Friday, February 14, 2014

$1500 Wedding

I challenged myself to plan a elegant chic wedding with a budget of $1500. This does not include the rings or the honeymoon. The wedding is being planned with 100 guests in mind with actually 75 being in attendance. When you are reading this please proceed with an open mind and remember this couple only has $1500 to spend; therefore, some of the things will be unconventional. 

Here is the breakdown budget for each category: 

                              SUGGESTED %          BUDGET
Reception                     45%                        $675
Ceremony                     2.7%                     $40.50
Apparel bride                 8%.                        $120
Apparel groom.            .60%.                         $9
Photographer                 7%.                       $105
Videographer                 5%.                         $75
Flowers                          7%.                       $105
Music                          6.25%.                    $93.75
Stationery                      3%.                        $45
Accessories.                1.5%.                      $22.50
Gifts                             1.5%.                     $22.50
Transportation              2.5%.                     $37.50
Beauty                        .70%.                      $10.50
Other                            7%.                        $105
Overages                    2.25%.                    $33.75
TOTAL                        100%.                     $1500

For the bride I found a dress on clearance at David's Bridal for $99, shoes on clearance at Dillards, jewelry at ICING for BOGO, and veil on bringing my apparel bride's total to $147.39. Over budget. 

For the groom: Men's Warehouse has a special when 5 tux rentals are paid in full the groom's tux rental is free! My cost for grooms apparel is $0. Under budget. 

Beauty: The bride will get her makeup done by a professional at a makeup counter such as MAC for free. The mani/pedi and hair will be done by a student cosmetologist all for $51. Over budget. 

Photographer/Videography:  Once again we will take advantage of professional students. View some of the portfolios of photographer and videographer students. You will be very surprised by their work. They would be thrilled for the opportunity to add to their portfolio for free. You would maybe have to pay for the printing of the pictures and DVD of the wedding. Free. Under budget. 

Music: Create a playlist on your iPod or other device. Assign a responsible person to operate and switch to the songs picked out for each part of the reception. Free. And for the wedding ceremony, the church choir, soloist, or talented friend can sing at the ceremony. Free. Under budget. 

Stationary: DIY invitations and DIY programs purchased at Walmart for $70.19. Over budget. 

Accessories: This includes flower girl baskets, ring bearer pillow, aisle runner, cake knife set, and toasting flutes all for $49.03 from Walmart. Over budget. 

Gifts: The bride will give her attendants monogram luggage tags or keychains purchased at for $30. Most men don't care about little things like this so I suggest the groom pay the tab for the first round of drinks for his attendants. Over budget. 

Transportation: The couple will borrow a vintage or antique vehicle of a friend or family member. Usually people with vintage cars (just for personal use not intended for car shows) will lend out their car (driven by the owner) for free. Only $40 in gas would be required for transportation for the couple's send off. Over budget. 

Ceremony: Most preachers will wed couples of the congregation without a fee. Decor for the wedding will be rented (arch and unity candle stand). The candles and spheres for the unity set will be purchased at Dollar Tree which brings the total to $47.50. Over budget. 

Reception and flowers: The reception will be held at the church reception hall or other addition to the church for free. The linens and napkins will be rented for $150. The clear fancy plates, silver cutlery and clear fancy cups will all be purchased from Sam's for $81.39. The bride's cake and groom's cake will be purchased at Publix bakery both for $260. The food will be catered only with a carving station that will supply the meat for the reception for $265 which includes rolls, condiments, and attendant. Now for the sides the couple will enlist the best cook family members to make side dishes such as green beans, au gratin potatoes, and supply iced tea and water. Next is the table decor for the wedding. The centerpieces will be DIY with very low cost. The brides's bouquet and boutonni√®res will be live flowers purchased at the local grocery florist for $100. I choose baby breaths because they are the most least expensive flowers. All other flowers used for decor at the reception and ceremony will be artificial purchased in a bundle from Hobby Lobby during their 50% off sale for $50. Or individual small bundles from Dollar Tree. Total $906.39 

THIS BRINGS MY GRAND TOTAL TO $1480.25 with $19.75 LEFTOVER!!!!!!

*This is a hypothetical situation. Actual retail prices may vary. Pictures courtesy of David's Bridal,, Dillard's, ICING, Walmart, Pinterest, and Publix. 


  1. Great ideas. ....We will need you to plan our wedding once we decide to have it. Thanks for the ideas

  2. Great site Jen
    Ashleigh #wde!