The beginning of your wedding planning journey is such an incredibly exciting time, and it’s often so easy to overlook budgeting and to perhaps get a bit carried away building your dream wedding without doing some serious thinking over the numbers.


At the end of the day, it really determines everything! In fact, chitchat and formalities aside it’s the first question we will ask any bride who enquires about working with us.


So the first and most important thing you absolutely MUST do is establish your budget! 


If you’re not completely funding the wedding yourself as a couple, you need to start having those often rather awkward but 100% necessary conversations with your parents and other family members. This is an important and completely natural part of the wedding planning process, so don’t beat yourself up about it!


Once you’ve established your wedding budget, it’s often a little daunting to work out;



- the different elements that you need to include in your budget.




- the proportion of your budget that you should dedicate to which areas. 

Below is a list of what we think are the most essential elements that need to be considered, and our rough guidelines on what percentage of your budget you should use where. 

The Ceremony (2%)

Location Cost

Styling Props (excluding flowers)



Organist, Choir, Bell Ringers (if in a church)

The Reception (48%)

Venue Cost

Marquee Hire (if applicable)


Styling Props (excluding flowers)

Wedding Cake


Special Events Permit (if applicable)

The Music & Entertainment (8%)

Ceremony (e.g. singer, string quarter, harpist)



The Photography & Videography (8%)

Photographer Fee

Photo Albums

Videographer Fee

The Transportation (2%)

Wedding Car

Transportation for Wedding Party


The Flowers (10 %)

Ceremony Venue Flowers

Reception Venue Flowers

Bride’s Bouquet

Bridesmaid’s Bouquets

Flower Girl’s Flowers


The Stationery (3%)

Save-The-Date Cards




Place Cards


Thank You Cards


 The Apparel & Accessories (10%)

Bride’s Dress (including alterations)

Bride’s Veil & Headpiece

Bride’s Lingerie & Garter

Bride’s Jewellery & Accessories

Bride’s Hair, Makeup & Beauty Treatments (including trial & on the day)

Bridesmaid’s Hair & Make Up (on the day only)

Bridesmaid’s Dresses (including alterations)

Bridesmaid’s Shoes

Bridesmaid’s Jewellery & Accessories

Groom’s Apparel (including shoes)

Groomsmen’s Apparel

The Wedding Rings (3%)

Bride’s Wedding Ring

Groom’s Wedding Ring

Ring Pillow or Box

The Gifts & Favours (3 %)

Gifts for Maid of Honour & Bridesmaids

Gifts for Best Man & Groomsmen

Gifts for Flower Girls

Guest Favours

Guestbook & Pens

The Miscellaneous (3%)

Reserve Funds

Wedding Insurance


Our Tops Tips


There are lots of resources and wedding budget planning tools available to download online, but we find that if you’re computer savy and any good with formulas, the easiest way to build a system that is completely bespoke to you and your wedding planning is to create a simple excel worksheet. But of course it’s totally up to you to decide which works best for you!


Schedule yourself quarterly or half yearly budget reviews to make sure that you’re on track!


Note down and diarise payment schedules and important dates!


Keep track of deposits paid and amounts due to help you work out how much you’ve spent so far and how much more you need to spend


If you’re planning to hire a wedding planner you should always remember to factor this into your budget too!