Musings of a Bride · The Husband & Wife · The Wedding

How I Managed The Wedding Budget

Disclaimer: I know this post is somehow viral now and i really hope you have a good read. 
However, do take note my wedding took place in 2011 and most of the price indicated below is in 2011 ok! Other than that, i hope you have a great takeaway from this entry. 🙂 

Sometimes, i get asked on how much i spend for my wedding. Especially by friends yang dah pasang niat (atau pun dah gatal) nak naik pelamin. lol

and most of the time, i can’t give them an exact amount but i know it was less than $12,000 for our combined wedding.

This is achievable but i believe with much discipline, good contacts and lotsa luck. lol

This may or may not work for some people but then again, i just wanna share on how u can cut cost on your wedding.

Do bear in mind, my wedding was a combined wedding for 800 pax and i started planning for it in less than 9 months cos i got my house in January and have to get married latest by October.

Catering – $4,000:
I got really lucky with this cos my father and his siblings are good cooks!

I gave my dad $4,000 for all the barang2 dapur. This includes all the poultry, beras, sayur, drinks, ice and everything you need lah to feed 800 pax. hahaha.

I’m so glad my relatives were willing to help me and i am so so glad i asked because to be honest, i love the food that was served on my wedding day. My friends and my hubby relatives loved it too and recently, after 8 months of marriage, a friend sms-ed me to ask if my dad is still doing Catering. lol

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when my hubby relatives meet me, they will talk about the food they had at my wedding. So i’m really really thankful to my parents and relatives for this. Because people remember my wedding for the food. Yes, there were hiccups, but oh who cares? It’s my wedding and if it is imperfect with hiccups and all, so be it.

Catering Logistics + Venue: $1400.00
I used Hazimah Catering services but i wouldn’t recommend them cos they are pretty irresponsible. They don’t keep to their timing and the person in charge bebual kelam kabut. Tak tau apa tah yang dia kejarkan tah. Tak tau nak bebual slow2 ke?

My deco people were there before my kerusi meja was and malam nikah, there were a few missing items for the orang dapur  and the husband got into a shouting match with the Bangla  who was picking up the phone and couldn’t understand what we wanted because the pakcik refuse to pick up our call.

They were the most annoying vendor we had for the wedding.

However, if you or relatives intend to masak sendiri, u can always look out for Catering Logistics contacts at Berita Harian. Just make sure u have all the details u need like no of tables and chairs and also berapa banyak tong gas u need etc. If u need more details, can ask me ok?

For the venue, cheap cheap cos we only did ours at the Multi-Purpose Hall at our new place. It should cost less than $500 for 3 days usage + electricity & water.

Outfits (head to toe) – $1600.00
I took Lyanaz Bridal package which consists of 3 sets of baju, makeup, hairdo, hand bouquets, manicure & henna.

This was a fuss-free booking. I knew who and what i wanted, pay deposit, meet them again 2mths before wedding, choose baju, fitting and bam! i’m married. lol

According to my Excelsheet, this is also inclusive of our wedding shoes and my Spanx corset.

Tips: If you are on a budget, consider choosing new bridal companies or a freelance one.
If you are lucky u can can get 3 pairs of baju for about $1200.00. Kena pandai cari je k. And the things about wedding vendors, the earlier u do your bookings, the cheaper it gets. So it’s always good to research early and book early.

Deco & Dais – $1580.00
Uncle Jais, my saviour and i chose the date 15 & 16 October because he was available on that date. hahaha
For that price, i got all the works, fresh flowers, chair covers etc.

Printing of Pictures, Slot-in Album & Photobook – $300.00

This is an estimated amount. It is definitely lesser than $300.00
I printed my photos at Miao Laan Colour Centre to get the same effect as what other photographers can give me and got my slot-in albums there.
Photobook, i waited for discounts from Photobook Singapore to make it even much more worth the $.

TIPS: If you are on a tight budget for a photographer, you can try sourcing for freelancers at Clubsnap. It might be a tad risky so please do a background search on them at least and don’t put too much deposit with the. Maybe just a minimal token to lock your dates in. Always ask for receipts. Since they are freelancer, get their copy of NRIC if you can and draft out a simple agreement. If not, Facebook have got tons of budding photographers. You can just go to a well-known photographer’s FB page and see the comments he receives. 70% of the comments will come from budding photographers who wish to learn more by the said photographer. 🙂

Wedding Cupcakes + Cake Stand  – $130.00
I order loose cupcakes from My Little Cuppies and made my own Cupcake stand and the total amount came up to $130.00

I ordered 30 regular size cupcakes and 50pcs mine ones and came up to $94.00
My Cupcake stand, using those styrofoams used for Dummy cakes were bought at Phoon Huat and the rest of ding-ding-don-dong like ribbons and kain at Arab Street and i bought nice scrapbook paper from Plaza Singapura and all this came up to about $40.00. I saved more than $200 this way cos a small cupcake tier would have cost me at least $350.00 and i specifically wanted cupcakes because it would be easy for my guest to take a cake and finish it all up istead of having to wait for orang rumah to cut into pieces.

Videography – Free
This was done by a close friend of ours and we loved it a lot cos it was intimate and very personal. I cried and laughed so hard while watching it.

Entertainment – $200.00
We leave this to my in-laws and because i didn’t want Jentayu to susah payah carry our equipments (speakers etc) cos they have other things to do, like take outdoor shoots with us. hahaha.
so my in-laws got one of her contacts to set up the Live Band and sound system for us. I swear the $200 is just syarat je because they would have gladly done this FOC for us.

Kompang – $230.00
Again, my mom-in-law nya contacts. Cos my in-laws are very active with Yuhua CC, we got this at a cheaper price and the entourage was so huge, i kept thinking how the hell they are gonna divide $230.00 among themselves during the entire procession. hahahahah

TIPS: If you are not very particular about your kompang group, asalkan ada bunyi kompang, you can try and ask around CC. These group generally charge cheaper.

Hantaran, Sireh Dara, Bunga Pahar, Bunga Rampai & Favors: $2000.00
We did not exchange much valuable hantaran gifts cos we don’t see a naeed for it. we only get basic ones like shoes which we then re-used as our reception shoes and also lotsa food gifts cos those can be shared among our loved ones. In fact we only gave an allowance of $500 each to get stuff like toiletries etc. All the bags etc can wait!

Bunga rampai & Sireh Dara, i did my own, together with the help of my friends and family. I saved a lot cos i bought the flowers from Far East Flora. I estimate the Sireh Dara & The Bunga Rampai to be about $50.00 aje together with the DIY Bunga Rampai Holder i did.

As for my Bunga Pahar, i also DIY-ed my own Pompom bunga pahar which cost me less than $40.00 altogether cos Tissue papers are really cheap!

This $2000 is inclusive of the flowers i bought at Far East Flora and the sponge etc.  All the above DIY Projects can be found here.

Kendarat Services – $230.00
I used Kendarat Nurbani for this. Cheap and fuss-free

Bridal car – Free of charge
Hosni gave us a Nissan Teana to be used for our wedding. Because he works for Nissan, i got it free and the they sponsored me the Bridal Car Decorations. I just need to sit in the car and look pretty. haha

Bridal Room – $50.00
I bought new furnitures but i think that is not supposed to be calculated in our wedding expenses. More like our house expenses. My bedsheet was rented from my close friend and i used leftover flowers to decorate the room and paid $50.00 for the posters.

Guestbook: $20.00
I printed my guestbook poster, bought markers and borrowed the easel stand from work.

Wedding Invites: $260.00
I think most of you would have known by now, i’m that lady behind The Card Maison so naturally, i do all my stationeries myself, at a cheap price. I estimated my cards to be of the above price. There were 2 pieces of Square Postcards, a petal-fold envelope and paper stickers. Most of my cards were passed by hand. I think i spent less than $10.00 on stamps.

Main Poster + Directional Posters: $30.00
Again, these were done myself, hence i got it cheap cheap.

Tok Kadi – $150.00
Roghly, about $150.00 for the registration and the duit penat.

So, if you calculate right from the top to the bottom, i only spend $10,980 for our combined wedding.

This is of course excluding my Mahr (Ring) which i feel is too personal to disclose.

There you have it, in bold. $10,980.
My less than $12,000 wedding, made possible because of

  • my parents & relative willingness to help with the catering. An external caterer would have busted my budget big time.
  • my contacts (jentayu, my friend who works with n*ssan, my friend who does the video for us, my in-laws kompang contacts)
  • Tons of research. I cannot emphasise on just how much research u need to do if you want to save $.
  • my own creativity and resourcefulness. yes, i played cheat on the invites cos it’s my own business. but i made a lot of effort with the other DIY projects because i did not want to compromise the little details with the budget i had.

With that being said, i think Catering was the main factor on why i was able to save lotsa $$ for our wedding. I know many would still prefer to have a Catering company for their wedding, pasal ringkas and you can just leave all the labour work to others.

If that is the case, then maybe what you could do is, spend the $ on Catering and scrimp on the others.

Remember, your wedding is a 2 day event. Yes it is once in a lifetime thing but you have so many years in front of you. Don’t get into debt because of your wedding.

Exercise control and discipline and you’ll be able to make it.
I didn’t have much savings to start off with and and i had 9 months to get things together.

Not forgetting that i had a house before my wedding. I spent close to $8000.00 cash to do fit the house with the floorings and furniture, because i refused to take a renovation loan and get tied down to a loan. Yes, it is hard, but you’ll get by eventually. Your life does not revolve around the wedding alone. You have other things to look forward to after the wedding.

I could have a $20,000 wedding if i want to.
But i chose a $12,000 wedding with a furnished house with no loans.
Set your priorities right.

Even now, when i think of the $12,000 we spent for the wedding, i cringe inside.
But when i thought how happy my parents and in-laws were, that $12,00 was so worth it.

But, if you feel you can afford a lavish wedding and you wanted it since you were 13 years old, go ahead!

No one is stopping you! If a lavish wedding would make u happy, why not?
Just as long you don’t take up loans and you know after the wedding, you still have some savings to fall back on.

Happy wedding planning!

18 thoughts on “How I Managed The Wedding Budget

  1. Wow! Thanks for the update your family is really very supportive! Feels so happy reading your page. May I ask if u have jss deco contact? I have been trying to contact them on fb but to no avail will truly appreciate thanks! Btw! Wishing u a very happy marriage 🙂

  2. first time aku pakai Like button on wordpress. lol. you’re so lucky. i wish i had points #1 & #2. would cut my budget into half. but 3mths to go, vendors dah choose pun. lol. tinggal hantar badan je.

    1. hahahah 3 more months!!!
      exciting kan! i seriously cant wait to see your wedding pictures. Don has got awesome photographer friends, im sure it’ll turn out really nice and i’m waiting for what you gonna do with your Hantaran dulang and yoru dessert table. lol

  3. Hi Dyan,

    I agree to your sentiments. your blog has inspired me to DIY some of my wedding stuff to make it more cost saving. Insyallah the wedding would be kept to the stipulated budget that was agreed by my fiance and myself. Weddings has gotten so much expensive now and yes, i agree on not being in debt due to a one/two days events. Thanks for being my wedding muse 😀

    p.s. do you have any contacts for a cheap good kompang as the cheapest i had enquired is $500 and i think its still too expensive..

    1. WEdding muse! lol
      you’re too nice!

      I agree! Weddings are so expensive now that some people almost see it as a burden! Which is pretty depressing actually.

      I will try and ask my MIL for my Kompang nya contact person k! Nanti i update you. 🙂

  4. Omg… Ok.. 1st thing first.. This is the 1st Blog I have Ever read in my entire life.. Hehehhe… I actually dont really believe in or to say.. Bothered by blogs.. Blah blah… But.. Just came across by chance your blog is super informative n i actually feel involved in your Wedding n life.. Its like.. Fun. Hahhahah… Ok ok.. Dont want to bore u.. Thumbs up…… All the best to u my dear… Xoxo…
    Huda Boru Pasarebu

  5. Hi, just want to ask you get the key of your house before you register your solemnization date or after? If before did you appeal? How did you go about with HDB upon getting the letter to collect keys?

    Thanks so much!

    1. Hello Zanah,

      We actually got a flat through the Sales of Balance Flat. We selected the house in January, got the keys in May.

      Upon selecting your flat, u can tell them that u are getting married later and they will give you the email address of the officer in charge.

      So once HDB sends us the letter for key collection, all we did was email the HDB Officer to inform them that we are unable to produce our marriage cert upon key collection and we submitted the invoices of our Bridal etc to support our appeal. Alhamdulilah, we were given 6 months extension to submit our Marriage Certificate through email.

      Honestly, don’t worry about it. Cos i had friends who had theirs extended for a year! Lol

      Just give them the supporting documents eg Catering Invoice etc.. Those heavyweight items nya invoice so that they know you are indeed getting married!

  6. hi there, i just came across your blogpost. i realised that we went thru the same thing. my house reno was around $8k, i only got 9 months to prepare. the only difference is that my expenses were a little more than yours and i wasnt as creative and you and I DID NOT RESEARCH ALOT LIKE WHAT YOU ADVICED. haha. wished i had come across your blog after i got engaged last year.
    anyway, it was an enjoyable read as i am proud that there are people who still thinks about the future rather then go into debts for their wedding.

    wishing you all the best for your family! 🙂

    1. Hello Nurul!

      Such a coincidence!! I think my wedding expenses was quite low due to the catering but other than that, a lot of research and DIY would be able to help keep wedding expenses down.

      i’m glad i found another person who thinks about life after marriage too. I wish u the best for your family too dear!

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