It's what we love to do. It's how we spend time together. For us, it's something we really prioritize in our relationship." explains Emma.

And Emma's parents also have the travel bug.

They've collected postcards from all their destinations during the course of their 30+ year marriage.

And when they knew Emma and Stu were ready to tie the knot, they decided to go through their collection and give the couple a way to set the tone for their travel themed wedding.

"So they went through and culled a bunch of their extras out and gave them to us and all we did for our Save the Date was address and we had a stamp. We stamped our names and the date of the wedding and location on the postcards so everyone got a different one. " says Stu.

Wedding planners say picking details that are unique to you keep your wedding from being cookie cutter.

"I think my biggest piece of advice on all the details that you see nowadays is that you should stay very personalized. Make sure you bring in elements that are all about you." says Melanie Murphy from "By Invitation Only".

And that's exactly what Stu and Emma plan to do.

Their wedding ceremony will be in Emma's grandmother's backyard, with only close family in attendance.

But the next day there will be a big party in grandma's backyard that will not only be very personal to this couple, but majorly cut down on costs.

"Everyone can come in sandals and hang out in the backyard. There's no seating arrangements because it's kind of just a fun party to hang out. We don't have to rent a church. We don't have to rent chairs." Emma says.

The couple also slashed costs by taking loved ones up on their offers to help.

"My sister is a pastry chef. So she's making the dessert so I don't have to spend money on a wedding cake.Because she said 'I want to do something'. Well, great. Would you make cupcakes or would you make the dessert? Whatever you can contribute." says Emma.

It's personal touches like that which make Stu and Emma feel as though this celebration is all about them and no one else.

"Those pieces ultimately make it so it's about us. It's about celebrating this relationship and this moment." Emma states.

A moment this couple is sure to remember during all their years to come.

It's reported the average wedding nowadays costs around $26,000.

Stu and Emma say their wedding will end up costing well below that amount.