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Pinterest vs Reality: The real cost & what you end up with

Let’s be honest. When you are planning your wedding, Pinterest can be a blessing and a curse. It can be a source of beautiful inspiration for your wedding day and we’ve all gone down that three hour Pinterest rabbit hole more than a couple of times.

The problem is that Pinterest can also sometimes misrepresent what is actually attainable for an average or even above average wedding day. What appears to be a simple design can sometimes encompass the most expensive elements or labor intensive florals. This is especially true of the clean, modern look that is super in right now.

So, how much does it actually cost to achieve that “perfect Pinterest” look? Let’s take this table for instance…

The black linen napkin underneath the plate is $2.50. That’s for one napkin, mind you. The  chairs (pictured below) are $25.00 each. The charger plate, china, flatware and glassware on this table will run you about $20 per place setting. That covers the plates, forks, knives and glasses. Upgraded, textured linens will run you about $50-$80 each. (A basic poly linen would run about $20-$30.) The centerpieces will run you a minimum of $300.00.

All together that comes to $680 per table.

So say you wanted to do this look on 15 tables of 8 (that’s a wedding of 120 guests), you’d be looking at a grand total in excess of $10,200 just for your tables. That doesn’t include the extra glassware at the bar to accommodate guests all night, cake plates and forks etc. It adds up!

















So here’s a couple of things to consider when lusting over those gorgeous weddings on Pinterest:



If your budget allows for all things beautiful in all the places, go for it girl! If not, one way to make a big impact on the design with a smaller impact to your wallet is to go big on the head table. You can add all those upgraded elements to the table where you and the wedding party will be seated and then keep the rest of the guest tables tastefully minimal. The head table will also be the most photographed.


The thing about Pinterest is, a lot of the photos you see are from photo shoots. Event vendors LOVE to do photo shoots to play around with new design ideas and to show people what can be done. But it’s important to remember that just about anything is attainable when it’s done on a small scale (i.e. just one table) vs having to do it for over 100 people.


Don’t be afraid to share your budget with your vendors when requesting quotes. Oftentimes, people feel that if they hold that number secret they might not spend every penny. In actuality, if you don’t share your budget goals with your vendors then the sky is the limit. If they don’t know what they are working with, they’re going to suggest the biggest and the best because they want to give you the vision you are describing. When given parameters, your vendors can give you ideas on how to take your wish list and scale it to fit your budget. Trust them, they do this for a living!

most important tip to remember.....


Remember, if you are seeing it on Pinterest, it has already been done and you risk your wedding looking like another carbon copy of every other wedding your guests have been to! Use Pinterest as a jumping off point, a way to explore color palettes, refine your style and a space to save ideas. Make sure to make your wedding design your own — it should reflect your personalities and be unique. Lean on your planner, your florist and other vendors to help you personalize things so that your vision is truly one of a kind. And remember, at the end of the day, it’s about the marriage and the celebration — the rest are just details.  

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