Luxury wedding planner Mark Niemierko has partnered with Barclays to offer couples some brilliant pearls of budget-savvy wisdom...
A recent study conducted by Barclays found that the typical Brit couple will go over their budget by £7,971 when planning their wedding. The survey also found that the saving-up part of wedding planning is what couples typically find the most 'unnerving' - with 20% of people aged 25-34 years even admitting they had considered cancelling their nuptials owing to the cost. Gulp.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 15 hidden wedding costs you need to know about ASAP
However - planning your dream wedding doesn't mean you have to go into debt. The bank has partnered with Mark Niemierko - wedding planner to the stars - to offer couples some brilliant tips for cutting down on the cost of their day.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 12 ways to make your wedding budget stretch further
Says Mark: "I’ve worked in the wedding planning world for over a decade and have observed my fair share of pre-wedding quarrels. There are certain pressures that affect all couples in the run up to their wedding and sticking to a budget is high on that list for most– even high society couples and celebrities. Everyone wants to create a beautiful and unique day that is memorable for both them and their guests, but doing this while sticking to a budget can be a real challenge. I’m often asked for my top tips and tricks for planning the perfect wedding, and first and foremost, I am a big believer in making what you’ve got work for you. You definitely don’t need to break the bank to have the perfect day".
Read on for his top saving tips!
#1 Be brave when trying on wedding dresses – try lots of different styles
When dress shopping, try everything at your first appointment. I’ve yet to meet a bride who has purchased a dress style that she planned to. And come on – when else will you try on a big oversized ball gown – get in one! You never know it could be the one.
Photography: Krista Mason
#2 Marquees are the most expensive option – avoid them unless you have a big budget
People regularly assume marquee weddings will be cheaper. I can confirm they are the most expensive options. You typically need to hire bathrooms, build a kitchen and, on most occasions, build the marquee days in advance increasing the spend on ground hire. I would advise to avoid marquees unless you have a very good budget.
#3 Ditch the hotel ballroom (and whopping room hire fee) – take over a restaurant for your reception
Ditch the hotel ballroom. Exclusively take over a restaurant for your reception – most restaurants don’t charge room hire fees, just a minimum food and drink spend – so all your venue budget goes on that essential ingredient of feeding and watering your guests and you save yourself from a whopping large room hire fee... Which you could then spend on your honeymoon!
#4 Break with tradition – instead of hosting an expensive meal, have a standing reception with fun canapes
Food and beverage can be one of the biggest expenses at a wedding. Perhaps break with tradition and have a standing reception that evolves into a party to save you any large meal costs. Creating favourite miniature canapes of your meals can also be fun for chefs.
#5 Candles, candles, candles – use them instead of expensive flowers for that magical sparkle
For any large unused areas at your reception, floral displays are far too expensive. Use an abundance on candles in hurricane vases or frosted tea lights to create that magical sparkle.
Photography: Craig & Eva Sanders
#6 Keep your guests guessing – never have your dining room set up with an empty stage or an empty dancefloor
Never have your dining room set up with an empty stage or an empty dancefloor because your guests will know what to expect. Perhaps have dancing in another room and keep any specialised performances to under ten minutes. Unless it’s Beyoncé.
#7 Reuse flowers from the ceremony as table centres for the reception – practical and budget-saving
No matter what the budget, I will always re-use flowers if I logistically can. If you are having your ceremony in the ballroom where you will also be dining, arrange for the flowers that lined the ceremony aisle to be used as the table centres for the reception. It’s practical yet also will hugely help your budget.
Photographer: Kerry Ann Duffy
#8 You can always tell a good wedding from the loos – fill them with toiletries and products for your guests
Don’t forget to check the loos out on each venue inspection. A great trick is to put some toiletries and other products in the ladies’ bathroom powder room. Your guests will be very grateful and it makes for a nice talking point.
#9 Add a personal note for that extra touch – why not create bespoke ribbons with your names on?
Bespoke ribbon made with your monogram or names tied around small wedding favours will add a great personal touch.
#10 Your wedding is yours, make it your own - don’t follow peer pressure or Pinterest too much!
Your wedding needs to effortlessly be your own. Know the traditions but break them – you are getting married and that is tradition enough.
Find out more about Barclays' Financial Wings scheme here.