Let’s face it- we all want to make sure we get the best value for the money. Be it in home decor, shoe shopping or wedding planning.
When it comes to wedding budgeting, all of us, including us as wedding planners, first think of the big items- food and beverage, wedding administration costs, music, photo and video and similar big items. But we also all know the devil is in the detail 🙂
Here are the most commonly forgotten wedding costs, and honestly- most of you will have most of these, so be prepared and don’t say I didn’t tell you 🙂
1. BEAUTY TREATMENTS– yes, you’re thinking of your own hair and makeup, maybe even same for your bridesmaids, but did you forget your mum or even worse- your mother in law to be? Make no mistake, in my experience, in 99% of the cases they expect to be a part of the bridal party. But these are not the only costs I am referring to- how about spray tan? Manicure and pedicure? A massage to relax the day before the wedding? When you’re planning a wedding in initial stages these seem needless, but I assure you in a lot of occasions at least some of these will be booked in final stages of your wedding planning.
2. OUTFITS FOR THE DAY BEFORE AND DAY AFTER EVENTS– of course her Majesty Wedding Dress holds a pedestal, but have you forgotten you will be a Bride on all of these events? I suggest you go with white on all of the events, after all you are the Bride! A cocktail dress for the night before and a casual beach dress for the brunch/BBQ day after. Don’t go overboard, but do plan on this cost. And don’t forget the shoes!
3. WEDDING STATIONERY (not thinking of invites here! 🙂– when you think of paper stuff needed for your wedding, invites first come to mind along with maybe save the date cards and RSVPs. Though technology has taken over a lot of wedding segments and more and more couples are opting for wedding websites and wedding apps, I do have a feeling stationery will never go out of fashion. Especially the non planned items such as place cards, seating plans, welcome signs, menus and different signs you want to place throughout the wedding in the same theme. I suggest you use the same designer for all of your planned stationery and I suggest s/he does it all! This is one of the prettiest personalization wedding segments and it is definitely noticeable, I can assure you of this. Then simply email it to your planner for print locally or have it printed at home if you want to make sure the print and paper is exactly what you had in mind.
4. CEREMONY SOUND SYSTEM– yes, your planner booked a lovely string duo to play for your charming garden wedding in Dubrovnik. You love the fact there is a hushing sound of the waves in the background too. And the humming sound of the trees, with a few birds singing only for you. If you have over 30 people I strongly suggest you rent the PA for the outdoor wedding ceremonies. Yes, the officiate is likely to be loud enough, but do you really want to yell out your vows while so gracious and elegant, on the most special moment in your life? And your cousin who you selected to do a reading is not all that open to public speaking and without a mic is probably going to be heard solely by the two of you. Take my advice, those couple of hundred Euros will be well worth it, I guarantee you that!
5. HOTEL ROOM FOR THE NIGHT BEFORE– you are so proud of yourself as you are so well organized- you booked your hotel for your wedding, before the wedding and honeymoon too months in advance. Did you think about the fact that you and your soon to be husband will want to spend the night before the wedding separately and that it makes sense he stays in the accommodation that is booked for the wedding week while you book a room in a hotel where you’ll be getting ready in to make things easier on yourself? You didn’t? No worries, most brides don’t. Book this room now, and don’t forget to ask from your wedding planner to put a note in the reservation system not to move you from this room or to have a late check out. Details like this can save the day, trust me on this one!
6. FEEDING YOUR VENDORS– being one of those vendors myself, I am obviously subjective when it comes to this subject. Providing a small meal that rarely costs more than 20€ per person in most venues is a token of appreciation for the wedding staff that spent most of their day with you. And yes, they are working and getting paid, but supplying them with a small meal is the least you can do. I assure you it goes a long way! P.S. Don’t raise the subject of covering a meal for the band or the DJ, these guys are setting up in the direct sun in the peak of the summer since early afternoon and doing sound checks and most of the time take a shower in the hotel changing rooms. Do feed them, you don’t want hungry /read cranky/ vendors at your wedding, do you? 🙂
7. GIFTS FOR YOUR PARENTS– you think you thought of everything? There’s always something left, I guarantee you that :). Of all the items ever in wedding planning, I would say this one gets forgotten the most. Only God knows how many times I called our florist to create two bouquets for mothers in less than 10 minutes as the speech is starting and this little detail went forgotten. I even had cases where the couple had presents for parents but never gave them out during the speech and left them in reception room under the table. Housekeepers found some lovely gifts ;)To keep it short- DO NOT forget your parents. Yes, they are happiest for you on that day and they don’t need a present but a small memorabilia from this most special day will be more than welcome. And do go with something more lasting than flowers. Ask your wedding planner for local present ideas, I have no doubts they will be happy to help!
8. BREAKFAST, LUNCH AND DRINKS FOR YOUR WEDDING PARTY– you’d be surprised at the importance of this. I refer to the above in feeding vendors, same goes with bridal party- have them fed and well hydrated, sparked up with some champagne or prosecco at least. It’s a morning you will never forget, make it memorable for your ladies of honor too, it’s your choice they are there with you, don’t have them running to the bakery minutes before ceremony. I have seen it happen and nobody’s happy. And it’s so easily prevented! If you’re in a hotel, email in advance so it’s one thing less to think on the wedding day, and order some fruit platters and non bloating breakfast items in the morning (eggs and bacon work too!) with some fizz and about 1 hour before the time you put the dress on order some fries, they wont bloat you but will comfort you when you will need it. And everyone else around you too: )
9. EXTRA DECOR– nobody plans for this from the beginning. Not because it is omitted on purpose but because the extra decor such as lighting, balloons, charger plates, chandeliers, different chairs than what the venue has, festoons over the dance floor, lanterns dotted around the venue, fairy lights around the trees and similar items are something that is added once the whole concept of the wedding is finalized. And trust me, it can be a significant cost. I suggest you plan on extra money for decor just in case. It is quite likely you will have one of these beautiful mood setters. And if you ask me- they’re worth every penny!
10. INCLUDING YOURSELF IN THE FINAL HEAD COUNT– it is utterly unbelievable how many couples (including me at the time of my wedding!) forget to count themselves in the final head count. It adds up easily trust me, a canape here, a glass of champagne there….My suggestion- put yourselves first in all of the lists. As a positive RSVP of course 🙂
That’s it folks! I am sure there is more, but these are in my 12 year long experience 10 items most often forgotten to be planned for. And the costs do add up, we all know that. What we also know is that it’s not about the cost but the feeling, the emotion and the memory. Still, it feels good not to save on your honeymoon because you forget items 3,7 and 9 🙂
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