planning a wedding on a budget

10 Wedding Planning Mistakes You Can Avoid!

Mistake 1: Budget

If you have a certain amount of money saved for your big day outfit, this does not mean that you can spend exactly that amount on your dress. Always take into consideration that your look is not just the dress. You also have to pay for shipping, if you’re not buying it straight from a retailer, alterations, undergarments (very important), shoes, hair, any accessories you may need, make up, and depending on the theme of your wedding the list could go on! Make a list of all of the things your particular look may require, and divide your budget around these. 

Mistake 2: Flowers

We are all sure that your Pinterest board may have some really beautiful centerpieces and ideas for bouquets and floral arrangements. You might have a pin of sunflowers, but your wedding is booked for December. This may cause a problem. It is always helpful to speak with your florist (the expert) on what is in season during the date of your wedding and make sure to include a second favorite type of flower into your contract. It is always best to pick your flowers based on colors and shapes that will flow with your wedding.

Mistake 3: Save the Dates

As time moves on and we grow older, sometimes people we were once close with, fade into the darkness.  This is the reason for mistake number 3, don’t send out your save the dates too soon! People you may be friends with at the time of engagement, could possibly fade away as the actual wedding grows closer. Save those save the dates for people that are a sure thing, people like your families.

Mistake 4: Videographer

A picture is worth a thousand words, but the videos are just reliving the actual words all over again! A picture can’t capture the groom’s face when every body’s eyes are fixed on the bride as she is walking down the aisle, the tears a grandmother sheds as she’s watching the first dance or, the best man’s speech after he drank just a little too much.

Allowing others to take videos of your special day gives you the opportunity to share their experience at your wedding as well. There are many new apps for all smart phones that you just download the app and upload your guests own special videos of your big day.

Mistake 5: Micromanaging 

You are spending your hard earned money and precious time on your vendors, with the assumption that they are the expert, so let them do what they do best! Your wedding day is going to be the most special day of your life, so it’s understandable that you would want to oversee every detail to make sure everything runs smoothly, but don’t do that! Trust that you chose your vendors for a reason, they are professionals at making your vision come alive, and they don’t work in the wedding industry because it’s “just a job”, they do this because they love and care just as much as you. 

Check back on Monday for 5 more mistakes! 

Happy Planning!

Tips for Selecting the Right Vendor

Selecting vendors for your wedding day can be an overwhelming task for many couples. If you’ve ever attended a Bridal Show or even done a basic internet search when looking for vendors, you’ve probably found a never ending list in every category.  Most vendors are eager to be a part of your day however it’s up to you to decide if the vendor has what it takes to help create your dream wedding. 

When considering which vendors to hire, keep in mind the vendors you select play a huge part in your wedding.   Once you’ve hired and provided your vendors with instructions, you will have to trust that your vendors will be on time, will be prepared and will ensure guests leave with a wonderful experience. 

Before you begin meeting with vendors, think about what’s important to you. Have a clear vision of what you want. Knowing what you want and relaying the message clearly is key when speaking with vendors. The following are a few tips on how to select the best vendors. 

Know your budget & where to spend- Some vendors are worth paying for, such as the perfect venue which provides the ambiance you desire or a coordinator who can help plan, manage vendors and ensure your vision is carried out. Keep in mind some wedding coordinators can also pass along discounted rates from vendors they use frequently. 

Prioritize your vendors- If you wait too long to start meeting with vendors you may find the vendor or venue you’ve decided on isn’t available.   You should first focus on vendors who are in high demand such as the venue, photographer, wedding coordinator, caterers or DJ/Band.  

Ask for referrals- Great vendors have great referrals and are thrilled to share what others are saying about them. A past client is always a great source for the inside scoop.

Arrange an interview- Once you’ve narrowed down your vendor list, arrange an interview. Be prepared to ask several questions and make sure the vendor clearly understands your vision. 

Be polite- Vendors are more willing to throw in little extras, work with your budget or make suggestions if they enjoy working with you. You want your vendors to be just as excited about your wedding as you are.

When you select your vendors wisely, you will be able to rest assured knowing your day is in great hands. Remember, some vendors are worth paying for as they’ll be priceless in ensuring your day is just the way you planned it. 

Happy Planning! 


Wedding Insurance

We all have insurance in some fashion either for your car, home, apartment and possibly even your engagement ring.   But many do not purchase insurance for their wedding either because they are unaware its available or think they do not need it. 

You have always dreamed about your perfect wedding but during the year planning things can go wrong that are out of your control.  What if the venue goes out of business and you lose your deposit or worse all of your money. What if your bridal shop closes, leaving you without a gown?

The average cost of a wedding is now at $26,000, wedding insurance is needed more than ever. After all you wouldn’t buy a new car that costs that much without insuring it. 

Wedding insurance can cover a variety of situations:

Wedding gown       Lost deposits

Lost rings     Bad Weather (hurricane) 

Transportation Shutdown   Ruined Photos

Call to Duty         Damaged Gifts

Sudden illness      Venue Requires Insurance

Liquor Liability     Additional Expenses

I would be happy to set up an appointment for you to discuss wedding insurance with a US Private Insurance representative. 

Happy Planning! 

Decide Whom to Invite

If you are like most couples and are paying for your wedding yourself the guest list becomes very challenging. You want to invite all of your family, friends and co workers but can you afford it?  Here is a great tool to get you started on who to invite and who to add to the maybe list! 


Contact me for a free consultation! 

Happy Planning! 

Planning a Wedding on a Budget

We all know weddings are expensive!  Thousands of dollars are easily spent on food, flowers, photographers and all of those “Pinterest” ideas you have seen. I believe every bride deserves to have the wedding of her dreams and this can be done on any budget.  Here are some tips to help you stay in your budget and actually have that wedding everyone is talking about! 

Create a budget

  Yes this may seems obvious, but in most cases overspending is the main result of stress while wedding planning. Think about how much you can actually afford then break it down per vendor. 

Most importantly do your research! Talk to friends about how much their wedding cost, contact the vendors you are interested in and get quotes. This will help you start with your budget.  Once you have the budget, stick to it!!  Keep everything organized in a spreadsheet to stay on track. 

 Set Priorities 

It’s only natural that you want your wedding to be perfect but sometimes what your imagining can be pricey.  Decide as a couple what is most important for you to have at your wedding by putting the following values in a list from most important to least important. The higher the importance the more you can go with your initial choice, the lower the importance the more you should be open to finding an alternative option. 

  • Dress & Attire 
  • Venue
  • Music
  • Photographer 
  • Stationary 
  • Event design 
  • Food
  • Honeymoon
  • Makeup/hair
  • Other details 


Be Createive with your Wedding Venue 

Don’t be afraid to think outside the wedding venue box. Before you give a deposit on the first place you fall in love with, take sometime to find other venues that are not necessary the normal wedding venues. Look at parks, restaurants, lounges, art galleries. You are likely to find a spot that’s perfect for the both of you that is unique and personal. 

 Consider Hiring a Wedding Planner 

 If you are thinking “If I’m on a budget, how could I ever afford a wedding planner? Won’t that be an extra cost?" You are partially correct. There are many wedding planners out there that can work themselves into your budget. Also remember wedding planners have built relationships with vendors that give them discounts on their services. Which in the long run will be a huge savings for you. 

 Keep it small 

Big weddings cost big money. While some weddings have no choice but to be big due to larger families. If you have the option to have a small wedding it is a great way to keep costs down. While your venue options will decrease, small weddings have the option of being in alternative venues that don’t have wedding price tags, and “per person” costs. 


You don’t have to be to be an artist to incorporate DIY elements in your wedding. The key to DIY is planning and having realistic expectations. For example, if you or a friend has experience with photoshop consider making your own wedding invitations. If you don’t feel comfortable with that considering purchasing inexpensive stationary from ETSY, Vista Print or event Staples offer pretty invitations you can print yourself. 

Other low risk DIY elements can be:

Party favors

Centerpieces (I recommend making these in advance just in case they don’t turn out and you are not spending time the week or even the day of the wedding worrying about the centerpieces) 

Guest Book (These can be as simple printing a photo book of your engagement pictures and leaving some pages blank for your guests to sign) 

DIY elements to leave to the professionals:

Wedding Cake 





I offer many different packages to fit in every brides budget. If you are just starting out I can help create a budget and keep you from falling off track. 


Nicole Arend

Event Coordinator