Oh my goodness, this is such a loaded question! Money is always a tough thing to talk about, especially (it seems) when it comes to weddings. But the good news is that there are options out there for EVERY budget. So, while I’m sure some of you saw this blog post and thought I would give you price points for every vendor, I’m actually going to take a different approach…
Once you’ve gotten engaged and celebrated (because, let’s face it, that’s the really fun part after he pops the question!) and the planning really begins, my suggestion is to first prioritize your wedding day. Is your venue the most important thing to you? Photographs? Video? The food? There’s no right or wrong answer here, it’s just important that YOU decide what’s most important to YOU.
However, once the celebrations have wound down, the last glass of champagne has been drunk, and you and your spouse are headed off for your honeymoon, the things that will be left to remember the day are a few favors that were left and the photos and video that captured the day as it sped past you. And I promise I’m not saying that just because I’m a photographer! I think most people – especially these days – would tell you that it’s worth it to spend money on the things that will last.
Before you even set your budget though, do a little research to see what things cost. There’s nothing more depressing than finding out everything you like doesn’t fit into what you set out to spend. So instead of blowing your budget from the get-go, have an idea of what your favorite vendors charge and then work on your budget from there. You may find that you have to cut back in one area in order to spend a little more in another, but that’s where it’s helpful to know what means the most to you!
If you and your fiancé are both gourmet chefs, then food is going to be a big deal to you. So, spend more money on having a nice sit-down dinner and cut back a little bit on something else (maybe go for the photographer’s 8 hour collection instead of the 10-12 hour one). If you’re a florist or you grew up helping your grandmother with her garden, then by all means, go all out with the florals for your wedding! And trust me, your photographer won’t mind one bit :-) Doing that may mean you go with a venue that’s a little more simplistic, but since you’re not cutting back on flowers, any venue can be transformed with a creative florist!
Truth be told, no matter what your budget ends up being, your wedding day is going to be BEAUTIFUL! Just be sure to find vendors that are a good fit for YOU and what you’re envisioning for the day. As one of my brides recently said, it’s worth it to hire people who know what they’re doing so that you don’t have to worry about a thing. It’s your wedding day and all the bride and groom need to worry about on that day is enjoying family and friends… and getting to marry their most favorite person in the world!