Hello! I am a 19 year-old engaged to the love of my life. Sadly, I know NOTHING about wedding planning and have no idea where to even start. Right now our budget is looking to be about $1500 to 2000. We also know we are looking to marry next year in late spring or early summer. He’s in the Army and we are going to try and have a military theme…I need all the help I can get!
In the Trenches
First, the most important thing – Brides Across America donates wedding dresses to military brides at several events a year so go there and find the next one nearest you. Alfred Angelo also offers a 15% discount for military brides, and there is an online wedding dress store called, well, Military Bride, that offers substantially discounted wedding gowns. So, one way or another, you are set there!
Your wedding isn’t all that different from civilian weddings as you think – you still need to figure out a date and find a venue. Pretty sure the date will be up to him, and the schedule the Army has him on, so, start there. Truthfully, I’ve coordinated my share of military weddings, but not with that small a budget. Keep your guest list short! My best advice is to take as much advantage of the Army’s resources as you can. See if your fiance can set you up to meet his base’s protocol office or chaplain, first of all. Both have done this many, many times, and they can give you pointers on how and where to go and what to do next. And I bet there will be a ton of military brides here who can give you pointers as well. Ladies?
Ducks and Pigs – The Wedding Animal Farm
So, one of the big questions on my live chat on Wednesday was from a Bride who bought her wedding dress for $700, thinking that she had a budget of $1,000, only to find out from her mother that her budget was $2,000. She liked her dress, but could she have gotten a nicer one? A better one? Should she get rid of the dress she has and find a more expensive one? There were a couple of people who pitched in to say that she should let it go, she got a great price for her dress, and she could spend the extra $1k on other wedding stuff. This is true. However.
It is a universal truth in Wedding World that if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and waddles like a duck, but you think it’s a pig? It’s a pig. What I mean is that if you have decided that something isn’t good enough or right enough for you, it’s never going to be, no matter how much you look at it, or how much someone tries to tell you otherwise. Your $700 dress is a pig.
If you ever find yourself in this situation – and everyone of my brides has, trust me – stop torturing yourself. “What if’s?” are annoying, and they will haunt you forever. The best way to get over anything, one way or another, is to get in front of it. Try on a few $2,000 dresses. Look at the $100 a plate venue. Go ask your florist exactly how much it’s going to cost to get anemones in July. Find out what it’s going to take to get what you think you want, and make an informed and happier decision from there. You have nothing to lose by looking.
So, where are my military brides at? And where you horribly unhappy with one of your wedding things and decided to make the switch? Let me know in the comments below! And if you would like to find out a little more about my wedding world, go to www.silvercharmevents.com.
See you at the end of the aisle,