@Brooklyn55: Yes the reception category includes everything you listed – DJ is not included as part of the package, but I included $1100 for DJ (including tip) in the reception $ amount.
@MLDoddie: No, we don’t have a photographer yet. It’s just a budgeted amount to go look for a photographer. This is the type of thing I am worried about…
@HeLovesDogs: No, we don’t have flowers yet. It’s just a budgeted amount to go look for a florist. This is the type of thing I am worried about…
So for things that I should have put more money towards, it seems like there’s not anywhere else in the budget to take the money away from.
In the apparel category we’re pretty much done, i.e. we’ve spent everything that will be spent. The only place I could “get” some back from there is I budgeted a $100 contribution to my Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses. So if I could find a more affordable dress then I wouldn’t need to contribute that. But, finding a dress that we agree on is a challenge at any price point!
In the flowers category, it seems a little lower than it truly is b/c that’s just flowers for people. There’s another $800 for flowers in the reception category, for a total of $1200. I’ve been told that is still low, but anyway, no room to squeeze anything out there.
In the photo category, we could come out at the budgeted amount. I have a few referrals for student/starting photographers, or we could use thepros (kind of a “chain store” photographer). Using any of these options we would hit the budget. But I don’t know how to choose the best one among those.
In the paper category, we are already over, so @Sea_Ashley: is totally right. I can raise that one to $278 or 1% without it really hurting all, and that’s more realistic.
In the rings category, my future husband wants something very specific which we priced out at almost exactly $1300. So depending on the price of platinum we should hit this one exactly.
The miscellaneous category includes: Marriage license, Hairdresser, Bridesmaids luncheon, Manicure/pedicure for me & attendants, Make-up, Premarital counseling, & Getting ready brunch/snacks.
The favors budget includes about $1/guest in favors & a present for each attendant [$40 each for 3 men + $70 each for 3 ladies] , and $200 for his family gift, $200 for my family gift.
The whole problem is (as for everyone, I imagine) that the budget doesn’t fit the vision that we have! And we’ve already done most of the things on this list (or they don’t apply)… http://www.brides.com/wedding-answers-tools/wedding-etiquette/2012/11/how-to-cut-your-wedding-budget-in-half
@eocenia: Thanks, that is a lovely way to phrase it. You’re right – critique is harsh wording. How about, “Help me review my budget.” It is really interesting to see how different the budget comes out depending on what you’re doing. I guess the reason I wanted some feedback is because I’ve been hearing a lot of feedback that I didn’t budget enough $ in some areas, so I just want to know, can we make it work, or do I have to scrape up more money from somewhere?