(Closed) Tell me about your budget wedding:)

posted 7 years ago in Money
Post # 3
598 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I am still in the process of planning my budget wedding.  My MAX is 10,000 but I think I’m going to end up more on the 8000 side.  So far I’ve spent about 6000.  I bought my dress at davids bridal for 500.  It will cost about another 200 for alterations.  We are having the ceremony and reception in the same venue that is costing about 1400 for everythign there, a friend is going to DJ for us so that is 300 as a favor, We are having a buffett of Johnny Carinos (not served) so that is about 1500 and we are going to have some of our friends older (in high school age) kids serve for us.  I found a GREAT deal on a photographer, 800 for engagement, bridal, ceremony and reception pictures with printing rights.  I got my invitations at 123print.com, great quality and very affordagle, 82 for invitations and reply cards including envelopes.  Additionally I am NOT going to do save the dates, wedding favors, a videographer or a plated dinner. My mom is doing the reception flowers for me so that also saved cost wise.  That is about all the details I have ironed out as of now.

Post # 4
217 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@TequilaSunrise: We’re working with about $8,000 for 100 people, which I think is a tight budget. Here are some of the ways we’re saving $, thanks to family friends and shopping around:

  • Photography–My best friend is a fantastic wedding photographer. She’s not photographing because she’s my Maid/Matron of Honor, but she has a friend who is also a professional who will photograph for about 10% of the regular cost as a favor to her. My Maid/Matron of Honor will do all the Photoshop/editing stuff as our wedding gift–a VERY generous donation of her time!
  • We’re getting married ourdoors at a beautiful restored ranch in San Diego. It’s fabulous, but it’s considered a public park, so it’s a LOT less expensive than any venue I could find in SoCal.
  • Flowers–My parents’ friend has a wholesale flower license. She and all her daughters, my mom, me, and girlfriends are going to sit around in her dining room the day before the wedding making all the bouquets.
  • Officiant–We’re having a friend marry us. We’re just paying to have him ordained via the internet.
  • Rings–We’re now getting me moissy rings instead of diamonds. That’s saving us a ton of money.
  • Dress–I’m not going with a designer dress. It’s just not a priority for me, even though designer dresses look fabulous.
  • Caterer—We shopped around. The first caterer quoted us $2,000 more than the caterer we decided to go with. Our current caterer has all her own tables, chairs, linens. It saves us a ton of money because we don’t have to pay as high of rental fees as we would have with the other caterer who would have outsourced everything.
  • Honeymoon–We’re going to Europe, but on my parents’ frequent flyer miles! It’s our wedding gift, and it’s saving us a few thousand for sure! My parents are super generous, even though they don’t have a ton of money.

Post # 5
26 posts
  • Wedding: August 2012

Our budget is $7,000 in the Chicago suburbs which is crazy low by a lot of standards here! We’re not too far into planning, but so far I am 

-entering to win a free wedding photography package (just found it on this website!)

-having both the ceremony and reception in my aunt’s backyard to save on fees

-having a friend officiate

-offering only beer, wine, and a few cocktails

-having a local restaurant cater instead of a big catering company

-using furniture from friends and family instead of renting tables.

Oh, and our guest list is 100 people!

Post # 6
6892 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012

We are still 2 months out, but our guest list is 114 and our budget is 7000. Here are some of the basics though.

Venue: We got a disocunt on our venue because FI’s father “knows somebody.”

Dress: My dress was on sale for $749. Yes, it was a bigger part of the budget than I’d planned (I’d wanted to spend less than $500) but I LOVE it.

Tux: We are getting the tuxes from Savvi formalwear and they had a deal – if all the groomsmen rent from them, the Grooms tux is free! So, it’s free. Includes “everything but socks and underwear” as we say.

Rings: We got an excellent deal on our wedding bands. It was basically “Buy Woman’s ring, get Man’s ring free.” So we got $1100 worth of rings for about $600.

Food: My Mom’s co-worker used to own a catering business and now does catering on the side for cheap. Also, we didn’t do a full sit-down meal and instead are doing heavy appetizers, desserts, etc. The menu sounds delish!

Cake: Our cake is being gifted to us. Look for good deals though, we had looked into doing a one tier cake and serving sheet cake from the back for the guests before we found out we were being gifted it.

DOC: Is free! Our DOC is just starting her business and is still at the stage that she’ll do work for free with the promise of a recommendation and use of pictures if she does a good job. Found her on here.

Other: We’re forgoing a lot of floral. I’m not really into flowers in the first place, so that wasn’t hard at all. Also, DIYing the Bouts for the guys. Got beautiful dried flowers for the Bridesmaid or Best Man bouquets which were $10 a piece. DIYing makeup. Only doing a pro manicure, doing pedi at the Bachelorette party. Bought our tablecloths from a Craigslist seller and plan on reselling to a friend after the wedding. Oh, opted for a mid-afternoon wedding so we don’t HAVE to do the sit-down dinner or lunch. It was strategic. Not having a DJ – our iPod works just fine. Had a friend offer to play piano for processional.

Our splurges were Photography and Dress, and a little bit Venue/Food. But none of that equaled up to an insane amount.

I can’t think of a lot right now – but if you have questions you can ask! I also started a thread a long time ago that has TONS of good advice. I’ll see if I can find it for you and post it in a second.

Post # 7
310 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Our budget is 10k The ceremony and reception is in the same place and if we meet our food and beverage minimum, the room rental fee is waived. Im doing a ton of DIY projects FHs uncle is going to officiate My mom is buying my dress and alterations We arent having a cake, we are doing cake pops and a candy buffet. So far we are doing pretty good!

Post # 8
26 posts
  • Wedding: August 2012

@AmeliaBedelia: I would love a link to that thread if you can find it. These suggestions are all very helpful!

Post # 10
468 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

@TequilaSunrise: Well I didn’t really have a budget for some things that people offered to pay for but this is mine…

STD/seating cards-$30 DIY

Invites- $40 from Michaels

Flowers-$600- Mother-In-Law DIY

Venue- $12,000 That includes food, Beer and Wine (on a Friday off season wedding)- linens and such are with the package.

Dress- $2,500 (Wasn’t supposed to be! I got tricked and fell in love)

Shoes/Jewelry- $100

Bridal gifts- $100

Tux- Free when the Groomsmen purchase theirs

Rings- $400 for both… not including engagement ring

Centerpieces-$200 DIY


Photo Engagement- FREE a friend

DJ- $900




Misc-$2,000 that we hope not to use at all!

Grand total is 23,720… ouch! for 100 people and I’m very lucky my parents are doing a lot for us. The whole venue and dress was covered by them.

Post # 11
217 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I’m at $5,000 – $6,000  for 100 guests.

$1,100 Venue – includes 5 hours with banquet chairs, tables and catering (which includes silverware and china). Having a morning wedding was $9 pp vs the $36+ pp it would cost to have an evening reception.

$800 – Photographer – hired a photography student that shows promise and selected the cheapest package that would allow is all the pictures in a CD so we can make our own album

$800 – Flowers & Decoration – Friend of a friend will buy the flowers wholesale and do the arrangements. Of the $800, $500 is the cost of flowers and supplies and $300 is what he is charging us for the work.

$300 – Cupcakes – Cupcakes were cheaper than cake if I just stuck to cake and frosting, no fondant or decorations. 

$700 ish – Custom designed dress from a local designer. Made just for me and way cheaper than designer dresses

$150 – Invitation – designed by Lil Sis, materials bought at Cards & Pockets and printed locally

$150 – DIY Makeup – Going to Sephora for a make up consultation and buying the products used so I can DIY on wedding day

$400 – Music – booking a Violinist & Saxophonist to play during the reception

$100 – Shoes – They are too beautiful to pass up

$100 – Jewelry – Swarosvski Crystal earrings and cuff made by me

$200 – Church Fee

$180 – Pre Cana Retreat

$1000 – Rings



  • Be FLEXIBLE, I didn’t HAVE to HAVE a particular venue, chair or flower this maked me open to choosing things I hadnt considered
  • Always try to find something cheaper
  • For me having no alcohol(other than champagne for toasts) saved be loads of money

Post # 12
26 posts
  • Wedding: August 2012

Question for all of you (because I know I can’t count on winning a photography contest, lol!) — how do you find new photographers? I’m not really comfortable going the art school route, so do I just keep Googling?

Post # 13
4675 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

@carriemat: have you checked Craigs List?  or other sites like it… I would recomend the girl I booked (out of Milwaukee), but I’m not sure if she is still available. 


I’m still 8 months out..  and

we haven’t been staying on a strick budget, at least for the small stuff, but here is what we have so far.  We plan on spending $5-6000 (in addition to the food and venue which my parents are paying for) 

Venue- $350 (ish) (County park pavilion building…  most are plain but they did an amazing job making this one beautiful)

Ceremony)- at the reception area

Food- $11-$12 per plate (includes china as my reception site doesn’t have any)

Cake- haven’t discused this yet but probably around $150-$200 (my caterer offers 25% off if we get our cake through her as well, what a deal!) 

Dress- $800 before alterations

Photography- $1000 (my sis recomended a girl she went to art school with and she was willing to cut some of the price off because we didn’t need e-pics though her)

E-pics- Free…  my sis did an awesome job! 

Flowers- haven’t nailed down a budget for this yet, but we are having a lady my mom knows do the bouquets and bouts, and we paln on growing as much as we can!

Centerpeices and reception decor- my aunt e-mailed half of the county and found us about 30 or so blue mason jars that were taking up space in some ladies garadge!  We bought some.. together spent about $50.  Also my mom spent about $50 for candels at IKEA.  There will also be a LOT of DIYing for reception decor. I also spent about $70 on lights, but I probably have more lights than I need, and about 20 on tissue paper to make flowery balls with.  

STD’s- about 40, and I bought way TOO many cards!

Invites- bought paper at Joannes when they were $.20 a sheet (I have about 40-50 sheets) and bought 70 envelopes at the paper source for $30-40.  

 Favors- DIY’ing desert bar




Post # 14
69 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

So…. my budget is $4,000.

BUT- I do have a lot of connections in the wedding industry.


Dress – $749 including sash (I should have bought a cheaper one off Etsy!)

Tux: Free (with groomsman rentals)

Venue: Ceremony and Reception at same place, up-and-coming reception hall $650

Food: Approx $2,000 (FI parents are paying for this!)

Alcohol: Just beer and wine $300 (half of the guests don’t drink – adamently)

Bartender: $100

DJ: Friend from college $250

Photography: FREE I work for a wedding photographer and he offered to do it as a wedding present (this will only include a CD, I will do all the prints/albums myself)

Cake: FREE FI’s sister owned a bakery

Linens/Tent Rental: FREE I also work for a party rental company and they are giving us everything for free (FI also worked there a summer)

Rings: $300 budgeted, going to look tonight

Honeymoon: At this point, all we can afford is a mini moon $400

Hotel room: Day before and wedding night $250

Flowers : Budgeted about $400 I will be buying in nulk and putting them together the day before

Hair/Makeup: Friend from highschool is doing both for $80

Limo: None, all at one place

DOC: Owner of hall acts as one

Invites and Save the Dates: I made them myself, cost of paper and ink (estimated) $40


Some other pertinent info:

Guests:150 ish

Date: May 19th 20012

Bridal party: 5 attendants each side, plus flower girl and ringbearer


Without the food, which we are not paying for, we are up to $3519.

Post # 16
14658 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

since I had this for another thread..here’s my pie chart category break down.

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