The average wedding in the UK costs £14,984.28, so we’ve come up with a guide to help you with your £15,000 wedding budget!
Want to spend less on your wedding? Here’s how to have your dream day on a £5,000 wedding budget.
In this step-by-step wedding budget breakdown, where we offer expert tips and tricks on how to get the most from your money; here’s how you can easily have a stunning wedding and honeymoon on a £15,000 wedding budget.
Your £15,000 Wedding Budget Breakdown
Ceremony Costs – £1,000
You can hire a church for around £500. If you want the bell ringers and a choir, expect to pay another £400.
Alternatively, you can always hold your ceremony in the same place as your reception; simply hire a separate room in your venue, and then pay the registration fees and any extra costs for the registrar to come to the venue.
If you fancy something a little different, think about having one of these unity candle wedding ceremonies, they’re perfect for the creative couple. Or, check out these alternative wedding ceremonies and choose the one that best defines you as a couple.
Remember, alternative wedding ceremonies are not legally binding, so whilst these are a great way for couples to mark their marriage in front of family and friends, make sure you factor a trip to the registry office into your wedding budget.
Remaining wedding budget: £14,000
Wedding Venue Costs – £5,500
With a £15,000 wedding budget, you can put aside £5,500 for your wedding venue, it’s enough to get a lovely space.
If you’re looking for a city wedding venue, consider hotels that will come equipped with tables/chairs/a dancefloor, so you have no hidden costs.
If you’re planning a rustic wedding, have a look at barn wedding venues, they’ve always been a favourite with creative couples as they’re the perfect blank canvas for you to create your dream wedding!
With this budget you should be able to offer your guests a three-course meal but consider avoiding the canapes as this is a large and not wholly necessary expense.
Whilst getting married in the peak of summer sounds ideal, more and more couples are opting to get married in the winter.
Not only can winter weddings can offer sparkling, frosty mornings and orange sunsets – making winter one of the most magical times to get married – they’re also considerably cheaper too!
Remaining wedding budget: £8,500
The Wedding Dress – £1,500
Your wedding day is the one day in your life where it’s totally acceptable for you to waltz into the room and expect all eyes to be on you, and your wedding dress really is a once-in-a-lifetime outfit.
If you want a beautifully designed, great quality dress (and who doesn’t!?) then we’d only recommend you head to bridal boutiques, where expert consultants will help you find your dream dress.
Whilst you might assume your £15,000 wedding budget won’t cover a wedding dress from a bridal boutique, this isn’t the case.
Heavily beaded gowns are stunning, however, these often come with a high price point, so if you’re thinking of having a simpler wedding dress, you’ll have far more choice.
If you’re after a designer gown on a £15,000 wedding budget, think about looking for a sample wedding dress. Most bridal boutiques will offer these dresses at hugely discounted prices, and often they’ve only been tried on a couple of times.
Shops will sell these dresses to brides when they need to make room for new collections, so if the sample fits you but the dress is out of your price range, it’s worthwhile asking if you can buy the sample from the shop.
Alternatively, try looking around for trunk shows or designer day events as it’s likely that they have offers.
Start your hunt for ‘the dress’ on our sister site Wedding Style Collective. Browse wedding dresses by designer or style and contact bridal boutiques in your area.
Our top tip would be to have a phone call with the bridal consultants where you tell them your dress size and budget – this way you can eradicate any boutiques that don’t cater for your needs without even having an appointment.
Remaining wedding budget: £7,000
Photography – £1,500
A lot of work goes into photographing a wedding, meaning hiring a wedding photographer is often expensive. This is an expense, however, that’s definitely worth forking out the money for.
Emma from Emma-Jane Photography explains a positive correlation between the amount of experience a photographer has, and their price:
“Experienced photographers know how to handle very quick situations and still get the best results. Sometimes a very cheap wedding photographer might be building their portfolio and still learning, which means there can be mistakes that can happen or coverage that is missed.”
“You’re paying for the ability to capture moments that will not happen again and make sure they are captured in the best and most attractive way. So be careful about saving as it might not always give you the best results, but that is not to say there are some good offers to be had.”
Cutting too many corners on your wedding photography really could end in tears, and for this reason we recommend you set aside £1,500 of your £15,000 wedding budget for this service.
Whilst Emma explains that the best wedding photographers don’t normally offer deals, you’re most likely to find any deals over the Christmas, new year or Valentine’s Day period.
The best way to make savings on your photography, however, is to check your photographer’s packages and see if you would want everything in them.
Whilst engagement photo shoots are incredibly cute, they’re not a necessity to your wedding, so see if you can take this off; it might mean the difference between having your favourite wedding photographer or not.
Check out Confetti’s wedding photographers to start your search.
Remaining wedding budget: £5,500
Accessories – £300
Follow the wedding tradition of wearing ‘something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue’ on your wedding day – you’ll gain good luck and save money!
Simple wedding jewellery is timeless and won’t draw attention away from your dress, so why not sift through your jewellery box for some pretty and dainty pieces? It’s lovely to wear heirlooms or other meaningful pieces on your big day.
Try borrowing wedding accessories off your married friends and family – after all, you’re unlikely to wear a tiara after your wedding day, so is there any need to fork out the cash for one?
A comfortable pair of wedding shoes is a must, however, so make sure you invest in some. These flat wedding shoes are perfect for the evening and purchasing these still leaves you with some of your £15,000 wedding budget for other accessories.
Remaining wedding budget: £5,200
Hair and Beauty – £200
When saving money on your wedding makeup, the ideal solution would be that one of your super talented guests will do it for you. That way, you can invest in some quality makeup that will last the entire day – and for a few months thereafter (it really is an investment!)
Make sure you read our tips on doing your bridal makeup yourself before you get started.
Photo credit: Instagram.com/ctilburymakeup
If you’d rather get your hair and makeup done professionally, browse Confetti’s hair and beauty listings and ask around for the best quotes to make sure it fits within your £15,000 wedding budget.
Remaining wedding budget: £5,000
Bridesmaids – £550
We advise that couples on a £15,000 wedding budget keep back £550 for their bridesmaids.
One of the hardest things to do when shopping for your bridesmaid dresses is finding an outfit that suits all your girls. Many independent boutiques offer alteration services, so bridesmaids of different heights, sizes and body shapes can all wear the same dress.
You might also be able to get a discount if you buy your bridesmaid dresses from the same boutique you buy your wedding dress from.
Remaining wedding budget: £4,450
Groomswear – £600
£600 is enough money to buy a really special wedding suit that you can wear again and again thereafter.
Alternatively, cut costs in this department and consider hiring your suit instead. Suit hire companies like Slaters offer special deals if you hire your suit and your groomsmen’s suits from there.
Remaining wedding budget: £3,850
Wedding Cake – £250
Simple cakes decorated with fresh flowers are really on trend.
Naked wedding cakes, made from Victoria Sponge and filled with jam and butter icing, are really in, and can be an affordable alternative to a more traditional wedding cake.
An affordable way to decorate your cake is by getting a cute wedding cake topper – they make the best post-wedding keepsakes – and they look great on cakes of all types, including alternative wedding desserts like doughnut or brownie stacks.
Alternatively, opt for a small, single-tiered wedding cake for the cake-cutting ceremony and serve your guests a sheet cake hidden in the kitchen.
Browse Confetti’s professional and experienced wedding cake suppliers here.
Remaining wedding budget: £3,600
Wedding Flowers – £600
We caught up with the professionals to find out how you can make savings on your flowers, without heading to Tesco and getting your mum to arrange your bouquets.
Sarah from The Petal Shop agrees that the price of flowers can vary hugely, but if you do your research, you’ll be sure to find something you love that fits within your £15,000 wedding budget.
A great way to cut costs, Sarah explained, is by “Choosing a key floral piece or installation for your day, such as a floral hoop or arch that could be used as a backdrop for both your ceremony, wedding breakfast and celebrations afterwards.”
Another way you can ensure you get your dream flowers within your £15,000 wedding budget, Sarah suggests, is by “Using your table centrepieces for aisle pieces or using the main ceremony floral centrepiece as a top table centrepiece also,” explained Sarah.
This works best for couples who are planning to have their wedding ceremony and reception in one place. To make this run as smoothly as possible, Sarah recommends you make sure you have the right person, like a good floral designer, on hand to coordinate the room turn-around.
Remaining wedding budget: £3,000
Wedding Stationery – £400
Wedding stationery includes save the date cards, invitations, order of service cards, and thank you cards. Lots of couples also opt for table planners, place cards, table numbers and menus.
The amount of money you need to put aside for your wedding stationery is totally dependent on the number of guests you have, but on a £15,000 wedding budget, we’d recommend budgeting £400.
Whilst you can opt for gorgeous stationery from suppliers like Fox Honey, creative couples can try saving money in this department by making their own wedding stationery.
Remaining wedding budget: £2,600
Wedding Entertainment – £1,100
We advise you allow £1,100 of your £15,000 wedding budget for your entertainment. Wedding entertainment is expensive, but there are a few free and easy things that go down really well at every wedding.
Guests love rehearsed first dances – they’re personal, meaningful and totally adorable. Check out these amazing wedding first dance videos for inspiration. Make sure you create a wedding playlist too – you can get started with this list of the best love songs or these rock wedding songs.
With £1,100 left to spend, you still have the budget for a couple of great wedding entertainment ideas. For example, you might be able to get a DJ for £500 and a magician or comedian for a similar figure. Glitter bars and photo booths are also very on trend and realistic options for your £15,000 wedding budget. A visit to The National Wedding Show is a great way to research unique wedding entertainment options, for every budget size.
Remaining wedding budget: £1,500
Honeymoon – £1,500
£1,500 is easily enough money should you want to go abroad; a week away in a romantic European city or to other short-haul destinations is definitely on the cards.
Alternatively, you can have an extremely luxurious UK mini-moon if you put aside £1,500 of your £15,000 wedding budget.
If you’d rather spend more on your honeymoon, then think about asking your guests for cash as your wedding gift. The gift of honeymoon travel is becoming a more and more popular wedding trend but it can still be a little awkward to ask for money – check out the etiquette behind how to ask for the gift of cash.
Sticking to your budget can be tough, check out this wedding planning checklist to help you track your spending.