Article 1 In a Series of Articles on Your Pretty Princess Wedding on a Pauper’s Budget

By , June 19, 2015 10:15 pm


Today, many women spend tens of thousands of dollars on glamorous weddings. The competition to have the “biggest and the best” on “the most important day of your life” is fierce. But you actually don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a fabulous wedding. It is simply a matter of deciding what features are important to you and how to cut the costs. You can still have everything you want and keep your wedding on a budget if you plan carefully.

It Starts With a Ring

Traditionally, a man buys a ring and suprises his girlfriend with it when he proposes.

Traditionally, the man or the couple would go to the local jeweler and look at the 100 or so rings available and make a choice.

Traditionally, a man would spend two times his monthly income on the ring.

But things aren’t so traditional anymore. In the modern world, the woman is often involved with the purchasing decision from the word go. Now, there are online diamond jewelry outlets that have tens of thousands of ring combinations and will save you a ton of money over a retail store.

At the time of this writing, Zales was offering “specials” on half carat engagement ring diamond solitaires for $1600. Blue Nile online store’s “build it yourself” ring was $1050.

You not only save money at Blue Nile, you get to design your own ring. You can select diamonds on the basis of their clarity, carat, color, and cut. You also select the setting and can incorporate things such as the bride and groom’s birthstones.

Another nice feature is that you can order the ring in the bride’s size from the outset which means there is no delay in getting a standard size ring resized.

Finally, when you start the wedding process by saving on the ring rather than spending an outlandish amount at a retail store, you set the tone for the whole wedding budget.

Wedding Budget

The next thing we need to look at is deciding on the overall wedding budget. A sensible thing to do is establish a top figure that you are willing to spend (say $10,000) and develop your budget at 80% of that (say $8,000). Weddings have a way of costing more than you planned, so plan for the unexpected from the beginning.

The bride’s father typically had two roles: write the checks and walk her down the aisle. But things have changed.

First of all, with wedding expenses what they are, many fathers are not willing to foot the bill all by themselves. Also, as couples have delayed getting married, they have some money to pay for the wedding themselves.

Early on in the wedding planning, sit down with all of the people who are going to be paying the bills and ask what their contributions can be and what they expect in return. You can involve fathers, mothers, step parents, and groom’s parents.

You can ask people to chip in a certain amount toward the overall budget or you can ask them to pay for specific things. Perhaps an aunt will pay for the wedding flowers while your step father will buy the dress. If you get commitments for specific things, the people who are helping you foot the bill will feel that they have more control over their budgets. They may also be willing to spend a little more because it is for one thing and not for a general budget.

Keep in mind that once you get financial commitments from people, they start to work them into their own budgets. If you go back and ask for more later, they may not have the money. So, try to stick with the budget you set forth at the beginning.

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