Marry Me Tampa Bay: Expert Advice

Our Special Moments Event Planning team loves it when our friends at Marry Me Tampa Bay come to our Lead Dream Maker, Master Wedding Planner Tammy Waterman, for planning advice!

We don’t always get to share everything, but this is always an important topic!

Their latest article, Expert Advice: 10 Things to Know About Setting a Wedding Budget, is packed with great advice. They asked wedding vendors from different wedding services about budgeting.

Be sure to check out the entire article by clicking HERE. 

But here are some awesome budgeting tips from Tammy that were featured in the article.


1. Determine Who is Contributing

“Having conversations about money is never any fun. However, we’d be willing to bet finances surrounding the wedding are something that most parents have given a little thought to, regardless of how much or how little they can contribute, so having that conversation is probably a little easier than you think. Don’t dump all the money into one big pot. People who contribute money to a wedding like to have some input on how their money is spent. By keeping it separated, you can have those discussions without them needing to be too involved in other spending.”


couple planning their wedding.


5. Understand How Your Guest Count Impacts Your Budget

“More wedding guests always means more money, and controlling your guest list is always a struggle. The ‘+1′ is one of the most significant ways to drive up those costs quickly. We have a colleague who preaches, ‘No ring, No bring.’ If the friend you are inviting isn’t engaged or in a serious relationship, they don’t get a +1! It’s cold, but the reality is your friend will more than likely spend the whole night with mutual friends, leaving the ‘date du jour’ alone. Another excellent barometer for judging who makes the cut on the guest list is to consider if you would take them out for an expensive dinner, any other night of the year, and pick up the tab.”


large stacks of wedding invitations.


6. Spend Smartly

“Look at a few things as focal points and play them up. Look at a ceremony structure or arrangements that can be repurposed. Splurge on a couple of things that people will notice. Investing in things like upgraded linens, candles, and lighting on a sweetheart table and cake table goes a long way. The two of you and the wedding cake are two of the most photographed elements of a wedding.”


7. Don’t Spend More Than You Can Afford

“Media hype in weddings is enormous. Too many of the pretty things you’ll see online actually cost more than you might expect, and everything grows exponentially. That one swoon-worthy centerpiece on Pinterest might be okay if you need one, but not if you have twenty tables. Have realistic expectations, don’t go into debt, and use those fantastic photos as an inspiration for something that works in your budget.”


8. Don’t Hire Vendors Based on Price Alone

“Price, Product, and Personality are all factors to consider when hiring a wedding vendor; cheap is not always a good thing. If they don’t really offer what you want or the thought of spending your wedding day with them bothers you, the price isn’t that great. Sometimes cheaper packages are just less expensive because they have taken a bunch of stuff out that you might really want.”


9. Plan for the Unexpected

“Not everyone writes their proposals the same way. One vendor’s package might look so much cheaper for the same things as others until you realize that they separately price out staffing and rentals. A venue might seem like a real bargain until you add something like a cleanup fee, additional hours, parking attendants, or the rentals you might need. So, read the fine print and calculate all of the extras you might need to add in.”


nervous bride with her fingers crossed



Way to go, Tammy!  Great advice for creating a wedding budget.

Our Special Moments Event Planning team loves to share wedding planning tips wherever possible. What are some wedding planning areas you’d like us to share more about on our blogs?



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