We hope you’ve been as inspired as we have by our budget series. We’ve enjoyed bringing you tips and insider tricks you can use to make the hardest part of wedding planning an absolute joy. Not to mention the savings that can be had, for your wallet and your sanity! We’ve loved the advice we’ve received over the past two weeks so much that we just had to share our top ten favorite tips. See if you agree:
1) Be thrifty
In our $10 000 Budget Breakdown, Alyssa from Belle Journée Events shares this advice: “These days décor has become a huge part of wedding budgets. If you can keep costs down by shopping at thrift stores, garage/estate sales, on Craigslist or other used bridal websites, you’ll save a ton of money.”
2) Think outside the “venue box”
Alyssa also gives this great suggestion: “Maybe you can’t afford the barn wedding you’ve dreamed of, but you can afford to rent a park lodge, or plan an off-season wedding. Most venues give major discounts for weddings booked October through April”
3) Cut the guest list
Jessica and Ali of Soiree Event Design and Alyssa both agree that cutting down the guest list is one of the best solutions to wedding budget crisis. Alyssa says “Sit down with your fiancé and maybe each of your parents, and seriously ask yourself why each person is on your wedding list. Most people will understand that there simply isn’t always enough room in a budget to invite everyone.”
4) Reuse décor from the ceremony at the reception.
We love this often overlooked budgeting tip from Alisa Lewis Event Design in the $35 000 Budget Breakdown. Alisa reminds us that this could easily be incorporated into your wedding-day timeline with help from your wedding coordination team.
5) Keep guests’ comfort in mind
Both Alisa Lewis Event Design and Jessica and Ali of Soiree Event Design cite this as an important consideration when deciding what items to cut and what to keep. Alisa gives a great example: “For instance, if it will be a long ceremony out in a field in the middle of summer, don’t ditch the water station or water bottles you budgeted for your guests in order to spend more on flowers or something that’s not a “comfort measure.”
6) Track your spending
It’s so easy to overspend and this seemingly innocent tip will go a long way. Jessica and Ali says in the $20 000 Budget Breakdown that if you make yourself track each expense you are more aware of what you are spending and less likely to make impulse purchases. So true!
7) List your top 3 “must haves”
What a great idea! Alisa suggests that you should do this and make a detailed list from the very beginning.
“Is it important you have incredible food, a great photographer that stays the entire day, and a live band? Or maybe food isn’t a priority and you choose to have a dessert bar reception with a fully hosted bar, an incredible dress, and an amazing videographer to capture it all.”
“The more you research and read before you start signing contracts with your vendors the better off you are.” Shared Alisa in the $35 000 Budget Breakdown. “Make sure you always read the fine print in your contracts with every single vendor you hire. Learning as much about your vendors, their payment plans and contract stipulations is always a good idea as you meet for consultations. Find out exactly what you are paying for and what is not included. Find out what your vendors provide and what they expect you to provide at the beginning stages of the planning process before you sign contracts to make sure it fits in your budget, even with some wiggle room for additions down the road.”
“When talking to vendors such as your caterer and florist there are ways to get a similar look or taste for less money. Be honest with your first pick vendors about your budget, if they simply can’t fit within your limits, then move on to your second or third option.” –Alyssa in $10 000 Budget Breakdown
10) Hire a month-of-coordinator
“It’s sure to protect your (and your mother’s) sanity for the wedding day but also help the wallet if you’re needed to cut costs.” We couldn’t agree more Alisa!
We simply can’t imagine any couple having budget stress with these great tips from the pros, can you? Tell us, what have been your favorite tips shared in our budget series? Do you have any personal success stories to share? Any advice we might have left out?