Here’s the scenario…you got engaged over Valentine’s Day, you bought all the bridal magazines and started doing your research, Covid 19 hit, and you got laid off (or furloughed) or your fiancee did, or one of your parents did. What do you do now? You already set your budget and were off to the races! The first thing to do is to reassess the budget. What can you absolutely afford to spend right now? You wanted the four-tier cake and the designer wedding dress and all the bells and whistles. There are ways to achieve your vision…but not quite at the budget you initially had. We will offer you some secrets on how to cut your budget and still have your dream wedding.
1. Venue. You can’t exactly go out on site visits to see venues at the moment, but you can visit them virtually! There are many venues offering online 360-degree virtual tours (we are featuring some of them on the Little White Desk Facebook Page this week). If they don’t have them uploaded online, many other venues are offering a virtual walk-through with one of their venue coordinators. Why is this important? It’s smart to book your venue now (especially for 2021). All of the weddings that have postponed during this pandemic will be looking for new dates. Popular months like October and November are already pretty booked up for this year and getting a date during peak season is not really possible…unless…you are willing to book for a different day of the week than Saturday! That’s right! There are some Fridays and Sundays still available for these months and can be equally as lovely as a Saturday wedding. Some of these brides will be booking their postponements into 2021 as well, so dates that were limited before are going to be even more so. However, with that being said, if you are struggling with budget it is still way more cost effective to book for a Thursday, Friday or Sunday, as they are usually less expensive than Saturdays. Also look in off peak seasons (January-March). Some venues even offer discounts during these months. Also look for venues that allow outside catering and BYOB. This can result in a huge cost savings for you.
2. The Dress. Did you know that sometimes designers change one little detail from the dress they designed last year and reissue it as this year’s? That little change can result in discounts for you! Purchase last year’s designs and you could save a lot of money. Many bridal boutiques even carry these dresses and discontinued dresses at clearance prices in their stores. We had a bride purchase a gorgeous discontinued dress off the rack for $75!
3. The Cake. 4 tiers, huh? Would you believe that many bakeries offer faux cakes at a fraction of the cost of a real one? Even more true of faux cakes that have been used at previous weddings. Minor details can be altered on these cakes and reused for your wedding. Purchase sheet cakes instead (sometimes called kitchen cakes) to be cut out of site and no one will ever know. You will still be able to cut a cake! These faux cakes usually have a spot to place a wedge of real cake for you to cut that first slice.
4. Florals and Décor. It is always more economical to use blooms that are in season! If that’s still out of reach for you…have you thought about sharing flowers with another bride? We are always so sad to see a lot of flowers go to waste after weddings. Wouldn’t it be nice to reuse them for another ceremony? If possible, you can work with another bride who is getting married the day before or the day after you to share costs on florals (other than bouquets and boutonnieres). Centerpieces can be reused, ceremony flowers can be reused, etc. This same thing applies to rentals (chairs, tables) as well. Greenery is also less expensive than flowers. Have you thought about re-purposing a ceremony floral to your head table? Using bridesmaids’ bouquets on guest tables? Lots of candles! Candles are very cost-effective. There are many ways to cut costs in these areas.
5. Why a Planner Is Essential at this Time. Are you looking for a new job? Are you working multiple jobs until something in your field comes available? A planner is more necessary than ever for you on a limited schedule. You’re asking, how can I possible afford a wedding planner right now? Virtual Planning is a fraction of the cost of traditional planning. Let us do the research, present you with options, and you make the final selection of your vendors. We know the pricing of vendors and have an extensive list of trusted wedding professionals at every budget. We will also do wedding consulting with you, showing you other ways to save money with photographers, DJ’s, catering and bar service. We will give you tools such as a budget worksheet to allocate your resources in the places you feel most important. We do all our meetings through phone calls or video conferencing which will save you a lot of time. This is especially valuable if you have a trusted friend or relative who is willing to coordinate your wedding day for you. If you don’t have someone, we can add Day of Coordination to any package and it will still be less than traditional partial or full planning.
We are booking virtual consultations right now. Contact us to let us show you how we can help you during this time. We pride ourselves on taking the stress off our brides and giving them less expensive alternatives!