Believe it or not, weddings revolve somewhat around your budget. That is why it is very important to sit down and discuss the monetary aspects of your lives and this wonderful event.
To determine your budget amount, you should define the wedding that is appropriate for you. Some say weddings are massive parties, with the amount of food, the liveliness of the music, and the extent of the dancing being all important. Others say a wedding is a more regal occasion, with attention to detail and sophistication. To define your wedding is by determining your own style and taste carried out within the framework of personal and/or local custom.
Here are some beginning questions for you to ask yourselves.
1. Is anyone unemployed?
2. Is anyone just recovering from a failed business endeavor?
3. Is anyone still paying off medical, legal, or educational bills?
4. Has there been recently, or is there about to be, another wedding or big celebration in our immediate families?
5. How much can we afford to spend?
6. Can we afford the wedding we have visualized?
7. Who all is going to pay for the wedding?
Remember, it is not what you spend, but how you spend it that will distinguish your wedding from all others. According to various sources, the average cost for an American-style wedding over the fast few years for 100 guests at a ceremony and a reception ran more than $16,000. Wonderful weddings can be had at one-half and even one-tenth of that cost.
Write down the amount you think that you, your fiancé and your families can spend, or would like to spend. You have now determined a preliminary bottom line figure for your total expenses.
Here is a sample budget.
Budgeted Approximate Cost
Thank-You Notes _______________
Reply Cards _______________
At-Home Cards _______________
Pew Cards _______________
Formal Pictures _______________
Wedding Album _______________
Parents’ Album _______________
Extra Prints _______________
Wedding Rings _______________
Wedding Cake _______________
Valet Parking _______________
Bridal Attire _______________
Headpiece and Veil _______________
Wedding Consultant _______________
Wedding Parties _______________
Bridal Luncheon _______________
Rehearsal Dinner _______________
Ceremony Site _______________
Reception Site _______________
Maid Of Honor _______________
Best Man _______________
Ring Bearer _______________
Monogrammed Napkins _______________
Groom’s Cake _______________
Spending Money _______________
Total Budget _______________
Total Approximate Cost _______________
In general, about 50 percent of your budget will go to food and drink at your reception. Allow another 10 percent for flowers, 10 percent to 15 percent for music, 20 percent to 25 percent for photography, and 15 percent for different purchases, fees, and attire. One thing to think about is that one of the largest variables in the cost of any wedding depends on the number of guests you invite.
Review your ideas and decide what you might have to do without, or have less of. It is easier to discard some of the luxuries you had hoped for now rather than after you have gotten used to the idea of them. You will want to revise your budget several times throughout the planning process, but it is always good to set out with one in mind.