- 6 years ago
- Wedding: June 2014
Hi all, I’m a new bee (though I’ve been trolling the site for months). I got engaged in December but we don’t have a wedding date yet because finding a venue has been so difficult. To keep the stress down and allow time for us to save up, we’re planning on a date in 2014.
My fiance and I have been together for almost 8 years (we started dating in high school). I’m a neuroscience PhD student and he is a diesel mechanic. We like food and drinks and movies and just good old fashioned hanging out.
Overall, we want the wedding to be romantic, classy, and fun. We pretty much need it to be in the summer on a Saturday night. Neither of our families have a lot of money, so we will be paying for the whole wedding. We have a list of about 100 people. Our budget was $10,000 but after looking for 6 months I bumped it up to $15,000 MAX. We would like the venue to be within driving distance of our home town of Hopkinton MA – under an hour would be amazing, but we’re willing to go ~2hrs away if we can find somewhere great (this includes MA, CT, RI, NH, VT, ME). We need indoor options because it’s New England and the weather is never guaranteed, but I’d like to have the ceremony outdoors if the weather is nice…in a beautiful garden or on the ocean or in the mountains. We want to ensure the safety of our guests while also letting them have a good time, so we will either have the reception at a hotel, within walking distance, or we will supply transportation back to the hotel. And wanting them to have a good time also means providing the alcohol (though I’m open to “signature drinks” or other cheaper options). I don’t want to have the reception at a bland country club or wedding factory. I would be OK with a hotel or country club as long as the feel was right (no hideous carpets and drapes). Jay likes the barn type venues and I am fine with them but I generally dislike the “whimsical” and “shabby chic” wedding style because they would feel false to me.
I have looked online at LITERALLY 900 venues but the worst part about this is that every time I use a new site, there are more venues that I haven’t looked at yet! At this point, although I’ve found many venues that fit some of the things we want, I haven’t found any that fit everything we want. I’ve made up a budget on weddingwire.com and I have 2000 for venue/transportation, 6000 for food and drink, 600 for the DJ, 600 for flowers, 250 for decorations, 150 for the officiant, 1000 for photography, 250 for invitations, 150 for the cake, 160 for bridal party gifts, and 950 for the dress/tux/shoes/accessories/hair/make-up etc. If you do the math, this is only ~$12,000 but because there is always tax, administrative/service fee, and tip, that adds 25%. I feel like I’ve skimped as much as I can in many categories, so I don’t know what else to do! Please help!