Our Biracial $23K Texas Garden Party Wedding

Balloon art on the dance floor? YOU BET.

jillian, Product Designer & Clint, Visual Effects Editor

sum-up of the wedding vibe: A garden party with comfort food with flowers.

Planned Budget: $20,000
Actual Budget: $23,000
Number of Guests: 135
Location: Mercury Hall, Austin, Texas
photographer: Marisa Vasquez

Where We Allocated The Most Funds:

Food! Our caterer, Vanilla Orchid, helped us craft a delicious menu that was also dietary restriction-friendly. We were able to offer vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, and peanut-free options.

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Where We Allocated The Least Funds:

Bride’s makeup was generously gifted by her talented little cousin (she was also Miss Texas Teen 2019). Photography was gifted by the bride’s father, flowers by the bride’s mother and stepfather, rehearsal dinner by the groom’s parents, and post-wedding brunch by the groom’s aunt. Outside of that, we spent the least on alcohol. We picked up red wine, white wine, and sparkling wine from Costco, and beer kegs from two local breweries. Unopened wine was returned to Costco after the wedding. We also saved a bunch on invitations and signage for the wedding. Those were designed by the bride and printed at a shop just down the street.

What Was Totally Worth It?

Having a month-of coordinator! It was so liberating to hand off all the logistics and details a month before the wedding. Our coordinator from Your Wedding Your Way was so on top of everything. The wedding day went off smoothly, and, most importantly, ON TIME. All the little details and inside jokes that made the wedding really feel like us: The Where to Eat Pizza book our officiant held during the ceremony which later became our guest book, the black and white cookies, the tree watering part of the ceremony. One of Clint’s friends had several pairs of socks printed with his face on them and handed them out to the groomsmen and dads! Having the balloon artist was so fun for the adults and the kids.

What Was Totally NOT Worth It?

Maybe serving coffee during the reception? Not too many people had some, but those who did were really happy to get it!

A Few Things That Helped Us Along The Way:

Having a mega spreadsheet to keep track of tasks to be completed, budget, vendor contact, guest list, and gift list really helped us stay organized and on time. We had a standing meeting every Thursday to work on wedding stuff: Making decisions, requesting quotes, etc.

My Best Practical Advice To My Planning-Self:

Clint and I share a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor. In addition to the cake, we really wanted black and white cookies. Our baker at Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop had never made black and whites before. She loved the idea so much and tried out a few recipes. They were delicious! Normally, our family and friends aren’t really into dessert, so we only ordered about twenty-five cookies. We were shocked to find out that all the cookies were gone pretty much immediately after cutting the cake!

Favorite Thing About The Wedding:

Our friends and family love to hit the dance floor, and DJ Nixx kept the dance party flowing the whole time. There were dance battles, classic wedding line dancing, and soul train lines to get everyone moving. Our balloon artist, Christine, was so popular with both the adults and kids! I got a wrist unicorn and Clint got a giant party hat. The balloon requests didn’t slow down; people were lining up until the very end of the reception!

Anything else:

Clint and I met through his best friend and best man, Zac. He’s literally seen our whole relationship—from the first meeting to now. I walked down the aisle with both my dad and stepdad. Our officiant was Amy Wolfgang, one of the first friends I made when I moved to Austin. Most of our vendors were womxn!


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