Category Archives: Wedding Budget Ideas

Budget ideas for planning your wedding and reception

Who Should Walk You Down The Aisle?

Who Should Walk You Down The Aisle?


When you are planning your wedding there are many factors to consider.  One of the things you need to think about is who will walk you down the aisle.

With divorced families, this decision can be especially hard.  Sometimes you don’t just have a biological father…but you also have a step father that you are close to and would like him included in walking you down the aisle. What should you do?  There is absolutely no reason both can’t be included as you see in the photo above.

Another option is to have one walk you halfway down the aisle and then the other dad or step dad walk you the rest of the way.

I’ve had brides who have no father living and decide to have their mom walk them down the aisle.  That is so awesome!  Their mom was not only their mother but also their father to them….why shouldn’t they pick their mother to walk them down the aisle.

Others opt for a close family member….sometimes a brother, uncle or even a grandparent.  I’ve had some brides who have no father or mother and a brother will walk them down the aisle.

Just remember that this is your day.  Do what makes you happy!

Happy Planning!

Bridal Dressing Room A Must!

dressing suite 1 e

It is so important to have a place large enough for not only yourself but your bridesmaids and moms to get ready before your wedding reception.  There are a few options you can use.

For many years our clients had a choice of hoping to find a relative’s house that was large enough for everyone to dress in…and then get them to come and get all of their items they had left there after the wedding reception …or rent a hotel room or two for everyone to dress in.

What better way to start your day than to have all of your wedding party with you and a perfect place to take photos while getting ready, than a bridal suite just for you!

While at a wedding conference in 2013,  we decided to make a bridal dressing room our top priority for 2014.

We completed the 900 sq. foot dressing suite and named our new area, Rhona’s Dressing Suite, after my mother-in-law, who was a very dear friend of mine.

My clients get the key to Rhona’s Dressing Suite at 9am the morning of their wedding.  This gives them ample time to do their hair, makeup, dress, etc.  There are 3 vanities as well as a large glass table with four makeup mirrors and chairs.  We have a large dress rack for the dresses to hang as well as four dressing rooms, three full length mirrors, a bar, refrigerator and bathroom.

Each bride I have shown our dressing room to walks in amazed at the size and what the room has to offer for their wedding party.  If it helps make my brides just a little bit more relaxed to have a place to get ready…..I’ve done my job.

Happy Planning!

Planning Your Rehearsal Supper

Dustin and rebecca

Planning a wedding can be stressful enough.  It’s one of the reasons I try to give you all of the tools you will need to plan this special occasion.

Four to six months before your date it’s time to start looking for a rehearsal dinner location.   Finding a location that fits into your budget is very important.

Traditionally, the rehearsal dinner falls on the groom’s family…but times are changing.  Many of my couples are either paying for part or all of their own wedding….or if the parents are paying for their wedding, they are very conscious of the budget they have been given and realize there are ways to cut expenses.

Having the rehearsal dinner at a parent or relative’s house, especially outdoors, is one option.    When you are talking about it and the sun is shining, it sounds like a great idea!  But what if it rains?  Do you have a plan B?   Is there enough room in the house to seat all of the wedding party and their guests?  And do you have a plan on who will cleanup afterward?

Then there is the option of a restaurant.  Another good idea!  But then again that can cost a pretty penny….and we’re talking about just one night!

That’s why we have so many rehearsal suppers here at Magnolia Court Reception Hall.  For a small fee you have a wonderful place outdoors, if weather permits, or indoors if it doesn’t.  Many couples decide to do a gumbo or jambalaya with some sides.  Or if your relatives want to help, ask them to bring a dish!

You can supply water and tea and if you don’t mind your guests drinking, they can bring their own.  Just remember, keep it simple, and stay in budget!

Happy Planning!

Budget Ideas. Wedding Cake Tower

Cake tower make by Chris Lasage 

The wood tower was made by Chris Lasage, father of the bride.


Found on Pinterest on

It seems many couples planning their wedding are on a tight budget.  I am always keeping my eyes open….looking for ways they can save money.

A cake can be very costly.  But there are several ideas I have seen, not only from my customers, but searching around on Pinterest.    You will see the top photo….the tower was made by the father of one of my brides.  I thought this was a unique idea and have seen many variations of this idea on Pinterest!

You can have a small cake for the top so you can cut the top and take photos.  The bottom can be filled not only with cupcakes, but you can use a variety of items such as brownies, petite fours, cookies, etc. that will go with your color scheme.  You can choose individual desserts and put them in cupcake paper or small plastic cups, using your color scheme and place them on the tower.  Extras can be kept on hand to replace as the guests eat the delicious items on your tower.

Are you a baker?  Are there family members who make special candies or items they would be willing to bake for you?  You would be surprised how many would love to make these items for you….a cost saver and they get to brag!  Be sure to send them a thank you note for their help!

Your guests will love this idea because of the variety and easy access!

Keep in mind, some of my clients just don’t like cake at all!  So leave the cake out at the top and instead put the bride and grooms special sweet item…these can be shared for the photo taking!  Remember….it’s your special day…do what makes you happy.

Happy Planning!

Catering Table Options


catering tables

When it comes to setting up your catering tables, you have many options.  Of course, there is the traditional “L” shaped, as shown in the first photo.  The second photo shows the straight line…which is also good.  The main thing to remember is never to make a “U” shape….guests tend to “bottleneck” in the middle and the line will not move well.

A unique, trendy idea that will also increase the mingling of the guests is a food station reception with each table having a different theme of food and/or floral displays.

One table could be a display of cheeses with a variety of breads, fresh fruit and vegetables.  You could supply several dips for the fruit and vegetables.

Perhaps you and/or your fiance love tacos….why not designate one table a taco station…with a variety of condiments for your guests to use.  You could become very creative with putting not only the traditional lettuce, cheese, sour cream, tomatoes and avocados…but perhaps a few different local salsas!  I recommend Cajun Power Salsa made locally here in Abbeville, Louisiana.   It’s my personal favorite!

One table could have a slow cooker filled with jambalaya…pork and sausage jambalaya is not only a great filler for your guests…but it is also easy to make and can be made a few days ahead…waiting until the day of your event to put in the rice.

Why not have a popcorn station… with a variety of different flavors of popcorn!  Items could be placed in large clear glass containers with scoops for self serving.  The kids will not only love it but so will many of the adults.  (I recently went to a conference and this was used at one of the cocktail parties.   The table had  6 varieties of popcorn…you couldn’t keep the guests away from those tables!)

Always remember to keep in mind the food allergies that some of your guests may have.  Remember to label each item…especially the seafood and nuts.

Whatever you decide to do…remember it’s your event…make it your own by putting the food items you like and be creative!

Happy Planning!


A Wedding Budget Reminder

Bryan BlonPhoto by Bryan Blon Photography

So you’ve planned your wedding budget.  That’s a good thing.  But remember the fifty dollars spent here or a hundred dollars there…..that you didn’t figure into your budget….adds up!

Let’s talk about “your look” for the day.  Make sure to add everything into your budget for “your look”.  Take into consideration not just the dress……remember to add all of the other expenses that come into play.

Let’s just say you decided on $1500….that doesn’t mean you can buy a $1500 dress….there is tax to consider.   What if you ordered it instead….there will be shipping costs involved.

And don’t forget the alterations!  Many of my customers are surprised with how much alterations cost!   And then you need to figure in your undergarments, nails, pedicure and jewelry as well.

Are you having your hair done by a stylist?  If so, this cost needs to figure into your budget as well.  And speaking of hair….what about your veil….that can be costly….so make sure to figure that into your budget.

And of course your shoes are very important!  Try to stay away from buying shoes that are marketed as “bridal shoes”….instead buy a nice pair of pumps or sandals that  you know you will wear in the future.  Your comfort should be your only real concern…you want to enjoy your day…hurting feet will not be fun!