When you decide you are both ready to declare your love in front of your family and friends, the first thing to consider is your budget. Knowing your budget before starting will give you more control and allows you to focus on your priorities. It will also help you understand roughly what your budget is for each item.
On average 45% of the budget is spent on the reception (this includes the venue/room hire, wedding breakfast, & reception drinks). This is a large part of the budget gone on one part of the wedding so you need to decide what is important to you. A few things to consider are:
- Guest list – How many people are you planning on inviting?
- Drinks reception – What do you want to serve people in terms of initial drinks (bucks fizz, beer, sparkling wine, champagne, etc.)?
- Drinks reception – Did you want to canapés or any other food?
- Are you having the ceremony at the same venue?
- What formality is your preference (casual, semi-formal, formal, black tie/ultra formal, etc.)
Don’t be afraid to discuss your budget
Money is a hard subject for people to openly discuss. It may feel uncomfortable but it will save any unnecessary stress later on. Wedding planning will take a lot of your time so knowing where you stand in terms of budget and roughly how much you want to spend on your suppliers will help in determining the best suppliers for you. It can also help you determine the maximum number of guests you can afford without compromising on any important items.
Once you have worked out your budget and assigned ‘limits’ to the items required for your wedding, you can start to look at other things. Ideally try to keep to the following starting order to help avoid complications or compromises later on:
- Set your budget
- Assign limits to each category. Start with the ones most important to you (i.e. photographer, flowers, venue, etc.) so you have enough for the key items
- Think about the number of guests you can comfortable afford with the budget set for ‘venue’
- Think about the theme, style, colours you want in your wedding. Most think about a venue first but if you have a good idea around the type of wedding you want, the venue selection will be a lot easier and slightly more enjoyable
- Consider if you want a religious or civil ceremony. Including if you want a bespoke wedding ceremony and therefore an independent registrar
- Decide on an approximate date for your wedding
- Start looking at venues that suit your style, budget, guest size and approximate date
- If having a civil ceremony, remember to check the registrar is available before booking the venue
This is not a complete list but is here to help you think logically around the start of wedding planning.
Help when you need it
Why not hire a wedding planner to guide you throughout the process, helping you to secure those amazing suppliers, giving you hints & tips throughout the process and most importantly, being there for you on your wedding day.
My full planning service includes everything you need for your wedding, including any stag, hen, engagement party, anniversary or honeymoon assistance. Why not contact me today for a non-obligation quotation.
Photographs on this blog are courtesy of Aaron from Incircles Photography