Have you ever looked through a magazine at pictures of a celebrity wedding and imagined what you would be able to do if you had a wedding budget of $10 million a la Kim Kardashian? While “Platinum Weddings” are all the rage, not everyone has the budget to put them on. If you will be planning a wedding at any time in your life, read on for ways on how to plan a wedding on a budget, be it yours or someone else’s:
- Set a budget– Before you even open a bridal magazine or make a phone call to one vendor, it is absolutely essential to sit down and figure out exactly how much money you have to spend. That said, another important thing to keep in mind, is once you set a budget, you absolutely must stick to it. The last thing you want to have happen is to end up carrying debt as a result of your wedding. Set a budget for how much you are able to spend on every single item from your wedding gown to the venue to the favors. The details add up, so make decisions about necessities versus luxuries. Decide what is important- at the end of the night; what are guests going to remember, the meal, the music or the party favors? Decide what is important to you. Spend your money on those things.
- Look into a full service venue– Some venues that host weddings such as hotels, banquet halls and even some restaurants offer full service options. That might include food, beverages, the ceremony service and even details such as chair linens. Watch out for unexpected costs such as a cake cutting fee- some venues charge as much as $2.00 per person to cut your cake.
- Do your research- You may not want to get your heart set on having Sunflower laden bouquets if you are looking to get married in winter. Designer trunk shows offer sales on wedding dresses sometimes for up to 60% off. Some bakeries offer “bonuses.” For example, when you purchase a wedding cake from some bakeries, on your 1-year anniversary, they will give you a complimentary anniversary cake to help you celebrate. Have a friend with good photography skills video your wedding with “video cameras” you purchase and then have them developed into DVD’s. Make your own invitations and invite a group of friends over to help create centerpieces. You will also want to start early. Many vendors offer discounts the earlier you plan ahead. The closer it gets to your wedding date, the higher the price gets. Desperation equals exorbitant prices. You can have a lavish wedding on a DIY budget if you start early, plan ahead and do your research.
With a little creativity and some good old-fashioned effort, you can have a celebrity style, platinum wedding without breaking the bank. If you plan ahead and stick to your budget, you can in fact have the wedding of your dreams!
Michele Branch is also the Relationship Expert on the online radio show, “Happy Hour with Anxiety Gal and Holly.” The show airs every Sunday at 5 pm, with Michele’s segment airing the last Sunday of the month. All shows can be listened to in “archived” mode.