Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wedding planning hell…..exciting, terrifying and frustrating to no end!!

Here’s the first installment in a series….so I can vent, and maybe help others out.
So I have to admit, this isn’t my first rodeo….I was a micromanaging control freak of a bride over a decade ago, and I’ve been a micromanaging control freak of a planner for parts of about 10 other weddings. If you are like me, you really need to GET A GRIP!

Really, you can’t do it all and keep your sanity, or look pretty on the big day if you are not sleeping for weeks before hand!! This is where friends and family come in… need to Delegate…say it with me, DELEGATE! You have people you trust and can count on, right? You trust that they know YOUR style (even if you hate theirs)…you know they can make educated guesses at the last minute that won’t be any worse than a decision you make, right?? So let them. Ask for help!!

For the trusted family and friends, please, don’t take on too much, don’t procrastinate, really think of what the bride would choose (even if you hate that option). Get a task from the bride, follow it through and if you are still game, ask for another one…..don’t be like me. This summer I helped a friend for her wedding…..I made her bridal jewelry (necklace, earrings and tiara)…I made the wedding bands….I did ALL the flowers and decorations on the big day….I was a basket case by the end. DON’T DO THAT!!

My second topic for today is about budgeting….you MUST have one. Really people, unless you just got the winning lotto tickets, you need to have some idea what you are spending and where! The earlier you get this done, the better. If your families are contributing, don’t expect them to kick in more at the last minute because you went over budget….and for the love of God, don’t just pull out the credit card!! Fine, you want to put it all on your “miles” card so you can get upgraded to first class on the plane to your honeymoon….I get that. Please make sure there is CASH in the bank to pay for it next month. You really don’t want to be fighting over the credit card bill on your 1 month anniversary.

A budget tip for families… be up front about what you can and will pay for. If you want to give a lump sum, do so. If you want to pay for the food, do so (but cap the total up front!!) Please realize that this is the kids’ day, and it should turn out how the kids’ want it…not how you picture it in your head. Please don’t think that if you are handing over the cash you should be able to hand over a guest list of 50 friends who your child hasn’t seen since they were 5. You should have INFLUENCE in the decisions, but you SHOULDN’T get the final say (unless it’s over budget.)

Another thing about budgets…they are never what you’ll spend. There’s always a last minute thing.

**You forgot that EVERYONE is supposed to get a tip that day. Let’s see, that’s about another $1000 or so, depending on how many servers you’re having, and if you have a 7 piece band or just one DJ.

**Or you find the “perfect” bridesmaids gift only a week before the wedding. For all 6 girls, at $30 each, that runs you another $180.

**The prepaid open bar is dry with 4 hours more to go on the dance (what, do these people have a hollow leg?)….that’ll be another $400 for a keg and $500 for two cases of wine.

See, there’s always something….so please add in at least $1000 of wiggle room. Worst case scenario, you have it if you need to use it…best case scenario, you have an extra grand to spend on the honeymoon!!

I think that’s all I have for today….next time, battling with caterers. Unless something else implodes before then!!


  1. Oh Asa, I can't wait for your next installment! We've been researching venues and they're between $90 and $110 per person here in NJ...and that's not going overboard on anything! Then there's 18 to 21% gratuity + 7% sales tax. That's not including the music, photographer, flowers or anything else. We've looked at venues where you have to bring in absolutely everything but they're quite ugly and would take a lot of $ to transform the look. THEN, my daughter's former boss ran into her--he's the executive director of a museum. We're going there on Sunday to check out the space. If it looks like it could work, we may be dealing with caterers so I'll need your sage advice ;0)

  2. so, $90 to $110 includes food and the room? It's a bit steep for me, but if that's going price, that's going price....check out the next entry for some other oddball ideas, if the kids are up to it.