Where did my budget go?!

Most couples will have a budget to work to and most are pretty good at sticking to it. 

But the time to be most on your guard is the last three months before your wedding.  Its peak stressing out time and you’ll be tempted to splash out on things out of panic rather than necessity.

Write down a list of necessities when you first start planning and make sure you stick to it.  There are some things that you just don’t need:-

Table gifts – unless you’re loaded!  When everyone has had a bit too much to drink and the venue are in a hurry to clear the tables, believe me, the table gets cleared of glass and cutlery and anything left, including those £5 table gifts, gets scooped up and binned.  Its heartbreaking.  And its unnecessary.  Give a sum to charity instead – you’ll save money and you’ll be doing some good too.

Buttonholes for everyone – unless you’re loaded.  Just stick with the main bridal party and parents.  If anyone else wants to join in with the ‘look’ they can buy their own – you are not responsible!

Confetti – you know I love good old paper confetti.  The rest costs an arm and a leg and is never as effective.  The wrath of florists everywhere is about to descend upon me…help!

Cakes – why not double up your cake as a pudding?  The french have the ‘croquembouche’ (think that’s how you spell it) which is their wedding cake – a  profiterole tower.  It looks fantastic, tastes delicious and you’re not left with tons of fruit cake that no one likes and is far too heavy to eat after a great big meal anyhow. 

Cars – if you’re having a civil ceremony there is absolutely no need for cars.  Why not pay a smaller fee and get a really good taxi company to do the honours?  If you do have a car to deliver the bride to the door, there is no need to pay extra to get them to wait until after the ceremony to have pictures taken in it.  Think about it seriously – you’re going to walk out of venue, get into the car, have the pictures taken, and then get out again.  Its not real!  Car companies all over are going to be baying for my blood! 

 Photography – OK I’ll be honest here.  If you’re going to pay less than £500 for your wedding photography (including an album)  think again.   You might be better off buying a half decent camera and lens and getting a friend to do it for you.  You simply cannot get a full day’s photography by anyone with any skill, an album of any quality and a good service for less than £1000.  If you find someone who you think fits the bill for less,  ask them if they have Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurance – because if they haven’t and something goes wrong you won’t have any comeback at all.  You might also like to ask them if this is their full time job – rather than a part-time weekend job which they are not declaring to Mr Taxman.

This is why Fotoamour only offer a three hour service, preview book and framed montage for £500.  A longer service by a professional photographer and a decent album should cost a lot more than that. 

Disposable cameras – Forget it.  You’ll pay a load of money to put cameras on every table and you might end up with one half decent photo from each one.  If you simply must go this route put two or three of these horrible things in the hands of a teetotal relative and rely on them to do the honours.  But in all seriousness they always produce rubbish results and, when you weigh up all the cost against the finished results you’d be better paying your photographer to stay for an extra couple of hours coverage in the evening.