Bees with a 15k budget (or close)

posted 3 years ago in Money
Post # 2
1558 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2017

snookpower :  Have you looked at The Knot? Their app has a tool where I key in my total budget and they give you recommended budgets for each category/vendor.

Post # 3
123 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

100 people – Including ceremony, cocktail hour & reception, some flowers, a limo, the DJ, the cake, photography – $10k plus sales tax in NY

Bridal gowns – so this one is a bit weird but I researched my dress and realized that buying their minimum to qualify for a wholesale price cost me less than buying 2 dresses (1 for ceremony and 1 for reception) retail. – $2465 and I’ll sell the other 3 brand new dresses at cost to try to recoup a portion of that so any bees interested in a size 10 dress at a third of the cost let me know.

Men’s suits – $1200 – Went with a UK website that does a great job with them

Flowers – $550 (DIY centerpieces are the extra flower cost because I didn’t like the ones that came with the package)

Bridesmaids dresses and flower girl dress – $600

Other miscellaneous like added decorative touches, marriage license, Mom’s outfit etc – $1500.00


I am sure I am going to go a bit over our budget but been pretty lucky finding deals on items I like or love.


Let me know if I can help! Good luck!

Post # 5
1202 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

Ours is somewhere between $17K – 20K but I’ll share.

Venue + food $10K: this includes the ceremony/reception site, 5 servers, 2 bartenders, all food, linens, tableware. this covers up to 100 people so we will more than likely have an additional cost add on, not sure of that yet since we haven’t finished final guest list.  This was a STEAL.

photographer $3,800: this included engagement session, 10 hours on day of wedding + second shooter.

flowers $3,000

cakes + cookie favors: $450 

 DJ $1,190: ceremony + reception + monogram

I should say this doesn’t include invitations, wedding dress, hair/makeup, guestbook, miscellaneous details.  My fiancé’s parents gave us a chunk of money we choose to use to cover the vendors and are paying for the small stuff ourselves so I haven’t kept up with those charges. 

Post # 6
153 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

We’re aiming for 15K but our guest list keeps going up so we’re a bit over now. If some of the people I’ve assumed are coming don’t (and this is the maximum), we’ll be in better shape:

Guests: 119

Location: Dad’s backyard, Portland OR

Food and Beverage (dinner, cocktails, cake): $6,000

Marriage License: $60

Photography/Videography (engagement session and videographer is Wedding Mix): $3,380

Flowers: $325

Other Decor: $100

Lighting $150

Rentals: $2,200

Stationery/Paper Goods: $275

Attire (my mom picked up my dress): $1,240

Hair/Makeup: $445

Bus: $945

Day-of coordinator (includes servers): $785

Hotel: $480

Total: $16,385.00

Post # 7
1200 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2015 - Malibou Lake Mountain Club

snookpower :  we spent total $15k for 100 people including honeymoon. It was grand. Prioritized food lol

Post # 8
75 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 2017

We’re hoping to keep ours under 10k (originally wanted 5k but realized that was pretty impossible for what we wanted 🙁 ) for 60-80 people off season (december) on the US West Coast.

Current Budget:

– 7500 to Venue which is beach adjacent and includes ceremony fees/setup, reception fees/setup, food and beverage, and valet required parking for venue (we might not end up having to do this one which will lower it by 1000)

– 1000 or less to my and SOs attire, hoping to have a friend sew part of it to lower costs

– 300 or less for flowers (have had multiple offers from friends of friends who do wedding arrangements)

– 200 for favors, other misc day of stuff

– 500 for fabric to create color throughout venue

There are a few other misc costs but thats just off the top of my head

Post # 9
511 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

Venue: $3500

Catering: $3750 + $483 service charge

Rentals: $583

Drinks: $810

Photography: $920

DJ: $1100

Cake: $385

Decorations: $500

Floral: $623

Gratuities: $1194

Dress: $1077

Hair: $30

Insurance: $270

Invitations: $280

Save the dates: $113

This doesn’t include wine as it is a gift from FI’s parents. The tux rental was free and our officiant is a friend. Wedding is in Northern California with 150 guests. 

Post # 10
1296 posts
Bumble bee

50 guest wedding.

Venue (historical home 12 miles outside of Boston. 5 Hours for ceremony and reception) $2,100

Catering- $3200

Open beer and wine- $1200

Photographer- $800

Dress with alterations- $950

Dj- $500

Harp player for ceremony- $250

Cake- $190

Officiant- $350

Tux rental for groom and best man- $400

Flowers and centerpieces  (my sister made the flowers out of cloth and book pages) $200

Invitations- $40

Cake topper- $20

 I think that about covers it and it totals about 11k. We took a low key honeymoon that ran us about $1500.

Post # 12
2072 posts
Buzzing bee

snookpower :  

Here’s our breakdown so far for a budget wedding:

Guest list: 35 people total

Venue: FREE (friends property)

Photographer: $900. She’s a 2nd shooter starting her own wedding photography business so got a steal

Flowers: $440. Includes my bouquet, corsages for parents/ g-parents/ officiant / Groom

Decor: $150 includes table lanterns, candles, ribbon, string lights

Cake: FREE- gift from family member

Caterer: $12/pp included lasagna, chicken alfredo, salad with 2 dressings, homemade rolls, water and tea

Wine: $200

Brides dress: $800

Groom Suit (purchased not rented): $600

Groom Shoes, tie, pocket fold: $200

Bridal Hair + makeup: $200

Chair and table rental: $280 for all day chairs and tables + delivery fee

Ceremony Arch: FREE- gift from friend

Officiant: FREE, gift from friend

Instrumental music: FREE gift from friend

Invitations (envelopes + return labels included) $50

Postage: “free” (already have)

Set Up/ Tear Down Fees: none

Alterations: none for me

Bridal accessories: shoes gift from parents, jewelry already owned, hair piece $15 

Marriage License: $110

Right now our total is $4,165 but doesn’t include some incidentals like tips and a few fruit + sandwich trays day-of as we are getting ready. I think total we will slide in just under 5k and not really cutting any corners per se.



Post # 13
1296 posts
Bumble bee

medaisies :  I know pictures are all that’s left after the wedding is over but for us food, drink and atmosphere were tops. I found our photographer on thumbtack. He had a few weddings under his belt but was mostly a concert photographer to begin. We loved his work (concert and weddings) and once we met and clicked we knew he was a good fit for us. We were very happy with him on the day and with how our pictures turned out.

Post # 14
1352 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2017 - The Lodge at Little Seneca Creek

We’re spending about $11,500. Some things we decided to scratch or do ourselves (like my hair and make-up), and everything else we did a lot of research on to find the best deals but still have the wedding we envisioned. We’ll be inviting almost 100 people but expect no more than 80 to attend. Here’s our budget breakdown:

Venue: $2,740 (beautiful lodge owned by parks and rec)

Officiant: $200 (a friend is marrying us)

Marriage license: $55

Photographer: $1,550 (includes engagement shoot and 4 hours at the wedding)

Caterer: $2,150 (AMAZING BBQ for a reasonable price!)

Alcohol: $680 (purchasing from a liquor store, and the caterer is providing a bartender)

Dress: $500 ($200 for the dress, $300 for alterations)

Shoes, underwear, and accessories: $70

Suit rental: $120

Florist: $480 (using in-season flowers and having simple bouquets and centerpieces)

DJ: $1,500

Cake: $300 (a friend of a friend is making our cake)

Linen rental: $400

Invitations: $110 (used paperless post for e-Save the Dates and ordered the invitations on Black Friday at 30% off!)

Favors: $25 (wildflower seed paper hearts)

Wedding party gifts: $85 (bracelets for the ladies, ties for the guys; we’ll be creating photo albums for our parents–not sure how much those will cost yet)

Other decor items: $150 (flameless candles, escort cards, table number holders, etc.)

Wedding night hotel: $100

Post # 15
242 posts
Helper bee

We hosted 36 people, and spent around 15K (central Canada).  Here was our breakdown:

My dress, accessories, shoes = $550 (dress was $300 on a sample sale, no alterations required)

His suit and attire = $2K (purchased on sale; he was in need of a new, good suit that he’ll wear multiple times)

My hair and makeup = $500 (including a hair and makeup trial before hand)

Center Pieces & decor = $300 (bought roses from Costco and made the arrangements myself, already owned a lot of the vases, candle holders, etc.)

Linens = $200 (only had six tables to decorate)

Officiant & license = $550

Food & alcohol = $6500 (passed appetizers, three course meal, top shelf open bar for the night; included our venue for the ceremony & reception for no extra charge. Food was one of my top priorities, so it took up a lot of our budget)

Stationary (invitations, save the dates, menu cards, thank you cards, postage) = $250 (Vista Print – worked out fantastic)

Cake = $350 (two-tiered, fondant icing)

Photography = $2800 (I tried really hard to keep this one to a reasonable cost – it would have been super easy to spend $5-6K on a photographer)

My bouquet & DH’s boutinere: $300 (I splurged on my bouquet – didn’t want to DIY that; no wedding party, so no additional bouquets/boutinere’s required)

DH’s ring = $1k (I didn’t get a separate wedding ring – I just wear my e-ring)

DJ = went the DIY route with a pre-planned play list on the computer and the venues sound system

Leave a comment

Find Amazing Vendors