Once you’ve announced your engagement from the rooftops and pinned everything you could possibly dream of for your wedding, it’s time to take a step back and consider how much you want to spend on your nuptials. With tools like Pinterest, it can be super easy to go over your budget and plan for things that you simply don’t have room in the budget for. I mean, when you really sit down to think about it, there are a lot of big and little expenses that go into the big day (as I found out on my own wedding day). From the dress to the catering and decor, it’s easy to see how setting a budget is just as vital as setting a date.

Who’s paying for what?
Before you go on a spending spree searching for your dream flowers and reception space, decide which expenses are going to who. According to Wedding Wire, the bride’s side traditionally pays for church costs, invitations, reception/venue, transportation and the wedding dress. The groom’s side, on the other hand, will be responsible for the honeymoon, liquor, marriage license, officiant fee/gratuity and the rehearsal dinner.

Consider the breakdown of costs
Traditional brides will spend more on the reception than they will on things like transportation and music for the big day. But how are you supposed to know how much to spend on what? According to Martha Stewart Weddings, the breakdown generally goes as follows: reception – 40 to 50 percent, flowers – 10 percent, photography/videography – 10 percent, bride and groom attired – 5 to 10 percent, music – 5 to 10 percent, wedding planner – 10 to 15 percent and miscellaneous – 10 percent.

It’s important for you and your groom to sit down and discuss if you’ll be splurging on any particular part of the wedding. For example, if the bride wishes to spend a little extra on her dress, you’ll have to consider cutting back on another area of the wedding, whether that’s decor or transportation.

Do your research
If you have had a dream reception space in mind ever since you were a little girl, research that particular venue to get an idea of how much it might cost and if there’s room in your budget for it or not. Once you get a general idea of how much everything is going to cost, you’ll have an easier time knowing where it’s okay to spend a little extra and where you should cut back.

And don’t forget about our engagement story contest going on! Time’s running out! Leave us a comment with your extra-special engagement story and you’ll have a chance to win $150 credit at Invitations by Dawn. We would love to hear from you!