So you’ve set a date and found your dream wedding venue (Hardy Farm, of course!) but as for the rest of your wedding budget, you haven’t got a clue. Budgeting for your wedding is a personal process unlike any other, a blending of the highly emotional with the ruthlessly pragmatic. Your right brain screams for orchids and caviar while your left brain shrieks for carnations and pigs in a blanket. So where to save and where to splurge? Where can you afford to save a few bucks and what’s worth the extra money?

wedding venue maine


Kim Chapman Photography


Local flowers. The same farms that offer food also offer flower perfection! From June until the first frosts of the season, local fields are filled with gorgeous blooms. Explore a local farmers market to ask about what might be available around your wedding date. If you are flexible on colors, just ask them to put together bunches of flowers that you can pick up and have a few of your gals help you put them into mason jars or vases found at flea markets. Gorgeous, easy and thrifty! We are always impressed with the in season blooms at Sherman’s Farm Stand right down the street!

Sweets and treats. Tradition doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot to have a heavenly treat served to your guests. If you have a favorite bakery, ask them to put together a sampling of their best treats, a few cakes and maybe a plate of chocolate truffles and you have yourself a delightful dessert table. If cutting a cake it a must, have a small special cake made just for you and your groom.

Boogie nights. If it’s in your budget for a band, then go for it. But if live music isn’t important to you, book the best DJ you can find. He or she will still keep the party rocking all night long and save you plenty as well.


Local food. Depending on the time of year, local Maine and New Hampshire farms offer so much variety and deliciousness – heirloom tomatoes, scrumptious squashes, perfect pears, cheeses, grass-fed beef, golden honey. Work with your caterer to incorporate local foods and flavors into your meals. It may cost a bit more, but think of the flavors and the fact that you are supporting local farms.

Photography. Your wedding day will go by in a flash, as much as you try to embrace and hold on to every moment. Having a fantastic photographer to capture the day is crucial, but even the best can’t be everywhere. If your photographer offers a second shooter for the day, go for it! Every detail of your day will be recorded.

Dress it up. Don’t underestimate the impact the perfect linens can make. You have picked your colors, carefully chosen just the right bridesmaids dresses, the perfect mix of flowers -why not take it up a notch and bring in more color and texture with just the right linens? Whether it’s a runner, overlay or full cascade of color to the floor, a little extra spent on linens will make a big difference in the overall design and vibe of your party.

Staying on track. Finding that right person to help guide you through the planning process and be at your wedding for the ceremony, rehearsal and wedding day is invaluable. I am partial to this, being a planner and all, but honestly the amount of stress taken off your shoulders knowing that on your wedding day all the pieces will come together is worth it!