A wedding is every woman’s dream event. It’s the one day when you get everything the way you want it and where everyone respects your wishes no matter how silly they sound. From as early as the age of 5, most girls have started thinking of what their dream wedding will be like. As they grow older, their dream wedding keeps growing bigger and taking a perfect shape and look so that by the time they are ready to start dating and to get married, it becomes difficult not to put into motion the ideas that have been burning in her mind from when she was five.
But the question remains, “While you are trying to bring your dream to life, just how much is that dream wedding supposed to cost you? Is your dream wedding supposed to cost you an arm, a leg, and your marriage?
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With the initial excitement that follows the engagement, you begin to make calls to the caterers, the florists, designers, and beauticians before you suddenly realize that to have the kind of wedding you want, you would have to bring out every penny you have and then cough up more until you and your intended are choking. Welcome to the wedding arm and leg cost.
If it’s a birthday or a picnic, sure, you can just sign the check but if it’s a wedding, you might as well, empty the account because, by the time the last guest leaves, your bank account will be as empty as the wedding venue. Since weddings are that expensive in South Africa, it is estimated that you will need at least R70 000 to plan effectively and you will agree with me that this will be no small feat for a young couple that is just starting off life.
So if you are sure you don’t have an arm and a leg to sacrifice for the dream wedding, then you need to start from somewhere and try to cut down to the right size as your bank account can carry. So, to cut down that dream wedding to the perfect size, you need to consider doing the following:
1. Decide What’s Important
First and foremost, you need to sit down, think hard and decide what stays and what goes. Yes, the celebration is a must, but you must decide to let go of some things that do not necessarily make your wedding better. Let go of some things that are just for show-offs, remove everything that results in a splurge and is not absolutely necessary. This would go a long way in cutting down the cost of your wedding so that at the end, instead of spending through your ears, you will comfortably watch yourself have fun at your dream wedding.
If there’s a family tradition that must be respected, pencil it in, but if it’s not a must-do, then scrap it and concentrate on celebrating yourself and your partner rather than pleasing family and friends. Remember that after the wedding, the family won’t be there to share the debt you would have accrued from your big and rich wedding. The perfect theme, venue, cake and even the dream dress all have alternatives. If you don’t want to go that way, you can relent on the venue or the cake and get the dream dress.
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2. Do A Budget
Before you start anything or even look into making decisions, make a budget and map out how much you want to spend on your wedding. After you have made this decision, you will be surprised at how easy it will be fit all the things you want into the budget you have mapped out.
To better ensure that you are able to stick to the budget you have made, take a pre-wedding vow with your partner not to spend more than you have budgeted, this will be your first test at being committed to vows, if you succeed, then be sure that your wedding will be great and your marriage even greater.
3. Try Something New And Different
Yes, weddings have been branded but remember that you can always try something different from what everyone seems inclined to accept. What makes your wedding unique and different from that of others is that you try something other people have not tried. Don’t be afraid to experiment whatever idea comes into your head, you will be surprised at how good it will turn out.
You can try an outdoor picnic or bring a Braai event. You can change the food menu, follow a different seating arrangement or even make it as party-like as possible. Let your imagination get creative even if it’s just this once.
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4. Never Forget Your Budget
Whatever happens, never forget to stick to the budget you have made. This can become especially difficult when family and friends expect you to follow the usual traditional method of doing things. Learn to stick to your budget no matter the amount of pressure.
This is the time when you and your partner will need to remind each other at every point in time why you decided to stick to a budget. Also remember that even though the wedding might be the biggest celebration in your lives, it is just a day and will be over within a few short hours.
5. Don’t Forget To Always Wear A Smile
Finally, no matter what happens, make up your mind to wear an adorable smile at all time. A smile may not be much, but it will go a long way in lifting your spirit and keeping the troubles at bay especially when family and friends are determined to change the plans you have made. It may be difficult to smile that day especially if you feel like the perfection you wanted was altered, but when you do, you will have more fun than you think possible.
So shake off the pressure every now and then and concentrate on having the time of your life.