$25,000 Wedding Budget: A Breakdown

A wedding planner's job is not just decorating the reception and fluffing a bride's dress before she walks down the aisle (although we do love that part too!), but we regularly are of best service to clients who are on a tighter budget. Kai Squared can help you create a detailed wedding budget as well as recommend vendors and venues that would best fit into your budget. Check out this post from Brides.com that breaks down (in details) where money should be budgeted for a $25,000*** wedding budget:

It would be amazing if the first step in planning a wedding was actually cake-tasting or searching for your dream gown, but before the real fun can begin, step one is determining exactly what you have to spend on the big day. But even nailing down that number is only half the battle β€” you also have to figure out what to spend where. The costs go beyond the obvious items like flowers and food, and you don't want to head off to your honeymoon knowing you're over budget because you forgot about the transportation bill! To help demystify the details, we broke down a $25,000 budget below. If you have less (or more) to spend, visit ourwedding budget tracker to calculate your own custom wedding budget and track payments.

DRESS & STYLE: $3,250

Lucky you! There are tons of gorgeous wedding dresses for less than the $1,500 you should budget for your gown β€” but don't forget that this figure also needs to take alterations into account. As for the other bridal style accoutrement, budget around $250 for your headpiece and veil, another $250 for shoes, accessories, and jewelry, and around $500 for hair and makeup β€” including the cost of trials and tips. Your hubby-to-be? He gets about $250 to cover the cost of his tux. And, finally, set aside $500 for both of your wedding rings.


Between inviting your guests to the big day and thanking them for sharing it with you, budget $750 for yourwedding paper suite. That doesn't include your escort cards and ceremony programs, for which you can budget $125 each.


Clearly, this is where you'll spend a bulk of your wedding budget! For the reception, set aside $250 for the ceremony site and another $250 to cover the cost of the officiant. Plan on spending no more than $375 for ceremony music whether you want to have your DJ set up early or hire a string quartet to play you down the aisle.

As for your reception, the venue, any rentals, service, food, beverage, and bartenders should account for about $10,500 of your budget. Your wedding cake should come in around $500 and you have $1,875 to keep guests dancing all night long to a band or DJ.


It's easy to go a little crazy on your wedding flowers, but budgeting about $188 on your bridal bouquet, $250 on your bridesmaids' bouquets (divided by the number of girls in your entourage), $75 total for boutonnieres, and $25 for flower girl petals will get you off to a great start! Your bigger ticket items β€” ceremony decor like an aisle runner or chuppah and reception decor and centerpieces β€” shouldn't set you back more than $1,713.

PHOTO & VIDEO: $3,000

Definitely don't skimp on photography or videography. The day will blow by but you'll cherish the memories forever β€” it's clichΓ© but entirely accurate!

FAVORS & GIFTS: $1,000

With a $25,000 budget, plan to spend $250 total on favors for your guests, $500 on gifts for your bridal party, and the remaining $250 on gifts for both sets of parents if they contributed to your wedding day.

***NOTE: The average CA wedding budget is around $27,000 while the average Sonoma County wedding is tallying up at closer to $34,000 with an average of 140 guests. This budget breakdown also doesn't include recommended allocations for some important details such as a wedding planner (8-10% of your budget), tips and gratuity (10-15% depending on the vendor), transportation (5-8% of your budget) and an emergency fund for last minute or unexpected expenses and details (like insurance and postage).

For help creating a specific and realistic wedding budget, contact Kai Squared Events to schedule a consultation.