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Wedding Budget Series: Part 7 - Allocating Expenses: Who Pays for What?

Well -- if you made it through the wedding budgets then you probably saw at the end where I said I would work on sending out the "who done it". Or -- the who was responsible for paying for what... Remember -- this is just how we prioritized it -- you do you! We also had the benefit -- and i really strongly recommend it if possible -- of making a budget draft and planning out the budget ( including dollar guesses) before you need one. Because let's face it -- emotions run high during wedding planning and it was delightful -- sincerely -- to make a budget free from emotions! You can always shift and adjust --- but at least you have a start! We also started earmarking some money for upcoming weddings when we did the budget. God willing our girls will spread out their weddings lol -- but that is never guaranteed -- and we have 3 to keep our eye on!

If you missed the previous conversations --- here's where you can find them! BLOG & RECIPES | The Great Hall of Royal

Here's our quick breakdown -- followed with a little explanation. If you look back at our previous blogs -- you'll get a sense of why on this priority order -- and what we factored into those decisions!

Venue - us

Catering - us

DJ - couple

Photographer - couple

Cake/Dessert Options - couple

Dress - us up to a dollar amount - couple if they go over budget

Suit or Tux - couple

Flowers - (this was honestly left up in the air and we are each doing different parts)

Invitations/Save the Dates - couple

Engagement photos - couple

Bar - us

Bar and Catering Staff - us

Siblings Outfits - us

Decorations - us with a budget in mind - if they go wild, they can pay the difference!

Hair and Make Up Day Of - us

Church Rental - us

Priest Stipend - us

Church decorations - us

Ceremony Musicians - couple

Transportation/ Party Bus - (left up in the air - probably us if we decide we need one)

Party Favors - couple

Bachelor/Bachelorette party - couple

Rehearsal Dinner/Sunday Brunch - us

Staff Rehearsal and Sunday - us

Wedding Shower - us

So --- the thought process for us -- is a little different because we own the venue! If they choose to have it at our venue -- we are obviously not charging them! This covers a lot of areas for us where we will manage those expenses related to the wedding weekend on our own. I also have a hand in the catering decisions based on what the kids want and on the staffing decisions that we are making so that we can enjoy our weekend with friends and family! We are choosing to pay extra so we can be mom and dad!

So, these covers for us -- Venue, Catering, Desserts (kids are planning their cutting cake), Bar, Bar and Catering Staff, Rehearsal and Sunday Food and Staffing, as well as Wedding Shower. I'll also throw the decorations here too --- we bought a bunch -- because they will be things that we will have in my decorating closet for a long time to come -- but if they want more, they can do whatever they wish!

Church and Priest were big priorities for us and the kids -- and we are paying for them because we are delighted, they are starting out their marriage at the church. This also includes the church decorations for us. It's a deeply personal decision for this -- but one we are so happy to pay for! I believe in removing any perceived obstacles to this ( such as a budget constraint) -- I don't think that made one moment of difference in our upcoming wedding -- but it is part of our philosophy for all of them!

Dress -- we set a dollar amount and if they stay in this amount then we pay it -- if they get designer fancy -- then they make up the difference! Siblings' outfits -- again just our choice! Hair and Make-up --- I have seen what the local experts can do -- and I know what I can do. {eek} -- I'm happy to pay!

Flowers -- we are doing a mix here. I think we are choosing to cover a bunch -- but the kids might pick some extra things they want too...I would support whatever direction they go in with flowers, but with all our other expenses I don't have the budget in mind to do all the we'll share if we go past that!

Transportation and Party Bus --- we are not sure yet what we have planned. If we need one to get to/from the wedding for peeps that will be getting ready at the Great Hall we might do that...and we might do one at the end of the night back to the hotels. I don't know how much that will be useful with our particular guests -- so we are still making that decision but are prepared to handle it if needed!

So --- that leave the stuff we designated to the couple -- or "not us"!

A quick reasoning for us was...DJ and Photographer are to me two artistic things -- they are so wide open to interpretation -- what strikes the fancy of the couple -- so many different things. We didn't want to try to guestimate a budget and then have them trying to artificially make choices based on that. This seemed like something that wasn't unreasonable for them to budget and pay for -- and so we stayed out of that. ( side note -- I DO want family pictures so we will be chipping in on getting the "for me" stuff!) I would also put the invitations and save the dates under this umbrella --- choose what you would like as a couple and order how you see fit!

Same with Cake and Dessert -- although with this upcoming wedding we've made a few changes ( budgets are a guideline folks! ) I wanted the couples to pick out whatever they want from whomever they want and not have an artificial budget for that -- so they are a couple's decision! The upcoming wedding, we did do a little switcharoo as the bride is not a cake/cupcake/most desserts fan. So, we are renting in an ice cream cake and serving with homemade cookies and bars -- because we can. But I'm obviously not charging my sweetie to make her favorite chocolate chip cookies. LOL

Suit or Tux -- this was a guy's thing...and I don't have any boys. If it was for my boy we'd be paying.

Ceremony Musicians - we felt like this was a spot that the couple could again choose as they wish and pay accordingly -- and that they wouldn't mind a bit!

Lastly - party favors and bachelor and bachelorette parties. These are just not important to Matt or I -- and not something we would prioritize in our budget. So -- if the kids want them, enjoy! But plan your budget with that in mind!

There's the scoop on the rationale -- I appreciate all the feedback and you all have had some great anecdotes and questions --- I stand by the fact that weddings are MEANT TO BE FUN! So, enjoy the process! And one way to do that is to lay your cards on the table so to speak and know who is paying for what. It saves so much headache. And your stories prove that to be true!

Again -- share if you think this would be helpful! We are here to serve you!

Sara <3

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