The very word strikes fear in the hearts of every bride ever known.
Budgets are not something you think about before you begin planning a wedding yet, words like 'budget' and 'reality' become prevalent themes in many conversations, once "she said yes!!!"
Let's face it, planning a wedding is like planning an un-planned medical expense without insurance. Like surprising medical news, with engagements--everyone suspected it might happen, but were not sure when it would, and now that it has are asking "how are we going to pay for it?"
Never fear! You can pull off a successful wedding with even the smallest of budgets!
No matter the size, a budget must be created. Grooms, despite the pressures you may feel to propose, think about where you and your future bride are financially before you pop the question because, weddings can be expensive. Also, when you ask your brides' parents for her hand (hint, hint), you can broach this conversation with them at that time.
Ok, now that you have all your finances together, make a list of what you want your day to look like; circle the 'must haves' and list them in order of importance. For me it was, Autumn, photography, lighting, food, family attendance.
Your top five will dictate where your budget will go, who your vendors are, how many guests you can afford, etc. You will re-chart your course several times so be open and have patience; this is part of the fun! If you realize early on that it is impossible to make everyone happy, tough decisions become easier.
Finally, if you cannot afford to outfit your wedding with a crew of professional vendors, utilize your resources. Who do you know with skills necessary to your wedding's success? You will be surprised by what you find!
Make room in your budget for 'friendly helpers' and pay them fairly, even if they insist it's not necessary. It's not only a kind gesture, but the right thing to do.
For more info, planning tips, and resources visit www.vibridalguide.com
Quiana L. Adams, Managing Editor
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