I love all the festive red and white details from today’s winer wedding. John and Vanessa got married around Christmas time, and they incorporated the colors of the season into their big day. They kept their budget low through paying their photographer per hour, using real and silk flowers and negotiating for prices. And I positively love their ring bearer pillow! Enjoy this lovely red and white December wedding! xoxo, Jessica
Vanessa + John
December 19th, 2015
Bridgewater, NJ | Bridgewater Manor
What was your budget?
My budget was $15,000. Most of it was spent on the reception. The reception included cake, ceremony venue, tablecloths, and table numbers, which totaled about $11,000.
Our centerpieces, bridal flowers, flowers for bridesmaids, boutonnieres for grooms and ceremony decorations cost$1300.
Wedding dress, shoes and jewelry cost$1300
How many guests did you have?
We had about 108 guests.
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
I worked with our florist to design our centerpieces!
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
I did a lot of big things to save money. I used silk flowers for my bridesmaids and boutonnieres for groomsmen and groom. I went to the Shop-rite’s flower department to put my centerpieces together. I had the wedding in December, a time when there’s not much competition. Our venue included a lot in the package, including the cake for less than many vendors. I had my makeup done at the mall for free.
Our invitations were sent out through Evite. I did not have any wedding favors (most people leave these things behind or throw it away after a while, I know I do). I planned the wedding with the help of my family, I did not hire a wedding planner. The officiant was a friend of the family, performed our ceremony at no charge.
DJ was a friend so he charged only $500. The photographer was hired for only 3 hours @ $175/hour
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
Negotiate prices if you have to. Shop around for the best price before making the final decision. Don’t be afraid to use silk flowers. Pick a venue that includes a lot in their package.
What was your biggest splurge?
My biggest splurge was my dress. A bride’s got to have a beautiful dress!
What was your favorite detail?
My favorite detail was the centerpieces. The florist and I worked on it for a while. We’ve put together so many different centerpieces, changed our minds so many times to save money. We started out at $2000 then brought the price down to under $1300. Everyone loves the centerpieces and wanted to take one home.
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
The most memorable moment was our first dance. My husband does not like to dance. We have never danced together before — that’s how much he dislikes to dance! Dancing with him on our wedding night in front of our closest friends and family members meant a lot. That might have been the first and last time we dance, so it was very special.
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.