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WHAT EXPECTations to have while PLANNING A WEDDING

Let's pause on the Pinterest for a second. I know how easy it is to get swept up into having a "Pinterest Wedding" and by all means, if that's your dream and you have the means, go for it! BUT let's chat about what an "average" which I HATE to use this word, but average cost, average vendors used etc. MEANING the industry standards average (since we need something quantifiable)


Anywho enough jabbering on my end (lol) let's dive in!


Details can be important, but I suggest starting with the top priorities, first off, where you are going to get married!


The average wedding venue in the midwest in recent years costs roughly ~$6,000. Though this number can shift DRASTICALLY in either direction depending on what all is included and/or location. I have seen some incredibly beautiful backyard weddings, where the only cost required was rentals i.e. tents, dishes, chairs, tables etc. I have also seen the other end of the wedding spectrum where the venue costs over 10,000 maybe due to being a city location or being all inclusive (meaning food, drink, rentals + decor are included in the wedding venue package). When I got married, this is what we chose to do, we picked a venue that had food and drink included so it was one less thing we had to worry about.


The first thing to decide is if location is of importance to you, and if it is, what you want your wedding to look like within your budget. Figuring out where you'd like to spend your budget money is a super critical part in the preplanning process.



The above was a beautiful backyard wedding at a family property. As I said earlier, location is the first must have decision before moving forward. Then let's prioritize 1-2 vendors at a time.


Some people will prioritize photo/video services first, some will prioritize food/drinks and others will prioritize music or details such as florals/decor etc. You need to talk with your partner to pick 1-2 to focus on at a time. An industry quote you may have heard frequently is "book your must have's first" so what ever vendor you REALLY want, make sure to reach out to them first. I think it's always easiest to work on 1 type of vendor (i.e. photographer) at a time, and reach out to roughly 3 of that same time of vendors (your number 1, and 2 backups). Keeping it at or around 3, minimizes the stress of hearing back from multiple people and allows you to stay organized while focusing on your favorites.


Now let's talk vendors and average prices. We again, are discussing averages, which means there will be vendors on both sides of the dollar sign. This is where the budget needs to be divided up. You have to decide which vendors you are more comfortable spending more on, and which ones you would like to think about further.




Let's talk money.


Photographer's average: $3,000

Photographer's range: $2,000 - $4,000+

Videographer's average: $2,500

Videographer's range: $1,500 - $5,000+

Floral's average: $1,500

Floral's range: $700 - $2,500+

Wedding outfits average: $2,200

Wedding outfits range: $1,000 - $4,000+

Food + Drink average: $85 per person

Food + Drink range: $70 - $130 per person

Makeup + hair (if applicable) average: $300

Makeup + hair range: $150 - $600

Officiant average: $300

Officiant range: $200 - $450

Wedding Planner average: $2,300

Wedding Planner range: $1,800 - $4,000+

Invitations/save the dates average: $3.00 an invitation

Invitations/save the dates range: $1.50 - $5.00+ an invitation


This is based off research done on google and through other businesses I have worked with for the 2023 year.


and the list can go on if you need/want specific rentals, rings, cakes/desserts, favors etc.


If we take the average of all these numbers we get roughly: $31,750 per a 150 guest list.


BUT here's the thing. that number can look super daunting, and these are just averages. I think it is super easy to get swept up into a Pinterest perfect wedding. We need to acknowledge that many "weddings" we see on Pinterest are often styled shoots, stylized and created strictly for the photos (just like magazines). The most important thing you can do for your own wedding is making sure it is YOU without making you feel uncomfortable. I am not here to tell you to do a budget wedding or spend $50,000. I am just here to help guide you all in making decisions that are most comfortable for you. You can choose to for-go some of these vendors, you can choose to elope, or you can choose the traditional route as well. There are SO many ways to get married that Pinterest doesn't show us, and there is NEVER a wrong way. Trust YOUR process, take a deep breath and try not to let it be too stressful, because really in truly (speaking from someone who has gone through a wedding) the wedding isn't the important part, the important part is marrying your partner and best friend.



Photo Details

First set of photos:

Second set of photos:

Location: private backyard wedding

Third set of photos:



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