A lot of the blogs around the circuit have recently wrapped up their weddings and have begun to discuss their budget (expectations versus reality). I try to just pretend I don't have a budget! But, I do - and it's about $8,000. When I was first engaged (YEARS ago) my budget was $10,000. But that sounded like too much money to me...so I cut it in half. $5,000 ended up being a little unrealistic - now we're at $8,000 ($7,352 to be exact, but I'm sure there will be some last minute details and things I've left off).
While trying to keep a small budget, I tried to follow the suggestions of other sites and make a list of my top priorities for our wedding. That didn't go so well! When looking at each item individually - they all seemed important! Food? Yea, we want great food and plenty of it. Music? At first, I was considering the iPod route - but I found a GREAT DJ and they're worth every penny (or more). Dress/Shoes/Attire? Well, who doesn't want to look great? Photography? I tried to go budget on photography but going with an experienced pro is a MUST for us. Paper? Yes, please!
I worked backwards and found the vendors I wanted (through bridal shows, internet, other brides) and made my budget set on having them help with my wedding. I have basic figures that I'm willing to pay for services (based on local sites and other brides in the area) and I go in to my search with that figure in mind. Vendors are a lot more willing to talk when you have a budget in mind. They can tell you right off what they can offer in your price range. One serious budget saver is having our wedding on a Thursday! On venue alone we're saving $1500. We've also used it as a bargaining chip with other vendors as well.
I realize while $8,000 is a lot to me - it's not nearly enough for the weddings in larger cities. I guess living in Mobile, Alabama has its perks! I do hope to stay under budget over all. As long as I can stay away from temptation, it seems very possible. Only time (8 months, 3 weeks, 5 days) will tell!
5 hours ago