Budgeting for Event Design

Whenever we start having serious conversations with a prospective client, there is always one overarching question on their minds: how much will my event design elements cost

I wish I had an easy answer for each of them, but I don't. I don't have one because event design is an artistic process. It doesn't have a predetermined outcome. It doesn't follow a static formula. If done well, event design is a process that follows a couple's story and creates a full sensory experience that allows them to share that story with their guests. 

Jake & Heather Photography

Jake & Heather Photography

But I get it. Money does matter. Whether you have $30k to spend on your wedding, or $300k to spend on your wedding doesn't matter... it's vital to develop an itemized budget to guide the artistic process. Before I start developing any design concepts for a client, I **always** start by working from a comprehensive set of budget guidelines. 

So what elements need to be included in a budget? Well, that varies from event to event, but here's a helpful list of considerations: 

  • artwork (such as a monogram or logo, or artwork that can be consistently used in a variety of ways) 
  • print production (this may include save the dates, invitations, escort cards, place cards, menus, programs, table numbers, signage, cocktail napkins, welcome booklets, etc.) 
  • table linens 
  • linen napkins
  • floral elements
  • candles 
  • soft seating or lounge furniture 
  • tables
  • chairs
  • tabletop elements (china, chargers, flatware, glassware, etc.)
  • interior lighting
  • exterior lighting
  • staging
  • flooring
  • tent structure(s)

This list isn't exhaustive. Sometimes the elements don't fall squarely into one of those categories. But if you're starting from scratch and overwhelmed thinking about it, that's a good signal that you should hire an event designer. The items you can touch and feel may be at the forefront of your mind (think things that are tangible such as dishes and flowers), but its the sum of all these things working together that brings a wedding vision to life. It's the process that matters most.