How in the world do you arrive at a wedding budget? This is one of those things that couples and their families have been trying to figure out for ages and I’m sure this will continue to be the case. There are a number of ways. You can set an arbitrary number, based on what you want to spend and try to make your wedding happen for that amount. You can base it on what your friends spent on their wedding, but chances are that they may not even really know. You can try to figure out how much each item you want will cost and then add it all up.
The ways that people arrive at their wedding budget are varied but no matter what that number is there is one question that we are always asked – “What can we get for $???”? Big spending plan, small spending plan – it doesn’t matter. People want to know what they can expect to receive from the amount that they are spending. And we would like to shed a little light on that question by breaking down the costs of one of our past ACTUAL weddings. We’re going to show you some pictures and the costs associated with those items from K&J’s wedding from this past fall (October 2013). For a frame of reference, you should know that they had approximately 85 guests in attendance.
The photographs that you will see in this blog post are from their photographer, Two Rings Photography, and included 7 hours of photography with 2 shooters – a $3,000 total.
Her wedding dress (on the left) was from Signature Bridal and was approximately $3,000 with alterations. The dress on the right was the reception dress that she changed into later in the evening and it was an additional cost.
The Venue was Antebellum Oaks in Austin, Texas. The rate was $4,500 and was a little lower than a peak day, since this wedding was held on a Friday.
The wedding cake was a 4 tier fondant cake with a rhinestone wrap on each tier. It was from Amazing Cakes of Austin and was $1,500
The decor was beautiful, with tall floral arrangements on 7 of the tables and 8 low arrangements on the remaining tables and a heavily decorated head table and cake table. They were filled with a variety of flowers, focusing on roses, hydrangeas, and succulents in colors of peach, green, white, and grey. The brides bouquet and wedding party flowers were equally gorgeous. Malleret Designs was the florist and the total was $5,019 with installation and tear down as well.
The catering was well done by Southern’s Fine Dining and the food was out of this world delicious. The menu consisted of local flair passed appetizers of pipeline quesadillas, Texas smoked kettle chip with smoked brisket, and a chef attended Elote station.
Dinner was comfort foods of deconstructed pot pie and Italian meatloaf with balsamic glaze, accompanied by roasted root vegetables and mashed potatoes.
There was a late night chips and salsa bar with a variety of fresh made dips and tri color tortilla chips for dipping.
With bartending staff, serving staff, taxes, and all, the total was $5,200
The costs for the alcohol used for the bar was approximately $1,400
The additional pretty decor that you see – the flowing waterfall tablecloths, china, silverware, glasses, etc are from Premiere Party Central and the total was $2,300. The beautiful chiavari chairs that you see in the photos are complimentary with the rental of Antebellum Oaks. This was an outstanding deal, as the normal rental rate of these chairs is about $7+ per chair.
The lighting from ILD Lighting was extraordinary. If you really want to transform a space you should definitely have gorgeous lighting at your wedding. The cost of wedding lighting and an on site lighting tech to control the lighting all night was $2,500.
There are a lot of costs that are associated with a wedding that you don’t really see in these pictures:
- The DJ that was $1,500
- The transportation costs to take the guests from the hotel to the venue and back again at the end of the night – approximately $2,000
- The videographer that was $1,400
- The guys tuxes at about $200 each
- The hair and make up for the bridesmaids and the bride, at about $175 per person
- The guitarist for the ceremony that was $350
There are also items that we haven’t covered here, like invitations, travel costs, hotel expenses, guest favors, miscellaneous decor, rings, honeymoon, and more.
But the answer to “How Much Does A Wedding Cost” in this case is…
Around $50,000+ for 85 guests for an October wedding date at Antebellum Oaks in Austin, Texas.