Thursday, April 30, 2009

Three Splurge Items

One of the guidelines many use when planning their wedding budget is establishing 3 splurge items and cutting costs on everything else.

We haven't set our items in stone just yet because we haven't REALLY started planning everything, but I would love to know what you would choose or did choose (if you're already married).

Here's a list of wedding needs (let me know if I'm missing some - I'm sure I'll miss a few):

- Venue Location
- Catering (food & alcohol)
- Wedding Dress
- Guest List Size
(luxury to invite the amt of people you want)
- Photographer
- Videographer
- Wedding Cake

- Reception Entertainment
- Invitations
- Reception Decorations/Centerpieces
- Flowers

- Gifts

- Rehearsal Dinner
- Hair & Makeup


  1. I would splurge on the food, reception entertainment, and a good photographer or videographer. Having been married the dress the makeup the flowers, the invites...they are only good for so long...that day...but what people will remember is if you had something good to eat and if they enjoyed the dancing and a had a great on the other hand will always have the photographs and videos.

    I cut back costs hugely by making my own invitations. I bought some boxes on sale from Micheals...spent some money on an ink cartridge...all in all it probably only cost be about $60 compared to the hundreds it would have cost to have done professionally...and really everyone throws them away anyway right?! If you can find a venue that includes costs thats the way to go...the hotel we had the reception at charged one flat fee which included food, the room, booze, centerpieces, wedding cake, champagne, set up and tear down...very cost efficient...and very low stress because they did everything...i showed up one day they pulled out a book and said pick and I didn't have to run around to different places to have it taken care i was planning my wedding from another state and was limited on my time.

  2. Is alchohol considered a splurge?

    I think you don't have to splurge on a photographer as long as he has good equipment and you feel like he will really be in the trenches, getting the photos you need. Is it really important to have the "best in the business" over someone who will just get the job done?

    If it were me, I wouldn't think the rehearsal dinner would need the same kindo f money going into it as the wedding. If you got catering from chik-fil-a (hint hint) people would probably be just as pumped. And do you really need to spend money on make-up and hair for the rehearsal dinner???

    I could see you really getting into the invitations. Ultimately, is it going to be something that everyone saves? Maybe not, but awesome invitiations can really pump people up for the wedding. And if they look expensive, maybe people will spend more money on a gift if you class it up and set the bar high. SCORE

    I say splurging should be centered around food at the reception, booze at the reception, and entertainment at the reception. Thats what its all about, right?

  3. Hmmm...

    I think that it's hard to narrow down to three, but ultimately I think the location matters most. If the reception is absolutely gorgeous, people will forget about the food mostly. As a guy who is more into heavy hors d'oevres more than a sit down dinner, you can certainly get away with not spening as much money on the food, but the ambiance of the location will always leave an imprint in people's minds.

    I've also said that the band should be a spare-no-expense sort of thing, but if you don't have a band it really doesn't apply.

    I'll agree with Nick that an incredibly expensive photographer isn't really needed. You have no idea how many people are professional "photographers" now, and tons of people will be clicking away, so you can save money on that. I also think a videographer is completely unnecessary.

    You want to make sure you have enough booze for everyone, for sure, but that could be a huge or minor expense depending on the crowd and what you are serving. My feelings are that if it has alcohol, you're good to go.

    And Nick and I disagree... i think a rehearsal dinner is a very important thing (to me at least.) It provides the out of town family members and wedding party something "extra" that will make the wedding special to them. So I think you should consider that a main expense.

    With invitations and gifts, you can get SO CREATIVE without breaking the bank, it's redonk. i hate when people spend so much money on stationary when there are so many great options. You can roll all sorts of ideas around. I know someone who had the save the date info printed onto balloons for cheap, and they were mailed with a simple not that said "inflate". Pretty awesome. You can also make invite and STD postcards for cheap.

    Ultimately I say the three things you worry about are (IMO) the rehearsal dinner, the location, and the entertainment. If you are getting a DJ, then I'd say save on that and put it towards the food and booze.

  4. What I remember from the weddings I've attended that ruled...the awesome open bar that was STOCKED, the insanely good band that played mostly songs no one knew but they were great to dance to, and the amazing venue....

  5. As of now, I think my splurge items would be:

    1. Location (gotta love where it is!)
    2. Music/Entertainment
    3. Cutting costs elsewhere so I don't have to cut many guests.

    I think I would put a Photographer in #3, but as I do a lot of research I've seen that there are a lot of great up and coming photographers out there that aren't TOO expensive. I am, however, willing to shell out money for someone who has a great eye and is unobtrusively everywhere. There are some great photographers I've seen on the internet that aren't the cheapest, but aren't the most expensive.

    I was thinking about the food, but I don't think that it's really a splurge item. I honestly couldn't tell you about the food at any wedding I've been to in the last 10 years. I mean I remember food being good... but I couldn't even tell you what I ate.

  6. we majorly splurged on the location if you're in a beautiful place there is no need for excessive decor, excessive flowers (the biggest wedding rip-off) lighting of any kind etc. we have some simple centerpieces i'm making myself - and the location is so gorgeous we don't need anything else. Basically we didn't want to get a hotel ballroom and spend lots of money to make it look like something other than a hotel ballroom. food and music were the other two most important things to us. of course - you know what the famous saying is: the food and the music is what everyone remembers - unless the couple is so awesome and so in love then that's what people talk about.

  7. we decided to splurge on the photographer, which still seems like a good idea.
    alas, in hindsight, bad idea.
    we shelled out A LOT for our wedding album, and the freakn vendor has givin us all kinds of problems.

    sure the photos are incredibly important, but I feel like we could've made the album ourselves, the way we want it, when we want it.

    think about how much you really wanna spend on a photo album. then cut if half, b/c to me it's not worth what they charge.