Wedding Planning

William Talks Budgets and Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

Color conflict: what should the MOB wear to your special day?

I am trying to plan a wedding in San Diego myself…..the bride…..for about 60-75 people on about $3,500.00….any reception tips or resources? Christina Sarff from Facebook
Dear Ms. Sarff,

This may sound like a small budget for a wedding but with some creativity you can plan a nice affair. I often find that clients with smaller budgets inspire greatness into their wedding. Since I don’t know what all you need to get out of your budget, here are few exciting economical ideas.

Consider a reception style where potluck works well, such as a picnic on the beach or in a public park. You provide the side dishes and everyone can bring offerings for the grill. Or do a Victorian picnic theme and let everyone bring their own basket and game.

Do a private ceremony, followed by an evening after-party where light hors d’oeuvres are appropriate. Serve an alcoholic punch or limit to wine and beer.

Plan the reception on a weeknight such as Thursday. Venues offer better rates, as do caterers, on slower days for events.

Go thrift store shopping for your decor pieces such as tablecloths, vintage silver and glass vases. You can pick up fabulous stuff for under $5.00 per piece and create an elegant look that will make them go, ‘Wow.’ Fill your treasures with simple greenery, fruit or food and you have a totally chic look.  The price and quality of purchasing this way beats any party or wedding aisle at big box stores.

Focus and determine what is important, either food, booze or decor. Allocate your budget accordingly.

Consider a venue that is either free or very inexpensive to rent. A friend’s backyard, church hall or park pavilion all work well. Make sure there is existing furniture to work with as rental tables and chairs can get pricey.

Hold off and celebrate your first anniversary with a big bash.
Is it wrong of me to not want my mother and guests etc to wear my wedding colors? My dress is white and champagne and our colors are pink and green.. My mother and I keep arguing about this because she wants to wear green or champagne. –Jenna Ruch from Facebook
Dear Miss Ruch,

First and foremost, relax. It is only color. Your guests should be free to wear what ever they please and you should encourage them all to be fashionable.

With regard to your mother, though, champagne would be inappropriate for her to wear if that is indeed the color of your gown. Although a shade of green not in the same tone as the brides maids is not unheard of, it would be much more stylish if she wore a complimentary color to those in the wedding. She should have her own stand-out look that doesn’t compete with the rest of the bridal party.
Whether it’s wedding etiquette questions, info on the latest styles and trends, or timeless advice, our in-house wedding designer William has the answers. Have a burning question about your big day? Send it to us at: or tweet it or Facebook us!

Photo by Weddings by Heather.