We’re really bad at sticking to budgets. Sorry, Alex requested that I clarify: I am really bad at sticking to budgets.
It’s not that I can’t stay within my limits, it’s that I have a very laissez-faire attitude about buying what I want, if I can afford it. I’ll responsibly pay off my credit cards every month, make sure to put something in my savings account when I can, blah blah blah. But if I budgeted for $100 spending money when traveling, and came across something irresistible for $150, I’ll gladly buy it and nip a little from groceries or money that could potentially be saved (oops) later. It all works out in the end. At least, so far it has.
A couple of things to throw out there – when we got engaged, we knew we wanted to be 100% responsible for all the costs of the wedding. Since we graduated from university, we’ve been completely on our own, and by the time engagement rolled around, we had gotten our car and condo without any help from our parents. In that sense, it almost felt “not right” to ask for help on a smaller ticket item. Also, we knew we didn’t want to pay a lot of money for our wedding. To us, the more exciting things to spend money on were things like our condo, or traveling, or higher education. Marriage was, and still is, a formality that is nice to have, but all things considered, definitely not a priority on my mind.
Anyway, so with that in mind, we’ve decided to spend as little money as possible. We’ve made a budget that is lower than the average cost in 2010. I’m as committed to it as I can be (see above for my track record). To manage it so far, we’ve done a few drastic things: our guest list is super small (but we promise to take good care of them!), we’re getting married on a weekday, and I’m having my dress made, even though I loved the “real thing” in the couture gown store.
To live up to my reputation, there have also been instances where I couldn’t resist splurging. I am determined on having letterpress invitations (it’s a lost art!), and I had such a wonderful conversation with our florist the first time we chatted that I doubled my budget to suit her quote. In return, I’ve cut down on our stationery needs and will be printing minimal numbers with letterpress, and hand stamping and embossing the rest of them.
As we plan out a bit more, we’ll get closer to seeing if we can stick close to our goal. It’s definitely been an interesting experience getting ourselves into the “give-and-take” mindset, and I hope I can continue to post ideas where we found ways to “give” but still stay creative. Stay tuned!