I started APW because I was having a total meltdown about wedding budgets. My issue was less what people were spending on their weddings (though the average budget of a wedding featured online in those days was stratospherically high). My issue was how much wedding publications were hiding the ball on what things cost. And that meant there were a lot of tears from couples trying to figure out how to get a wedding like the cute indie weddings they saw online for their $10,000 budget. These other couples had done it, so obviously the problem was you. If you could just figure out how to be smart enough, crafty enough, and ingenious enough, you could do it to. The one problem? Those cute indie weddings they were seeing cost anywhere from $35,000 to $200,000. And while there is no shame in any wedding budget, you’re not going to be able to copy a $50,000 wedding for $10,000, just by making enough mason jar crafts.
And that’s why at APW we’ve worked hard over the years to build a library of weddings that include the budgets. And we want all kinds of budgets. We want to show you what a $110,000 wedding in an antiques warehouse looks like, and what a $3,000 San Francisco City Hall wedding looks like, and what a $10,000 super hip wedding in Los Angeles for 250 guests looks like. And then we want to help you figure out how to build your budget, and how to make decisions about your wedding based on the resources you have available to you.
No shame in anyone’s budget game.
But frankly, it’s an uphill struggle. We often find that couples who had larger than average budgets want to share their weddings without numbers, which is a problem. Because while I can eyeball a wedding and tell you, “Oh this probably cost $90,000,” if you haven’t spent the last ten years looking at real weddings, you could easily drive yourself crazy thinking that wedding was $20,000 and you can probably pull off something just like it, if you spend another five weeks researching to find the perfect venue.
All of that is to say that when it comes to wedding budgets, information is power. And the best information out there is yours. So today we’re asking you to share your real-life 2018 wedding budget breakdown to help other folks figure out what things really cost and how they can realistically make this thing work. Because weddings (unfortunately, sometimes) run on cash money, not magic, no matter what the internet tells you.
So if you’re up to it, in the comments (anonymously or not), we’d love for you to share the following:
- Your wedding budget total
- The year you got or are getting married in
- Your location (because New Mexico weddings are not the same price as New York City weddings)
- Your guest count
- Your wedding budget breakdown, with as much detail as you’re willing to offer
The information you share will help your fellow travelers of the wedding planning path so much. If only by making them feel more sane. Because shit costs money, y’all. Sometimes way too much of it.
Who’s up for sharing their wedding budget breakdown and breaking the industry silence on what things actually cost?