Wedding Tip Of The Week From A Huntington Beach Wedding And Portrait Photographer In Orange County

Good morning to everyone in Orange County and across the US from Esquire Photography HQ in Huntington Beach, California!  I have a great Wedding Tip Of The Week to share with you from my great friends at  This wedding tip is about helping you keep money in your pocket while planning your wedding day.

So I’m guessing by now I’ve got your attention.  I know when people were telling me that when I was planning mine, my ears perked up real quick as it seemed like every time we turned around the budget was no longer & we were just getting deeper and deeper in debt planning our wedding day.

So let’s say you’re an Orange County bride and you’re finding yourself bogged down with your wedding budget & it’s really starting to take it’s toll on you and your health & beauty.  Having planned my own wedding and been to my share of weddings in Orange County, Los Angeles, and around the country, I think that this article is really creative and will help you relieve yourself of some of the stress or at least help you deal with the wedding planning.

But before I present you with this week’s wedding tip and you’re thinking…  Hey – I’d really like to get to know this Orange County Wedding Photographer in Huntington Beach, California that wants to enjoy life to the fullest and share a toast with his couples celebrating a phenomenal day, feel free to get in touch with me anytime.

I’m available just about 24/7 via Twitter, Facebook, the form on my contact page, or the old fashioned phone as well at 888.ESQ.PHTO (888.377.7486) or 562.225.5915.

And without further ado, here is the article from & have a super Baby Friday – cheers!

PS… Stay tuned!  I’ll be dropping the TWELVE HOUR Engagement Shoot I did with Shelby and Matt any minute between today & tomorrow.  I am so eager to share it with you!

How to Stick to Your Wedding Budget

Oops – they did it again. Nearly half of all couples report spending more on the wedding than originally planned. These budgeting tips will help you stay on track.

Step 1: Get a Budgeting System

Establish a reliable method to keep track of all expenditures. Try to keep your wedding fund separate from your personal accounts, so you can easily determine what’s being spent on the wedding.

Step 2: Prepare to Go Over

Set aside five percent of your budget for a just-in-case fund.  If you absolutely cannot exceed $20,000, aim to spend $19,000.  When last minute costs come up (and they will), your reserve funds will save you from debt.

Some common costs you may not have considered when setting your initial budget:

  • Tips for your vendors – 15-25% is customary.
  • Trial runs – make-up and hairstyling – about $20-$100 each
  • Overtime fees if your reception goes longer than expected – anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars
  • Last minute dress cleanings or tux pressings – anywhere from $50-$100 each
  • Postage for invitations and stamps for RSVPs – cost depends on how heavy your mailings are and how many you send
  • Marriage license fees – approximately $15-$90; depending on state

Step 3: Cut Back

Serve three courses instead of five (save on catering). Have four bridesmaids instead of 10 (save on bouquets and gifts). Invite 150 guests instead of 200 (save on almost everything).

Step 4: Beware the Up-sell

With every detail planned, someone is going to try to up-sell you.  Don’t crack under pressure!  The fabulous designer dress, the top shelf bar, the succulent lobster tail – they all seem like good ideas at the time, but be wary that all of these upgrades add up.  The key is to prioritize beforehand.  If you want to serve an elaborate five-course meal with all the bells and whistles, you may have to sacrifice your dream of a 10-piece ensemble.

Step 5: Tighten the Purse Strings

Here’s a goal – try to save 20% of your income for your wedding expenses.  It may sound impossible, but there are easy ways to cut corners in your personal life to make saving for your wedding a tad easier.  Simple lifestyle changes like brown bagging your lunch to work, cooking meals at home, brewing your own coffee, renting a DVD instead of pricey trips to the theatre, and inviting your friends over instead of expensive evenings at the club all add up to substantial savings.  The best part?  You can take these thrifty habits into your marriage – and make it easier to save for other big ticket items like a new home, vacations or a college fund.

Last Thought From Little Ole Me

I also thought I would add to their article is that as a photographer and having walked he path of a wedding, it’s better to fore-go the nicer linens, or the fancier china or maybe even that small handful of really distant relatives or work colleagues and have a quality photographer.  24 hour after the big day, everything else in the wedding is a fading memory, whereas the photos aren’t.  The wedding dress that you wore will live on forever in your photos.  The photo of the delicious cake you shared together at your reception will make your mouth water and the photos of your flowers will bring back the memory of how amazing they smelled.

So before you think about hiring a friend of the family or someone that you found on Craigslist or a student that wants to build their portfolio.  Remember that the wedding photos can’t be redone.  I’ve heard from time and time again from guests at weddings that they wish they found me because my client’s Engagement Photos looked as if they were torn out of a magazine and the fun that they had with me was dichotomous of their experience with the friend that they hired for their wedding.

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