Welcome to my second week of Wedding Wednesday. Last week I began sharing the posts I never got to post last year after our wedding.
I pride myself on being a budget savvy gal and honestly my wedding was no exception. We didn't want to go crazy and put ourselves in the poor house when planning our wedding. I was pleasantly surprised when after all was said in done we actually went under our original budget.
The best bit of advice I got when planning a wedding was pay a little bit at a time. My advice is have a long enough engagement where you don't have to jump on the first vendor you speak with. Take your time, realize what you want, what you are comfortable paying and not settle for anything you are unsure of. Also, put your money in the places you will remember and your guests will remember. I'm relatively crafty so we also saved money on our centerpieces.
We chose to have our wedding on a Sunday afternoon in April which saved us 70% off the regular price at the country club. Base price on a weekend during high season starts at $100. That was before any alcohol package was added. The venue was absolutely beautiful and what I always wanted.
I didn't skimp on the important things but we were very lucky with the choices we made. I was able to shop around for 15 months before all of the decisions were made. We were lucky to find an up and coming photographer and her husband who took pictures for 8 hours and we got a disk of 800 photos for under $1,200. As a way to save on our photographer we didn't get prints or an album. Instead we used the dvd and printed out photos via Snapfish and Shutterfuly or whichever had a sale. We also used both sites to make our wedding album for under $50. We chose our DJ after I saw them perform at a bridal show. I thought they were pretty fun and I was happy to see them live before I had to make a decision. We received a discount after visiting them at the show too. Our friend, Marie was happy to make our cake for under $300.
My splurge item was my gown and altering my gown. Having a large chest it was hard to find a dress I looked beautiful in. I found the St. Patrick's gown at RK Bridal in NYC. I can't say enough things about this place. I went on a Monday morning. No one was there besides me. I had the help of several attendants. I spent 6 hours trying on gowns. Because I can't make decisions I was so glad when a girl who was there for a friend's dress fitting walked over to complement me on my gown and how she thought I looked in it. The dress needed a bit of work to work with my body but it was worth the splurge. I felt amazing in my dress. It was everything I had ever wanted in a dress. I felt so pretty. At the end of the night I didn't want to take it off. I used my usual regular hair stylist. She was incredible. She charged my $75 for my hair and $50 for all of the girls and moms. Jewelry was found on Etsy and also a small local shop. Both bracelet and earrings cost under $75.
I was a very lucky girl and won a lot of wedding essentials. Thanks to Project Wedding I won my fiancés amazing Bonobos Italian wool suit, priced at about $700; a hair piece from Bella Bleu Sara Gabriel Hairpiece, a garter from Bleu Garters, a wedding tree from True Woodcuts. I also won my bridesmaid's tote bags from American Bridal and some other small accessories.
I wasn't sure if we should post exactly what we spent on our wedding so lets just say I spent between $14,000 and $16,000. If anyone wants to know how we were able to do it and exact amounts please feel free to message me. In a world where the average wedding is between $19,000 and $32,000. I say my budgeting was pretty successful. Staying half under the typical wedding budget I still had everything I wanted and dreamed of for our day.