It was the happiest moment of your life. Your special someone knelt down on one knee and asked the four words you've always dreamed of hearing... "Will you marry me?"
You can't stop staring at the ring on your finger. You're suddenly the proud owner of stacks of bridal magazines. You insist on practicing your soon-to-be-new signature. You're on cloud 9 and nothing can bring you down. Or so you thought.
After several days of newly engaged bliss, you begin the actual wedding planning process. Which, as most know, means talking about the dreaded "B" word.
That's right. The budget.
This conversation is difficult no matter what, but especially when the answer to, "What is our wedding budget?" isn't what you had in mind. Maybe your parents gave you a much smaller budget than expected. Or maybe you are paying for the wedding out of your own pocket.
No matter the circumstances, realizing you have a tight wedding budget is a tough pill to swallow. With how much the wedding industry has grown just in recent years, the price of the average wedding has skyrocketed, making tight budgets much more difficult to work with.
It can be very easy to get discouraged and have How-Are-We-Ever-Going-to-Afford-This? thoughts. Just glancing at vendor pricing packages can be overwhelming.
But, let me encourage you... planning a wedding on a tight budget can be done! It happens all the time. Here are a few things you need to know...
1. Take advantage of Pinterest.
Thankfully, Pinterest existed when I got engaged. By the time my man popped the question, I already had boards filled with pages of wedding idea pins. Pinterest is a great resource to help you find DIY ideas, inspiration, articles about cheap wedding options, etc. You'll also discover that you're not alone in planning a wedding on a tight budget.
2. Who do you know?
It's all about who you know. Truly. Look around you and do some research. Is there a family friend that recently started a photography business? Do you know of anyone that works at a bakery? Do you happen to already know a great makeup artist? If you don't know of people that can play a part in your wedding day, I'm sure someone else you know does. Make a list of the areas of your wedding that need to get planned and write down the names of people you can reach out to about your vendor needs.
3. Pick 1-2 things that you're not willing to negotiate on.
And you can't say everything. Every bride has 1-2 things that she won't want to budge on. Maybe it's the size of your guest list or that you want a band at your reception. Perhaps it's the floral arrangements or hiring a videographer. Whatever you choose is fine (it's your day), however, you'll need to be willing to sacrifice on other areas of the wedding. For example, if you are trying to stay under budget, but aren't willing to remove guests from your list, you may have to select less expensive flowers for the centerpieces.
There are so many ways to cut wedding costs! The possibilities are endless. It will take research, positivity and creativity, but it is possible. It is possible to have the wedding of your dreams without breaking the bank.
If you need help with wedding planning, check out The Planning Bar. I'd love to meet for a consultation and talk through your special day with you.