Posts Tagged: Budget


6
Jul 12

10 Tips to Cut Catering Costs

You should budget around 45%-50% of your overall wedding budget on catering. No matter what type of wedding you have or what time of day it’s held at, guests will expect food and beverages.  Most couples opt for a 3-course sit down meal but I’ve also seen buffets, stand up cocktail receptions, and more informal versions of the sit down meal. Most couples are now offering canapes, a main meal, and an evening buffet so this can really blow the budget if you’re trying to spend wisely. Catering is not cheap so see my 10 tips on saving catering fees below.

luxury wedding planner london

Lloyd Dobbie Photography

Top 10

1. Save your meat for the main dish and serve vegetarian canapes and starters. Try risotto served in shot glasses, vegetarian rice rolls, or a trio of asparagus

2. Cut out the starter course by offering more canapes during the drinks reception and this will save on crockery, cutlery, equipment, and staff.

3. Unless you and your guests are champagne connoisseurs, opt for cava, prosecco, or English sparkling wine to add a bit of luxury without the price tag. Most guests won’t know the difference. I personally prefer cava over the other two (when champagne isn’t offered, of course!).

4. Replace the first course with a selection of breads and dipping oils

5. Serve wedding cake as your dessert. You will save so much money doing this, and guests will actually eat your cake! If you serve a dessert and then offer wedding cake, you will have a lot of leftovers.

6. Serve your food “family style” meaning 3-4 dishes come out for the starter in which guests serve themselves, then you see the same for the main course. This allows for a formal seated dinner with an informal service and cheaper price tag.

7. If you’re having an evening buffet, you don’t need to cater to all your guests as only a small percentage will eat at that time. I normally see less than half of guests touch the evening buffet.

8. Serve the expensive drinks (bubbly, specialty cocktails) early in the day so guests can remember them and enjoy the taste. Towards the end of the evening I always see half full glasses being left around the room which always go to waste. Guests leave their glass on a table then forget which one is theirs, or they set it down to use the loo then a waiter picks it up before they return. To avoid waste on expensive items, serve these early on.

9. Add a bit of luxury to your presentation by dropping raspberries into your bubbly, or adding small slices of cucumber and orange into each water glass. Presentation is everything and a small touch makes a major impact.

10. Serve cold canapes and a cold starter. Hot dishes require more equipment which means more cost. Also, if you’re running behind on time, you don’t need to worry about food coming out cold. Win/win!

luxury wedding planner in London

 

Happy planning!

Erika xo

 


9
May 12

Budgeting: The Essentials and the Extras

Everyone knows that weddings are expensive, but not everyone knows how to allocate their budget for a great wedding. To begin, there are certain items and vendors that must be booked in order to have a fabulous wedding and happy guests. If you have any leftover money in your budget, refer to the extras guide below for some added luxury and an even more show stopping and jaw dropping day.

 

Please note that the below refers to a traditional wedding with a sit down meal. Many couples are planning unconventional weddings these days so if you have any questions about your budget or how to allocate funds, please leave a comment and I’ll be in touch. Please also note that the essential list is made up of the minimum items/vendors that are necessary for having a wedding celebration. If you’re like me and love your luxury, save up for your extra items! :

 

Essentials

Ceremony and reception Venue

Ceremony Officiant

Photographer

Stationery: invitations, table plan or escort cards, and place cards

Food and beverages caterer

Music for ceremony, cocktail reception, dinner, and evening reception

Rings

Bride’s outfit

Groom’s outfit

Bridesmaids outfits, if paying

Best man and ushers outfits, if paying

Flowers for bridal party

Wedding cake

Table centrepieces

Tables, banqueting chairs, linen, china, stemware (usually provided by venue or caterer)

Transportation, if required (often dictated by venue)

Dance floor (normally required but check with your venue)

Guest book

Gifts for wedding party

Insurance

Microphone and PA for speeches and band

*** Marquee weddings require a lot more in the essentials list***

 

wedding budget

Peggy Porschen

 

Extras

Hair and make-up

Videographer

Ceremony decorations

Ceremony aisle runner

Transportation for bride and groom

Transportation for wedding party and parents

Transportation for guests

Lighting, lighting, and more lighting

Live music

Special cocktails

Statement floral arrangements

Decorations

Evening buffet

Personalised dance floor

Charger plates and upgraded table ware (linen, stemware, china, salt and pepper shakers, etc)

Specialty banqueting chairs

Draping

Toastmaster

Wedding day stationery, including; dinner menus and personalised table names

Fireworks

First night hotel

Gifts for guests

And much, much more

luxury wedding cakes

Grace Ormonde

 

 

 


24
Apr 12

Receptions On a Loan

Rental equipment has the power to transform your reception into something magical and personalised. From stylish china to chic sofas, consider a visit to your nearest equipment showroom to find pieces that will make your event über glamorous.

Examples of pieces you can hire:
Banqueting chairs
Luxurious linen
China/glassware
Table accessories
Candelabras
Storm lanterns
Sofas, ottomans, decorative pillows, side tables, etc
Rugs
Antiques
Chandeliers
Lamps
Large parasols
ans so much more!

Tip: Hire a lighting professional to spotlight special pieces and add colour and warmth to your reception.

erika unbehaunerika unbehaun 2Hello BlogErika Unbehaun 4Glasswareluxury wedding planner london

Glass_SilverBeads4_LR

black-chandelier


16
Feb 12

You’re Engaged!!

The ring’s on your finger, the champagne’s been popped, your friends keep pestering you for a wedding date, now what? Wedding planning!

There are three tasks you should do before diving deep into the world of lush silk and perfect bows:

1. Decide on a location

2. Draw up a guest list

3. Set a budget

 

Location

Together with your fiancé/é decide where you want to get married. I’m not referring to the actual venue at this early stage, but the town, city, or country in which you want to hold your wedding ceremony and/or reception. In many cases this will be a no brainer but if you’re indecisive then think about the following to help generate ideas:

  • Would you rather stay close to home or have a destination wedding? If you want a destination wedding, do you think your family and friends can afford the costs associated with air tickets and accommodation?
  • Do you want a city wedding, country wedding, or beach wedding?
  • What type of venue do you envision hosting your wedding in? Is it a grand castle surrounded by a moat, a stately home with elegant decor and luscious manicured lawn, a contemporary gallery in the city, a divine five star hotel, or is it a family barn in the middle of the countryside?
  • The distance from the nearest airport. If you have guests flying in to witness your nuptials then you want to consider the distance from the airport to your chosen location.

You should also decide if it will be formal or casual as this will help with process of elimination later on when searching for venues. If you want a formal wedding you won’t look at certain venues such as barns, 3 star hotels, restaurants, etc., you should only look at the appropriate venues and where they may be located.  As you’re answering these questions you start to understand what type of wedding you want and eventually you’ll narrow in on a location.

 

Guest List

Together with your partner and both sets of parents, draw up a first draft guest list which has two separate columns. One column is for those guests that must be invited to the wedding, and the other column is for guests you would like to invite to the wedding.  Tips for editing the guest list will come in another post…

MUST                        MAYBE

 Things to consider when drawing up your guest list:

  • What size wedding do you want?
  • Will you have the budget to cater to all your guests?

 

Budget

Figure out realistically how much you have to spend. Sit down with your fiancé/é and your parents to discuss the wedding budget in depth. If your parents want to contribute in someway but don’t like the idea of just giving you a fixed amount of cash, then suggest they pay for certain parts of the day such as the photography, or the band, etc,. so they know where they contributed.

If you’re on a budget, figure out where friends and family can help. There are tons of ways to save. First and foremost, hire a wedding planner! We save you thousands of pounds from the strong relationships we have with our vendors. As proof, I saved one couple £4,800 today alone! If you prefer not to go down that route then friends and family can help by calling vendors to get quotes, making flower arrangements, baking the cake, designing and printing the stationery, etc. Think outside the box and be creative. One thing I do suggest is signing an agreement with friends if they are playing a big role in your wedding such as baking the cake. Make sure the baker understands your wedding envision, the time of your wedding, the time he/she has access to the venue, the time the cake stand must be removed from the venue the following day, and the details of the order. It does bring your personal relationship into a mildly awkward business relationship, but for good purpose.

wedding planner london 2

Lloyd Dobbie Photography

wedding planner london 1

Pippa Mackenzie photography

Featuring WPMU Bloglist Widget by YD WordPress Developer