I forgot to post our article that was in the LJWorld a couple weeks ago...
Lauren Wilkinson has been crunching numbers since last summer.
She’s compared dresses, flowers, food, transportation and photography. You name it, she’s crunched it.
For Wilkinson, an English teacher at Free State High School, throwing a cost-effective wedding never has been more important than now — especially with the shifting economy.
“I was surprised at the cost of things and how quickly the different elements of a wedding add up,” Wilkinson says. “There are things I had never thought of.”
Like coffee, for example.
“It was an additional $1.50 charge if you want coffee included in the drinks,” says Wilkinson, who is planning a June wedding. “We were able to cut some costs there.”
Wilkinson isn’t the only future bride who is cutting costs wherever she can.
Photographer Stu Nowlin has noticed that brides are becoming more conscious of their budgets.
“When someone calls in, I ask them what they want,” says Nowlin, owner of Stu Nowlin Imaging, 4609 Harvard Road. “I try to work with their budget as much as I can.”
Even Heidi Yoder, floral designer at Bittersweet Floral and Design, 1407 Mass., has noticed a slight change in her customers.
“It seems like a lot of them are being more aware,” she says. “We try to encourage them to do a lot of reusing.”
Yoder says purchasing decorations that serve double purposes can be an effective means of cost reduction.
Some decorations that brides might consider cutting back on are flowers.
“We encourage brides not to cut back on their bouquet,” Sharon Reynolds, president of Owens Flower Shop, 846 Ind., says. “They can cut back on bridesmaid bouquets.”
Despite the plummeting economy, Reynolds says she isn’t worried about business.
“I really think that business is going to be there,” she says. “They want it to be something special.”
Instead of eliminating flowers or photographs entirely, Nowlin says brides might just cut back on the quantity of items they purchase.
“What I try to do is address their concerns,” he says.
Still, Nowlin says he can name one item no bride wants to cut back on — the dress.
“The fairy princess ideal is so strong in America,” he says. “It’s going to be the last thing to go.”
Wilkinson wouldn’t argue with that logic.
“I know people personally who have put their weddings on credit cards,” she says. “They find a way to have what they want.”
However, Wilkinson and her fiancé, Nick Adams, are being more realistic about their options.
“I’ve spent a lot of time comparing prices,” she says. “That’s the luxury of being engaged for a long time.”