Maximize Your Wedding Budget
Pinterest is beautiful, but most of what you see are vendors going over the top for styled shoots. These gorgeous HUGE bouquets and over the top cakes are usually not within the bounds of reality for most budgets. Instead, focus on what is most important to you two; whether that happens to be your stationery suite, florals or décor, and cast aside whatever does not work. Pinterest is perfect for inspiration, but be sure that is all it is.
Don't hire any vendors until you create a complete budget. We've seen brides hire an expensive caterer that they couldn't afford once they took into consideration all of the other wedding expenses. It's hard to enjoy your meal when you have to skimp on everything else.
Don't be afraid to negotiate.
Vendors have starting points for a reason—to cover their time and talent, their overhead, their staff, and so forth. Sometimes there's a bit of wiggle room, or sometimes you might inquire with someone out of your price point only to find that they are open to working on the costs. Regardless, it's OK to ask, but just know that many smaller companies or self-run businesses really can't swing a lower dollar amount without digging into their own pockets. If you or your fiancee are members of the military don't forget to ask about unadvertised discounts!
Please don't forget to always be respectful of vendors as well. If someone doesn't provide a service or product that fits within your budget, you don't have to hire them, but don't try to belittle them over what they charge either. You wouldn't walk into a retail store and demand to pay half the price of what you find on the shelves, so don't expect your vendors to give away their products, service, and time away for free either.
Be Honest—Be Flexible
Honesty is key. Being flexible with ideas, types of flowers, or products being used is just as important. The most important factor in making things work, however, is trusting your vendors. Quality companies do not survive in the highly competitive wedding industry by not producing beautiful memories.
And don't forget to also check out this awesome Wedding Budget Calculator from Wedding Wire. They will distribute monetary amounts based on your total wedding budget, then customize as needed. We find it quite helpful for couples to stay organized by adding their own categories and line items. You can even add a friendly automated reminder to make sure you pay your vendors on time.