Wedding Budget Tips

3 Early Signs You Need Coaching

Michaela Pollock for Laurel Avenue

Whenever I explain coaching to people they often, respond with, "oh wow, that sounds so great, I want that for my life!"

Don't we all!

Laurel Avenue Wedding planning made affordable: Wedding Coaching.
Wedding Coaching, Laurel Avenue
3 Early Signs You Need Wedding Coaching


Especially during this extremely crazy time in your life where you have 1,000 ideas and things running through your head, on top of that you're processing how you are going to involve the 50 people you love the most into this process and you're moving to another city with your man, etc. etc. 

Being engaged is A LOT. And you may just need some coaching guidance. 

Here are Laurel Avenue's top three early signs you need coaching!


1) Vendors got you like.... WOAH.

If you're getting overwhelmed with the 1,000 photographers in your town and don't know what separates them from what, coaching is for you. Or if you fell like you don't know how to find a vendor you trust and know will deliver exactly what you're thinking, this is for you!


2) Emotions are overriding the to-do list.

This is probably one of the most common reasons we see couples book us for coaching. Your fiance's parents are divorced and you're serving alcohol and your mother doesn't approve, the list goes on! Because this is such an emotional time for everyone involved situations like this get sticky. We want to help you keep your head on straight by reminding you- hey you get to take fun photos with your beau this weekend! or woohoo let's set up your makeup trial! Or maybe we just listen to your struggles and help you best delegate these situations. We love it and are 100% here for our brides. 

3 Early Signs You Need Wedding Coaching


3) You are not a self-starter.

Let's be honest, if you aren't type A wedding planning is a bit harder for you. Keeping up with a to do list isn't your forte. This is totally fine! We actually love brides like this! Through coaching we can keep you on track and help motivate you to keep on your to do list. Honestly, these brides always make me laugh because they are so appreciative of the structure. 

Wedding Coaching and Coordinating, Laurel Avenue

Here's an actual sneak peak of the checklist software that we customize that our coaching clients get access to, so we can keep up with it all together, in a way that makes sense for your budget and your goals:

Aisle Planner, Planning Software for brides

We hope this helps define more if you need coaching, because we love our coaching couples! 

The #1 Thing That Makes Wedding Planning A Breeze

We have the best-kept-secret weapon of frugal brides when it comes to planning. Here's our Nashville, TN based coordinator Michaela Pollock:



People often ask, so what is coaching? And what a great question, because no one else quite does this like Laurel Avenue does! 

Laurel Avenue Wedding Coach Michaela Pollock

As far as logistics, we meet for a while once per month you book, and just see where you are at in the process. Your mom is telling you you need to be getting your hair trial done but you think it's too early, you feel like you can't find a make up artist that does quite your style, and you have no idea where to find your wedding shoes. These are all little fires we love putting out. Through our first meeting we see what you need to be doing and what you are doing. We help devise a plan of action for once we leave this meeting. We also see what is behind all the planning. How are you and your fiancé really doing?! After all this is an incredibly special and once in a lifetime season for the two of y'all. 


Here are some reasons I love coaching:


1. It's so personal.

Who wants to just stare at a computer screen for days and never talk to a human?! This extrovert loves giving people to-do lists so specific and chatting up with brides about their planning problems. 


2. I love being a cheerleader.

I have two older brothers and I always went to all of their sports games and cheered them on, so I've been developing this whole cheerleader thing since I was about five. During your season of engagement it may seem like your to do list never ends, which let's be honest, it never does and you need someone to affirm you along the way, who at the same time is helping you see where to stop and where to keep going.

Wedding Coaching is a planning service that allows brides the option of choosing what months they need planning help and a personal planner to assist their process and refer vendors along the way!


3. Our online planning software.

I wish I could have these tools just for organizing life. It helps you see everything concerning your wedding in one place. Your budget is set into place, our grand checklist is all there, we can create your timeline and you can access it there, and your bridal calendar can also go there. This creates a space to just fill everything wedding out and we sort and detail it and allow you to JUST handle what you need to be handling. 


Basically I love our brides and I love coaching because this allows for a friendship and way for us to personalize more of your wedding and remind you how cool this experience is. 




Wedding Coaching is ONLY $100 per month for as few or as many months as you need us! This is a lot of support /service for not a lot of money. It won't be this affordable forever, so get in touch today

Serving anywhere in the Southeast.

Your Wedding Budget's 2 Biggest Enemies

Around here, we spend every day with brides, working to make the endless pile of puzzle pieces fit inside their finite budgets. Let's be real- no one is made of money, and there IS limit (at least for most people) and unfortunately, it's a big pain point for our clients and brides everywhere! 

The 2 Big Enemies of your wedding budget and how to demystify the cost of a weddin.

Ask any gal that has already walked the aisle, and she'll probably say something like,

"My wedding didn't go exactly as I had hoped, budget-wise". 

Why is that?? People get married every day, why does wedding budgeting have to be such a big mystery? I have two ideas that might just be a game-changer for how you think about your wedding, and it might save you....thousands. 


The #1 Enemy of your Wedding Budget?

I want you to use your imagination for a minute. Pretend I called you this afternoon in a panic and said,

"I'm going to be bringing two large bus-loads of people in to town and they will all be looking at me to take care of them for a big portion of the day- at least 5 or 6 hours! They're going to be hungry, and some of them will have come a long way to get here! How much is this going to cost?!"

What would you say? Where would you send me and my massive load of friendly folk?
Let's say you sent us to Buca di Beppo, a mid-range priced Italian restaurant, to take everybody out to dinner. A quick Google search of Buca's menu shows me that for the average Joe to get dinner and a soda will run me about $18.50. Throw a (stingy) tip in there, and you're looking at 20 bucks a head.

Here's the deal, my buses will be bringing about 150 friends total. Oh shoot. That's THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS. 

So - in your infinite wisdom - friend, you say to me,

"Elena, how are we going to do that? Your guests are going to be crammed in there, and there's no way we're getting a table for 150." 

A good point you have there. So then I start looking around...well maybe we could find a low-key place that will let all 150 of my pals crash for 5 or 6 hours. How hard can that be?! That won't cost too much.

Except...I might also want for that location to have chairs and tables. Also bathrooms, air conditioning, ice, trash cans, and wifi. I'd also like for them to let us play loud music, maybe drink a little, and I need them to take out the trash for us. Where would you send me then? Let's say you send me to your church fellowship hall that is going to (graciously) meet all of those above requests for just 1000 bucks. Not bad, considering they have to pay the guy who sets up the chairs, cool the building, pay the attendant on duty for all 6 hours of our event, then pay the clean up crew afterwards. DEAL. 

But we still haven't solved the food issue.

Maybe we could ask the staff of Buca di Beppo to just close us shop for the day and bring their ENTIRE SHOW on the road to feed me and all my guests. We've determined that feeding us at their place is going to run me about 3K. But you remind me,

"Elena, they are going to have to haul a lot of food and equipment, as well as pay ALL those folks fairly, even though they're ONLY feeding us today, no revenue from others." 

Well shoot. Sounds like at least another $2,000 to me! Maybe 3! Now we're at $7000. 

It is NOT the caterers fault- that makes sense. It's on me for bringing two bus loads of people in to town and then expecting to host them in a grandiose way for anything less than what is fair. 

If this is a wedding we're talking about, we haven't even touched the expenses of dresses and photographers and flowers and DJs, and linens, and pretty jewelry and hand crafted bridesmaid gifts and matching bowties and limos with red carpets. 

Friends, I love you, but the #1 Enemy of your wedding budget is probably your guest list. 

Before you come after me with pitch forks for being an inhospitable Spartan and kick me to the curb for trying to exclude your friends from your big day, just remember: the real opposing forces here are the number of your friends vs. your finances.

Which brings me to the #2 Enemy of your Wedding Budget:

It's the wedding you went to last May at that country club in Charleston. Your handsome date was all about the mashed potato bar followed by the steak carving station. You slid your custom coozie on your ice cold bev and snapped an Insta of the flora in the middle of your table. The band was the kind that sweats a lot when they perform because they're singing the classics in their white dinner jackets or sparkly heels. The second shooter got a couple shots of you and your honey on the dance floor and on the way home you can still smell a little bit of sparkler smoke in your hair. 

Friend, that was a....oh I dunno....$70,000 wedding you attended. It didn't feel like it, and I promise you, it wasn't just one thing. 

It's the wedding snowball effect that starts when the bride has an expectation- just one expectation - which informs all the other decisions that have to be made. 

"Well, we invited a lot of people, so we had to go with the nicer venue."
"Well, she bought a ballgown, so we can't have that small beach wedding anymore."
"Well, we booked this amazing photographer, so we need to have pretty things!"

That fancy Charleston wedding? It may have silently wrecked your expectations. And so did the other three weddings you just attended. As a guest, it's so easy to think- "Mine will be bigger, better, more relaxed, more fun, more food, more music, better dancing, more seating...more more more." And before you know it, you're expecting to have (like most images you see on Pinterest) a $100,000 affair. 

So, sweet thing, the #2 enemy of your wedding budget is hands down your expectations. 

Listen to me: if you have 70 grand to spend on your wedding, go for it! I'm not stopping you. I'm speaking to the girls with $15,000 that can't understand why it's just not coming together like that Charleston gig.

My #1 goal as a wedding coach is to clarify and calm all of the biggest question marks of wedding planning by helping to set realistic expectations- even the big ones like budget struggles. There are vendors out there for you and your budget. Your dream wedding IS possible, you may just have to make a few unpopular decisions or forego the confetti canons, and realize that hey- you're making a BIG step with your sweetheart. Chin up, buttercup. Your day will be swell because it's yours. 

I'm passionate about connecting my brides with the vendors they need on the budget they have! Want to know more about wedding coaching? Find out more by visiting our services page to find out how to get a lot of guidance for a little investment. 


Cheering you on,

Elena Balkcom