Wedding Budgeting

Wedding Planner: Getting Organized

Let's get real; we are both married, planned a wedding and it was great!
Looking back the ONE single thing I recommend to newly engaged or couples planning a wedding - Get a day-of coordinator!

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Getting organized is hard work. You have just been handed a ring and the massive task of planning a large scale event - and you’ve never done this before. Having a wedding planner or coordinator just makes sense, they are professionals at this and you’ve only ever planned a wine & cheese night (aka buy wine & cheese, pour in a glass and put on a plate….proceed to drink wine and refill). Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure you are super organized with spreadsheets, contact lists, a pinterest board that could make any ‘non-engaged’ person dream of colour palettes, cupcakes and gorgeous centrepieces.
However it's a very special day that deserves the right amount of stress and worry free attention from the star couple. It was the one thing that I was so happy I chose to spend my money on. Having someone there to roll with the punches, make sure food was warm and coming out on time, ensure that uncle Mike didn't run out of his favourite gin behind the bar, that my sister’s 19th birthday cake came out with the wedding cake and she got that special moment on our wedding day. ALL of these moments were extra special because I wasn't worrying one tiny bit about having to organize all the moving parts.

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Wedding Planners can also be an integral part in your wedding planning from day one. They have connections in the industry that might help you make important decisions, prioritize our budget and make sure you are spending money in the places that are most important to you. They could have experience with your particular venue and have insight into how an event could run best given your timing or other scenarios you may not even be thinking of!


Vendor Spotlight:

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We have worked with Alexandra on a couple of collaborative creative photoshoots, and with some of our wonderful couples as well. Every experience with her has been wonderful, she goes above and beyond to help make sure your vision comes to life - and has great style and vision herself! We recommend her to any of our clients looking for someone to help bring all the elements together for them, day of or months ahead!

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With over 5 years of experience working with event coordination, Alexandra Folkes, owner and lead planner,  is a pleasure to work with. Alexandra has an eye for detail and is meticulously organized to ensure your day runs smoothly.  From consultation, partial planning, and day of coordination, Alexandra is the perfect person to have on hand to execute your special event!

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Working creatively with our vendor friends is something we are inspired by, and hope we are able to put together all the looks that are floating in our heads one day. Experimenting is fun, if you have a vision, we are more than happy to get creative and start running with it.

Wedding Venue: Picking your Atmosphere

You’ve picked a date
You’ve looked at how to budget for the big event
Where will this party happen?

Ceremony Location;
Are you religious, or have family members that are? This could play a part in deciding on having your ceremony in a separate location - ie. a Church.
There are sometimes time restrictions with having a ceremony in a Church, so consider this and speak with your parish or priest about the details.
Do you want an outdoor location for your ceremony? If you want something in a park or field - there are still things to consider like; permits, someone to marry you, toilets, parking, just to name a few...

The Burroughes Building , Toronto Photo Credit: Toronto Wedding Studios

The Burroughes Building , Toronto
Photo Credit: Toronto Wedding Studios

Reception Location;
Think about what time of day you might want your reception to happen. Will it be a party that goes into the wee hours, or perhaps a casual brunch/lunch or cocktail vibe. Once you have considered the atmosphere you would like it will help narrow down a more specific look, vibe or atmosphere you will be looking for. For example if you are thinking a more intimate brunch for your nearest and dearest - a restaurant might be the perfect fit. Or perhaps the look and atmosphere is something you really want to create for your guests - so a gallery or event space is more up your alley.
Will you need accommodations for people that are traveling to get to you? If its a more remote location, you might want to consider how many people will want to stay the night somewhere vs. driving home the same day/night. This doesn’t really factor in if you are choosing a resort style venue - as rooms should be readily available to you and your guests for the date of your event!

Ricarda’s Restuarant, Toronto Photo Credit: kirstenhuculiak.com

Ricarda’s Restuarant, Toronto
Photo Credit: kirstenhuculiak.com

Or Both;
There are certainly a lot of Venues that will offer both a place for the ceremony and the reception, which might make things easier! These are also typically the venues that will also include all kinds of things like rentals, linens, staffing, a complete bar and caterer etc. All really good considerations, as you will most likely end up spending more if you have to book all these separate pieces individually and have to organize it all to happen for one day!

Cosgrove Barn, Havelock ON Photo Credit: Lauren McCormick Photography

Cosgrove Barn, Havelock ON
Photo Credit: Lauren McCormick Photography

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Our Suggestions;
1. Pick your location
2. Make an accurate guess of your guest list
3. Decide Sit-down or Cocktail/Party Reception
4. Narrow down your Venue choices by size - now that you have a guest list
5. Choose 3 Venues you like and go visit them!
6. Ask Questions! What do they include? What’s already on-site? Do they have examples of the set-up you would be having?
7. Be ready to decide quickly!

Once you have your Venue location and the date confirmed - you can start narrowing down all the other details that follow! Are you getting excited yet?

Assembly Chef’s Hall, Toronto

Assembly Chef’s Hall, Toronto

Wedding Budget: Tips and Tricks

  1. How much money do you have? Don’t have unrealistic expectations on how much money you can save in the next 6 moths to a year.  

  2. Set a budget and stick to it! That means keeping track of how much you are spending.

  3. Look at the big picture.  Discuss what is important to you.  Do you love live music? Splurge on a live band but find other areas to save.

  4. Make compromises.  Be flexible with your options.  

  5. Be mindful of the season.  Some venues charge off season prices but consider all the factors.  If you are dead set on having peonies in your flowers, research when they are available.

  6. Do your research.

  7. Be comfortable with your vendors.  You don’t want to have to worry about minuscule details on your wedding day.

  8. Check your budget again.  Most couples are surprised how quickly everything adds up!

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