Hi ladies! In my previous post, I gave you “6 Ways to Have a Debt Free Wedding.” But today, I want to dig a little deeper into this issue of expectations.

We all have dreams and wishes, especially when it comes to big ticket items where we plan to spend a substantial amount of money. We see all the things being posted on Instagram and we say to ourselves, “I have to have that.” This is especially true when it comes to weddings.

A wedding brings on so much emotion and because so many brides, and sometimes grooms, have these ideas of their “dream wedding,” it can be easy to forget that sometimes, those dreams are just that, DREAMS.

You may have to adjust your expectations because ALL the pretty things may not be an option. This doesn’t mean that your wedding can’t be beautiful or special; it just means that you may have to tweak what you originally thought your dream wedding would look like. So, let’s dig in.

Wedding Expectations


One of the biggest problems most of us struggle with is this rabbit hole of comparison. We look at what everyone else has or what they’re doing, and think we should be doing that too. This is a dangerous game to play.

It is especially dangerous during your wedding planning journey. Your wedding should be an expression of the love between you and your fiancé. Your love will not look like anyone else’s, so why should your wedding? It’s unnecessary and unhealthy to compare this special time in your life to that of someone else’s, so spend a little time really thinking about what will make your day special and let that be your guide.


After you have nailed down your budget (see my post on Creating a Budget), shopping for your wedding vendors and attire usually comes next. And this is where expectations can really be all over the place, so let’s break this down to clarify some things.

1.  First off, before you have your eyes set on a particular vendor or service, you have to know how much money you actually have to spend. Then you need to EDUCATE yourself on how much those services really cost.

  • For example, you have decided that you want a professional makeup artist to come to your bridal suite on your wedding day to do your, your 6 bridesmaids, and your mom’s makeup. You didn’t do any investigating beforehand and you budget $100 for this service. This is an unrealistic expectation.

You can’t just assign an arbitrary dollar amount to a category and add it to your budget before researching how much things actually cost. This is not only unrealistic, but it is a sure-fire way to blow your budget. It’s an absolute MUST to make sure your budget makes sense before you start shopping.

2.  Now, when shopping for attire, you have a little more flexibility on how to set your dollar amounts. But, once again, you must be realistic. Your spending should be a reasonable ratio of your overall budget.

  • For example, on average, if your overall wedding budget is $30,000, then your wedding attire should be about $2400 - $3000 (8 – 10% of your total budget). Now, you have every right to go above this amount, but remember if you do, another category will need to be decreased to keep your budget balanced. So, once you have your attire budget set, don’t go shopping for gowns and jewelry that are twice the amount you have allocated.
  • Keep your shopping goals realistic and under control. Don’t set yourself up for failure by shopping and falling in love with STUFF that’s outside of your price range.




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As far as expectations go, this topic can go hand in hand with Comparison. Sometimes we get so hung up on what the pretty things are, that we forget to really consider how important they actually are to us.

We tend to think that the “perfect wedding” should have x, y, and z. This is an expectation that could possibly derail us. So, instead of feeling like you need “ALL THE THINGS” to have the perfect wedding, adjust that mindset and focus on what really matters to you and incorporate those things to produce YOUR version of a perfect wedding.


By this, I mean that your version of realistic will not look like anyone else’s. Everyone has some form of limitation, no matter the wedding price point; you just have to be mature and acknowledge yours. So, when making your wedding decisions, remember to limit the comparisons, educate yourself and shop wisely, and focus on what matters TO YOU. By doing these few things, your expectations will be in check and your special day will be all the more special.