2018 Brides-To-Be

2018 Brides-To-Be


Hello to all 2014 brides-to-be from Jim Casey, owner of the Maine Wedding Planner.

Whoa? Did you say 2014? Is that for real?

Strange as it may sound, it is here and the time to start planning is NOW!

This is an exciting time, but it can also be among the most stressful.
The recession for the most part is over and the average cost of a wedding will start to rise again. However, there you can still find some great wedding deals out there. You have to be willing to take the time and look.

You may find the deals, but it is still possible to overspend on your wedding day without ever knowing it. What can you do to avoid getting caught in the vacuum that is wedding spending frenzy?

Make a budget and stick to it.

Easier said than done, right?
Let’s talk dollars and sense (spelled purposely this way). There are a lot of factors that go into formulating a budget. Will your wedding and reception be on the water? Expect to pay top dollar.

Want to have it at a private home? Caterers charge extra for on-site service plus you then have to make sure to find one with a liquor license…then you have to rent a tent.

What it is really all about is prioritizing. What is the priority for your wedding day? Artistic photography, live music, elegantly planned? Chair covers?

Below are some of the typical costs for a wedding in Maine. The lower end of the spectrum is typical of VFW Hall and American Legion locations while the higher end moneywise represents exclusive resorts on the coast.

Invitations, Announcements and Thank You Notes $ 250.00 – $500
Flowers $ 400 – 2,000.00
Photography $ 900.00 – 5,000
Videography $ 700.00 – 3,000
Music (DJ) $ 400.00 – 2,000
Music (Band, Etc.) $ 1,000 – 6,000
Officiant & Ceremony Site $ 200 – 700
Transportation (Limo, Carriage, Etc.) $ 350 – 800
Gifts for Attendants $ 300 – 600
Wedding Rings $ 250 – 1000
Engagement Ring $ 1,000 – 3,000
Rehearsal Dinner $ 750 – 3,000
Bride’s Gown $ 700 – 4,000
Wedding Veil & Headpiece up to $ 200.00
Bridesmaids’ Apparel (for 5 bridesmaids) up to $ 1000
Mother of the Bride’s Apparel up to $ 1000
Groom’s Rental Tuxedo $ 150
Groomsmen’s Rental Tuxedos $ 100 – 150 per Tuxedo
Catering $ 2,000 –  25,000
Honeymoon up to $ 5,000

Again, you can see the wide range of costs dependant upon where the wedding is located, how much experience your professional has and how much in demand they are in.

Don’t shy away from off-season weddings. You can save up to 50% or more in the winter and early springtime.

Splurge only in areas that you truly believe matter to the success of your wedding day. When you do, your guests will thank you for it and more importantly, your guests will thank you for it.

October 6, 2017 |

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Maine Weddings – Maine Wedding Photographers

Maine Weddings, Maine Wedding PhotographersMaine Wedding Photographers, DJs, or Reception Location for your wedding day? Maybe you are planning a 2014 or 2015 Maine Wedding. You have found the directory for Maine Weddings that has been helping brides since 2003, the Maine Wedding Planner.Take the first step and look at the top of the page where it says “Find Your Maine Wedding Pro” and roll your mouse over it. You will find perfect locations, talented Maine Wedding Photographers, a fun DJ or Band, a great Maine Reception Location as well as over 30 additional categories.

Maine Wedding Blog and Calendar for Bridal Shows

Below are two resources all Maine brides could use. First, Maine finally has a resource to find your local bridal shows in Portland, Lewiston, Auburn, Bangor, Bar Harbor and more. Click the Maine Wedding Calendar link to see what is coming up.

Then, read our Maine Wedding blog as our Maine Wedding Planner experts help you plan the perfect Maine Wedding.


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Planning Timetable for Maine Weddings

We have put together this planning timetable with links to wedding pros that will help you with your big day. The time frames represented are our recommendations to book with them to ensure availability. Click to find your Maine Wedding Photographers, DJs, Caterers, Reception Locations and a Maine Wedding Planner.




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September 16, 2017 |

Choosing Your Wedding Date


maine-wedding-calendar-230x2301This is possibly one of the more difficult things you do when planning a Maine wedding. The majority of couples plan their Maine weddings on a Saturday between June and October.

Did you know by adjusting the date to a Friday or a Sunday you can save as much as 20% or more off the total cost of your Maine wedding?

1. More Quality Vendors Available

Most quality Maine wedding professionals book their services as much as 18 months in advance. If you are flexible enough to move the wedding day to a Friday or a Sunday, you are at least 75% likely to find your choice open for the date.

2. Save Money

The fact that vendors have much more availability on Fridays or Sundays gives you the opportunity to save money.

In order to increase this “off-day” business, many professionals will give you discounts of at least 5% to as much as 25% or more. Call your Maine Wedding professionals and get all of the details.

June 12, 2017 |

Get Married Without Debt


The average cost of a wedding has dropped from a peak of $28,000+ in 2007 to about $25,656 according to The Wedding Report in a recent survey of couples and wedding vendors nationwide. A Maine Wedding is said to average 23,674 according to The Wedding Report. While this is a once in a lifetime event, you shouldn’t be expected to take a lifetime to pay it off.

Here are a few money saving ideas from the Maine Wedding Planner:

1. Wedding programs – This is almost like taking dollar bills and tossing them in the trash. 99% of people do NOT save these. Print a couple of copies of your wedding program on fancy paper using your home computer..

2. Bathroom baskets – These are rarely used in Maine, but again, money is better spent elsewhere.

3. Out of Town guest bags – While a nice thought and gesture, most people forget to bring them home from the reception

4. Full open bar – Alcohol is expensive on its own, but when it’s free it may cost you a small fortune. It can potentially cause problems from people that over-drink or that drive while impaired. In Maine, the host of the party and the bartender is responsible if an intoxicated driver is out on the road.

5. Pew bows/flowers – no one notices once they sit down, besides, the ceremony location you’ve picked is already beautiful.

6. Chair covers – Placing your money in a fireplace would be less wasteful.

7. Outrageously expensive invitations – Yes, you need to invite people but there are ways to do this and be frugal.

8. Ornate centerpieces – Many people “forget” to bring theirs home.

Save money by not wasting it on items that people will never remember. Instead, spend your time and money on aspects that truly affect how much you and your guests ENJOY the day.

May 15, 2017 |

Choosing Your Vendors


Good morning!

How is the wedding planning going? Does it seem a bit overwhelming? I’m sure it is. In fact, this is third most difficult task a woman will do in her lifetime.

Here is some advice that may sound crazy in some ways, but will save you a lot of time and make your life easier.

1. Write down on paper or in a wedding notebook how many wedding vendors you will be hiring. The percentages next to the vendor is what per cent of weddings use these types of professionals for their weddings.

8% – Wedding Coordinator
85% – Church
15% – Ceremony Facility
100% – Officiant/Priest
100% – Hair/Make-Up
94% – Tuxedo
99% – Dress
69% – Reception Facility with in-house catering
12% – Reception Facility with your own catering
19% – Professional Caterer
89% – Photographer
74% – DJ
18% – Band
8% – No Entertainment
81% – Ceremony Musician
19% – Ceremony Music done by DJ or Band
21% – Videographer
91% – Florists
9% – Using own flowers or none at all
94% – Cake
3% – Alternative dessert
3% – No cake at all

(All numbers were for 2012 weddings according to The Wedding Report)

That’s 14 different vendors.

While that chart gave you an idea of what others have done for their weddings, it is your turn to do some research.

There are four/five major wedding vendors that book the fastest

1. Function Facility and/or caterer
2. Photographer
3. Entertainment
4. Ceremony Musicians

This is the order you should book these vendors. This way, all can give you an accurate price based on where you are having your ceremony and reception. A wedding vendor traveling to an island resort will cost much more than one going to a local facility.

How should you narrow down your choices?

1. Pick one vendor type on your list per week

2. Commit two full days of a week – one to research on the internet (Monday), one for appointments (Friday or Sunday – most of us work Saturdays)

3. Make no more than three appointments for each vendor type – bring your checkbook or credit card, show them that you are serious

4. Go with your gut instinct and hire your vendor within 24 hours of your meeting
(Making a wedding vendor wait is NOT in your best interest. Most brides know at their initial meeting whether or not they click with a vendor and risk losing that vendor to someone else by saying they will “think about it”

5. If it is obvious you will not be hiring someone after your meeting, tell them as much and tell them why.

April 18, 2017 |

Maine Wedding Planner is All-New!


Hello and welcome to the newly re-designed Maine Wedding Planner.

Maine is such a wonderful state to get married in. After 10 years of helping thousands of Maine brides find their wedding vendors, I felt it was time for a change – to be even better. This is the biggest change I have made to this website since our inception in 2003 and I couldn’t be more excited! We have helped thousands of Maine brides find the perfect wedding pros for their big day. My goal is to help even more brides with the social tools available at our disposal.

Our blog is going to be open to everyone that wants to tell their Maine Wedding Story.

If you are a bride or groom, tell everyone your story by your words and photos.  Let other brides be inspired by your dress, your church, and everything about your wedding day. Tell stories that will make some laugh and others cry. Tell of the joy you had when you said “I Do!”

I look forward to seeing and reading about your weddings from all over Maine.

January 2, 2017 |
Copyright 2003-2018 by Jim Casey Entertainment of South Portland, Maine.

Maine Weddings - Maine Wedding Photographers - Maine Wedding Reception

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