I’m sure someone out there is going to tsk tsk or frown upon what I’m about to share, but our wedding, the one you all saw here, cost us $27,000 give or take a few thousand. Twenty-seven thousand big ones, my friends, $10,000 of which was generously given to us by my parents and $5,000 which was given to us by Andrews. The rest was funded by us. While we never really had a budget set from the get go we simply decided along the way if select items were necessary, important or doable for us. If we couldn’t make something work within reason then we moved on and learned to live without that specific something, done and done, end of story. And in the end we made $27,000 work for us. How do ya like them apples, blogettes? It’s not a number I am ashamed of and it’s not a number I am proud of but instead is merely a number that represents what we spent on everything that made our wedding what it was. For those inquisitive readers out there who are a little nosy (I’m nosy too, it’s cool) fifteen thousand went towards our venue, ceremony, food, alcohol, cocktail hour, and linens costs. The rest, including our honeymoon fell within the $12,000 remaining. If anyone is interested in any specific breakdowns of how much I spent on decor, DIY projects, photography, my dress or whatever, then send me an e-mail. I have no problem disclosing the totals on everything else.
The point of my post today, is I wanted to generate a discussion on what the average wedding budget really is and what it truly means (not that I believe one specific average wedding budget exists because it doesn’t). There are so many magic numbers that float around out there as being industry standards for quality product and services and while it’s my job as a wedding stylist and coordinator to be aware of these prices so I can educate my clients I can’t help be feel like there’s a huge gray area when it comes to the cost of throwing a wedding. Some penny-pinching couples (I adore you guys, you amaze me with your frugalness and attention to detail) think $5,000 is an appropriate average wedding budget. Some couples think $100,000 is a fair amount to fork over for their big day. Maybe that’s just a number they’ve picked off the top of their head, maybe it’s what they can afford or what they’ve been given by their parents or maybe it’s the ‘average cost’ among their social circle and community. And some couples, perhaps in smaller cities may think $15,000 or $40,000 or whatever the number is is more along the lines of an average cost. And much like how unique each and every wedding is, the budget for each and every wedding is completely rare in it’s own form.
I saw this once on A Practical Wedding and thought it was a fitting idea for today’s Pep Talk so I am encouraging everyone, married or not, to leave an anonymous comment below with the cold hard facts of how much you spent or plan to spend on your wedding day. You can leave one total or a combination of totals that culminated to your grand total but please be respectful of others and refrain from bragging about how you saved money/had money to work with/spent almost less than half of the commentor above you. I for one, always had a greenish-hued cloud of dolla bills hanging over my head during my 2.5 years of engaged bliss and know that hearing from others would have made me feel a bit better about my choice to spend or not spend x amount of money in one direction or another. Money is a touchy subject and people are often quick to judge others based on their spending and saving decisions so I can only hope the post will allow you and I to have a new outlook an what that pain in the ass of an average wedding budget really is and what it really means, big budget or not. The whole wedding cost discussion is a little taboo and I want to change that because wedding costs are as real as the pretty pink roses in your bouquet. Ready, set, go! Above photo by Amanda Wilcher Photography.