Asking Bridesmaids in a Special Way
For many brides, asking their besties requires more finesse than a mere text. After all, they will be doing a lot for you over the next little while. Many Brides are popping the question to their maids with creative, thoughtful requests & are spending time (and money) making sure the group gets out and lets off some steam in fun way (like this one).
Don’t blow your entire stationery budget on your save-the-dates and invitations — you also need to think about programs, escort cards place cards, menu cards, and even some signs to help guests get where you need them to be. As a money saving alternative to Save The Date cards, create a free wedding website & use our video save the date service to share a bit about you as a couple all while gathering the exact number of invitations you will need to send out in a few months time. This is also a great way to gather all of your guests’ contact information!
Meals on the Wedding Day
Whether you’re getting ready at home or in a hotel, your bridesmaids will likely be with you every step of the way. Don’t let them starve! Keep it simple with bagels and fruit for breakfast and a platter of sandwiches for lunch. A few bottles of bubbles wouldn’t hurt either ;)
“Wedding brain” can affect even the best of us — and if you’re not getting ready in your own home, it’s far too easy to forget something and need a last-minute replacement. Forgetting to pack your dress shoes for can equal a hasty trip to the closest shoe store and $100 dropped instantly. We recommend starting your packing list at least a week before your wedding, and have a trusted loved one look it over as well to make sure you’re not forgetting anything.
Unless you’re extremely lucky, your wedding gown is going to require some alterations. You can easily spend two hundred dollars on the adjustments that will make your dress dance floor worthy. Taking it in, adjusting the hem or opening up the back. Just be sure not to spend your entire fashion budget on the gown itself.
Undergarments and Accessories
These can eat up a huge portion of your wedding budget. Your veil, shoes, undergarments and/or shapewear, can easily reach five hundred dollars. Trust us! You can cut costs by haggling, by making some of these items your ‘something borrowed’ (perhaps not the unmentionables ;) or our favourite, choosing pretty, well made shoes that can be used after the big day (like these ones).
Inevitably, a guest who RSVP’d “no” will turn up anyway, a hapless friend will show up with an uninvited plus one, or your cousin will bring her kids even though you specifically said no kids were invited. Chances are, wherever you are hosting your event will have budgeted a little extra food & drink to accommodate these overages. Now all you have to do is plan for your bill to be a potentially a little higher than planned.
Favours can cost a few dollars per person, which can take a big chunk out of your wedding budget depending on the size of your guest list. A few ways to keep costs reasonable: Choose a favour that works per couple rather than per person. Go for a DIY option if you’re feeling crafty, or combine escort cards & favours. We’ve got a whole host of ideas for you here.
While certainly not required, gift bags for out-of-towners are a great way to infuse your personality as a couple & a taste of your home town into one lovely gesture. You could include seasonally appropriate practical items (hand warmers in winter, a cute water bottle in summer) along with a city map. For a bit more luxury, you could include a sample of your favourite local chocolates or hand lotion along with brochures for your favourite local attraction. Finally, a hand written welcome note will let your guests know how grateful you are they made the journey.
Your photographer and wedding planner will be with you for 8+ hours on the wedding day; they’re going to need some fuel to keep making sure you look your best all night long. Vendor meals are usually much cheaper than guest entrees, but depending on the size of your band, number of photographers and coordinators, you may be looking at a few hundred dollars extra.
Couples often think they don’t need a videographer because photos will be enough. Then they come to the realization the month of the wedding that they have made a big mistake. Trying to squeeze in a major vendor like videographer without properly budgeting for it can be a cause for concern. Fees & experience levels in videography can vary wildly, from two to five thousand dollars, depending on what you’re looking for. If you’re wishy-washy on video, set aside the money anyway — then, if you decide you really don’t need it, you can reallocate the money later on. Plus, now you know that you have a choice. An alternative to traditional videography that costs less than half the price is right here in BC. (Hint - it’s us ;)
Décor Beyond the Flowers
Most couples set aside the majority of their décor budget to flowers, but forgetting to set aside $25-30 per table for the non-floral elements can cause a shock in the budget down the road. Consider if you would like candles, glass hurricanes, mercury votives, linens (your event space may or may not provide), photo frames etc. If you’re looking to add additional elements like lanterns or vintage décor rentals, you may want to save as much as 40 percent of your total décor budget for these pieces. Plus, you can also save on flowers by choosing in-season blooms
Whether your wedding runs over the allotted time because you got a late start or because you choose in the heat of the moment (read: THIS IS SO MUCH FUUUUN!!!!) to extend it, keep in mind that you’ll have to pay for any time outside of the contracted time. When you’re in party mode, it’s easy to say, ‘party on!’ But be sure to know ahead of time what the overtime charges will be. That includes the venue (which usually has an option to extend — for a price) but don’t forget your other vendors, such as DJ or band, photographers and coordinators who may ask to be paid in cash before continuing the throw down!
After your beautiful day, you want to remember to thank all those loved ones who made it so great. Adding a couple of hundred dollars to your wedding stationary budget is important for thank you cards & postage, prints of your favourite photos, and an album or frames to put them in. When it comes to your dress, whether you choose to clean and preserve or take place in a trash the dress style photo shoot - set some money aside!
Already included all of the above items in your budget? Congratulations, you are indeed a budget-savvy bride! Just to be safe, we still recommend setting aside 10% for the ‘other’. Like when the when the power suddenly goes out and you have to go buy 200 candles. ‘Other’ is for when it rains in the middle of an August dry spell & you need to run to the dollar store and buy two hundred dollars worth of clear umbrellas. ‘Other’ is for the flower girl who sat on the breakfast platter and needed a new dress to replace her frittata covered bottom just thirty minutes into getting ready. If you prepare for the unexpected ahead of time, you won’t be left scrambling to come up with extra cash at the last minute & if you don’t need to spend it, you can put it towards a spa day, a special treat on your honeymoon or a rainy day!