These days when you get married it's not just wedding bells ringing, its the cash registers! From photobooths, to photographers, to wedding favors, the average wedding now costs around $27,000.
Local 4 Consumer Expert Ruth Spencer sat down with wedding expert and president of Brides-to Be Inc., Cyd LaChiusa, who claims she can plan a wedding for any budget. She showed us a room full of wedding items that cost less than $10,000.
"You're going to work with those people and say I am a bride on a budget," said LaChiusa.
Putting her planning skills to the test, LaChiusa, set up a bridal showcase for us to illustrate all the bridal options.
"Fresh flowers, invitations, photography, everything you see here actually came down, and I'm really proud of this figure, for 150 guests, to $9,100!" said LaChiusa.
Her package included dinner with a full bar for $29 a place at Barrister Gardens in St. Clair Shores, $1000 for a florist, $450 for a real, full wedding cake, and a bridal gown for under $500 from Nicole Michaels. (see entire wedding budget and vendors at the end of this article)
Trim Your Budget Down To Size
There are also several ideas on how to trim your wedding budget down to size.
"You don't need a huge centerpiece. It only detracts, you can't talk to guests," said Cyd LaChiusa.
You probably know booking your wedding in popular months like June or December comes with a bigger price tag. Other months are also popular.
"In this city, in Detroit, they want September and October. They think its going to be cooler. If you want a fall wedding honey, go to November," LaChiusa said.
She also emailed Ruth to the Rescue more of her secrets to saving! LaChiusa tells brides to purchase a sample wedding gown or a gown off the rack, consider buying flowers from Costco, and buy vases for the table from the dollar store. She also suggests brides get their hair done at a local cosmetology school and make their own invitations.
Brides on a Budget
Local 4 Consumer Expert Ruth Spencer sat down with two brides who were able to keep their weddings under $10,000. Both brides shopped around and negotiated with their vendors to ensure they got the most bang for their wedding buck.
The negotiations included the DJ for Jennifer Symons, "They are like 'Oh, do you want these lights, do you want a fog machine'? No, I just want you to play music, the simple, whatever lights some with it, whatever you use. I don't need a big show or pony dance."
Other advice our veteran brides have for brides to be is to make your own invitations, skip the party favors, and you don't need to have your wedding on
"We did get a discount for having it on a Friday night... They said Fridays aren't very busy. We offer discounts if you do Fridays, and I said Sold!" said Symons.
Both of the women urged other brides to keep their expenses in perspective.
"I would say keep in mind that it is just a wedding. It is not a show. It is not a time to go broke and impress all of your guests," said bride-to-be Holly Koehn.
"You could be paying it off for 5-6 years after you are married just because of you have to have this big show, make sure you have that budget," said
Bridal Package: Wedding for 150 Guests: Under $10,000 (approximately $9810, including wedding planner)
Florist: Bellisario Florist $1,000 586-773-7070
Tuxedos: President Tuxedo $300 800-837-TUXS (Groom, Best Man, Father of the Bride)
Photography: J&S Portrait Tuxedo $600 734-649-4857 (Unlimited coverage, All images on CD)
Invitations: Sizemore Selectives $100 586-739-2553
Photo Booth Box of Fun (4 hours) $435 586-883-2471
Hall: Barrister Gardens $4,350 586-773-4040 ($29 a plate, full bar)
Dresses: Nicole Michaels $500/$200 586-254-5474 (Bridal dress, Mother, Attendant)
Bakery: Sweetheart Bakery $450 586-795-1660
Minister: Minister At Large $125 734-502-5111 (Victoria Kowalski)
Favors: Bonaldis $150 586-263-1233
DJ: Barry Alan Ent. $500 586-709-3632
Limo: Entertainment Express $300 313-277-5000 (3 hour package)
Bridal Shows Brides To Be Inc $800 586-228-2700
There is a conversation about Weddings on a Budget on our Facebook page.