Wedding season is approaching very quickly. Many brides are finalizing reception, floral arrangements, and other related wedding activities.
I have discussed many aspects of wedding attire and accessories, but not the actual wedding/reception party planning.
We all know that weddings/receptions can be expensive. If possible, your best bet is to begin the planning process early. Please bare in mind that the actual wedding is not as costly as the reception. You can probably get away with faux flowers and tulle on the pews and a few flowers, columns, and so forth on the rostrum.
The reception is probably 60-80% of the budget, assuming that all of the bridal party will be paying out of their own pockets, which is pretty much standard, unless you are aware of financial hardship with a couple of bridal participants. Here is Mix Maven’s rule of thumb, “If you cannot afford the reception, you need to keep the wedding invites to a minimum.” Opt for a destination ceremony that will limit who can come to the wedding, which, ultimately, means less money flowing out of your pocket.
I must stress that you cannot have a caviar and saltfish reception. You must either keep the reception elegant or decide on a casual event. Do not mix the two. A friend of mine was telling me about a wedding that the friend was planning with the bride. The bride asked the friend to help because she likes my friend’s taste, which is quite impeccable. The friend told me how the bride wanted to use plastic or paper plates for dining *gasp* as well as setting up a lobby for the reception. *double gasp*!!! To add insult to injury, the bride and groom wanted to serve a specific ethnic menu to all guests, but the menu would cater to 25% of guests. Why? Because the menu was the cheapest. Now, the best solution would be to cater to both sets, negotiating rates that will be conducive to their budget. (Sidebar: if you have a significant amount of guests that are vegetarian, do not relegate them to eating cheese and pasta. Make sure that substantive food i.e. protein is provided for them.)
I am not saying that you should not find bargains, but be careful of where you decide to cut costs. I am a bargain shopper, but I know that you get what you pay for. Do not cut costs on food. If you cannot afford to feed people good food, DO NOT have a reception. I heard about a bride wanting to have a potluck for her wedding reception, thankfully, a relative stepped in and helped to make sure the event was catered.
Do not treat guests with disdain by providing them substandard fare, yet still wanting gifts from them . Elegance does not have to be butchered, if your budget is not the amount you want it to be, be open to creative affordable options that will still add the touch of elegance you desire. You, your spouse, family and guests are definitely worth it! Always REMEMBER, Your wedding day is a reflection of you and your new spouse, so make sure the look you want is cohesive and charming.
Keep It Classy,