Broke-Ass Tag: budget wedding planning


Hey guys! I am writing this to you today as a married lady!

Real Bride Julie on her wedding day!

Yay! Here’s proof that we really did tie the knot in front of God and everything!

Married life thus far is pretty awesome. Matt and I just got back from our “mini-moon” at Patriot Place in Foxborough, Mass. If you ever have a reason to be in that area, it’s pretty great even if you’re not into football (which I’m not). There’s a spa, bowling alley, bars, a movie theatre, restaurants, shopping and this really cool adventure entertainment spot called 5 Wits all within walking distance of the local hotel. If you ARE into football, it’s right next to Gillette Stadium (where the Patriots play), there’s a football museum there and I guess the players are seen regularly at the surrounding shops. It was a nice little getaway for us that was close enough to home that we were able to get back and forth within an hour.

Min-moon at Patriots Place in Foxborough, Mass.

Enough about our semi-staycation. You have gathered here today to hear about the culmination of the past four years of my relationship’s life … our wedding. The wedding was a resounding success. Everything came together perfectly in the days before, just like everyone said it would. The day (along with the days leading up to it) passed by more quickly than I ever expected, just like everyone said it would. When it was all said and done, I was relieved to be done with planning and overwhelmed with how happy and loved I was feeling. It was great.

One piece of advice I received in the last few days before the wedding that I really took to heart was that at some point, you need to be done planning. There is a certain point where you have done everything you can and the day is no longer in your hands, but instead the powers that be whoever they may be (your various vendors, your bridal party, your guests, or the fates themselves). You can’t worry about anything that hasn’t been done at that point because there is literally nothing else you can do to make it happen. Matt and I stopped planning/carrying out those plans at around 10 p.m. the night before the wedding.

We had driven the last of our decor items along with our final seating chart out to our venue at around 9:30 that night. We had had our rehearsal a few hours before that and thankfully had forgone a rehearsal dinner due to the cost and complication associated with it. Instead we went straight back to the house to finish up anything that needed to be done and then loaded up our car and headed out. When we got there, we realized we had forgotten to include how many people were seated at each table on our seating chart so I went home and emailed that to our coordinator at the venue and then set up everything I’d need to get dressed the next day. Everything was together in 5 minutes after I was home, except my wedding shoes that temporarily disappeared. I searched my house for them for a little while and then resolved to get married barefoot if they didn’t show up by morning (they were in the car, as I discovered the next morning when I headed to my hair and makeup appointment) and went to bed.

I woke up when I had to the next day. I left for the hairdresser when I had to. My hairdresser and makeup artist both remarked at how calm I was for a bride. Of course I was … everything was done and if it wasn’t, there was no changing it now. There’s a certain peace that comes with realizing that you’re powerless over a situation at a certain point. Instead of stressing out over every little thing going off without a hitch, I had confidence that the work we’d done had been enough.
Cool and calm on her wedding day

This picture wasn’t taken to show how cool I was feeling the day of but it definitely illustrates the calm I was feeling before we headed off to the church.

Did things go wrong? Not really. We did leave a set of tiny treasure boxes at home I had intended for my ringbearers to carry down the aisle. Matt had painted them and I was excited about doing something slightly different than the traditional pillows. Did it ruin the wedding? Nope! Nobody knew we had planned it and the best men had the rings anyway. Instead the ringbearers were simply the boys that accompanied our flower girls down the aisle. I didn’t even notice it myself until way after the ceremony. We’re going to be giving the boxes to our ringbearers as part of their gifts instead.

Ringbearer boxes ... that were left at home!

Seriously I love these so much. I’m a little sad they didn’t find their way out to the altar but I know the boys are going to love them.

Did I stress out at all during the day? Of course. My biggest stress came from failing to talk to my coordinator ahead of time about visiting each table of guests. I was really worried about not having enough time with each table so despite the fact that my coordinator told me she’d come and get us when it was time (she wanted to be sure we got some time to eat), I jumped up mid-meal to start walking around to people. All my stressing was for naught though. I got to each table and got to speak with just about everyone and had time to spare for some dancing!

What this all comes down to ultimately is trust. We needed to have trust in ourselves that we had done all that we could to make our day perfect. We did. Our day was wonderful and we got a lot of compliments on how things went off. Any stressing I did do really didn’t amount to much and didn’t help anything that was already in motion. It just meant that Matt and I missed out on a good meal. And from what we heard the food was fantastic. The minor things that got left out or forgotten weren’t really missed by anyone. Nobody’s day was ruined because they didn’t get to see an 11 year old carry a treasure box down an aisle. And because we stopped planning the night before the wedding and didn’t worry about what would happen next, we both got to sleep well that night and enjoy what really did turn out to be the best day of our lives.

Julie and Matt Revel in their MarriageOh look, despite any forgotten decor items or stressful scheduling, we still ended the day hitched!

So, BABs, just remember that things can (and will) go wrong, but as long as you’re married at the end of the day, none of it truly matters.

  • 11/23

    Sponsored Post DisclaimerWedspire

    Wouldn’t wedding planning just be a breeze if you could create a wishlist, share it on one platform and get matched with pros and rentals that fit into your ideal budget? Even better if you earned points toward dollars off said rentals and purchases?


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    • Sign up for Wedspire
    • Create a wishlist, detailing what you need for your wedding, the timeline you need it in and your budget
    • Wedspire’s magical wedding elves curate daily vendor matches and send ’em your way
    • If an option is a great fit, you can make the purchase directly through the Wedspire platform

    Sounds pretty rad, right? Yeah. It’s basically like having your v. own personal wedding concierge. And let’s be real: We could ALL use one of those.

    But, of course, it gets better: When you submit your first wishlist, you automatically earn 48,000 Wedspire Rewards Points. Wait, what does that mean? Oh, boo, I got you. That means you get $60 off your first Wespire purchase. UH, free money, yo! And if you just so happen to use that $60 toward a purchase of over $2,500 you score an extra $85 off + an extra $5 in rewards. #nailedit!

    Wishlist submission window

    Whether you’re looking for specific wedding day goodies — flower crowns? Bouquet design? Dress? Jewelry? Photographer? — or just need someone to plan the damn thing for you, Wespire can help find the right match for your needs and within your budget.

    Hurry, though, because you can only get that free $150 until Dec. 6! Head on over to Wedspire to create and submit your wishlist to start earning points (and dollars off!) and get matched with amazing vendors!

  • 11/23

    Etsy Alligator Food Design Let's Elope Print

    Wedding planning and preparation can be stressful. It has it's ups and downs, twists and turns. There's drama with friends, family and vendors. Decisions upon decisions. Money. Money. More money. It can be a lot for a person or a couple to handle. Throughout my planning process, I've certainly experienced some stress!  There's been changes with my venue, my coordinator and disagreements with good friends. As I'm…

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    Julie Vino Emma Gown

    BABs, I hope you're sitting down, because today's Can't Afford It? gown is CrazySexyCool. Actually, scratch that -- I'm upgrading it to ClassySexyCool. It's one of those rare gowns that balances a sultry silhouette (almost mermaid fit-and-flare) with high class details (Chantilly lace and pearls) and modern flair (separate bodice and skirt fabrics). The off-shoulder sleeves and deep-V sweetheart neckline polish off a truly unique design. Think I…

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    crepe rose 2

    I'm a lover of flowers, but there's one thing I don't love -- the price tag associated with floral arrangements. When I started venturing into the world of wedding planning, one of the first things that jumped out at me was the exorbitant cost associated with buying flowers for a wedding -- centerpieces, bouquets for the bride and bridesmaids, boutonnieres, corsages, ceremony decor ... you get…

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  • 11/18


    Love must be in the air: Between my graduate school cohort, the assistant lecturers with whom I share an office, and my Facebook news feed, I think I’ve seen about 10 engagements, six weddings, three babies, and one vow renewal in the last month alone. All this love and excitement lately has me feeling a little nostalgic; as a person who had a Pinterest board full…

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    Things are clicking, you guys! I mentioned previously how enamored I was with Relics Vintage Rentals and what an amazing resource they were for cool, vintage décor rentals. We made an appointment a few weeks ago, and have finally started making some decision on items and I couldn't be happier seeing this coming together. The first thing we knew we wanted was chalkboards. We chose two…

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    Zime Personalized Peg Wedding Cake Topper

    Happy Friday, Broke-Asses! It's starting to get a little chilly in my little corner of North Texas, but that just means nights around the fire pit with good friends, good beer and good music, plus some super cute and cozy outfits. But I digress. I've been thinking a lot about small, fairly inexpensive ways to ultra-personalize your wedding day. From rubber stamps to complementing your…

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  • 11/13

    Spicy Mustard With Local Beer

    Welcome to another episode of Broke-Ass Advice! Today's question is about what to serve guests at a casual reception: I love your website. Not just this one, but all of your blogs. So helpful and inspirational. While I was reading your book, I continually would read passages out loud to my fiance and say, finally, someone who gets it! We are paying for our wedding…

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