Excuse me, my wedding will cost… how much? How to talk $$ before the big day.

HOSTS Carmel Moorhead & Zoe Moorhead|18 June, 2021

Meet your hosts

  • Carmel Moorhead

    Carmel is in a relationship of three and a half years with her partner, and they own a house together and a dog called Ruby. She says, 'despite my partner also being a lawyer, I still win all arguments'. Carmel loves gardening and can tell the difference between a cucumber pant and zucchini plant just by looking.
  • Zoe Moorhead

    Zoe is in a relationship with her partner of two years and they've lived together for the past 6 months. They have a cat fur baby named Dumpling, he’s a sweet boy with a fluffy face, but according to Zoe, 'he’s currently fighting with his plant brothers and sisters in the form of digging warfare'. In her spare time, Zoe is an amateur potter and has recently discovered the world of yoga and essential oil diffusers (would recommend).

Are you dreaming of a white wedding? And if so, how much are you willing to pay for it? Because According to moneysmart.gov.au, the average Australian wedding costs an eye watering $36,000. This week Carmel and Zoe talk to Fiona Dean-Dundas of Couture Wedding planning about how to plan your special day on a budget, families expectations when they’ve added a little extra to the wedding budget and how to cut costs if you need to! where’s the best place to cut costs!

Don’t forget to follow us on insta for memes and details between the episodes.

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Zoe Moorhead: [00:00:32] Here we go. Money, conversations and early stages of relationships are difficult, compromise all the time face hard choice. We got the house. Oh, my mother said, when you get older, I wish you'd hurry to get older so that you would settle down and marry a rich man. And I said, Mom, I am a rich man. Hello and welcome to another episode of Meet Pay Love, a podcast where we talk about money and relationships. As always, I'd like to start off by acknowledging the traditional custodians of the land in which we are recording and listening to this podcast on. Today, we pay respects to elders past, present and emerging Carmel my elder sister, who I'm recording with today. What is the topic? [00:01:12][40.5]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:01:14] Thanks, Zoey. So today we're talking about weddings, how much to spend on them, who's getting married, why they're getting married and all things, of course, money and relationships when it comes to weddings. [00:01:26][12.5]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:01:27] Why are they getting married? I don't think we're talking about why people are getting married. [00:01:31][3.8]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:01:32] I just mean that getting married is becoming less and less common. So it's a significant expense to do for something that may not be important to you. [00:01:41][9.5]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:01:42] Well, that's true. There is a lot of changing perceptions on weddings. And I know that like a majority of millennials are currently not married. According to Pew Research to ÓG, only 44 percent of millennials were married in 2019, compared to 53 percent of the Gen Xers and 61 percent of boomers. So there is a changing perceptions on marriage and why people are getting married. Do you think you would personally get married? I mean, I know Young are getting the divorce. I'm getting that. I don't know how much personal stuff you want to release, but I hear there's a ring in the works. I feel like you're not going to give me a choice. Is I was giving you a choice just then. [00:02:27][44.9]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:02:27] I think so. And I think the thing that I'm struggling with is the pressure to have it a certain way or have a certain amount of people there. But I definitely think that showing commitment and having a big celebration with your friends is something that I want to get around. But I also don't feel like any kind of rash or any kind of necessity to get married in a church or have bridesmaids and do it that traditional way. I kind of just want to do it my own way. [00:02:53][25.3]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:02:54] So you want the tradition of marriage and all the tradition in all aspects of it? Yeah. What about you? I don't feel the need to get married. I don't feel the need to have the government a part of my relationship. I think if I am in a relationship, I know it. He knows it and we're happy as that is. Having said that, I love any excuse to have a party, so I can't rule it out altogether. But there does come other like little aspects in it for Ali and I, because he is a Thai citizen, that if we ever wanted to go over there and live over there, we'd probably have to get married for those reasons. But there's no and we love each other anyway. It's not just those reasons, but that's kind of the only real considerations with marriage I have. I don't feel the need to do it. [00:03:40][46.6]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:03:41] Yeah, well, that brings us to the main issue of this podcast, which is if you're going to get married, how much are you spending on it? [00:03:48][6.8]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:03:48] According to moneysmart.gov.au, you the average Australian is spending about 36000 dollars on their wedding, and that's the average Australian with 82 percent of couples happy to dip into their savings for the wedding, 60 per cent happy to get a loan, and 18 percent are using their credit card, which basically is still spending money you don't have. [00:04:07][18.6]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:04:07] Yeah, I'm really and getting a loan generally, but in particular for something like a wedding, that just really spooks me out of it. But it takes such a long time to save up 36000 dollars or if you want to spend more. So, yeah, it's just a serious kind of consideration. Isn't in the whole aspect of getting married, how much it's going to cost. Where are you going to spend? Are you going to cut costs on guests or are you going to, you know, really splash out for a big wedding dress? And what's most important to you? [00:04:36][28.9]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:04:36] Obviously, there are changing perceptions. As we said, like 53 percent of Gen Xers were married in 2019 compared to 44 percent of millennials. And even myself and members have different perceptions of marriage. So we did have a few discussions with people who are already married, who wanted to give us their tips and tricks on what they value in a wedding and what saving costs. We're looking back in their wedding days. My name's James. I'm married. I've been married off five year, four years, something like that. Not very long in the grand scheme of things, but by trade, I'm a teacher. One of the things that intimidated me about getting married, my uncle's a priest, and I had heard from him that the sort of average cost of an Australian wedding is sort of in the region of fifty thousand dollars. And so we had to get married. We were in Hong Kong and we just you know, it was kind of like, let's just do it in a. In the easiest way that we can, you know, we had a very small group of close friends and we also figure because we were overseas, that might just be a barrier to entry to the wedding. So we just didn't invite a whole lot of people, which was controversial in its own right. A couple of people kind of expressed after the fact that they were that they didn't get an invite, but that that kind of made it a much more manageable thing as well, that we only had, I think maybe twenty, twenty-five people there. And they were all people that we were friends within Hong Kong. But, you know, I like initially I had said to my mom, I don't want you to come because, you know, you can't afford my travel. My mom is complicated because she doesn't have amazing health. And so I said, I don't want you to come. And that offended. You know, she got really upset with me. And so I realized it wasn't until that conversation with my mom that I was like, geez, maybe, you know, maybe I don't have the right to not invite certain people or, you know, maybe maybe other people feel really different, like really differently about the way that I do about weddings. Like, I wasn't my first. It was just a routine so that we can stay in the country. And anyway, we'll have another, you know, another wedding in Australia. We were going to have the real thing in Australia. But in the end, we didn't like the sort of twenty-four twenty five people in Hong Kong was enough and we didn't have another one in Australia, which is really nice actually. It was kind of refreshing. My name is Reece and I live on the Gold Coast with my wife Olivia. Yeah, we definitely got married pretty young. We sort of, yeah. Managed to keep our costs down and work towards our budget and stick with it. We probably saved a lot for that eight, 10 months. And as far as financial help, we did get a little bit from our parents, probably about a quarter or a third of the wedding paid for by them, which is obviously super helpful. But at the same time, you just never know how much you're going to get and even, you know, asking. It's such an awkward sort of thing having to ask your parents, hey, I do need to know, can you tell me how are we going to get. Because you don't sound like an ungrateful little kid, but at the same time, you need to make a budget and you need to try to figure out what it is that you need to save and what you can afford and what you can't afford. So sometimes you do have to have a few tricky conversations. But it's yeah, I mean, it's all pretty fun, really, because it's an exciting time. So that was really important to us. Was was actually was the people that were there, we kind of we wanted to try and save in other areas and still have a pretty big guest list. So we actually had one hundred and twenty people up, which at the time I didn't think was that many. But then speaking to some friends and going to some other weddings since then, it is a fairly big list. I mean, we were lucky enough that there was a way that we looked around and we found a place that had a discount on the date that we were looking at. As far as videography and photography, we did have some close friends, obviously still paid them. And then even my auntie, she did this, the flowers. So it just depends what your style is and how much you want to be, I guess, because you can yeah, you can spend a lot of money on everything or you can sort of just pick the things that you want to spend lots on and then set it with, set up with the rest. That makes sense. I would just really go through the guest list with a fine tooth comb and ask yourself maybe in two years' time, three years time, you know, am I still even going to see this person or have anything to do with this person? Because, yeah, it's an important day and you want to spend it with people who are going to be in your life for a long time. [00:09:08][271.6]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:09:09] Thanks so much for those guys for coming on the show and telling us about their special day and how they navigated those issues. I find it really interesting. And one of the big things that I think in my planning, if I do get married, is how family comes into it and how you do get an amount of pressure from your family to invite certain people or have it in a certain way because of their their ideas of how these things should work, why? [00:09:34][25.5]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:09:35] I think what we should say. But there's no right and wrong way to do in your marriage. It's so personal and everyone has their different capacities and different willingness, like although it might be a lot of money to me, it's not a lot of money to someone else or it's something that they want to spend their money on, which is completely correct and incorrect. It is fun to have your parents contribute, but there are some parents that don't have the ability to do that. It is important to have your priorities right. I have to say, if it was my wedding, I'm going to be ruthless with the guest list. I'm going to be cutting people left, right and center. Just be like, no, I'm not getting you know, [00:10:06][31.0]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:10:07] I hope you don't cut me. [00:10:08][0.9]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:10:09] No, let's not be sure. I still got a few years left. Let's see what happens. Well, the thing is as well, there is the common costs with the whole thing of prioritizing what you want. You got to kind of cut it down into the different aspects that are going to cost you a lot of money, like the venue, the food and alcohol you ceremony in. The rings, the photography, the entertainment, the clothing and accessories, the flowers themselves, the whole thing will add up, but you can cut corners here and there. And like, as the guy said, one of the tips is probably. Cutting down your list, [00:10:46][36.8]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:10:46] so we interviewed an amazing wedding planner called Fiona from Couture Weddings, and she talks to us about changes that she's seen over the years in wedding planning. What are people's priorities, how to navigate those issues, and most importantly, how you can save costs. We also talk to her about wishing well trends, because I know that's kind of a contentious issue. [00:11:06][19.9]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:11:12] Thanks so much for coming on the show. [00:11:13][1.3]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:11:14] Oh, thank you so much for having me. [00:11:15][1.4]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:11:16] So what are some of the most significant changes that you've seen just generally from the last nine years that you've been doing this? So 12 years? [00:11:23][7.4]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:11:24] Yes, I think really what people are spending on their gowns has dramatically changed. I remember back in 2009, you know, if you spent maybe five thousand dollars on your gown, that was quite a lot. And if you were spending 10000, you know, if you were going to see Stephen Khaleel or somebody like that, you know, that was that was huge. But now that's kind of very much the norm. You know, girls are spending anywhere from 10 to 20 to even 30 thousand and above, depending on who they're going to see, if they're buying from overseas, maybe getting a Galilea or Berta or some of the kind of Israeli brands or going for some of the American brands or discussing and getting bespoke gowns made in Sydney by all our amazing couturiers here. And a lot of people leave that off their budget. So a lot of times we're just factoring in the florals and the transport and what people are wearing from a bridesmaid point of view. But a lot of the time that actually that cost is not actually factored into people's budgets. They they prefer to have that outside of it. So they're actually spending a lot more, really, than they than they think. You know, what's on the Excel spreadsheet? [00:12:36][72.4]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:12:37] One thing I didn't actually realize is that for your bridal party, you're the one buying the dresses and the shoes. [00:12:44][6.5]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:12:44] Yes, very much so. I mean, back in the day, you you sometimes could kind of talk your bridesmaids into maybe buying the dress and then you would do the makeup and then maybe would use a shoe that they had existing in their wardrobe, for example. But these days it's a full styling. Shabangu You know, the gowns now bridesmaids gowns are anywhere from three hundred dollars to two or three thousand if you want to do a custom. So, you know, it's a huge investment. And also the boys have changed dramatically. Again, back in 2009, we would just hire suits, you know, and there was two or three companies that did that in Sydney. But now most groomsmen are getting bespoke suits as well as the groom. So, again, just the spin's alone, just to do the bridal party have dramatically changed. [00:13:32][47.8]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:13:33] So what kind of budget are you looking for around a wedding? Like what has been your lowest end and like highs and budget? And do you think there's ever a line where, like, it's too much? [00:13:42][8.8]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:13:43] I mean, my smallest wedding budget that I did was back when I kind of started. We did a five thousand dollar wedding. It was like this beautiful picnic wedding, which was really fun. But, you know, that was that was very different back then. Now we're doing kind of half a million dollar weddings. We're easily spending very large amounts of money on flowers. You know, the spend again back in the day, you could get away with spending two thousand dollars on an entire wedding. Now we're spending up from fifty thousand on flowers alone. And you haven't even done any of the other kind of styling components like Georgia plates and crystal glassware and gold cutlery and all the kind of the luxury linens. So it's all kind of layered on top of that. And I think when it comes to too much, I think it really just comes down to that couple and what they want to spend. That's what I like to kind of find out from them what they want to spend. And then we work within that budget. Some people come to me and they say that they don't have a budget, but you will eventually find out what that budget is, where where the maximum is, where they will not go past. So as long as they're comfortable with spending that amount of money, then that's exciting for us. We get to, again, really kind of explore opportunities that we probably weren't able to do with us with a smaller budget. I mean, I remember one time we had a beautiful couple. They really wanted this flower. Well, you know, I remember getting the bill. This was back probably in about twenty fifteen. So, again, the kind of Instagram world it only just started and the spend and weddings had only just really dramatically started to increase. And I remember getting the bill for thirty five thousand dollars just for this flower and just thinking, wow, that's, that's, that's a cock. [00:15:32][109.7]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:15:33] Yeah. Relating that to a car is shocking. Yes. Yes. The price of a car and a flavell. Wow. Exactly. [00:15:41][8.2]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:15:42] And quite a nice car too. [00:15:43][1.1]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:15:46] not a ten thousand dollar second hand like you know you could get like a brand new car or something like that. So, you know, and obviously there are obviously people with a much higher income and then, you know, they're very comfortable with that. But then there's also the lovely couples that we also get that, you know, just have this amount of money and we work with that and we make their dreams come true. And that's that's kind of actually my favorite part is kind of trying to fit. Everything that they want into the budget and just kind of finding creative ways to kind of do that, you know, the majority of my clients are in their 30s and, you know, they they have these amazing careers now. They're very busy. And so, you know, planning a wedding is what they want to do, but they don't have the time. So they get the planners involved. And then that's how we kind of help them with that. But it is it's definitely changed. I do do a lot of 20 to 30 year olds as well, but I tend to find with that age group the parents will contribute a larger amount of money towards those. [00:16:50][63.3]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:16:50] That's interesting that two D.C. parents contributing for the older sort of clients as well. [00:16:56][5.7]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:16:57] Yes, maybe not entirely, but they will kind of maybe contribute to buying the gap, for example, because the girl wants a twenty thousand dollar gown, but would like to be more conservative in her actual spend of her overall wedding because that's what she wants to pay for. But maybe her mom gives her the gown, for example, or maybe they get involved in something that's maybe they want to invest in but maybe can't quite achieve. So I tend to find there is still gifting in that scenario, but they're not outright paying for the entire thing. [00:17:27][30.7]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:17:28] Do you find that once the parents are paying, they tend to have more of a say in the wedding? Like, do you think they take over control in some situations? [00:17:34][6.6]

Speaker 4: [00:17:36] It depends on the parents. I think some parents really like to be involved. You know, I even have them on email and they're involved in the entire process. So you have the bridesmaid and the groom and the parents all in MELD in the one email. And then there are couples who are really in control with what they're doing and they just kind of relaying back to their parents saying, hi, guys. You know, we've decided that we're going to spend eleven thousand dollars on flowers. You know, could you transfer the deposit to this particular supplier? So it really depends on your kind of family dynamic. [00:18:08][32.5]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:18:09] I find so interesting that you say like twenty thousand dollars in my heart drops. Oh, my God. I know. That's my life savings is amazing [00:18:17][8.3]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:18:17] what people are spending. It really is. And I find it kind of the age of Instagram. It's just kind of accelerated that I need to do better than my sister. I need to do better than my best friend. You know, it seems to have kind of created that that culture that you kind of have to outdo the last person or yours needs to be go viral more than the last person or a lot of my brides are very kind of quieter and they don't even like us to post on Instagram. And we actually have to ask the suppliers not to post as well. And they're kind of more private. They prefer not to be out there and others really, really relish it. And they will kind of even source suppliers that have those big numbers on Instagram because they that's kind of what they what they want. It's very a different dynamic to back in 2009 when we only had Facebook and we had only really just started kind of getting business pages and things like that. Do you find [00:19:16][58.9]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:19:17] that from your perspective? Because you're dealing a lot with budgets and providing different options for prices and things like that? Do you ever maybe suggest that they say a financial adviser or someone that can talk them through financially how they approach their wedding? [00:19:34][16.9]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:19:34] You know, I I've never I've never done that, my darlings. I feel like if that's what they want to do, then they should potentially do that again. I feel again, it would probably be more the 30 to 40 range that might be wanting to do that, because they have those careers and it is their money that they're are investing where I find maybe the twenty to thirty year old to having that parents contribute, they might not be kind of factoring that in. They just think, oh, mom and Dad will pay for it. So we're all good. But yeah, I've never actually advised anybody to do that. I've always felt that that might be something that they want to do within their own families or their own relationships. [00:20:14][39.7]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:20:15] That's. Yeah, completely understandable. What are some of the best tips or some of the best tricks that you've seen that your clients have done or you've advise your clients to do, to be able to fit everything that they want to do within their budget? [00:20:27][11.7]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:20:27] The first way to start, you know, if you want to have a lower cost budget, I would start with fewer guests. Don't be inviting six hundred people if you want to have a low cost budget because your your food costs will be enormous. So maybe go for a smaller something between 50 and 100, maybe go for a smaller bridal party, you know, maybe just have your best friends on either side as opposed to having five or six bridesmaids, because ultimately you're looking at dresses, hair and makeup shoes. So again, those costs can add up dramatically, particularly if you have six that you're that you're looking after. I would also maybe potentially try and find a venue that is both. In the same boat, the ceremony and the reception can be held in the same location and then you can eliminate things like having to hire cause potentially you basically have a shorter time frame as well, then. So you probably need a smaller beverage package and things like that. And that would definitely help with costs. And I would really hit Boxing Day sales, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, all those kind of big sales. If you if you want something in particular, maybe you're off to like a cool neon sign or something like that for like the kind of welcome area and then potentially wait to purchase those sort of things. And I would also suggest getting a deejay over a band. Then you don't have to feed five people from the band and ultimately you're just paying for one person's labor, not five or six if you're having a big band. So those are kind of good starting points if you want to do a bit more of a conservative budget. [00:22:07][99.8]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:22:08] I really like black. It's it kind of sounds like an obvious one, but one that you might forget, which is those those big sale days. What are some of the creative ways that people are now getting married that might not be in that traditional married in a church and then having a reception after the ceremony? Have you seen different ways of having the day? [00:22:29][20.8]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:22:30] Yeah, I mean, absolutely. I mean, that that's actually because of covid particularly that that is definitely become kind of a stronger way of doing it, even if it's not at the registry office, guys, you know, just having like a mini ceremony with a celebrant and then going to have like a party, particularly at a restaurant, because it just kind of gives you that kind of more flexibility or you or you kind of book out the kind of private room to the restaurant. And so you kind of really eating the food that you really want to eat and have the closest people to you, which I think in a way is that is the best because you really get to have a conversation with with them, because when you have kind of more than 100, I find you can't really even have a proper conversation with anyone. You just kind of waving at everyone. So I think I think that's definitely going to be a trend from now on. [00:23:22][52.6]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:23:23] What's the most you've ever seen spent on a wedding? [00:23:26][2.5]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:23:27] What I've personally planned is we've done half a million, which was what was a lot of money, but it was a bigger wedding. You know, we had 500 people there and a very large styling budget. You know, we had a lot of rigging. We had a lot of very large ceiling installation. So those sort of things add up very quickly. But again, I'm sure people are spending more than that. But I just think we live Sydney, probably one of the most expensive real estates in the world. And I feel like as much as you want to have these amazing, huge weddings, I mean, hopefully you're also thinking about buying that house as well. But some people are in that position where they can do both. So that's really exciting to see. And those kind of weddings, you really get to kind of do things that you never get to do on one kind of smaller budgets. So it's it's just really nice to kind of see how people kind of take on the planning journey. And that's kind of, again, one of my really favorite parts of planning weddings. [00:24:31][64.2]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:24:32] And so what are some of the average costs of hiring a wedding planner? Like what are the services costing on top of the actual wedding? [00:24:39][7.2]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:24:40] Yes. So everybody charges slightly differently. I basically charge a 10 percent on your spend of your budget, basically. So 10 percent of your budget with a minimum spend of fifteen thousand. And then I also have smaller packages for couples who come to me halfway through their planning. And they've got the gown and they both got the venue and they've bought a few things, but they haven't kind of they've got a bit overwhelmed and they need help with the styling and kind of finessing the day. And that's more like a ten thousand dollar investment. And then we also do a like a five thousand dollar investment for couples who kind of want to plan their entire wedding themselves. And then we just come in at the end and kind of finesse the last couple of months of their process and obviously communicate all the information to the suppliers and just kind of make sure everything is seamless for them, particularly if they've got kind of interesting logistics on their days of guests coming onto boats after the ceremony or something like that before they go to the reception. That's a really kind of helpful package. But I believe there are people that are more cost effective than that. And I believe there are people that charge more than that. But that's kind of where we're at. And it kind of captures those kind of larger clients, you know, who want to spend thirty three or four hundred thousand. But it also doesn't scare away the kind of lovely couple who only want to spend one hundred thousand. Well, that's the thing. [00:26:07][87.3]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:26:08] You'd never really think about the process on the day like the. The planning of the wedding is exciting, but you need someone there to actually, like, help you execute it on the day so you're not running around yourself trying to organize things last minute while you're also trying to get married. [00:26:20][12.5]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:26:21] The most important part of an entire wedding, because, again, you can plan and plan and plan, but if something goes wrong on the day, it can really ruin the whole experience. And so I think really that that day of coordination is probably the best part. Even if you can't have a full-time planner, that's such a good thing to have. If you just want to have somebody who has you back, who's going to make sure it's amazing, who's going to make sure it's done exactly how you want it to be done because people do cut corners sometimes and that planner can make sure that that ceremony is set up quickly, that the reception is being run at a timely basis and we're not getting behind time. So, yeah. So I think it's the most important thing. And, you know, some clients are like, oh, well, we don't need you to come on the day, but we'll just. Could you give us a discount to to plan the wedding and then don't worry about coming on the downside? Well, there's no point in starting the planning if I can't be that, to make sure everything works out. So it's a very important part. [00:27:26][65.2]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:27:27] One of your comments just reminded me of, because I didn't really make the connection. Again, it's kind of an obvious thing when you think about it, but that wedding planners would have that close working relationship with a lot of different suppliers. They would know realistically if you know what prices would be offered and there's less chance that you're going to get ripped off by a supplier or no chance, really. It reminds me of that old saying of if you're planning a wedding, don't tell people that you're having a wedding because there's a wedding increase price that people would put on. Different things like flowers might be more expensive if someone knows it's a wedding or whatever. Do you think that that's true? Or do you think that you can even plan a wedding without saying that it's actually for a wedding? [00:28:14][47.3]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:28:15] I mean, we have attempted to do that in the past. But now, just as you say, wedding planner, they say no, but but yes, there's definitely that that knowledge that things as soon as you mentioned weddings, things go up. But that is, again, a huge part of what I do is to make sure that the client is getting the best value of what they are spending and also providing them with multiple quotes from multiple suppliers for the same thing. So, for example, you know, we're not just going to get one florist quote, we're going to get three. And and then they can make their own executive decision on who they feel comfortable with. Maybe they connected with one photographer more than they connected with one another, but maybe that photographer is a little bit more expensive. Then you go into negotiations with that photographer and say, look, we went to see another photographer. There are only charging eight thousand dollars. Would you be able to kind of price match them or could you potentially provide us with the same amount of inclusions as that person and these sort of things? So it there's a huge amount of negotiation that goes on in the background [00:29:25][70.2]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:29:26] and going back to how to cut costs or be strategic with spending money. And you gave us some really good tips earlier. Another one that kind of comes to mind for me is being intentional and picking the star of your wedding. So do you find that when you're talking to clients, there's generally like the star of the show might be the wedding gown, or is there any themes there or would you be discussing that with your clients? What what's going to be the real star of the show? [00:29:55][29.3]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:29:56] Absolutely. There's a lot of lot of conversations about what a people's priority, you know, is it a four thousand dollar cake or would you prefer to invest three thousand dollars more into flowers and we get a one thousand dollar cake? I think the things that you should definitely invest in, things like venues, you know, what you're drinking, what you're eating, that environment that you're in is what people are spending the most time in. I think I would always invest in great photography and great videography because that is something that will be with you forever. If there is kind of costs that need to be cut, I would definitely invest in the decorations around the bridal table and maybe kind of go more conservative on maybe half the tables. But ultimately, it's great to go see that person, see somebody more cost effective, see somebody in the middle, and then they can decide which direction they want to go. But I would definitely be making recommendations out of the three quotes, but ultimately, it's up to the client what they want to choose. [00:31:01][65.0]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:31:02] That's really good advice. And do you see any we haven't really talked about same sex marriages specifically, although I'm sure pretty. Much everything that we've talked about applies to same sex marriages equally. [00:31:14][11.8]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:31:15] Absolutely. I mean, ultimately with same sex marriages, you're potentially looking at let's say it was, you know, two men in a gay couple. You're ultimately looking at somebody probably with a higher income because both of them are probably in a kind of higher position, earning a lot more. And so, yes, you did tend to find that they would have larger budgets to contribute towards weddings. And and that's kind of, again, very exciting that that we get to kind of invest those those funds for them. [00:31:49][34.0]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:31:49] And so also on that, when you organize a wedding, do you do different religious ceremonies as well? Like, do you have a good understanding of different religious ceremonies and how they each one's got their own traditions? [00:32:03][13.9]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:32:04] Absolutely. Again, really the favorite part is how we kind of incorporate, for example, you know, maybe a Chinese bride with an Aussie group, you know, and we're doing the kind of Chinese tea ceremony. We're doing the Chinese dual games. And there's kind of a whole process around that that we kind of implement into their day. And it's kind of really fun. And, you know, things like Persian weddings, you know, they have this amazing kind of sugar feast laid out during the ceremony with this beautiful, ornate frame. And actually, in Persian culture, they are married when they dip their fingers into honey and lick each other's fingers, you know, like. So it's such an interesting thing to kind of bring those traditional elements into this kind of very modern wedding. Korean they do this really cool ceremony where the mums and dads kind of throw plums onto this kind of silk scarf that the bride and groom holding and they kind of try and get the plums to get off the scarf. That makes sense. And ultimately, if any plums remain within the scarf, that's how many children you're going to have. So it's really kind of so interesting because Aussie so multicultural, you always every single couple is a new kind of fusion of different cultures. And that's that's one of my favorite things, to find a way of bringing those those two different backgrounds together and making feel that their parents feel that we have made sure that we have covered all the traditions and implemented them into the way. [00:33:48][103.3]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:33:48] What is your experience with and I think it can be controversial is the idea of receiving gifts or doing a wishing well? Do you find that there's any trends or do you provide advice with those two options or options to receive gifts or money? [00:34:04][15.8]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:34:05] I think there is a very strong trend in encash these days, guys. I feel like the gift registry has potentially left the building a little maybe again. When I first started back in 2009, we were potentially definitely doing more gift registries. But I tend to find that most people are now doing some form of wishing well, some sort of contribution to their lives or to their honeymoon. I think it also depends on their backgrounds, kind of maybe they were old English and kind of maybe they would prefer not to receive gifts of cash, then definitely gift registries more to them. But I tend to find these kind of younger couples are going into their lives. We are definitely doing more wishing well. [00:34:50][45.2]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:34:51] Yeah, that's right. And I think I would have a strong preference towards a wishing well because I already live with my partner. We are in a house together. We have our staff. I don't need an upgrade on the stuff that I have, you know, I think yeah. But I think it's probably more practical, [00:35:06][15.0]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:35:06] but I agree. [00:35:08][1.2]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:35:08] That's great. Thank you so much, Fiona. Thanks for coming on the show. And I've really enjoyed this conversation. [00:35:12][4.6]

Fiona Dean-Dundas: [00:35:13] Thank you so much for having me. [00:35:14][1.0]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:35:15] Thank you so much, Fiona, for coming on the show. I feel really pumped and excited after listening to everything that she had to say. I feel a lot keener to plan a wedding or like spend for a wedding before. I just felt a little bit pressured to, you know, have to invite certain family members and have to do it in a church and have to do it a certain way. But that's not really what I want. I want I just really want it to be like my very best friends and really go large for those people that I am going to say day today and the people that I do share my life with. Does that make sense? [00:35:48][33.7]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:35:49] Yeah, honestly, I'm more excited about, like, the creative ways of saving money than I am planning that the getting married like that seems so much fun to me now. Yeah, and it's funny with the parental contributions as well, I get thinking about that and how they might want to say, oh, might want to be a part of the whole planning our. Specked kind of puts me off having a parent contributing. [00:36:13][23.6]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:36:14] Yeah, it's true, but I think it's important. I mean, it depends on you means obviously and not everyone can afford to contribute thousands of dollars to, you know, a one day thing. But I think it's it's kind of like a nice way for them to be involved and share that day with the ordinary. It just really just depends. [00:36:32][18.8]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:36:33] Joel, I found quite triggering is when she was talking about, like the age of Instagram and how that has impacted weddings and people going big or going like go big, go home just because it would make a good photo on their Instagram. I just don't understand. And I work in marketing. I like my love is Instagram, and I just would not spend that amount of money just for a good photo to show the masses. [00:36:53][20.0]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:36:54] Yeah, it just goes back to values, though, doesn't it? Like I do get from one perspective, like you only live once you're in the young once like this is you one day, like go large. I get that and I probably will have an aspect of that. Like I do have a dream that I'll have. And this is a little bit extra. But I do have a dream that I'll have apples and oysters somewhere. [00:37:14][20.1]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:37:15] Oysters. Yeah, I'm going to have to go pick them and shuko myself maybe. [00:37:22][6.8]

Carmel Moorhead: [00:37:23] But that's fine. I like, I just have a dream that I'll have those two aspects of the game that I don't know why. But anyway. Yeah, I know what you're saying. It's, it just goes back to values though. And as Fiona said, like if you have the money and that's something that you want to spend it on, then like, you know, go for enjoy. [00:37:39][16.0]

Zoe Moorhead: [00:37:40] Oh well, having said that, although Trig is me, I do support it if that's what someone wants to do. I'm not shaming anyone in the way they want to have that wedding anyway. That's probably it. With today's episode. I'd like to think everyone that was involved, as always, if you had a thought or wanted to contribute something or just want to tell me off for, like, not really wanting to get married or supporting them into wedding stuff, please feel free to email us at npl@equitymates.com Or you can reach out to us on our Instagram at meet pay love, please also write and review us. Every little bit helps when it comes to discovering a new podcast. Thank you to those who already have. Anyway, it's been a pleasure and we'll catch you next week. [00:37:40][0.0]

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