Expert September 2020

Venues, Budgets, and Schedules. Ugh.

Terra, on March 22, 2019 at 7:24 AM Posted in Community Conversations 0 6
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(this is going to be very long bc I don't know how to shut up, so I apologize in advance)

It's spring break this week, so we've been taking advantage of my rare down time and touring venues. Between school and work I don't really get days off, so I was hoping to have a venue figured out this week since I'm taking courses this summer also. We're paying for everything ourselves, a couple of early-20-somethings still establishing ourselves financially, and weddings aren't cheap. We're not super suffering, but we're also nowhere near in a position to drop $10k for a day, y'know? I know that backyard weddings (or similar) are a *thing* now for young, poor people like us, but neither of our families live in... nice places. So that's not really an option. We're also not religious, so no churches. We both hate the idea of an outdoor wedding. All this plus our limited budget makes venues hard to find.

I've been scouring the internet the last couple months and there were only three that fit the bill. Looked at them all this week. The first one was significantly out of price range. Y'know, after we got there and the lady told us all the little things that was very conveniently left out of the pamphlet she sent me. The second one was just... not good. I'm glad we didn't bother to book an appointment, bc it took standing there for 5mins for FH to say "absolutely not." And he doesn't normally have strong opinions about anything, lol. The final one was good. I really like it. It's pretty, it's conveniently located, and it was our top choice from the get-go. I... can't think of anything wrong with it. I've crunched the numbers over and over again for this place, one of their approved caterers, and the alcohol. If we're diligent, we can afford it. But I'm still not jumping for joy. I'm excited, and I'd love to get married there, but the idea of committing such a large sum of money is scaring me. The most ridiculous thing about it is that this place is VERY reasonably priced.

The venue is only $1,500 for a 10 hour rental. The entire building is done in literally the perfect color, so I don't even feel a serious need to decorate. They supply almost everything we need. It's two stories and we get full reign of both. They do have a list of preferred caterers we have to pick from, but one of them is priced very modestly. I'm a numbers person, so I've done the math a dozen times now. Venue, catering, and alcohol would all be $3k. And I know that is an amazing deal. I know this place is probably perfect. But I'm also the girl who spent over half an hour debating on purchasing a $40 purse I desperately needed for school just bc I get extreme guilt buying things for myself. Side effects of generational poverty. I want to be excited about all of this, but the price tags are stressing me out.

At the same time, though, I really, really do want a nice wedding. Not a fancy wedding, not an expensive wedding, but a nice wedding. I know this probably sounds childish, but I've never had professional pictures done, I didn't get to do prom, I've only really celebrated my birthday maybe twice in the last 8 years, I've never even had my nails professionally done. We don't get to *do* nice things in my family, and this is only wedding I'll ever have, and I just kind of want it to be nice. I feel like it's sort of my last chance. And thinking that makes me feel guilty and selfish but at the same time I feel I'll always regret it if we just eloped. We're doing what we can to save. The guest list is only about 50 people. The wedding is on a Tuesday. We're having a semi-long engagement, just under two years. I actually already bought my dress. Used, off Facebook, for $250.

I guess I'm being rant-y bc I'm hoping other users will validate my feelings and convince me to book. The only person I'm close to who had an actual wedding was my sister, and she hated it. She succumbed to the mindset I'm struggling with right now, spent basically nothing, and regrets it so much that looking at her pictures upsets her. I know she'd tell me to book, but I honestly feel guilty talking about wedding things with her sometimes bc of how awful she feels about her own. I dunno. Paying for this wouldn't break the bank for us. The problem is really just justifying all of this to myself. Is it worth it or is it irresponsible?

I didn't mean to write a novel, but I always do. Thanks for the venting outlet, lol.


  • T
    Dedicated May 2019
    Tori ·
    To me, it sounds like you really want this. I get where you're coming from, I do the same thing. I've probably bought clothes for myself maybe 5 times in my life, and those were all on sale. I just can't justify it when I get so much second hand from my sisters.

    But in terms of wedding cost, you're doing really well! I wish I could have found a place that cheap! And remember it's not just yourself youre spending this money on, it's your FH and guests as well. If this is something you really want and you truly can afford it (don't do anything you can't!) don't compromise if you're going to regret it.
  • Danielle
    Rockstar June 2019
    Danielle ·

    GO....FOR....IT!!! Girl, there is NOTHING wrong with having a nice wedding, if you can afford it. Sure, that money can be spent elsewhere, but so what. Enjoy your life! If you ALWAYS save and spend responsibly, then what will you have to show for it? A nice house? Sure. A nice care? Absolutely. But where will the memories be? Sometimes spending money "irresponsibly" is worth it for the memories, IMO. Plus, this is a very important memory...it's YOUR WEDDING! Don't regret not doing it the way you want to do it. You have the rest of your life to save money and spend responsibly.

  • Nicole
    Devoted January 2019
    Nicole ·
    I understand that you may had a poor upbringing like a lot of other may have as well, but you need to change your way of thinking or you will always live as though you’re still in poverty. It’s easier said than done but it’s a must! You’re an adult now and you have the power and control to achieve and succeed in life on your own terms. So you should never feel guilty about spending money on things that you like or want because YOU EARNED IT!!!! Also, if your family doesn’t get many chances to dress up and go out to have a nice time, that’s even more of a reason to have a wedding. They get to temporarily forget about whatever is going on with their lives and celebrate with you. Lastly it would probably make your parents proud to see that you’re able to this and that whatever struggles they endured in the past helped you to become the woman that you are today. And if your looking to have your wedding 2 years from now then you and FH would only need to save about $200 a month during that time to have the amounts you quoted. Sorry for the long reply but good luck with everything!!!! Happy planning
  • Courtney
    Super September 2019
    Courtney ·
    I understand the feeling of being nervous of committing that much money to one day or feeling like you’re splurging on yourself. If you want to have a beautiful wedding there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s celebrating your love, relationship and commitment and if you can find a way to responsibly pay for the wedding to look and feel the way you want there isn’t anything wrong with it. If you’d feel more comfortable maybe you could push the date back another 6 months or so to give you more to to build up your savings dedicated to the wedding? I think you should go ahead and book because it sounds like that’s where your heart is!
  • Ebone
    Savvy May 2020
    Ebone ·
    You should book it! It sounds like an amazing deal! If it’s any help I’m 24.. almost 3 years removed from college and I’m planning my dream wedding. The key to success is to have a realistic budget and break it up into small realistic monthly saving goals. I got engaged May ‘18 and I’m getting married May ‘20. It gave me two years to save up because we are paying for it ourselves and I know it seems like a long time but time is FLYING by. You deserve nice things! You work hard for nice things. This seems to be the venue that you really want and you deserve it!
  • Terra
    Expert September 2020
    Terra ·

    Thank you all so much for the comments! It helped to hear other brides kind of back up what I was thinking. It especially helped when y'all said this is for other people, too. It's always so much easier for me to spend money on someone else, lol. I also talked to FH about it, and he reminded me it's an amazing space and definitely the best deal we'll find.

    Sooo, we're going to book it! Not only are we going to book it, but we're going to pay the whole thing all at once! We *could* do that right now, but we're going to wait until Friday (payday) so that the number doesn't freak me out as much, lol. In a week I'm going to have a venue that is completely paid. That's so crazy to think about! We're getting married! In a beautiful place! This is nuts!

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