Wedding Wednesday

19 September 2012|

Wedding Wednesday?! No I am not getting married again but I want to re-live our wedding so I’ve decided to link up with Joelle from Something Charming. Joelle is a wedding planer with inspiring ideas and realistic thoughts for today’s brides. I am going to link up each week with our wedding experiences (and recap our special memories and moments too!)
Wedding Wednesday: How to budget
This is probably the scariest part of a wedding – the dreaded adding things up, hearing the word no and counting the pennies. It can also be a family drama, result in plenty tears and shatter some dreams. But my only piece of advice… is to be realistic! There are means and ways of getting around a strict budget, and there are definitely some things that are essential to indulge in and others that are best going the cheapest route.
We were so blessed and lucky with our wedding to have both sets of parents (mine and MC’s) offer us money for our special day. Our families were so eager to help us and get involved and make sure that we got the dream wedding we had always wanted. 
Our Budget Spenders:
1. Photographer – Heather Fitchet was my Grade 7 teacher and has always been a close friend and mentor. We have stayed in touch over the years and when she started taking photographs, I had her booked (way before MC and I even met!) Your photographer is the most important part of your day. They are responsible for the memories that you will treasure and look back on over time. You don’t want them to be late, miss a moment or forget their memory card!
2. DJ – This person will get your party started and keep your party going. There is no bette way to kill the mood than an average DJ. Daniel from Top Jocks kept everyone happy – from my 70 year old granny to my 13 year old cousin. He played slow songs for the couples and disco songs for the singletons. He played rock songs for the oldies and pop songs for the youngsters and eventually at 4am, he turned everything off… 
3. Food – I have been to plenty weddings (especially in the last 2-3 years) and one thing I always remember from a wedding is the food. I can tell you if it was absolutely delicious, served cold, not enough was prepared or down right gross to the palette! There is nothing worse than an evening being remembered for the yuk food! A wedding can be a whole day affair so when people sit down to eat, they really want to gobble it down and for it to taste good, be hot and be flexible to sensitive tastebuds and picky eaters (a lot to keep in mind!)
4. Wedding planner – this may seem like a luxury to most people but as a bride, there is no person you are more grateful for on the day and the preparation day before. Brides should be relaxing the day before and enjoying time with special family, friends and bridesmaids – not running around sorting out the nitty gritty. And on the day, brides should be having hair and makeup done, getting into their beautiful gown and being calm before a great commitment – not running around like a chicken with no head sorting out last minute disasters! I was lucky enough to had plenty hands on deck – from moms, friends, family and a planner… I was oblivious to the chaos that surrounded me.
Our Budget bonuses:
1. Venue – we got married at The Fairmont Zimbali Hotel on our North Coast. The hotel was built in the year we got married and when we confirmed our venue, it was a mere concrete structure. It officially opened its doors 2 months before we got married, and we were worried about the few teething problems that needed to be sorted out. The day went off without hitch or any problems. But being the first wedding held at the hotel, we were seen as guinea pigs for their event schedule and were given many discounts.
2. Accommodation – the venue is 30 mins away from Durban so it was a distance for people to drive (if not drinking) and catch a taxi (if drinking) so quite a few people chose to book into the hotel. We were lucky enough to receive their opening special prices and they didn’t charge us for breakfast the next morning (yes, for all 40 guests!)
3. Videographer – A few months before our wedding, my bridesmaids and I attended a bridal fair close to home. I already had most ideas set in my mind but it couldn’t hurt to take a walk around and see what was on offer. Whilst walking around, I entered a few competitions (admittedly, I didn’t even know what some of them were for!) A week later, I received a call to say that we had won a wedding dvd! We had already booked a videographer but the word free set off alarm bells and I googled Dane Forman and after watching just one video, I was hooked – he was brilliant!! Another great money saver!
There are so many ways to save – and spend – but make your day unique and exactly what YOU want!
What are your wedding budget tips or fears?


  1. this is so great – I love hearing from brides who have survived the planning! question: what's the one thing you spent money on that, in hindsight, you wish you hadn't?

  2. This is so useful to read! With Jurg and I just getting engaged I'm only starting to think about the wedding and I feel so overwhelmed! I have a LOT to learn!


  3. Great tips! I totally agree with the wedding planner part but then again I'm a little bias! There are so many other areas you can reduce or cut out but at least having a day of wedding coordinator makes all the difference!

  4. These are really great tips, and I love hearing your personal experiences with all of them! That part about the hotel is brilliant, if not a little scary! I'm glad you were able to get everything you wanted for wedding.

    Thanks for the sweet shout out, and for linking up today my dear!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About me

I'm Caley a thirty-something wife & mummy from Durban, South Africa. Ellie Love Blog is all about me, my family and our beautiful life.


Ellie Stories