Wednesday 10 April 2013

Wedding Budget

The 'B' Word
I'm really trying not to get swept away by wedding planning. I have a job. I must remember I have a job.

And there's the 'B-word'.

The Budget has taken me on an emotional roller coaster since we announced our engagement. My thoughts about what sort of wedding I'd like have swung wildly from 'intimate, small, rustic' to 'grand, black tie ball' to 'summer, floral, vintage', but the 'B' word lingers overhead like a grim overcast day.

I don't consider myself to be very materialistic. I lived on an island with only 1700 other people for a year and that taught me (occasionally the hard way) to realign my priorities when it comes to consumerism.
That year the bulk of my food shopping came from honesty boxes.

But there's something about the word 'wedding' that can cause a form of madness.

A girl I know who earns around £20k per annum spent £30k on her wedding. That is madness. That is one irrationally expensive day.

And when we were on the train to Paris last week we met a couple of newlyweds. When the topic of their wedding budget arose, the husband physically winced. The hostile silence that followed was punctuated by his wife's brisk reproach; "It's the most important day of your life so we really don't care how much it cost. Do we, babe?"

I can see how it happens. All the features in magazines and blogs about 'dream weddings' and suddenly you've been sucked in. You were going to make your invitations, but the ones that cost £5 each look better. You were going to make your cake, but the one that costs £450 would make an amazing centrepiece.

And then there's the bitterness: I work hard and I want to have a wonderful day so I'll pay whatever it takes. I deserve it.

It's as though there are stages of this madness. A beautifully lit aisle littered with diamante and over-priced wedding favours and before you know it you've reached bridezilla-dom.

Did you know the average UK wedding costs nearly £21,000?

The Guardian provided a list of tips on how to cut the cost including e-invites and a shop-bought cake. Having 'e-' at the beginning of anything sounds to me like ripping the heart out of my wedding.

A wedding really shouldn't come down to money all the time. It shouldn't be about what you or your respective families can or can't afford. This is a time to be thankful. 

String up some fairy lights, pour the wine, strike up the band and you're going to have the best day of your lives even if it's in a shed.

My Dad suggested I write down what is important to us about our wedding. So I did:

People we love
Making things with Mam and the girls
Twinkling lights

So, with that in mind, we decided that our budget will not exceed £12,999. My fiance has even drafted a spreadsheet (I don't know how to use it) which turns an alarming red if the total rises above that number. In his first draft I was assigned only £600 for my dress. That has been ammended. There are some things I just can't do.

I feel a lot better about this now. Our wedding will be all the more lovely for not costing the Earth.



  1. The wedding budget planing playing important role in the wedding planning. It's having helpful message to plan the wedding budget. I hope needed one to wedding couples.

  2. Lovely piece of writing. Enjoy your day.
    The Chocolate Strawberry - wedding cake designer.