Hello friends and welcome to the first post in my new Wedding Wednesday series. My hope is that this series will be a resource to brides-to-be during planning to make things easier on you and give you a beautiful day to look back on. Today’s post is geared towards “Budget” Weddings and how you can get the most for your investment and make your wedding look more expensive or “higher-end” than it really is!
Where to save and where to splurge is up to you but where you splurge will affect the overall look and feel of your wedding.
SAVE – Catering
We catered our wedding through a local barbecue restaurant, Black Eyed Sally’s in Hartford, which cut the cost way down and was the most delicious dinner we could’ve hoped for. Even if barbecue isn’t your thing, having a local restaurant cater your dinner buffet style will often (but not always) be cheaper than having a venue provide a plated or buffet dinner service.
SAVE – Signage/Calligraphy
A friend of mine did all of the signage for our wedding and it was gorgeous!! If you have a friend who is into calligraphy or just somebody with great handwriting, asking them to do your signage (please pay them if possible!!) is a great way to elevate the look of your wedding without breaking your budget! We sourced wood slabs from Michaels and local craft shops which kept costs down even further.
SAVE – Wedding Invitation Suite
This is one of the bigger regrets of my wedding experience despite our invitation suite being absolutely perfect for what I envisioned. I regret this because, while so many people complimented how beautiful it was, it is ultimately a piece of paper that ended up in the trash for pretty much everyone. Knowing what I know now, I would’ve likely gone with something much simpler and cheaper, yet still beautiful.
SPLURGE – Photo & Video
Photography/Videography was probably the most important aspect of our entire wedding day. These were the vendors we spent time to get perfect and are the two we are most thankful to have hired because the memories they captured are incredible. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched our Highlight video (thanks David Anthony Media!) and am constantly looking through our wedding album to relive the memories.
SPLURGE – Entertainment
Make sure you have a fantastic DJ or a band that you love because the experience of your wedding is ultimately what people will remember. Will I remember the color of the napkins or how big your wedding cake was…probably not. But I will remember if the dance floor was packed and everybody was partying and dancing the night away. Remember that your wedding is an event and, while you should be the priority in planning, the happenings of the event are ultimately what will be remembered most!!
Where should I invest my money if I really want to have a beautiful wedding?
Photography/Videography – This seems a little silly that you would spend so much on capturing your wedding if you’re not spending that much money on the wedding itself…right?! Wrong! Many photographers/videographers work hard making lower budget weddings look elegant and high end!
Florist – A great florist will be able to take your budget and stretch it much farther than you think by knowing what flowers are in season, which are best in a bouquet, what will give you the biggest “bang for your buck” and so much more! My personal favorite florist, and the one we used for our own wedding, Sinclair Designs did just this. We originally were going to get some cheap baby’s breath from Stop & Shop and deal with it but she was able to give us the most stunning day!!
Do I need an expensive venue to have a beautiful wedding?
The short answer is NO! I have seen backyard weddings that look ten times higher-end than weddings in expensive venues because of where the couple decided to invest their money. Venues can make or break the aesthetic of a wedding day so always keep that in mind. A wedding in a venue that looks like a dark basement isn’t going to look as elevated as a mansion BUT tented weddings are always a safe bet (weather permitting) to keep things looking classy!!
At the end of the day, what is most important in a wedding is LOVE and not the budget. One of my all-time favorite weddings to photograph was also one of the lowest budgets that I have photographed. It is a favorite, however, because the couple was so fun and so in love. That is what made it so memorable!
Anyways, I hope these tips were helpful to you and that they might help you create your perfect wedding day!! See you soon!!