Hidden Costs of a Wedding!

Over the last few weeks we have been booking our venues and checking that the registrar is free etc.

Now, I must admit, I’ve never been one of those girls that has put a lot of thought into her wedding. I hadn’t really thought about what kind of wedding I would like until I meet James and realised he was the one for me and that I wanted to marry him. Obviously, you have those conversations, “would you like a church wedding etc” with friends, but as for all the little details, like what kind of dress, colours, where etc I can honestly say I hadn’t really given it much though until this last year.

So, I have kind of entered this wedding planning with my eyes shut! Just after we got engaged, I sat down and compiled what I thought was a reasonable wedding budget. It was my rough guess at what everything would cost. I must say I wasn’t far off, and have probably over estimated the cost of some things, just incase. However the problem I am faced with is what I like to refer to as, “The Hidden Wedding Costs”.

Now in my wedding budget I had included things like, the venues, the cars, dress, bridesmaid dresses, suits, food, rings, and of course, booze! All the obvious things.

What I hadn’t taken in to consideration, was things like registrar fees (well I had, but I was about £200 out!), corkage (I shall go into this in more detail), glass hire, table hire, chair cover hire and the list goes on. Now you maybe a savvy bride-to-be and budgeted for all these things, however, I happen to overlook these things when writing our budget.

So, this week reality as hit me and it just happen to be in the form of the contract for our ceremony venue! Not that it was their fault and I think the contract is very reasonable and I’m happy with it, but in it, it did cover things like corkage. Now I knew this was coming, but wasn’t quite prepared for at what cost! I think I’d had my head stuck in the clouds thinking it would only be a very small amount!

We had this romantic idea of driving over to France, doing a big booze run and saving ourselves a fortune. Now looking at the situation, once you add corkage per bottle it really doesn’t work out that much cheaper! I’ve found through my research over the weeks, that the average price you are going to get charge per bottle of wine corkage, is around the £5 mark. So say you spend £5 per bottle on your booze run, and then you’ve got to pay for petrol, van hire and tickets, all in all you will have spent at least £10 per bottle of wine. Most venues charge that to supply it to you without all the hassle of you going to get it. You really have to think about is it really going to be cheaper to supply it yourself, or is it an extra hassle you could do without????

I’ve put together a list of what I personally think are “hidden costs" I’m not by any means saying that everyone would have overlooked these costs and a lot of brides-to-be may not of. However, if your like me and only thought about the big things you may find this helpful!

Registrar fee’s: Be prepared to spend around £300. On top of that you have your “Giving notice” fee. This will be around another £30 each. You then have to pay for each wedding certificate individually which will probably be around £12 each.

A hint when booking venues and registrars! If your area is anything like ours, you need to get in there quick when it comes to booking the registrar. I would highly recommend booking the registrar before handing over any deposit for a venue. Our area has lots of registrars, but only two books, and its the book that is important! So if you have your heart set on a certain time of day book it quickly! I missed out on the time of day I wanted and I’ve booked over a year in advance!

Corkage. This is my massive bug bear! I don’t understand how venues can get away with charging so much per bottle, for booze you’ve brought yourself! But it is one of those cost, that unfortunately, you will have to budget for! As I said before, the average corkage cost in our area is £5 per bottle. £1/£2 more per bottle of champagne. Now even if you are going to serve Pimms as your welcome drink, (we’re serving our’s after the ceremony while we have our photos taken) you will still get charged a corkage fee per bottle and normally the same corkage fee that would apply to champagne. After a few calculations, serving Pimms seemed like the much more sensible option as even if we’d brought a cheap £2 bottle of Bucks Fizz, allowing 2 glasses per guest, our corkage charges would have been close to £400!!!!!

Which brings me to my next hidden cost. Glass Hire. Now a lot of these costs may not apply to you as the venue will supply them, but for us, because our ceremony venue is somebodys home, this will apply. There are lots of places, like Waitrose for example, that do glass hire for free, providing you cover the cost of breakages of course.

Table Hire. Now our reception venue is a village hall. They have tables but square ones. I’m happy to line these up in two rows and cover with table cloths. Hubby-to-be however, wants round tables which he says are more sociable, and he does have a point. To hire a round table that sits 8 you are looking at around £10 per table. When booking your venues check these sort of things. Ask them what tables they have, if they have table clothes, how many chairs they can supply. Is there somewhere you can put the tables when they are cleared away to make room for the dance floor. As I said, this may not concern you, it depends on what sort of venue you are hiring.

Chair covers. Some of you may not be bothered about chair covers, and to be honest, we can’t decide if we want them or not! I guess it depends on what type of chairs your venue has and if you think they need covering up or not! Look to pay around £1.50 per cover and then they add-on costs for fitting them and travel, depending on what company!

Cutlery and Plate hire. Another thing that may not concern you depending on your venue! I’m still looking into average hire costs for this.

Cleaning. Check with your venue if they charge you extra to clean away after you or if you have the option to do it yourself. If you can save money doing it yourself ask some of the bridal party, friends and family if they wouldn’t mind helping out.

Wedding Insurance. I didn’t even know such things existed! And it seems that a lot of venues require you to have before you can book. It’s a good idea and well worth while, but yet something else I hadn’t considered. Look to pay around £33 for a wedding with a budget between £5-£10,000.

Now these are just the costs that I have come across so far and although that don’t sound like much when you say “£5 here, £2 there”, you will be surprised how quickly that adds up into £100’s and by the time your done close to maybe a £1000 on things that you may possibly not of given much thought! I shall keep you posted on any other “hidden costs” I come across!

Big Luv


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Hey guys!

I’d love it if you could reblog this post to spread the word around a little.

I would love to start getting more of a following on my tumblr as I plan on using it a lot more now!


Post of my images, both work and personal
General day-to-day updates
Behind-the-scenes images from jobs
Images that inspire me



HI there! thank you for following me! I love the sound of your wedding! I would absolutely love to be part of it, if you haven't already booked a wedding photographer that is.. :) sdsphoto

Ahhh thank you! We already have one! :-( Sorry! But I shall spread the word about you! :-) xxx

Some Very Special Cupcakes!

I’m so excited about this post! These have got to be some of the most sexy, pretty, beautiful and damn right amazing Cupcakes I have come across!

Now, I’m hoping that my mission while planning our wedding, is to come across as many “little guys” and not so well-known suppliers as I possibly can and share them with you. I must say, I am so lucky to of come across Alli’s Cakes. I have to confess, I didn’t come across this supplier all by myself! I was recommended to join a Facebook group by an old friend from school (don’t you just love social networking!) and once I had, I was so impressed, that I  had to message the genius behind the cakes straight away and asked if she would mind if I shared them with you on my blog, and guess what! She agreed!

We started chatting and Alli started to explain how she got into cupcake making business in the first place:

I basically started this as my Husband came home and told me one of his friend was going to pay £6 per cupcake for his wedding!!!!! To be honest it really annoys me that anything with wedding attached to it automatically doubles in price, So after a few try’s and finding a recipe I liked (all natural and free range) I started making some up and sending them into work with my husband. “

Alli also explained that she has a stall in the summer that she runs at local events in the Hertfordshire area. Her birthday cakes (Giant Cupcakes) Start from £27 and her cupcakes range from £1.20-£1.50 depending on toppings.

I love being more bespoke, and want to be different from other cupcake bakers.”

As you all know, I am trying to do as many things as I can for our wedding myself. Including making the cake. However, I’ve fallen in love with Alli’s cupcakes and have decided that we just have to have some at the wedding! She has advised me that she’s going to design some red and black ones and try some Sailor Jerry style cupcakes too! I’m so excited and cant wait to see them! Maybe we could just go for one big giant Sailor Jerry cupcake, wedding cake! The possibilities are endless and needless to say, I’m sure whatever Alli comes up with, it will look, and taste amazing!

Big Luv


Contact Alli:

Mobile: 07772533086

Facebook: Alli’s Cakes Hoddesdon

Twitter: @Bespokecupcake

Loving everything at this shop! xxx

Retro Stationary from Bon Moment!

When I first started looking into getting married and all the wedding bits that come with it, I was fairly certain, after spending many, many hours on the internet, that traditional wasn’t for us. Now, I’m not by any means knocking those that do have traditional weddings, I’ve seen, and attended some very nice and well thought out ones, but that just doesn’t match with our personalities.

When you think about it, your guests get their first sense of what your wedding is going to be like from that very important invite that falls through their door, so its understandable that a lot of brides and grooms put a lot of effort into their stationary.

For us, we wanted to get our personalities through in our stationary. James is into music and the whole Rock n Roll thing what with being in a band and all! And me, I’m into anything that’s old, Vintage, Retro, Rockabilly and of course, tattoos. Especially the Sailor Jerry style tattoos. Based on this, I have hunted around on the internet for wedding stationary in that kind of style, and I’m happy to say, it’s not as difficult to find as you may first think. However, wanting to go down the “something different" path can work out being quite costly!

A few days ago, I happened to mention on Twitter that I was looking for the above style stationary to talk about on my blog and was recommended Bon Moment by the like-minded, business savvy, Ree Ree Rocket. So I went and had a look, and may I say, what a recommendation it was!

So, we have been in touch and the lovely Maureen over at Bon Moment has sent me over some samples to share with you and has taken the time to answer some questions too!

How long has the business been going?

Although we’ve been pondering this concept for some time, we actively started planning our overarching strategy for 2 years.  We officially opened our virtual doors in August of 2009.

What made you set it up in the first place?

We (Denise Stockman, and Maureen Jann) are  a fiesty duo - part ninja, part pirate.  We became cohorts through our keen crafting skills, and after doing a bunch of mega crafty projects together, we came to appreciate how complementary we were to each other.  Armed with a keen eye on our goal of world domination and creating alternative and cheeky designs, we’ve set off on a rampage to share our sensibilities with the alternative wedding scene.

When we started to think about weddings, hearts and flowers didn’t fit every wedding.  Pastels and petals seemed a bit too fussy for us and we don’t think we’re alone. That’s why we’ve decided to collaborate and create wedding invitation suites that befit the couple that dances to the beat of their own drum.

What inspires your designs?

We don’t believe that weddings should be icy, impersonal or somber affairs. Our wedding invitation designs are compelled by fun, vibrant colors and culturally significant themes.  We specialize in pop culture, ethnic culture, geek culture, rockabilly culture, or whatever we feel will help our couples buck the wedding industrial complex and make their wedding a truly personal event.

You can check out Bon Moment at:

Bon Moment
Wedding Stationery for the rest of us.
Follow us on Twitter:
Fan Us on Facebook:

Hope you love them as much as I do!

Big Luv


thanks for the follow at my wedding tumblr! ( i'm really loving your ideas ;) aesthetically

Ah thanks! xxx

Well today we went to have a look at the lovely Glemham Hall. All I can say is, we were completely blown away by it.

There’s a long driveway up to this very grand house which has a little mini grass roundabout outside the very large front door.

Donna Stockley, who is the events manager for the house was amazing and very easy to talk to. She advised us on everything we needed to know, and more!

It’s a lived in house, which makes it very warm and welcoming. There is vintage plates, furniture and all sorts of nic-nak’s scattered around.

There is a large bedroom that has a dressing room and bathroom which I can use to get ready before the wedding, which may I say, will make for some amazing photos! As you come out of the bedroom, there is a grand, wooden staircase which takes you down the the grand hall where the ceremony will take place.

Next to the Grand Hall is a kind of sitting room, which has amazing high ceilings with a big open fireplace and vintage furniture scattered around. This can be used after the ceremony for drinks.

The gardens are breath taking and I cant wait to see what it looks like when all the flowers are in bloom!

Its save to say, we both feel head over heels in love with it. Neither of us can think of anywhere else we would rather get married. It fits in so well with the theme too and its four minutes from where we’re having the reception. We have had a discussion and we feel there is no need to go and look at any other venues. This is the one!  So, its booked! (Providing a registar is free on the date we need that is!)

Now the photos I’m about to share are from Glemham Hall website. However, I have spoken with Donna and she is going to send me some photos to share with you soon.

Big Luv


I’m listed in Tumblweeds under weddings, vintage, diyweddings

I’m listed in Tumblweeds, a user-generated community directory that rates Tumblr bloggers by their number of followers. Find me listed in #weddings, #vintage, #diyweddings


I’m sort of in love with this piece from A Practical Wedding. I even love the comments.

“The people who own their happiness are usually the first to attract a serious relationship. Because who *wouldn’t* want to be with the girl who is happy all by herself?”—My photographer, Maddie (in comment section)

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