Robbing Florals to Pay Rings

Third Time Wife, Wedding Planning

Wedding rings on top of cash

aka Figuring out just how your going to pay for what you want

Research weddings for any amount of time and you’ll get more than you ever wanted to know about where the budget should be spent. I despise the word “should.” Should implies that I have to do something because that’s how other people did it. And while I’m not one to have a problem with authority, I do take umbrage with those who pretend to know what I want more than me.

But having something like this sample budget allotment does give us a good place to start, so I’m not going to throw the budget out with the bathwater.

Here’s the basic breakdown for our $5K Wedding, as suggested by The Knot and Real Simple:

Reception $2425-2500
(including venue, rentals, food and beverage)

Attire $500
(bride and groom clothes and accessories)

Flowers/Decorations$500
(if it doesn’t come with the site, it goes here)

Music $400-500
(dj or band or your ipod and some speakers)

Photos & Videos $500-600
(includes the prints, too)

Favors & Gifts $150
(for guests, attendants and each other)

Ceremony $100-130
(site and officiant fees)

Stationery $150
(anything paper that gets mailed or handed-out)

Rings $100
(self-explanatory)

Transportation $50-150
(limos, valets and any hotel rooms for the bride and groom)

The biggest difference between the two suggested allotments were between music and photos: The Knot prefers photos to music and Real Simple considered them equal contenders.

Now, some of those amounts are absolutely laughable: $100 for 2 wedding bands?! Sure, I could find them like that online from some warehouse but we might have to monkey things around just a bit. Like maybe going the iPod route instead of a dj and freeing up those funds for other uses, and having the ceremony and reception at the same venue so as to avoid car rentals, 2 location fees and who knows what else.

We do agree that the reception taking up half the budget makes sense as one of our priorities is good food and drinks. Meanwhile flowers will probably get nixed altogether in favor of less-perishable, more economical options made by moi, as will pretty much all the stationery needs. That doesn’t mean we get to totally zero out those ledger lines, there will still be expenses involved (like stamps!), but they will be much less than these estimates with the rest made up in “sweat equity.”

And while there’s still the possibility of adding more to the budget (funds, not expenditures) by the time it’s all said and done, I don’t really have a problem being a couple with more time than money to pull off this wedding.

Pretty Book and Flower Icon

Does your proposed budget make you shudder? 
Or are you, like us, determined to make it work?