How to budget for your wedding - Some ideas for cutting costs

This has been a post that I’ve been a little hesitant to write for a few different reasons. I just Googled ‘ways to cut wedding costs’ and hiring a professional photographer was pretty much one of the first things to go, yikes! I’m starting to understand where the need for finding affordable wedding vendors is coming from. When I think about getting married I have to ask myself ‘how am I going to pay for everything?!’ so I get it.

In this blog post I’m going to cover a few ideas that could allow you to make some better financial decisions and save money when it comes to planning your wedding, without having to sacrifice the photography.

Budgeting for your wedding

START WITH YOUR BUDGET

Start with your maximum budget and then add a buffer for unknown expenses. Then start to make a list of all the expenses that you can think of. Try and order this list from ‘must haves’ at the top, to the expenses that you might be able to do without or explore other options.

REVIEW YOUR GUEST LIST

This has to be the hardest part about planning a wedding, I often hear this from Brides. It might be an area where you need to be a little more serious and cut back on the number of people you invite because this will reduce your costs. Invite your nearest and dearest, the people who mean the most to you and have had involvement in your life recently. Review your list a couple of times before moving on to creating invites.

Writing your wedding guest list
Inviting guests to your wedding

SHOP SAMPLE GOWNS & PURCHASE ITEMS YOU’LL WEAR AGAIN

Did someone say sale? Check out sample gowns for huge discounts on the original prices. You might need to spend a little longer searching for the right dress, but you’ll be surprised with what you find! Some brides are also choosing to not wear a veil so you can cross that off your list if you want.

When it comes to picking your Bridesmaids and Groomsmen outfits purchase outfits that they are likely to wear again.

Shop sample wedding gowns
how to budget for your wedding

GO MINIMALIST

Save on wedding decor by keeping your theme simple. You might not need all the bells and whistles. Think about only using items which you can reuse again in the future (avoid single use plastics and items that will be thrown away). Pick a location that speaks for itself. Use your view and surroundings.

Wellington wedding photography
Wellington shark wall

HAVE A BUFFET!

If your guest list is on the larger side, this is a great opportunity to have a buffet. Buffet food doesn’t have to be boring, in all honestly, I prefer it! I love being able to pick and choose what I want to eat.

If you are wanting snacks for your guests before dinner, make your own grazing table. These look great and go down a treat!

Wedding grazing table
Grazing table

SAVE ON WEDDING INVITATIONS

I have mentioned this in my recent post about planning your eco wedding. Send your invitations electronically! Not only are you saving on paper, you’re saving on money. Check out Paperless Wedding.

BUY YOUR OWN ALCOHOL

This will depend completely on your venue and it may not be achievable but keep it in mind because you will save so much money!

Wedding alcohol
cocktails for your wedding

CONSIDER THE OFF PEAK SEASON

I understand that some venues will have winter pricing and even week day pricing. Consider talking to multiple venues about their quiet periods and if they have special rates during this time.

USE SEASONAL FLOWERS

Talk to your florist about seasonal flowers or look into dried flower bouquets. Some brides will even make their own bouquets out of plastic or silk flowers which can be used again and sold after your wedding.

plastic flower arrangement
plastic wedding bouquet