Hey there! Today I'm giving you some insight on you what should consider when coming up with a budget for your big day. I know, the money talk sucks but it's best that you're honest with yourself and prepared when it's time to shop for vendors. No, not everyone will have a magazine wedding. No, not everyone can afford every little detail you see on blogs and Pinterest (because you know, you actually have to purchase every little thing you see in those photos). Your wedding will be beautiful and special no matter how much you spend. But let's jump into some realistic tips to save some headache and surprises.
1. Figure out what is most important to you and your fiancé? Is it the ceremony and grand entrance or is the party and food afterward? Or maybe it's the honeymoon. Deciding this will help you allocate your funds appropriately. Maybe be you can do without major decor at your ceremony space if that means you'll have an open bar for your guests to enjoy.
2. How many people do you know really want to be apart of such an important occasion? Seriously. Once upon a time I had a list of 200 people I wanted at my wedding and that was only my list. And it was destined to grow for genuine people I would meet along the way. Today, I'm at a fraction of that. One of the major ways weddings get expensive is when the guest list keeps growing. Come up with a cut off number then fill up the spaces with your nearest and dearest. You'll be surprised who makes the cut.
3. Location, location, location! Picking the right venue is arguably the biggest budget factor. Choose it wisely. When you're venue shopping consider your date, time of year and if the venue has onsite catering. Weddings are happening any day of the week now so don't totally count on a discount if you want a Tuesday wedding. However, some places offer deals depending if you're wedding date is during the off season, roughly October through March. Having your ceremony and reception at the same venue will save money on transportation and time for photos. Picking a venue with in-house catering will save you the trouble of finding your own caterer. However, you won't save money if they venue is expensive and the meal per person is way out of budget.
4. Decor. My only advice here is to not skimp out on quality. You'll do more harm than good trying to figure out what corners to cut and how to make something happen when you should just consult a planner/coordinator, a florist, or ask your venue for preferred vendors. Take advantage of resources like bridal shows, wedding pro tips, luncheons and different events looking for brides in attendance to help you get the best information for your planning process.
5. Photography! I mean how else were you going to document your wedding, iPhone shots from guests? The necessity alone can get very expensive. Shop around! Look at their work on their websites and Instagram accounts. Does their style fit you? Do you like they're editing? Most importantly, will they fit in your budget. From a coordinator who puts her clients first, don't let any one vendor consume a greater portion of your money. There are talented people everywhere and they all charge differently.