Bride to Bride: That Damn Budget

Budget. Budget. Budget. Budget. Why do we have to talk about the budget?! Unfortunately, all weddings require money, so it’s best to know before you even begin replicating your Pinterest board, how much you have to spend! For me, Pinterest sometimes made me question how much I needed to spend to get the vision I wanted. I am sure you have scoured the internet and stumbled across weddings where you bookmarked the page because “THAT IS YOUR WEDDING”! When you show your picture to a vendor, they give you a side eye and then drop the bomb of a price WAAAYYYY outside of your budget. Believe me, I was there a couple of times and when they presented me with the quote, I gave them the side eye back. Planning for a wedding is definitely about saving and really having a look at your wedding desires and making it fit inside of your budget. Here are some tips to help you do just that:

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1.) Talk with ALL parties involved who will be contributing to the wedding. Traditionally, the parents of the Bride handled a majority of the financial responsibility for the ceremony and reception, while the parents of the Groom handled the rehearsal dinner. However, times have changed and there are NO rules as to who pays for what. So you and your boo need to be able to have an OPEN and REAL convo with anyone contributing AND with yourselves.  Establish a base. Figure out how much everyone wants to contribute and/or take care of. For Brian and I, my parents gave me what they were willing to take care of and contribute, Brian’s dad let us know what he was willing to contribute and then Brian and I determined between ourselves what we would be able to save and contribute. Luckily for Brian and I as soon as we got engaged, my mom had a number in her head of how much we would probably spend on the wedding, so having the money talk with her wasn’t so bad.

2.) Make a preliminary guest list. What? Why are we talking about a guest list… isn’t this a budget post? Your guest list dictates almost everything pertaining to your wedding! Say you have a budget of 10K, but you want to invite 200 guests and it cost $30/per person to feed them, that’s $6,000 right there, leaving $4,000 to cover everything else like the photographer, florist, DJ, a wedding gown, wedding planner, etc. Now gorgeous weddings CAN and do happen for under 10K, you just have to be smart about planning. (Almost) EVERY SINGLE ITEM stems from your guest list – size of the venue, food, tables, invites, favors, and centerpieces (to name a few). Therefore, you have to do a guest list in the EARLY planning stages, so you can determine what your wedding day priorities are. You can make it work, but you need to know at the beginning what you are working with!

3.) Decide on your priority areas. Now you need to decide what are your three priorities. What are priority areas, you ask?! I explain it to my couples as – if you only have enough money to pay for three things, what would they be? Note – you cannot say one of your areas is the reception! There are SO many components to creating a reception, so you have to be specific about the areas.  For my own wedding, I wanted people to eat good, have awesome stationery products and dance the night away! Once you have determined and taken care of these areas everything else is NEGOTIABLE! Making everything a deal breaker can really be stressful and overwhelming to you and your family. It is your day, but you have to live life after.

Beautiful weddings can happen on any budget, you just have to keep an open mind to the vision of your day!

XoXo ~ Jevettra

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