April 21, 2014
Here’s a topic I’ve been wanting to cover for a while now! Not only can I write about this from a vendor/photographer stand point, but also as a past bride that was really really hurt, upset, and disappointed in my choices of wedding vendors. TRUST ME when I say, cheaper is NOT always better! You’ve heard it before and I’m going to say it again: you get what you pay for! In anything in life, but REALLY with vendors for a wedding (and other events as well).
The best place to start with a wedding is to set a budget. From there you can allocate an amount within that budget to each vendor/thing you need for your big day. Some people allocate more to the photographer because they know photo’s of their big day are going to be the one thing they really don’t want to miss out on, and they know they need to hire a great photographer in order to get great shots to last a lifetime. Some people know they want to spend more money on the food and alcohol and some really go above and beyond with the DJ because they want their guests to have a kick ass time and a great DJ is the way to go with that!
I want to share with you my story of my wedding. I had a decent budget (thanks to my in-laws who foot the bill for our wedding) but our venue took up two thirds of that budget. It really was a shame because I probably could have found a venue just as pretty and a lot less expensive so I could have allocated funds towards things that were more important to me (like photography).
I hired a photographer that I paid less than a grand for. LESS THAN A GRAND FOR PHOTOGRAPHY! Absurd. Insane. Unreal! She was a friend of a friend who said she had been doing wedding photography for years but when she quit working for her previous company, they wouldn’t allow her to take her portfolio with her and she really needed to start somewhere in order to get back into it. As as photographer myself and someone who wears her heart on her sleeve, I decided to give her a chance and give her the shot she needed to get her wedding portfolio built back up. I’m all about helping people out and especially when it means following their passion and helping them to get started! But… She.Was.Awful. Truly…she sucked. I’d say 9 out of every 10 of my wedding photo’s are out of focus, grainy as hell, and she didn’t catch any of the ‘moments’ that were really important to me. She also gave me a 4 week turn around but it took her 4 MONTHS. She knew she had done a crappy job and was so embarrassed by it that she didn’t even want to give us our images. The second I got the USB in the mail and went through them, I cried. I was heart broken that I had zero good images to show from my wedding day — which was one of the most amazing days of my life. I still wish I had hired the photographer I wanted to hire!
I also hired a DJ for $300 because my in-laws couldn’t justify spending $1,000 on the DJ’s I had my eye on. They refused to spend that kind of money on a DJ so instead I hired someone that came recommended from a friend. He was so awful you guys. Literally, awful! He announced our wedding party during the ceremony as if it were the reception (and didn’t even get their names correct). The look on my guests’ faces was horrible. Then, after he announced our wedding party correctly at the beginning of the reception, he froze. It was time for him to announce me and my husband, but he had forgotten our names :-( We stood there for a few MINUTES starring at our guests, embarrassed and shocked that our DJ had forgotten our names. We were the bride and groom for goodness sakes!!! How could he forget OUR names?! There were a few other mishaps with him but I won’t make a long list for you — you get the jist!
The point of this blog post is to warn you about these low budget vendors and ESPECIALLY vendors found on Craigslist (oh my gosh just stay away from those please)! You’ll end up disappointed at the end and you really don’t want to feel that way after spending your hard earned money and time in planning your special day. We charge what we charge because we know what we’re doing, we’re going to provide you with the BEST service and exactly what you wanted. We charge what we do because we’re worth it and you won’t have to regret hiring us at the end of the day.
I’m going to leave you with this video as pure proof. Horrendous DJ that really ruined these two people’s special day. Not to mention the out of focus video the videographer shot. Major tip for you in your wedding planning: choose vendors that go with your style and find a way to fit them into your budget! I promise you won’t regret it! xoxo!
UGH! Can you imagine?!?!
Design by West + Free Co. Photography by Jami Thompson Photography