Beware of these 5 Major Budget Busters!

Having a wedding isn’t as simple as saying “I do” — and it can be expensive.  The average cost of a wedding in 2020 was over $20,000.  Figures are still out for 2021, but probably very close to that amount as well.

Having a Wedding Budget is critical to having a wedding without stress.  And even with a budget, these budget busters could happen if you are not careful!

  1. Exclusive Venues

While recommended vendors are great, having exclusive vendors is much different. This will lock you into their prices, services, and policies. If you find a venue with exclusive agreements, make sure you have pricing from all those vendors before signing your venue contract.


  1. Venues without Amenities

The venue that is just a building — maybe it has bathrooms (let’s hope) and a “caterer kitchen” (meaning sink, water, and refrigeration). The price is right, so you think you’ve scored. Take a breath — then sprint to your nearest rental service. and get estimates on everything else. Don’t let rentals be a budget buster just because you thought the venue was a good deal.


  1. The Outdoors

The everlasting trend of Midwest weddings! You throw up a white tent and invite your closest 100 friends and family. It won’t be more than a few grand, right? Wrong! You also need bathrooms, power generators, outdoor lighting, parking, parking lighting, transportation to and from parking, rain plan items, catering tent and equipment, ice and ice trailer, fans or A/C or heat, bug spray, landscaping — and that’s just naming the essential items.


  1. Unvoiced Parent Opinions

This is why you should include contributors in budget talks. At that meeting, encourage everyone to voice their full, specific opinions. Real-life story: A bride’s dad said steak and decent wine were a must. We got it accounted and budgeted for. Fast-forward a few months to the catering tasting. Dad ended up wanting filets and table service for everyone. As you can imagine, the price of a filet times 350 guests was much different than standard wedding steak. The budget was busted, and guess who it fell back on? The bride. And she ended up having to cut things she really wanted because of it.


  1. An Untracked Budget

Track every single thing that you and anyone else spends. If you don’t, you will end up going crazy in one of two ways. The first is when you go crazy saying, “I’m spending like a crazy person!” and think you’ve overspent — because when else in your life are you dropping $1,000 deposit checks every other day? The second is when you go crazy saying, “Everything is going to be fine!” and start rattling off those $1,000 checks like nothing. Then you go to add everything up and realize you busted your budget. Then you have to cut things like gifts to your wedding party, alterations, and even hair and makeup


Selecting Your Wedding Date in 2022


The joy of being engaged is an excitement like no other, but it can also be overwhelming, thinking about how to plan the wedding of your dreams.

One of the first questions you will be asked is, “Have you set a date?” The date you choose is key to your entire event. If you are on a tight budget there are some dates you will want to avoid and if you choose a date around a Holiday, you might find your favorite vendor already booked. 

To save money, go for a Friday or Sunday wedding as many vendors will offer a reduced price on those days.  We also listed the 3-day weekends – these are great for guests who need to travel.  In our area, October is a very busy wedding month. If fact, it ranks up with June as one of the most popular wedding months.



Winter Weddings


January 1st – It’s a Saturday this year. (Some of you might want to opt for a 12/31/21 end of year wedding. If so, you can file your taxes as a “married” couple which might save your money!”) Many companies will be celebrating a long weekend, so this could be a great time to say those “vows” especially if you have out of town guests invited.

January 8th & 9th – (Saturday & Sunday) Okay – it’s not a unique wedding date, but it is an important date to mark on your calendar. It’s our HUGE, 2 DAY BRIDAL EXPO. This is your opportunity to plan your entire wedding in one weekend. Look for more information on our web site at Buy your tickets early so you don’t miss out on some of the great, FREE, seminars that occur at this event. And with your ticket you enter our $10,000 Wedding Giveaway!  How great would it be to win $10,000 in wedding services and products!

January 16th – Sunday – Our Second Bridal & Wedding EXPO of the Year in COLUMBIA, MISSOURI. If you missed last week’s event, you still have a chance to meet a lot of vendors, see a great fashion runway show, and get your $10,000 Wedding Giveaway entry.

January 17th – It’s a Monday. A 3-day weekend for many to celebrate Martin Luther King’s Day.

February 2nd – A Novelty Date (Tuesday) 2/22/22

February 11th – Lincoln’s Day is a State Holiday in Illinois. It’s a Friday. (Could be a 3 Day Weekend for some.)

February 13th – Super Bowl – If your guy is a sports fan – forget about this date!

February 14th – Valentine’s Day (Monday). Florists will be super busy, and you might pay more for those red roses.

February 21th – President’s Day (Monday)

February 27th – Sunday – Bride St. Louis’ Bridal Show at The Christy Banquet Center

March 1st – Marti Gras (Tuesday)

March 2nd – Ash Wednesday (Catholics usually don’t marry in Lent.)

March 13th – Sunday – Daylight savings time begins. (Longer Days)

March 17th – For You Irish Lads. (It’s a Thursday. Wear those kilts!)

March 20th – First Day of Spring – Vernal equinox. (Sunday)



April 3rd – Sunday – Ramadan begins

April 15nd – Good Friday

April 16th – Saturday – Passover

April 17th – Easter Sunday. Most couples avoid that date. Many churches will not perform weddings the Saturday before Easter – April 16rd

May 1st – It’s Bride St. Louis’ SPRING Bridal Show – Check our website for location and time.

May 8th – Mother’s Day. (Be sure to check with your Mom about that weekend.)

May 27-28-20-30 – Big Wedding Weekend – Memorial Day Weekend. If you are thinking about one of those dates, you need to get your contracts signed NOW. Photographers and favorite venues may already be booked. Vendors know that they can book these dates – so don’t look for price deals.

June 19th – Father’s Day.



July 2-3-4 – (Saturday, Sunday, Monday) This could be a busy time for many places so get your reservations in early. If you have folks who need to travel this could be an ideal time for them to come. It’s generally HOT so consider an indoor wedding.

August 21st – It’s Bride St. Louis’ SUMMER Bridal Show – Check our website for location and time.

(July and August can be very hot in St. Louis. It is best to plan for an “indoor” ceremony/venue.

September 3-4-5 – Labor Day Weekend. Book quickly if you want this date. Good again for those with out-of-town guests.

Sept. 12th – It’s our SUMMER Bridal Show in Columbia, MO. – Check our website for location and time.

September 23rd – Autumn Equinox (Friday)

September 26 – Monday – Rosh Hashana

September & October Weekends

Extremely popular in the St. Louis area.

Great time for those Wine Vineyard Weddings.

Ties with June as the most popular month. Book EARLY for weekends in these months.


Winter Bride - BrideSTLouis.comOctober, November, December

October 8-9-10 – Columbus Day Weekend. Another good long weekend.

October 31st – Monday – Halloween.

Nov. 6th –  Cake & Champagne Bridal Show (Check Details on our Website) – Daylight Savings Ends

November 11th – Veterans Day (Friday) – Many in the military choose this day.

November 24-25-26-27 – Thanksgiving Weekend. These dates book fast.

December 18 – Sunday – Hanukkah begins

December 21 – December Solstice (Wednesday)

December 23-24-25-26th – Christmas Holiday Weekends (Fri., Sat., Sun, Monday)

December 31st – January 1st, 2022 – End the year married! (Saturday & Sunday)


Also, be mindful of religious and cultural holidays (Passover, Rosh Hashanah, Hanukkah, Yom Kippur, Christmas, and Kwanzaa) when planning your wedding. There may be restrictions at your house of worship.

And if your family is deeply involved in sports – avoid weekends with the Super Bowl, Final Four March Madness, and perhaps some local college games as well.

And finally, for number “13” fans – you have (on weekends): February 13th (Sunday), March 13th (Sunday), May 13th (Friday), August 13th (Saturday), and November 13th (Sunday).





The 2021-2022 Bride St. Louis Calendar of Bridal Shows and Wedding Expos

Home Engagement Photos – A New Trend

HHome Engagements for 2021 - A New Trend as reported by BrideStLouis.comHOME ENGAGEMENT  

Here’s a trend that starting to build in our area, the Home Engagement Sessions.  Many couples choose to document their engagement in a safe, comfortable environment – their home!  Nothing is more personal than doing your engagement photos around your own comfortable environment.   And, since you are shooting at home, it’s easy to make a few clothes changes.  We recommend you wear outfits that you normally wear that describe your style and limit in to no more than three.  Additionally, this might be a perfect time to do a hair and or make up trial.

Trust your photographer to pick locations within your home with some good natural lighting and keep the mood casual and relaxed.

The bottom line – photos that feel so genuine, so you.


Fall Wedding Colors – What’s HOT for 2021

Fall 2021 Hot Wedding Colors

FALL WEDDINGS for 2021 – Hot Color Choices

As Fall approaches, it’s a good time to start planning your 2022 Fall Weddings.  Take a look at the colors of autumn and consider some of the perfect fall color palette options that will reflect the season for you.

Cream, Red Crimson, Golden Amber:

This is a classic color combination that versatile enough for a traditional or country affair.  Splashes of deep red crimson are gorgeous in bouquets and boutonnieres.


Eggplant, Sage, and Gold

The deep color of eggplant makes a stunning statement in fall.  Mix that with greens and metallic gold for a wonderful combination of color and excitement.


Terracotta, Beige and Chocolate Brown

Terracotta is HOT in weddings and is such a flattering color.  Pair these with other earthy tones to add a bit of depth.

Looking for Unique Ways to Personalize Your Wedding?

Looking for a unique way to personalize your wedding? You may want to consider a Monogram Wedding – one where you and your future husband’s names are intertwined to create your own custom monogram.  Starting with the invitations and carrying through to thank you cards, your monogram will be prominently displayed and will be truly unique to your celebration. There are a number of ways to decorate using your monogram theme – you can display the last initial only or a combination of the last initial, the bride’s first initial and the groom’s first initial. When creating your 3-letter custom monogram, it is tradition for the bride to be listed first, the last initial to be the large central letter, and the groom’s initial to follow.  Explore additional ways to flaunt your monogram: Add them to personalize napkins, have your groom add your monogram on the cuffs of his shirt, and so many more ways.
Monogram Wedding - Make Your Wedding Unique

Tips for Putting on Your Wedding Dress

Everything Weddings by


I love the fun and excitement of getting ready that occurs in the girl’s getting ready room.  There are lots of special moments that unfold that beg to be captured by your photographer.  Perhaps it is your sister’s special hug or gift, or your best friend’s “something old” that she has given you – all these moments are so very special.

Here is what I hate – bags, shoes, underwear, empty food containers, water bottles and a complete mess all around the room!  Your photographer will do their best to capture the events, but honestly, let’s have your girls pick up as they go – and a firm reminder from you, goes a long way.  The benefit is that your photos will not have the distractions of the messy environment, and those photos will emphasis the event and the emotion.  Remember you will be looking at these photos years from now!

Everything Weddings by

And now for putting on the dress.

Tip #1:  Always go potty BEFORE you put on your dress.

Tip #2:  Be sure your photographer is there to capture the moment.  Don’t put on the dress before he/she arrives.

Tip #3:  Putting on your wedding dress can be an incredibly beautiful, fun and captivating moment.  Most photographers recommend that you pick one person to assist you, sometimes your mother or your maid of honor.  Having less people will make the moment more relaxed, let you enjoy it, and allow your photographer to capture more of you and your dress, rather than a sea of people.

Tip #4:  To keep your hair and makeup fresh, if you are putting the dress on over your head, raise your arms up and out to protect your hair and makeup.

Tip #5:  Put on your own jewelry.  A sea of people – adjusting your dress, adding your bracelet, one adding a necklace – just way to much going on at one time.  I see people looking like they are dressing a Barbie Doll, and the bride just trying to accommodate everyone!  It’s crazy.   Put on most of your own jewelry, but if you have one piece that’s important to you (or hard to get on) have ONE person help you with this.  Shoes do require help – who can see their feet in those big fluffy or tight dresses.

And one last, little thing.  Why do all girls hold onto their boobs?  Really?  Once the dress is on, let go!    Do you want all your photos to show you holding up your boobs?