- 5 days ago
Got our wedding photos back and I can’t stop looking at them! When I was wedding planning, I felt like it was hard to find accurate estimates for what I wanted to help plan the budget. So here’s my spreadsheet! Details and photos below.
Guest Count: 140
Apparel: My dress was $200 off Craigslist, and my second “getaway” dress was $40 from a department store, shoes were $40 off Zappos (two day shipping!), giant sparkly earrings were $20 clearance from a department store, my mother made my veil from tulle from the fabric store, then stuck it on a comb. Fiance’s suit was around $400 from Indochino, and he also paid to get his leather shoes resoled. We bought our attendants ties’ and pocket squares from the Tie Bar. Attendant gifts included whiskies for the groom’s and/or dopp kits with luxe toiletries for the bride’s.
Catering: the biggest chunk of our budget. We did Sunday brunch, served buffet style. It was really important to me that we use as few disposable/one-time-use things as possible. Catering fees included linens, china, chargers, all glassware/bar supplies, appetizers during cocktail hour, bartenders, and staffing for setup and teardown.
Alcohol: purchased from a local liquor store–our venue allowed us to provide our own. We had a full setup including liquor, wine, bubbles, and two kegs. Mixers provided by caterers.
Cake: DIY–purchased two rounds and a bunch of sheet cakes from a local bakery, then stacked them together at the venue and stuck some fresh roses on top. Definitely bought too much. We had two whole 1/4 sheets left over.
Venue: included 9 hours at the place, and the tables and chairs, which were set up by the venue staff prior to our arrival wedding day. We left the reception via Uber to go to the hotel a few blocks away, so cost was around $40, most of which was a generous tip to compensate the driver for waiting.
Rehearsal: was at a local restaurant, food for ~40 people plus open bar tab.
Music: we had a cellist for the ceremony (150), then a DJ for the cocktail hour and reception.
Printing: DIY-ish: a combination of minted, vistaprint, and basic invite. I found lots of coupon codes online thanks to the suggestions on this site! We had electronic save the dates, paper invitations and rehearsal invitations, and paper thank you notes. We used large posters for the wedding program and seating chart to save paper.
Photography: a friend of my husband’s graciously gifted us this service for less than she usually charges. We had two photographers.
Flowers: mostly DIY–purchased a ton of roses and hydrangeas from a local flower market two days prior to the wedding, then placed into large buckets in our hotel room until the day before. We bought vases from Michaels as well as tape and floral wire/foam and ribbon. Made the bouquets and boutonnieres. Purchased wrist corsages for the moms from a local grocery.
Planner: was my day-of person and was FLAWLESS. Totally worth the money to do this.
Hair and makeup: included my trial and wedding day look ($450, woof), plus I paid for my mother and Mother-In-Law to get their HMU done. I’m usually pretty critical of myself/self-conscious in photos, but I LOVED how I looked that day, so I’d say it was worth it.
Childcare: we had a child-free wedding, so we provided on-site childcare for anyone who wanted it. I think there were around a dozen kids there.
My original budget goal was around $20k, so I definitely went over, but I don’t regret it. Big parties get pricey quickly!
PHOTOS – faces blurred for anonymity 🙂
Thanks for reading!