Wedding Budget Breakdown: How to Budget Your Ten Thousand Dollar Wedding

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I recently got married in January of 2022, and I know the excitement of being engaged and wedding planning (if you can’t tell from all the wedding planning posts). However, I also know the feeling of trying to figure out the dreaded wedding budget. We all wish we had an unlimited wedding budget when planning our big day, but unfortunately that isn’t the case.

However, you don’t have to break the bank to still have a wedding you will absolutely love and treasure. My husband and I had a very small and low-key wedding and ended up spending about $6,500. You can read this post to see some great tips and tricks on how I saved money on my wedding.

In this post I am going to help you map out your wedding budget, specifically a budget for a $10,000 wedding.

This post may contain affiliate links that I receive a commission from if you purchase and item through the link. This is at no expense to you. I only promote products and services that I have personally tried and truly enjoy. You can see my full disclosure here.

Where Should I Create My Wedding Budget?

First things first, you need to figure out where you are going to create your wedding budget. If you are a girl who loves to have everything written down on paper then go for it! I actually had a physically written wedding budget (because I am one of those girls), and then I also used The Knot app to keep track of my budget as well. You could also use a excel spreadsheet or a template like the one here.

Wedding Budget Planner
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What Are My Wedding Budget Categories?

Before we start getting to the nitty gritty of the money, we have to figure out our wedding budget categories. Below is a list of all the essentials you will need to plan for.

  1. Venue(s) Location
  2. Catering
  3. Rehearsal Dinner
  4. Decorations
  5. Hair and Makeup
  6. Wedding Attire for Bride and Groom
  7. Photographer
  8. Flowers
  9. Cake
  10. Stationary
  11. Gifts

Venue Locations

This is probably going to be one of the biggest expenses in your wedding budget, and the cost may vary a little depending on if you are having a ceremony and reception in the same location, or if you are going to need two venue areas. I would budget around $3000 for your venue space, and if you are doing separate reception and ceremony venues I would designate $1000 to your ceremony space and $2000 to the reception area.


The next biggest expense you will encounter in your wedding budget is the catering. You’ve got to feed the people! You can read some tips on how to cut down your food cost here. However, I would budget $3000 for catering, especially if you’re going to have close to 100 guests or more.

Rehearsal Dinner

Rehearsal dinner is a time for the wedding party to celebrate, reminisce, and prepare for the big day! Although exact cost will depend on the size of your wedding party, I would budget about $800 for your rehearsal dinner.

Wedding Decorations

In this post I talk about how I saved money in my wedding budget by doing some DIY wedding decor. I highly recommend this because it was really easy and turned out great. All in all I spent about $300 on my wedding decor but for this budget I allowed $500.

Hair and Makeup

The next item in your wedding budget is hair and makeup. Now, this category can vary quite a bit. Personally, I really wanted my hair done professionally by my hair stylist, who I loved. However, I didn’t want my makeup done professionally- I just wanted to do it myself, and so did my bridesmaids! Our cost was $325 without tip.

However, I budgeted $500 in this budget because cost can vary a lot from hair stylist to hair stylist, and of course it will cost more if you choose to get makeup done as well. Another thing that will determine the cost for you is if you offer to pay for your bridesmaids, or ask them to pay for their own hair and makeup. These are all things to consider before settling on an amount for hair and makeup in your wedding budget.

Wedding Budget Item 6: Wedding Attire

Let’s breakdown the wedding attire into even smaller categories.

  • Wedding Dress: $200
  • Suit: $150
  • Brides Shoes: $50
  • Grooms Shoes: $50
  • Grooms Tie and Pocket Square: $50

Total Cost: $500


You are going to want your special day documented, so a wedding photographer is an important part of the wedding budget. Make sure to budget at least $750 for a wedding photographer.

Wedding Flowers

If you want real flowers at your wedding it is going to cost more than if you opt for silk flowers. However if you are okay with having silk flowers then $400 should be plenty to get your beautiful bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages, and even decorative flowers! I recommend Lings Moment for your silk flowers!


I might have an unpopular opinion about cakes at weddings, but I don’t usually enjoy them. We opted to have a very small cake for the cake cutting, and then we served small personal desserts that were a huge hit. I would allow $200 for your cake in the wedding budget if you are going to have a cake to serve all of your guests.

Wedding Budget Item 10- Stationary

If you read my post about money saving wedding tips you know that my husband and I sent out our invitations digitally. It was completely free this way, and I still think our invitations were very elegant and beautiful. If you’d like a post about how I did this and some examples, let me know in the comments.

If you do choose to send out physical invitations you should dedicate $100 in the wedding budget. You can find really beautiful and affordable invitations on The Knot here. You can also use the code PAPER15 to get 15% off your purchase!


The full amount you should allow in your wedding budget for gifts does depend on the size of your bridal party, but I think a good rule of thumb is to budget about $20 per gift.

Final Wedding Budget Review

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Other Optional Items to Consider In Your Wedding Budget

The wedding budget items that I covered in this post are not the only expenses you may come across, which is why I left a $250 miscellaneous category. Some other things you may want to include in your budget are the cost of the wedding bands, travel costs, a videographer if you choose to have one, a DJ if it is your plan to have your wedding professionally DJ’d.

Before you plan your wedding budget write out all the possible expenses you can think of for your personal wedding, so that you aren’t left with unexpected cost that you didn’t properly budget money for!

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  1. Pastor Natalie (ExamineThisMoment)

    This is such a wonderful post. You are so right you do not have to break the bank to enjoy your wedding day. My husband and I definitely were frugal with ours and everyone enjoyed it. ☺️

    Pastor Natalie (ExamineThisMoment)

    1. bailey_mcgraw123

      Exactly! It can be affordable and still amazing. Thanks so much for reading 😊

  2. Florencia

    I loved this useful guide for planning the costs of thr wedding! We got married right at the start of the pandemic, I will never forget it! We did the best we could!
    Xo Florencia

    1. bailey_mcgraw123

      So glad you enjoyed the post!

  3. Kelly

    This is very helpful for anyone planning a wedding!

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  6. Claire

    This is great information and definitely eye opening for me. Congratulations on getting married too!

  7. Jean

    I want to use this in the future πŸ™‚ It will really help me

    1. bailey_mcgraw123

      Thank you, I am glad you found it helpful!

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