Finding the person you want to marry is a dream, but budgeting for a wedding can feel like a bit of a nightmare. The average wedding — once you include the cost of rings and the honeymoon — is roughly $36,000, according to WeddingWire. If you don’t want to spend the equivalent of a home down-payment on your wedding day, that’s completely understandable, and it is possible to do it for much less than the average cost. But how do you have a budget celebration without stressing out about everything? I had trouble sleeping and eating in the weeks leading up to my wedding, and I wasn’t even sticking to a super-tight budget or trying to DIY.
I have a ton of admiration for couples who manage to stay cool during the wedding planning process, especially if they’re strategizing about how to cut costs. It's important to research how much weddings actually cost, because couples usually underestimate how much they'll spend by 40 percent. WeddingWire’s Wedding Cost Guide shows how much people in different parts of the U.S. spend on their wedding, which can help you pick a number for your budget. Bustle spoke with WeddingWire Trend Expert Anne Chertoff about how to have a budget wedding without unnecessary stress.