Archive for the 'Wedding Budget & Planning' Category

Fake the Cake – Little Tricks that Save Big

Wedding cakes are by no means cheap these days.  Even if you go with wedding cupcakes, the cost could add up quickly.  Here are some ideas to trim costs when it comes to wedding cake.  The best part?  No one will ever know the difference except you and your bottom line! 

Order a smaller version of the cake you love
Don’t sacrefies with a less interesting cake.  Go with the one you love, but order a smaller version.  Use this cake during the cutting ceremony, then have decorated sheet cakes in the same flavour and frosting and serve to guests.  

Fake the Bottom
If the thought of having a smaller cake doesn’t appeal to you, consider getting fake bottom tier(s) decorated in the same frosting and pattern as the rest of the cake, while serving guests with decorated sheet cakes. 

Double Duty – Serve your wedding cake as dessert
If you wish to go with a larger cake, consider getting a gourmet cake to double as dessert and go without any other pastries. 


For the bakers in the bunch, I will be sharing a recipe for wedding cake as soon as I can dig up my old cookbook.


Downloadable Wedding Planner and Budget Calculator Spreadsheet

Weddings are expensive, and keeping up with your expenses is no easy task. I designed a wedding budget spreadsheet for my cousin a couple of years ago and have been fine tuning it ever since. It’s not a full fletch wedding budget tracking program by any means, but many people find it a good tool for establishing a realistic budget. You could also use this calculator to track budget vs. actual. I will continue to refine this calculator as needed, so feedback will be greatly appreciated. It’s an MS Excel spreadsheet that you can download and save on your computer.

Go to Wedding Budget Calculator. Once you are on that page, click on “Downloadable the Bella Wedding Budget Planner” for the budget spreadsheet.

There is also a wedding planner under that same page, with planning timeline and tasks.
Click on “Download the Bella Wedding Planner

Wedding Bouquet – from your neighbourhood Costco

Lately I’ve heard a lot of comments about how expensive wedding flowers are. My standard answer: Checked out After seconds of dead air, and usually some eye rolling, people start to realize this is not a joke. If you or someone you know is talented in floral arrangement, may have the answer. They carry an array of flowers that are in season, including Cymbidium Orchids and Calla Lilies.

Orchids from CostcoCalla Lilies

Costco even offers packages for bouquets and centerpieces.

Bouquet made of rosesCenterpiece

I posted some pictures a couple of days ago of some DIY floating arrangements. These Cymbidium Orchids and the roses would be perfect candidates for a simple yet totally posh centerpiece. You could save even more if you could find a local wedding rental store that carries the cylinder vase as show in my previous post.

I’m a Costco fanatic, so don’t just take my word for it. Go on, check it out yourself. I know where I’ll go the next time I need flowers.

Cut the Expense, Not the Party

Weddings are expensive, no question about it. To be able to afford that fabulous gown, you may have to make cuts somewhere else in your wedding budget.

When it comes to the budget, you don’t always have to sacrifice style. Instead, think outside the box. For instance, to be able to afford the gown of your dreams, you may choose to have a cocktail wedding party instead of a sit down dinner reception.

Another budget saving idea is to limit the drinks served to four or five. Speak to your venue to discover popular cocktails that would cover a wide range of tastes and ensure that the knowledge and ingredients are present to make your desired choices.

To simplify things, you may want to choose just one signature cocktail and wrap the wedding theme around it. Some fun cocktails to choose from include: a Wedding Belle, Sealed With a Kiss, Hot Romance, and Love is in the Air.

For that personal touch, design it yourself, and give it a fun frothy name to go along with that princess dress. A perfect task for you and your bridesmaids at your stagette or bridal shower.

While a full menu is not required, appetizers and tidbits will still be required to offset the alcohol being served. This is one event where a bowl of chips simply will not do.

For appetizers, choose bite-sized items that easily fit on a cocktail napkin. These can be items you make yourself, items you have catered or items provided by your reception venue. Appetizers can be served by formal waiters or provided at stations around the room, the general rule of thumb is usually three of each kind of appetizer for every invited guest.

When planning your cocktail wedding party, make sure to include music as a backdrop to guests’ conversations and as a possible lead in for some dancing. A jazz ensemble, string quartet, or even a piano bar styled accompaniment to your party makes sure that guests continue to mingle without any awkward silences.

As a wedding favor for the cocktail wedding party, you can choose from the many different cocktail mixes on the market that come in single packages. Create a small gift bag with mini bottles of all the ingredients complete with a shaker engraved with your wedding details to make a wedding favor and ultimately a party that will be remembered for years to come.

I came across a couple of wedding and budget planners. These checklists are pretty general, you may want to use these as templates and break down each category in detail as needed.

wedding planner

budget planner