Kelly
Legend October 2022

Essential or Extra???

Kelly, on September 4, 2018 at 11:20 AM Posted in Community Conversations 0 33
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This week we're wondering whether certain things are essential or extra for your wedding! Click through the linked discussions below and tell us whether it's essential for your wedding or an "extra"!!


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Essential or Extra - Save the dates

Essential or Extra - Engagement Photos

Essential or Extra - Videography

Essential or Extra - Photo booth

Essential or Extra - Welcome Bags

Essential or Extra - Getting Ready Pictures

Essential or Extra - Ceremony programs

Essential or Extra - Signature Drinks

Essential or Extra - Dessert Options

Essential or Extra - Favors


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33 Comments

  • futurmrslowe
    Super December 2018
    futurmrslowe ·

    Save the Dates - these were essential for me! ALL of my extended family is OOT and many of my friends. FH also has a large extended family, many of whom live out of town. It's helpful to be able to plan ahead!

    Engagement Photos - Also essential for me. I'm not the best at remembering to take photos all the time in real life, so I loved getting to take some formal portraits (in "regular clothes") with FH.

    Videography - Extra. Just wasn't worth sacrificing other budget items.

    Photo Booth - Extra. People have smart phones these days - this money could be spent somewhere else!

    Welcome Bags - Extra. But they are a really classy touch!

    Getting Ready Pictures - Essential - a great way to document some of the pre-wedding excitement.

    Ceremony Programs - Essential. We're having a religious ceremony, but not at the church where the hymnals cold be used.

    Signature Drinks. Both - not necessary if youre having an open bar anyways. But we're using these only during the cocktail hour to keep the open bar cost down.

    Dessert Options - Extra. Cake is the whole point~

    Favors - Extra. No one takes them home!

  • Beth
    Beginner May 2019
    Beth ·

    All of these are extra! We can't afford any of these things but we're getting married anyway

  • C
    Just Said Yes April 2020
    Cassandra ·
    The only essentials for me are save the dates (destination wedding) and getting ready photos.
  • D
    Just Said Yes October 2018
    ddowler4454 ·

    I think every single thing on that list is an extra! Of course if you have endless funds that won't break you or whoever is paying for it, have at it! Those things are great! However, if you're like most of us, trying to cut some cost or trying to actually have some money to live on once the one day is over, just say no to the extra stuff or find a different (cheaper) way to do it! :-)

    I sent out my Save The Dates through an event on Facebook! I mean, think about it... have you ever received a Save the Date or Wedding Invite and thought to yourself, "The font on this is so amazing and the wording is so beautiful I should frame it. NO! Sure you might think, wow those are nice. But if they were just basic invites without bells and frills, did you ever say, "Oh my God, what were they thinking!" LOL! No, of course not! Wasted money... unless again, you have endless funding like Kate & William. :-) The only real essentials you need, if you're having a traditional style wedding that is, are a venue, food, drinks, a professional dj/band (Makes all the difference! I promise you if there isn't good music played the right way according to the vibe/crowd, people will NOT dance and they will leave early! I've seen it time and time again!), a good photographer (don't skimp here! I'll tell you why later...) and cake or dessert.

    The only thing guests remember from your big day is how much fun they had! Sure they might gasp at how beautiful it all looks, but after that one moment, all they want to do is to eat, drink and dance! They really don't care if you have bows on chairs, an extra 5 flower arrangements, 10 desserts, or spent $300 on mini candles that say YOUR name for them to take home. ( I mean who wants something with other peoples names and how much THEY love each other! Right? LOL! )

    As for you, the ONLY thing you'll care about after the wedding, is how much fun you had and all the amazing photos! (Why the photographer is so important!) You will look back on those photos the rest of your life! However, don't make your guests wait 2 hours for you to take them! Do most of them or all of them before the ceremony. Talk about grumpy, irritated and "over it" when guests have been waiting way too long! You want them to stay... you spent all that money for everyone to have fun! DON'T MAKE THEM WAIT ON THE REASON THEY ARE THERE! YOU! :-)


    P.S. If you haven't guessed already, I'm in the wedding business and I've seen it all... Take my advice! I promise you won't regret it! In fact I've followed my own advice for my wedding which is coming up 10/6/18! Practicing what I preach... :-)


  • J
    Just Said Yes February 2020
    Jamie ·

    Save the Dates - Essential! Especially if it's distant family who you don't see often.

    Engagement Photos - Essential for me I think it's something beautiful to have to remember the "pre-wedding" activities!

    Videography - Extra. Totally not worth the money for us.

    Photo Booth - Extra, but we are having one as our "take home" item.

    Welcome Bags - Extra - don't think I've ever been to a wedding with one actually!

    Getting Ready Pictures - Essential! MUST HAVE moments for me.

    Ceremony Programs - Essential - such a beautiful keepsake to put in a scrapbook or memory box

    Signature Drinks. - Extra - especially if you don't drink, like us.

    Dessert Options - Extra, duh. The cake is the highlight!

    Favors - Extra. No one ever takes them home! Half of them aren't practical

  • S
    Savvy September 2019
    Shavon ·
    We did not take engagement pics. I’m texting out of states relatives to key in the wedding date. No save the date invites. No photo booths, extra desserts and ceremony programs. Not necessary. We are having cupcakes and the wedding cake. We are having signature drinks to cut alcohol costs. Yes I will be having a videographer for our ceremony only. That’s the most important part during the wedding. I want the photographer to capture moments before the wedding begins, but not entirely while I’m preparing to dress. The welcome bags sound like a cool idea instead of the favors. We are on a very tight budget. My fiancé and I been together for 9 years and we have a daughter together. We love the idea of having a wedding, but we are being smart about it financially. We just want to wed and party with family and friends.
  • Meghan
    Savvy June 2020
    Meghan ·

    Save the Dates - We're considering it, just because our engagement is a little longer than others.

    Engagement Photos - These essentially would go on the Save the Dates

    Videography - Seems extra to me, though so many brides I've talked to mentioned how they wished they opted for this because the day went by so quickly.

    Photobooth - Extra!

    Welcome Bags - Extra! Thankfully all but one guest lives in the area.

    Getting Ready Pictures - I wouldn't be opposed though they aren't necessary

    Ceremony Programs - Seems extra though I wouldn't be opposed to doing them

    Signature Drinks - Totally an extra

    Dessert Options - Extra

    Favors - Really, with how much my fiance and I are paying we plan to opt out of having favors

    I'm interested to see what others have to say!

  • E
    Just Said Yes June 2020
    Eliza ·

    Save the Dates - Essential even with us both and Florida we a from different parts and both of our families will be coming in from out of town and I need the time to plan ahead!

    Engagement Photos - Extra I don't really see the need for it.

    Videography - Somewhat Essential I wanted to moments that sweet and cute and the mess up no one get to see but again its also and extra for us because we don't really need it.

    Photo Booth - Extra. Point blank Extra I started to do no cellphone at our wedding and do this but there was no need for it because I knew most was going to want to post online.

    Welcome Bags - Extra. But they are classy touch!

    Getting Ready Pictures - Essential - a great way to document some of the pre-wedding excitement.

    Ceremony Programs - Essential.

    Signature Drinks. Essential/Extra - not necessary but again we are not having any bar at all. So I was thinking this would be a good ideal.

    Dessert Options - Esstential to me because this is something that I have always wanted and because I'm a cook I wouldn't have it any other way.

    Favors - Esstential/Extra they will not be over the top but a classy way of saying thank you. Sometimes the get left behind because some never look to see what the is lol!!

  • H
    Just Said Yes August 2019
    Holly ·

    Essential - Save the dates (Because people forget -- easy)

    Extra - Engagement Photos (just seems like an extra cost that I don't need (plus I need to drop a few pounds))

    Extra - Videography (Nice but with cell phones in everyones pocket -- ask a buddy to do it.)

    Extra - Photo booth (FUN -- I think games/fun should be essential but the booth may be a little $$&dollar

    Extra - Welcome Bags (for all the guest or just special people? Still most people don't need that stuff)

    Essential - Getting Ready Pictures (If it goes well/is fun you'll want to remember it)

    Extra - Ceremony programs (Unless you have some crazy detailed I do's then most people figure its "hurry up and kiss so I can go eat")

    Extra - Signature Drinks (FUN but not needed not everyone likes fancy drinks. Signature drink WATER)

    Essential - Dessert Options (not everyone is into cake -- so a few options is cool)

    Extra - Favors (extra essentials if done right. A vase of flowers - cool, a fish in a bowl NOT cool)

  • Betsy
    Just Said Yes August 2019
    Betsy ·

    To me a lot of these items are extra but doesn't mean I won't do them.


    Save the dates- These are essential for most weddings especially if the guest list is limited and the location is not where the couple lives.

    Engagement photos- To me these are extra. My fiance and I have been together for years and I feel we will have some many beautiful pictures from our wedding that engagement pictures are not necessary.

    Videography- Would be really nice but can definitely be cut from the budget and so I find it to be extra.

    Photo Booth- This is an extra addition to any wedding but thankfully comes with my venue.

    Welcome Bags- I think these are essential if you have a destination wedding, a majority of your guests are coming from out of town, or if you won't have any favors.

    Getting Ready Pictures- Every bride I have spoken that did not have them taken regrets it so I feel they are essential.

    Ceremony Programs- Most people know how a wedding goes and even if you have a special portion in the ceremony it still ends the same and so I feel they are extra.

    Signature Drinks- Definitely extra. Yours guests know what they like to drink and will make do with whatever is offered to them and so the frilly drinks aren't necessary.

    Dessert Options- These are extra. If you only love vanilla cake with vanilla frosting than just have that your guests don't need special dessert for a wedding.

    Favors- Favors are extra. You have invited these people to celebrate with you on your day, paid for their meal and potentially many drinks with an open bar. Your guests are not a 6 year old at a birthday party that need a party favor.

  • Lydia
    Just Said Yes November 2018
    Lydia ·

    Save the Dates - Essential for my out of town family and friends, especially since we have several friends getting married now and wanted to make sure everyone knew to steer clear of our date (although I still had a friend receive my save the date then three months later sent out her save the dates for the weekend before my wedding. When I mentioned it might be a little difficult for us to get to each other's wedding she said "I know" so there's that.)

    Engagement Photos - Extra, but worth it for us. We hate having our pictures taken so we didn't have any good pictures of us together before our engagement photos, haha. (Bonus, we had a friend take them for free.)

    Videography - Extra; we didn't have room in our budget and will probably be making slideshows and albums from our photos anyhow.

    Photo Booth - Extra; I've seen some real fun ones, but this wasn't where we wanted to put our money. Our photographer will be getting pictures and candids of our guests all night long anyway.

    Welcome Bags - Extra; I actually hadn't ever considered this before. We don't have the money or time.

    Getting Ready Pictures - Extra, but worth it to us to have some more memories saved for the future.

    Ceremony Programs - Extra; we're having a simple ceremony and there's nothing people will be confused about (unless they've never been to a wedding before, in which case they can ask someone around them.)

    Signature Drinks - Extra; a very cool idea but we can't afford an open bar (besides our cocktail hour) so we're letting people choose their own drinks (since they're the ones paying for them.)

    Dessert Options - Extra, but our venue includes some desserts with the package deal we got so we won't complain.

    Favors - Extra, but worth it to us. I got a great deal on customized dice for people to take home, since our reception is board game themed and people can use the dice while playing and/or take them home for future game nights. (Also, if we have extras, which we probably will, it just means we have more dice on hand for our weekly game nights!)

  • Sunshine416
    Savvy October 2019
    Sunshine416 ·

    Save the Dates : essential!

    Engagement Photos: Essential!

    Videography : Essential!

    Photo Booth : Extra

    Welcome Bags : Extra

    Getting Ready Pictures: Essential!

    Ceremony Programs : Extra

    Signature Drinks : Extra

    Dessert Options: Extra

    Favors : Extra

  • Taylor
    Just Said Yes June 2020
    Taylor ·

    Save the Dates - Essential

    Engagement Photos - Essential

    Videography - Essential

    Photo Booth - Extra

    Welcome Bags - Extra

    Getting Ready Pictures - Essential

    Ceremony Programs - Essential

    Signature Drinks - it depends

    Dessert Options - For me, it's an essential

    Favors- Essential

  • M
    Beginner December 2019
    Megan ·

    Save the Dates - these are DEFINITELY essential for me. We are having our ceremony in Las Vegas with close family and a few friends and even though the ceremony isn't until Nov 2019, we already sent them to everyone we wanted there. This lets everyone save enough for the airfare, hotel, (dresses/tux if in the wedding party) as well as any outside things they want to do there.

    Engagement Photos - for me these are extra. We really don't really to have these done, it's just another fun and romantic things for us to do/have. We're actually going to be taking them in New Orleans (my fiance lived half his life there and since we'll be in the area during Christmas, I thought that would be the perfect opportunity)

    Videography - essential. I'm having a videographer for the ceremony (it was included with our Vegas package) and I'm also having one at our formal reception in New Jersey.

    Photobooth - definitely extra. I don't need to have this at the reception, but I know my guests will enjoy it. Every time I'm at a wedding with one, it's always fun.

    Welcome Bags - essential. Because I'm having a destination wedding, I want the guests that attend to feel special and welcome. I'm going to include hangover kits and an itinerary for everyone, and probably a little bag with custom poker chips, cards, and dice since it's Vegas lol.

    Getting Ready Pictures - extra. I'm actually not having those for my ceremony, only for the reception in New Jersey. I don't really see it as essential per se, especially since I know my family/friends (and me!) will be taking photos during that time.

    Ceremony Programs - extra. Our Ceremony is going to be intimate and not as long as a church ceremony....I'm pretty sure everyone kind of knows how a wedding is going to go and we're not going to have anything extra (other than possibly writing our own vows).

    Signature Drinks - extra. The only place I'm having this is at our New Jersey reception. It actually comes with our package which was definitely an added bonus.

    Dessert Options - essential. I know when I go to a wedding, I'd like a little more options than just the cake. I'm lucky that our NJ reception has a dessert package which includes a donut wall, chocolate fountain, churro station, icecream sundae station, etc. I'm actually REALLY looking forward to it!

    Favors - essential. I know some people have opted out of favors, but I love them. I like when I go to a wedding and I get to keep something from that happy day...I'm going for favors that people will be able to use and that will also be memorable for everyone.

  • Across The Stars
    Devoted October 2019
    Across The Stars ·
    Save the Dates- essential for me. A lot of our guests have crazy work schedules and truly need a lot of notice!
    Engagement photos- extra. Definitely going to take some with a friend, but not getting professional pictures done.
    Videography- probably extra. Don't know if we'll do it or not yet. FH likes the idea more than I do
    Photo booth- extra. Don't really like them.
    Welcome bags- extra. Gonna skip.
    Getting Ready Pictures- Essential!
    Ceremony programs- essential and required by venue.
    Signature drinks- extra. Our extended families don't drink so not going to do them.
    Dessert Options- Essential. This girl loves dessert lol
    Favors- extra and being skipped
  • A
    October 2018
    allen ·
    Please take me off all walls and emails service no longer needed thank you
  • Kelly
    Legend October 2022
    Kelly ·
    View Quoted Comment

    Thank you so much for this advice!!! So true about what the guests will remember, everyone just wants to have fun and celebrate!! That's such a good idea about using Facebook for the save the dates, definitely will keep that in mind! You are about a month away from your wedding, so exciting!!!

  • Kelly
    Legend October 2022
    Kelly ·
    View Quoted Comment

    Signature drink water, LOL! I definitely agree with you on the getting ready pictures, I feel like it would be fun to have those pictures to look back on!

  • D
    Just Said Yes October 2018
    ddowler4454 ·
    View Quoted Comment

    Everyone responded really well to the FB Save the Date! Plus, I was always able to update it or add someone! :-) And thank you on the wedding! Feeling really overwhelmed right now... in a good way!

  • C
    Just Said Yes September 2019
    Courtney ·

    Save the Dates - Extra. The wedding invites have nearly the same info on them!

    Engagement Photos - Essential. Professional photos showing the love you two have for each other prior to your wedding day photos!

    Videography - Essential. I am OBSESSED with this idea. Having your wedding day captured into a movie and see almost every movement and emotion to happen that day. To be able to go back and watch you step-by-step marry the love of your life is ESSENTIAL!

    Photo Booth - Extra. Something super fun and entertaining for your guests to partake in, but is just another extra cost towards the budget.

    Welcome Bags - Extra. I feel like it's an either/or with welcome bags and party favors. You definitely do not have to do both, but you can choose to do neither or one or the other for another party involvement.

    Getting Ready Pictures - Essential. YAAS. I love this! Another capture-the-moment type of memory I need to have captured!!

    Ceremony Programs - Both. Hardly anyone keeps these after the ceremony, but they're nice to have to see what to expect during the ceremony.

    Signature Drinks - Extra. If the costs are there, this is such a cute and fun idea! Something for the bride and something from the groom.

    Dessert Options - Extra. I love me dessert! But having just cake or just donuts, etc. is fine enough.

    Favors - Extra. (read Welcome Bags)

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