Any one have a budget of under 7k

posted 3 years ago in Money
Post # 2
6073 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012


BelleEtoile:  I did a small intimate wedding with two witnesses, but I could have added more people if I wanted to spend $7,000.


Here is how we spent our money:

My attire: $701 (dress, slip, shoes, bra, jewelry, hair flower)

His attire: $233 (suit from Kohl’s, shirt, tie, hankie)

His Ring: $350 (it was $700, but I traded in a ring that was valued at $350)

License/Officiant: $100+106

Photography: $1260 (3 hours, plus her 4 hours of travel)

Just this stuff equals $2750. (Overall we spent $3300, but the other stuff would not apply to your guested wedding).


That means I have $4250 left for food, venue, decor. 

If I invite 20 ppl, that’s $213/per head

If I invite 30 ppl, that’s $141/per head

If I invite 40 ppl, that’s $106/per head

…50 ppl, is $85/per head

…60 ppl, is $71/per head

Those figures seem pretty doable to me.  If I had something like 30 or less, I’d probably look into a private room at a restaurant. 

I once looked at renting a big 6 bedroom mansion (enough rooms for all our immediate family and their families, including a detached guest hous for us to rent for the weekend and all the food.  It was less than $4250 for 4 days 3 nights.

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Post # 3
72 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

BelleEtoile:  Our wedding should come just under $7,000! Right now it’s around $6,300, but we have set aside $7,000 just because you never know what could happen. We’re actually having a pretty large wedding- around 200-230 people! Here’s the breakdown:

My attire (dress, alterations, headpiece, jewelry, shoes): $410

His attire (pants, vest, bowtie- he already has the white shirt and black shoes): $100

Venue (ceremony and reception are in the same place): $1,500

Photographer: $1,400

License & Officiant: $215

Catering: $2,200

Decorations: $100

Stationery (Invites, thank yous, postage, etc): $300

Total: $6,225

So we’ve gotten by pretty well so far! Honestly, a lot of it was due to knowing people- the venue is actually right down the road from where I grew up, and this is only their second summer doing weddings, and they gave me last year’s prices since we were neighbors. The photographer is a talented friend-of-a-friend who is just starting out. The caterer is someone my FI has worked with before through a nonprofit he volunteers for. Stuff like that!

Our venue also has a lot of miscellaneous decorations on-site, so there isn’t much I’ll need to bring myself. Rings weren’t something we included in the formal budget, but my E-ring was about $200 (antique), my band was $90, and his band will be around $20-$30 (tungsten).

Post # 4
1622 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2014 - Cape May

BelleEtoile:  under 7k here. So far we have the reception which is 35$ a person with 40 people. With tax we bank on 3k total. 

Dress 1100$ and the suit SO has already

Rings ( not purchased yet) 700$

officiant for private ceremony 200$ 

cupcakes in lieu of wedding cake if budget allows otherwise venue provides sheet cake or dessert tray. 

No dj- iPod instead. No photographer. We may dress up on a later date to get real shots done.

to save some $$$ were using centerpieces provided by the venue and I’m not bothering with flowers. Possibly a single rose since that’s what SO presented to me the very first time we met.

no wedding party and I’m DIYing hair and makeup.

Post # 5
1202 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

-My attire: 950$ (dress and alterations, ordered online)

-His attire: 0$ (already owned a suit)

-Photos: 200$ (family friend)

-Invitations 250$ (etsy)

-4-course sit down dinner and wine for 50: 2500$ (This took many, many hours of research to find)

-Cake: 150$ (craigslist, again, lots of research)

-Flowers: 200$ (bouquet from an ethnic vendor, grocery store centerpieces)

-Favours: 65$ (candy from walmart in cute boxes)

-Hair and makeup: 150$ (local salon, no trial)

Total: 4465$ (There were lots of other expenses, but these are some of the main ones)

For 7k, you’re not going to invite 300 people to eat filet mignon at a banquet hall, but you can have a lovely wedding.  I found great tips here:

  • This reply was modified 2 years, 7 months ago by  canadajane.
Post # 7
72 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

BelleEtoile:  Oh! Forgot linens, those will be around $100- just tablecloths.

We are actually doing buffet-style, so it’s very casual and self-serve. Our menu is all barbeque (pulled pork, chicken, various salads, cobbler), our beverages are just iced tea and water, and the dishware and silverware is all going to be disposable (not quite paper plates, but a higher-quality plastic). We have an awesome caterer who is really good about working within our budget, and we’ve had food from various other events he’s catered, so we know it’ll still be good! Cost will come out to $10/person.

Our whole wedding is going to be very laid-back, so luckily our catering style works with it! Our ceremony will be in a renovated barn, and the reception will be on the lawn under a tent, followed by yard games, bonfire, and a barn dance- so no one will be expecting fine china or tuxedo waiters, haha. Otherwise there’s no way we could get by so inepensively!

Post # 8
1422 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

With a ton of help from our family and friends (that’s how it’s done where we live, so they were happy to help), we spent about 3.5k on our wedding. We had a full (delicious) dinner and about 200-250 guests. I did a full break down here ( You can absolutely have an amazing wedding with 7k. Good luck!

Post # 9
2661 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

My wedding is going to be way under $7K for 40 people.

My dress, headpiece, and shoes: $900

Church:  free, but a donation: $150

Music:  Kid at church is playing piano: $75

Silk flowers:  $700 (that all bouquets, center pieces and men’s flowers)

Invitations:  $100 Wedding Paper Divas

Reception at our favvorite local restaurant:  $1000 in food and wine

Photography:  Free, my friend is doing it as our gift

Wedding cake:  I go for the consult Thursday but I am doing a cupcake tower with a small cake topper (lots of kids…this is a second wedding for each of us and we are including our kids and their friends):  I am estimating $250

Music:  We are hiring the kid who plays at the restaurant all the time:  $150

I don’t really consider our rings part of the budget because my e-ring would definitely make it impossible to have the whole wedding under $7000.  His ring was about $700.

Post # 10
1762 posts
Buzzing bee

BelleEtoile:  I feel you! I’m no prude when it comes to spending money, but I like to spend it on things that appreciate, or that I will get a lot of use from. Unfortunately my wedding, no matter how symbolic and meaningful it is, doesn’t fit into those categories!!! Luckily I’m creative and crafty too, so I think we will be able to do something phenomenal for cheap! I joke and say that my budget is “as close to free as possible” lol. I’ve actually had amazing luck at bridal shows so the “free” thing is literall! Here are some of the ways I am saving some moola!! 

-Won a free Honeymoon to St.Kitts…

-Won one free dress, bought another for $250. Hopefully alterations and accesories won’t add too much $$$ to the final cost. I plan on buying the fabric for my veil and having it made, sale shoes and jewelry, etc…

-When it comes to flowers, I plan on ordering a wedding package from Costco. I’m going to keep the aisle decor cheap by using te simple rose petal border. I’m also going to order bulk mini bouquets to accent the ceremony chair rows. I already have many of the same vases that can be used for centerpieces. If I need any other containers or candles, I plan on buying them in bulk and taking the time to find any sales.

-The majority of other decorations/details I plan on making myself with a little pinterest inspiration and a few trips to thrift stores and hardware stores. I have EVERY craft material that you can imagine (paint, adhesives, embellishments, fabrics, etc, etc,etc). Many of the adorable wedding items that I’ve seen lately can be made for much cheaper, so I’ve been snapping many photos!!

-I’m going to use a pianist for my ceremony music, so I only have to pay one person. I’m sure it’s cheaper than a string quartet or harpist!

-I’m still checking out venues, but I will only choose one that allows me to bring my own caterer and alcohol. Like an above poster, I plan on spending hours researching caterers to find the best deal. I will also choose a place that will look good with minimal effort, and that has chiavari chairs (I refuse to pay for ugly chairs lol). I’m also getting married in the “off-season” to get the best price 🙂

-I have an awesome proffesional make-up artist as a best friend that has volunteered her services

-My mom is a hairstylist…no one knows my hair better!!!

-Dollar tree has gold chargers…and we all know how much a charger dresses up a place setting!!! I might start researching and collecting other place setting items too…like napkins and napkin rings for use that day. After holiday sales are always a steal!!!

-I live in Atlanta, so I know a million AWESOME dj’s that are reasonable and very talented. 

-I plan on getting a “videographer” to record key moments, and just give me the rough footage. I have a friend who works as a video editor and does amazing work with synchronizing clips to music beautifully.

When it comes to he major expenses like Catering, venue, and photography…I plan on playing hardball and negotiating my ASS off! The first price that any vendor gives is their absolute highest. At this point, seeing how cheap I can get everything for is kind of like a game! I have over a year and a half, so there is enough time to collect sale items for favors,decor, etc. I can’t wait to see the finished product! I know it’ll be beautiful, and I will feel super accomplished knowing that I saved so much money! 

Good luck planning everyone!!!!



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