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Running the Numbers


THE ORIGINAL BUDGET: $75,000


The Couple: Lauren Kukafka (assistant art director at Fitness magazine) and William Steinberg (talent marketer at Premiere Global Sports)
Wedding Date: October 18, 2009
Location: Pier Sixty and the Lighthouse at Chelsea Piers

The Goal
We didn’t have a theme; I just wanted the whole event to be really beautiful and cohesive.

The Dress
L: My dress was by Christos; I ended up getting it at Kleinfeld at a trunk sale, so I paid about $3,500. I got the veil there, too, and the shoes were a splurge. They were Swarovski-crystal-encrusted Stuart Weitzmans, and cost $500.
Some of What They Paid: $4,000

The Venue
The Lighthouse had a sense of place, plus beautiful windows overlooking the water. We got the Twilight Package, which meant we were able to have the venue for the entire day. The Lighthouse cost $210 per person, plus a 22 percent service charge, $1,250 for the ceremony, and $500 for valet parking. There is no site fee.
Some of What They Paid: $41,461


The Invites
I’m a graphic designer, so I designed a lot of the paper myself. It was important to me that all the little things coordinated and had a similar look. I worked with a company called Elum, which does letterpress design, to personalize our invitations. Total cost for invitations, table and response cards, and program covers was around $3,500.
Some of What They Paid: $3,500

The Flowers
Chelsea Piers has a list of preferred vendors; we settled on Superior Florist because their style wasn’t too over the top. One thing I was fixated on was hanging candles from the ceiling; since it’s black, I wanted it to look like twinkling lights. The florist did the candles and the chuppa. Our flower budget was $6,000, but we spent closer to $8,000.
Some of What They Paid: $8,000

The Photographer
We went with Mantas Wright Photography; they are a husband-and-wife team, and I liked their personalities a lot. They charged about $4,500 for eight hours, plus our engagement shoot. We also booked a videographer, Rockmelon. We paid about $3,000 for that.
Some of What They Paid: $7,500

Where Else They Saved
We got married on a Sunday, so we saved there, partially because there was a lower minimum amount of guests, at 150. The guaranteed amount of guests on a Saturday is a lot higher (200 plus), which would have brought up the cost.


THE ACTUAL COST: $77,000

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