I thought I'd take the opportunity to impart some wedding wisdom since I find myself unable to take time off when I have 'time off'.
As a small business owner I'm pretty prolific on social media, particularly Facebook, promoting my venue dressing and consultancy services. Across more and more of the wedding group pages, I see the same post popping up: I need to plan my wedding, what do I do? (Or words to that effect.)
So... here's the answer: LISTS!
Once you've set your budget you're going to need to two lists - One, for the things you NEED and Two, for the things you WANT. (Methodical brides are going to respond well to this.)
Of course, this can be interpreted in many ways, but to get your budget down, you should treat this in a literal sense. In order for your wedding to actually go ahead your NEED list will look like this:
Next, cost up these items. Price will depend on where you live, whether you choose a weekend or weekday, summer or winter, church or stately home. If you marry on a Sunday your venue might be cheaper but the registrar will be more expensive. Ultimately, you need to work out what is best for you.
Get your venue booked first. If you've chosen a Saturday in August, you'll need to pin it down as soon as possible, plus, the venue will be the biggest single cost - so once it's nailed down you'll know where you stand with your remaining budget.
Boom! Congratulations! You can now legally become Mr & Mrs, Mrs & Mrs or Mr & Mr. There will BE a wedding.
Now, your WANT list, at this stage, will likely be so long it makes The Lord Of The Rings look like a children's book, but stick with me... it might look something like this:
Just added that last one in there to see how far down you would read ;)
Seriously though, if you're planning on having something just as bizarre (but real) as part of the festivities on your big day, leave a comment below. We'd LOVE to hear about your personal and unique finishing touches.
Anyhow, I digress...
This final stage is going to take willpower, compromise and possibly a second job if the aforementioned aren't working out.
From your WANT list, cost each WANT up in order of importance, and add them to your NEED list. For as long as you have budget remaining, you can keep adding them in.
There will always be compromises you can make in order to save money, enabling you to have more of the things you want, but only you will be able to assertain what those compromises will be.
What you can be sure of, is you will have a wonderful day regardless of budget because you will be marrying the person you love.