The five Stages of Wedding Budget Anxiety

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Bend It toss

The five Stages of Wedding Budget Anxiety

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Bend It toss

Gravity defying bouquet toss.


Stage 1 of Wedding Budget Anxiety

“A wedding costs how much?”

Despite years of attending weddings and seeing weddings on blogs or in tabloids, you may have lost all sense of what a not-lavish-but-still-including-most-of-the-“traditional”-trappings wedding actually costs. As you start to do your research, there will be some sticker shock. “There must be some mistake,” you’ll think. “There is no way that they mean to charge us $5,000 for the venue before we’ve even paid for the food.” Right? Wrong.

Stage 2 of Wedding Budget Anxiety

“Screw the wedding industry…and screw you for even wanting a wedding!”

Once you’ve moved past denial, you head into phase two: anger. Anger at the wedding industry for charging so much money to feed 75 people, anger at your sister for insisting you need the letterpressed invitations, and, worst of all, anger at your fiance for wanting anything for the wedding that costs any sort of money. Suddenly, his or her desire for that $2.50-per-slice wedding cake seems like the end of the world. “Why am I even marrying this person, anyway?” you’ll ask yourself as you stare at your spreadsheet trying to figure out how on earth you’ll afford the live band your fiance can’t live without.

Stage 3 of Wedding Budget Anxiety

“Do you offer any sort of discounts? Maybe we could just get a friend to do the pictures…”

During the bargaining phase, you may start attempting to haggle with wedding vendors or trying to find someone who is less experienced to do your wedding on the cheap. This is the point at which you start thinking, “OK, I could totally bake the cake myself and make my own dress…even though I don’t even own a sewing machine!”

Stage 4 of Wedding Budget Anxiety

“I don’t even want a wedding anymore…let’s just elope.”

There will come a point when you’ll think you’ve moved on to acceptance, but then something will happen — a fight with your mom about the favors, the realization that you forgot to budget for postage for the invites — and you’ll hit the depression phase. Wedding planning? It’s for rich people, which you certainly are not. “I don’t even care,” you’ll tell your fiance as you stare out the window despondently. “Let’s just go to Vegas.”

Stage 5 of Wedding Budget Anxiety

“Even though our budget isn’t huge, this wedding is going to be amazing.”

Eventually, you’ll realize that, like it or not, you’re stuck with the budget you have and you’re going to have to make the best of it. You’ll start focusing on the things that really matter (you’re marrying the love of your life!) and think less about the things you can’t afford.  No one is going to remember that you didn’t serve steak.  They will remember the dancing and FUN.  (This is a where lots of planning and good wedding entertainment come into play).

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