Post # 1
I just got engaged and have recently started planning things. I have also quickly realized how expensive everything is, especially in a big city. My FI and I are just starting out in life and are unfortunately very poor. I just graduated from nursing school with over 80k in student loan debt and my fiance has a job that does not pay extremely well. We also want to buy a home within the next year and have been saving up money for a downpayment on that. We want to be able to contribute as much as we can for our wedding, but after crunching some numbers, we were still a few thousand dollars short, even after cutting corners (I’m completely willing to forgo tons of flowers and open bar, want a buffet recpetion and will get my dress at David’s Bridal, I’m not having a bridal party, guest list of about 110 people etc). My parents, who are very well off but notoriously tight with their money had mentioned when we got engaged that they would “help out”. So I approached my mom and asked how much they really are willing to put toward a wedding. My mom snapped at me that she doesn’t believe in expensive weddings, asked how much FI’s parents are going to put forth and then told me that when she got married (in the age of hippies) she wore a dress her mom sewed out of bedsheets and her reception was a potluck. She still would not give me any numbers. So here I am, kind of disheartened. I realize it’s selfish of me to whine about not being able to afford the wedding the I envisioned (even though I believe by today’s standards what I wanted was quite modest) and I know plenty of people say “if you cant afford it yourself, dont get married” and believe that parents have no obligation to help pay for anything. Yes, I know. But as the title of this post says it’s still hard letting my wedding dreams die. I always imagined that despite being tight with money, my parents would actually enjoy helping make a special day for me (I am their only daughter). And it’s also unfortunately kind of embarrassing to think about how lame my wedding will be compared to all my friends. Anyone else out there sympathize? Go through something similar?
Post # 3
My parents aren’t very well off, and I am also super cheap.
I wouldn’t say I’ve “let my wedding dreams die” but I have really chose what I think are priorites and what I don’t think are priorities.
Here’s some before and afters:
Before: Maggie Sottero Dress $1300
After: Aria Dress $295 (and it’s way more “me”)
Before: Weisman Museum $1400 +Super expensive caterers
After: Schaar’s Bluff Gathering Center $500, free to have any cater who is licensed.
Before: Normal flowers from a florist.
After: Farmers market flowers (Hopefully all white daisies!)
I am still in college, we will be getting married right after I graduate. And having a fancy wedding isn’t my first priority. I want it to be fun, I don’t want it to be financially stressful for us or our parents. And just by setting a few paycheck and our tax returns aside, we already will have over half of our $10,000 budget.
Post # 4
As the mother of 3 sons, one who is married already and the second who is getting married this July, I can’t understand NOT wanting to help out with my children’s weddings. I’m sorry you are not getting the support both emotionally and financially from your parents during your engagement. That being said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have a wonderful wedding! You may have to scale down what you have dreamed about, but in the end you will be MARRIED! I wouldn’t worry about comparing your wedding to anyone elses. Things don’t have to be expensive to show your personality which is what makes weddings unique in my opinion. You can get lots of DIY ideas from the brides on this website. Actually, if I were to do my own wedding over again, I probably would eliminate 99% of the things I spent money on and thought were important at the time! I thought about advising you to have a longer engagement to have more time to save money, but I think that backfires sometimes. It seems like the longer the engagement, the more time you have to second guess your wedding decisions and actually spend more money!
Post # 5
Oh yes, over and over again, and I was never even one to dream of my wedding day as a girl! We’re paying for everything ourselves and there have definitely been a few things that we had to ‘leave out’ simple because of the cost.
It is definitely a reality check [big time] when you first start out planning. As soon as you tack ‘wedding’ onto anything it goes up 1000% [dress, shoes, flowers, hair, venue, food! etc].
I’d say focus on the things [elements, not necessarily material goods & whatnot] that are most important, and then compromise on the ‘luxuries.’
You can still have a very fulfilling wedding/celebration without breaking the bank… not to say having carte blanche wouldn’t be nice though!
Post # 6
You just have to set your priorities.. If you want a house first.. save money for the house, and do something more affordable for the wedding. There are a lot of girls here doing a budget wedding.
I was able to get my wedding dress and veil for 700 dollars. 144 votives and candles for 95 dollars, black cylinder vases for 4.75 each.. there are lots of deals out there. Our wedding isn’t super budget, but only because the church is 2000 dollars, and we are having 160 people at the reception.
My suggestions: find a photographer that is just starting out but has a good body of work (mine has only done about a dozen weddings, but her stuff is great, and she’s only 1000 dollars). Limit the size of your wedding, since the cost of food/cake/drinks can add up very very quickly. Find a place where there isn’t a hall rental fee… There are lots of people doing things on a tight budget here, and you will be able to as well.
Just keep a budget and stick too it. Know how much you want to save for a house,a nd know how much you want to save for the wedding. You’ll be okay & there are lots of people here to help.
Post # 7
I know how you feel about suddenly realizing that even what you think of as a “modest” wedding is so unaffordable. The beginning of wedding planning was pretty depressing for me. I do think, though, it’s possible to discover a new appreciation for the wee budget wedding. Have you read “A Practical Wedding”? They feature some of the sweetest, most beautiful weddings I’ve ever seen and many are potluck, backyard, picnic, etc. It’s given me a whole new appreciation for a modest, homemade wedding. Any wedding with a lot of heart is far more beautiful than a wedding that simply has a lot of cash, in my opinion.
It sucks to realize you can’t have what you want, but I think if you focus on what you can have (like all your friends and family together for one day, a beautiful ceremony performed by your lifelong pastor, etc) you’ll start to get excited again.
Post # 8
Bless your heart! I am so sorry that you are feeling this way. My advice would to be make some priorities, the “dreams” that can still happen. Even if the whole wedding can’t always be as you expected it, maybe your dress or photography can be.
And don’t worry about comparing your wedding to your friends’. Every couple is so different that their weddings are also so often different. It really isn’t going to matter to your close friends and family how much you spent—they are there to celebrate your LOVE with you!
Good luck and chin up…you’re getting MARRIED! 🙂
Post # 9
Davids bridal actually has some amazing dresses right now. Which I am very pissed out….
anyways! We went through the same thing, in hast(and a different wedding date) I bought a dress I thought I loved…and am now starting to resent…And life threw a few more blows at us. But we are still going to have a beautiful wedding, your wedding will be what you make it.You don’t have throw thousands of dollars at this for you to enjoy it! We are doing a lot of DIY which can help!
I am so sorry that your mom acting that way, I hope things get better!!
Post # 10
- Wedding: June 2010 - Tannery Pond at the Darrow School
That is definitely sad to not have your parent’s support when you know they are in a place to afford it. Personally, I think that’s pretty messed up of them…
I also completely understand the “Letting go” part, I think in some ways we all have to do that…Even though my wedding is not what would be considered a budget wedding, there are things that I originally wanted that ultimately I just had to nix bc of budget (damn those expensive Chivari chairs!!!!)
But I think others make a good point when they say that you can do a lot, even on a budget wedding, if you really do lots of research, figure out what’s a priority and let the rest take a backseat.
If your wedding is heartfelt and filled with love, it will be amazing, no matter how much you’ve spent!
Post # 11
I know exactly how you feel. I’ve cut & cut so many things from my wedding & when I finally found a place we could afford, I lost my reservation because the place is under new management & the pricing is going to change, so now we can’t afford it. I’ve had days when I just wanted to cancel the whole thing because it seems like we’ll never be able to find anything, but I’m still trying to get it done. Sometimes it just feels like you’re just going through the motions, like you’ve cut som many things you’re not even excited any more. Do you have any close friends that could help you find a venue? Is your FI helping with the search? After all the research that I did the first time around, I just don’t have much of a heart to start again from scratch, but my friends & FI are stepping up to help with the research & phone calls & that helps so much! What is your budget? Is it at all possible to cut the guest list down, maybe you could do something nice with just the people who are the closest to you? Well, I just wanted to let you know that I’m in a similar position (my family can’t really help financially, my mom has given me $250 and I think that’s all she can do) and I understand just how you feel! We all know we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others, but it still hurts when it seems like everyone can have a big beautiful wedding & you have to struggle for the bare minimum. I have 2 girls at my job & a girl who used to be my best friend getting married and it’s just so hard when I hear about their lavish wedding plans paid for by their parents, we’re only human.
Post # 12
Hey have you talked with a financial aid counselor to make sure that you’re loans are set up properly for repayment? I have about the same amount of student load debt and my payments are around $375. There is no penalty for early repayment, and so I can always pay more when we’re finished hemorrhaging money for vendors.
Post # 13
While I had to give up on some dreams, I’m trying to focus on others that can come true. No way I could afford my dream venue (Battery Gardens! Everytime I see bees posting about it I die a little inside) and I didn’t get my dream ring. I always envisioned my wedding near water, but it’s in a garden. I always wanted to dance till dawn, but we are having an afternoon wedding that will probably be over by 6pm. And an ipod as our DJ.
But, I did get my dream dress, and my dream man!
Post # 14
I can totally relate to you. My fiance and I are paying for everything ourselves. And Like you, when I first started wedding planning I envisioned an elaborate, elegant, top notch wedding and well, that’s far from whats really going down haha 🙂 We’re having a tented reception in my future father in laws backyard with about 110 people.
~ Instead of having a 5 course meal with servers wearing white gloves, we’re having a catered buffet of all our favorite foods (chicken shish kabobs, bbq ribs, beef sandwiches) Which in all actuality, it’s way more “us”. And I think we can get away with it at a backyard wedding.
~ I had set a budget for my wedding gown of $1000 and I found my dream dress for $250 at a small boutique in Georgia.
~ When we decided on having a tented reception I envisioned hanging crystal chandeliers and fabric draping across the entire ceiling. Well that quickly turned into white string lights and paper lanterns 🙂
What I’m saying is they’re are plenty of ways to make your wedding beautiful. Your guests that truely matter are coming for you and your soon to be husband they’re not there to judge you. There are inexpensive ways to add details to make your wedding memorable and In my own opinion, people are going to remember a wedding that is more unique and shows off your personalities. I’ve learned so much through my wedding planning process, you can’t get so caught up in all the small unimportant things cause you’ll lose sight of the big picture. Your wedding will be absolutely amazing no matter how big or how small because it’s the day you get to marry your best friend. I wish you well and if you need any advice or anything you can email me at [email protected] 🙂 Good luck!!!
Post # 15
i wanted a maximum of 150 people. we are inviting 320 (190 of the invited are FMIL’s the rest are me, fi and my mom combined!) so i’m guessing that dream is over! i’ve come to terms with it though…kinda.
Post # 16
my fiance and i are paying for our ENTIRE wedding ourselves. we’ve had to compromise on some things but it’s still going to be a gorgeous, awesome wedding. the key, i think, is to choosing WHERE you want to spend your money and letting the other stuff go a bit. this doesn’t have to mean that your “dreams are dying”. it just means that your vision is changing a bit, into something that makes sense for you and your fiance and where you are in your lives right now.
if you resign yourself to the idea that the “dream is dead”, then it really will be.
on the other hand, you can pick yourself up, start looking for the best bargains you can find, figure out what matters most, and throw yourself one heck of a wedding anyway.