There are a lot of posts out there about how to cut your wedding budget down, in fact, I wrote one last week. But today, I want to talk about the 2 things that you should not cut from your wedding budget.
After the last bite of cake has been eaten and the last rental has been returned, you’ll only have a handful of things left from your wedding. You’ll likely keep your wedding dress and cake topper and unity candle. If you’re like me, you’ll also have a box under your bed with various wedding day trinkets that you have no idea what to do with but would never ever get rid of. But what about the centerpieces that you spent so much time on? Or the food that you so painstakingly decided on? The only thing you’ll have left of those things are, you guessed it, photos.
While planning my own wedding, I saw soooo many posts that encouraged brides to skimp on their photographer or “just ask a friend with a nice camera to take pictures”. I have a question though. What good is spending all the time and effort and money on a stunning dress and beautiful decorations if you’re going to have sub-par images to remember it all by?
Wouldn’t you rather have a stunning dress and beautiful decorations (that didn’t break the bank to purchase) and then also incredibly magical images to remember everything by?
I’ve heard (and known) of countless horror stories from brides who have hired a photographer because they’re cheap. The photographer arrives the day of and treats everyone horribly, or takes MONTHS to deliver the photos after the wedding, or never delivers the photos, or delivers horribly blurry or dark or over exposed images. The list goes on and on, and it’s heartbreaking to hear about!
Look, I get it. You’ve got a budget. Money is tight. I know…I was there! BUT that is not an excuse to spend $4,000 on a venue and then turn around and hire a $300 photographer because you “can’t afford anything more”. For our wedding, I spent more on our photographer than I did most everything else put together. I had my priorities, and I made sure that I took care of the top things before moving on down the list. Because I knew that if I hired the right photographers, it wouldn’t matter if our venue wasn’t the fanciest one out there, or if our chairs weren’t Pinterest-worthy.
For my own wedding, I was not willing to skimp on our florals or go with fake flowers. I have seen plenty of fake flowers that look really realistic, and some really beautiful arrangements done with them! (And I know it can be a great way to cut some costs.) But for me, I wanted real flowers and greenery. I’m really thankful I went that route, and have no regrets about the money I spent on them. I did try to cut costs a little, though, so here are a few tips on ways you can do that too!
I nixed the roses in everything but my bouquet and the mothers & grandmothers corsages. Roses are spendy, ya’ll!! I opted to use Dahlias and Hydrangeas in place of roses, which saved a good chunk.
I put my own bouquet together, and a few of my bridesmaids did all of the bridesmaids bouquets. I’ve always loved floral arranging, and it’s something that I’m relatively good at. It was really important for me to create my own bouquet, and thankfully, my florist allowed me to do that! She set up her kitchen table with all the supplies we needed, and popped in every little while to see if we needed any help.
Not only was it fun (and honestly, even therapeutic for me), but it cut down on costs a little. Not every florist will be able to accommodate a bouquet making party like that, and not every bride would enjoy it. But if it’s something you’re even slightly interested in, definitely check into it.
I used a lot of greenery to help offset costs. I love the way greenery looks in arrangements, and it’s a lot less expensive than flowers! So anytime I could, I used greenery as a filler or in place of flowers. Baby’s Breathe is also a great filler and relatively cheap!
In my opinion, the florist and the photographer are the 2 things that you should not cut from your wedding budget. Every wedding is different, and every couple has a different budget. But I promise that you won’t regret investing in these two areas!