Suggestions for ways to maximise your wedding budget from wedding planner and stylist Chenai
I’m really excited to be sharing the words of wisdom of some brilliant wedding industry suppliers over the coming weeks and months. It’s really important to me as a wedding photographer that everything runs smoothly on the wedding day, so I’ve asked some of the wedding world’s finest to share their thoughts on various aspects of wedding planning. First up is London based wedding planner and stylist Chenai, who’s going to talk to you about ways to maximise your wedding budget.
Chenai is a London based creative and resourceful planner who has a wonderful eye for detail. She loves a well laid table, a superbly mixed cocktail (Negroni if you’re buying) and a room full of people having a wonderful time. Chenai can usually be found hosting dinners for her friends, cooking up a storm in her kitchen (and or dancing) when she’s not reading/ writing for pleasure. Follow her on Instagram, Facebook and pop over to her website.
Over to Chenai for some brilliant ways to maximise your wedding budget. All images by me, unless stated otherwise.
Whether you have £5000 or £50 000 to put together the wedding or celebration of your dreams it is so important to maximise every pound to ensure you have the day you’ve wished and worked hard for.
I’ve outlined some ways to do this that are great advice for anyone who is planning a celebration or event.
Be clear about your vision and priorities for your wedding
And stick to it! Having a meaningful and honest conversation with your partner about what you want the look and feel to be will guide you towards making the right decisions about what to wear, how you want your ceremony and reception to look and what kind of experience you want to provide for your guests.
Work out your wedding budget
Once you’ve decided what your priorities are, apportion money in your budget accordingly. If you want to have a great food , drink and entertainment experience and aren’t too concerned with heavy flora or decor styling, move that cash money to the ‘entertainment ‘section of your spreadsheet knowing that you will get the band/Dj and catering you really want.
Create a styling focal point
Don’t spend on small (especially disposable) decor items. Pinterest is a wonderful tool but also a curse to the ‘about to be wed.’ The temptation to want to fill your wedding spaces with ALL the DIY trends often proves too much for some. As a stylist I always seek to create a focal styling point, a statement piece that will draw the eyes of the guests straight away. Spend more on your floral arrangements which can elevate a room so beautifully without the need for too many other ‘bits’. If flowers are not your bag, then go wild with lighting or a ribbon canopy but don’t try and make a multitude of party favours or table decor knick knacks which guests may not really pay attention to and will end up being waste.
Delegate and use your network
I mean this literally. Identify friends and family who have talents and skills which you can use in your planning and ask for their help. This doesn’t mean you can assume you will get freebies across the board, unless they specifically offer it to you as a gift, so don’t look horrified when they give you a price. However, the obvious benefit here, is that if you have a cake baker, hairstylist, makeup artist etc in your close friend or family circle- you can really save on these often major costs.
Lucy’s mum made this awesome cake for her. Do you have anyone this talented that could help you out?
Hire a professional wedding/event planner
Wait a minute, that’s just spending more money isn’t it?’ Well, their job is to deliver your vision within your budget, giving you your time back to focus on your life, relationships and work. Time is money. Many couples to be don’t feel comfortable relinquishing control in this way granted, but for those who are time poor or live in a different country to where they will be married etc this makes good sense.
As professionals, planners and stylists won’t have the same level of emotional attachment which often leads couples to make allowances for things not accounted for in their initial plans, only to find their budgets are busted by more than a few hundred pounds. A good planner will guide you in all the above, a great planner will do their utmost to ensure that ‘sticking to the budget’ doesn’t feel like a chore and will always manage your expectations with honesty.
Thanks to Chenai for these brilliant ways to maximise your wedding budget. If you have any tips leave a comments!