Wedding Planning: Where to Save and Where to Splurge

Weddings are joyful, emotional and also a teensy bit costly! Flowers alone can cost upwards of $300 dollars for a small event. Then there’s the cake, the decorations, the dress, and we haven’t even touched on the venue and catering. It’s incredibly easy to get wrapped up in the excitement, go overboard and end up forking out way more than you wanted to. In fact, some couples don’t even realise how much they’ve spent until the big day is over. But with a little bit of mindful planning, we can help you to make sure that doesn’t happen.

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As wedding planning experts, we’ve come to know the best ways to save money on your wedding. But we also know when it’s time to splurge a little. Let’s be realistic, if you want to throw a wedding that you're proud of then you’ve got to spend money somewhere! Below are some recommendations from us and a four other wedding planner aficionados we know. Follow these guidelines and you’ll have a lush wedding without a going over your budget.

Ashlee Smith, Stationer and Designer at The Polka Dotted Bee

Save: Bridesmaid Proposals

Expert wedding designer Ashlee Smith feels that there’s no need to splurge on bridesmaid proposals. Cute as they are, you’ll probably be choosing these early in the wedding planning process and won’t have spent that much money yet. In a few months, you’ll start to notice that expenses are adding up, and this simply doesn’t need to be one of them. After all, you could just go out to lunch with your girlfriends and ask them in person! You should always try to eliminate small costs and put that money towards the bigger picture. It’s common to gift your bridesmaids on the day of your wedding, so save your money for this.

Splurge: On anything that you both love

You should splurge on anything that really represents the union between you two or something that you both love. If you’re both foodies, Ashlee recommends splurging on a great spread or a really good catering company. If you love a particular style of music, get a good live act. Anything that reflects your personalities is worth that extra bit of money on your big day!

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Heather Phelps-Lipton, Wedding Photographer

Save: Dress

It’s hard to advise someone who loves fashion to save on the dress, but for anyone who isn’t that into appearances – why not get something second hand or something more casual for the day? Heather made her own dress by taking a 1960’s vintage sewing pattern and ended up with something spectacular and so unique.

Splurge: Photography

Okay, so maybe she’s slightly biased because she’s a wedding photographer, but it is really important to get a good photographer for your wedding. After your wedding day, you’ll have nothing tangible except your wedding photos! Your pictures are something you’ll keep for decades to come and show to your grandchildren, so it’s quite a good idea to invest in a credible and talented photographer. You really can’t put a price on precious memories.

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Omari Fennell, DJ, Generation C Entertainment

Save: Attire

Why spend thousands of dollars on wedding attire just for one day. There are numerous services that offer online tuxedo, bridesmaid and wedding dress rentals. Unless you value the sentiment of keeping your wedding gear, why not rent it for a day then send it back? Omari says that the chances are you’re not going to wear it again so spend the money on something you’ll remember.

Splurge: Wedding planner

Let's be real, a good wedding planner is going to cost you a little, but it might mean the difference between a dynamite of a party and a complete embarrassment. Many couples don’t realise this until the day of the wedding when frankly, it’s just too late to do anything different. A good wedding planner is going to help you from the day you hire them up to the end of your big day. Put your mind at ease and get a professional to help you – you won’t regret it.

  Photo Credit: Sandra Duncan

Photo Credit: Sandra Duncan

Alison Heinecke, Accessories Designer, Ali Christine Bridal

 Save: Mass-produced jewellery

Nothing makes Alison cringe more than seeing a mass-produced necklace on a bride or bridesmaid. Not only are they often overpriced, but they often lack quality or detail to show for that price mark up. The majority of the time, with a little extra effort, you can find an artist to make you something personal and unique for the wedding for a similar cost. Not only will it be of a much higher quality, it’ll also be uniquely yours! If you are going to buy jewellery, look around and check various outlets before you commit.

Splurge: Original jewellery and hair accessories

A gorgeous ensemble of bridal jewellery and accessories are a staple in order to complete your look. Jewelry can be used to add a touch of sparkle and elegance. Whether you’re more of a simple girl who wants something minimal around her neck, or a bold bride opting for statement pieces, the right jewellery could make or break your look on the big day.

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Remember that jewellery is there to enhance. That means that your bridal accessories should not overpower your look at all. A simple gown would look amazing with just a little bit of glitter as well as something more high-impact. Whatever you choose, get something unique and special.

Advice From Botanica Wedding Planners

Botanica Weddings has a team of talented wedding planners who are constantly talking with couples about how to get the most from your budget. When asked their thoughts and the answers were surprisingly simple. Read on to discover ways to save.

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Save: The Bar

While open bars are a favourite of many wedding guests, they can easily hike your overall costs up to exorbitant amounts. You could dramatically cut costs by offering only wine, beer and one signature cocktail of your choice. Go for something that matches the theme of your wedding for extra style points.

Splurge: Food

You don’t want your guests to go hungry, and no party is complete without some good grub. You don’t have to do a 12-course dinner, but offering guests a good amount of delicious food is always going to be a hit. You could do a large and grand buffet with a luxurious spread so people can eat as much or as little as they like.

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Save: Chair covers

Chair covers are usually made of silk and are surprisingly expensive. They don’t necessarily add much aesthetically, either. Unless the chairs are absolutely hideous, skip the chair covers and think of another option. There are so many choices out there and we guarantee the silk won’t be amiss.

Splurge: Flowers

Gorgeous flowers can turn any venue from drab to fab. If you want your wedding to look like the perfect fairy tale you were imagining, splash out on those roses or peonies. Good flowers and flower arrangements are not cheap, but they’ll bring you so much satisfaction and add a tremendous amount to the event.

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We Make Wedding Planning Easy

If you’re engaged to be married don’t hesitate to get in touch with us about anything related to wedding planning. We’re an experienced Bali wedding plan team with many years of experiencing the joy of throwing weddings. You can also find a range of helpful articles here if you’re still in the research stage. At Botanica Weddings we believe the key is making sure you get the best value for your money while also providing an incredible celebration. Find out what some of our other couples say about us here.