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Anthony Mickeal Photography | NYC & NJ Wedding Photography blog discussing new photo shoots and the latest projects. Anthony is a NYC & NJ Wedding Photographer with a contemporary editorial style.

Hiring a NJ wedding photographer and other Wedding Budget considerations

Nj weding photographers Wedding Couple Photo 03587

 New Jersey offers a long list of activities and awesome locations but planning a wedding is no easy task, from finding a NJ wedding photographer, to video, to location, dress, venues...the list is endless. If you're planning a wedding, before you know it, you could take on too much over your budget and it happens quite frequently. You could add so many "must haves" to your wedding that you blow your budget through the roof. As a general rule 10% of your budget should be a decent guideline to finding a photographer to meet your needs. Following are wedding planning ideas that can keep you on budget and help you put together a New Jersey wedding that you, your family and closest, dearest friends will always remember fondly.

Couples marry in New Jersey for good reason. A host of New Jersey wedding venues, places like the Park Savoy, Pleasantdale Chateau, Buttonwood Manor, the Rockleigh Country Club and the Berkeley Plaza, offer facilities to hold traditional, lavish or laid back weddings and receptions at. Complementing the finest venues are indoor and outdoor visitor attractions that make for great entertainment for couples and their wedding guests.

Preparing for your NJ wedding

More than 120 miles of inviting coastline border New Jersey, one of the Northeast's smallest states. Nearby is America's largest city, New York City, a place that boast eight million residents. Favorable weather, the Jersey Shore, Wildwood, Cape May, nine national parks and surprising natural settings keep New Jersey brimming with color, change and grandeur.

When you start planning your wedding, visit a few venues. If the weather permits, check out indoor and outdoor facilities. Venues that accommodate wedding parties of 200 or more people include Lebanon Baptist camp (has a beautiful ceremony location in the woods and 2 barns), Nanina's in the Park, The Park Savoy, Flanders Valley, Trump National Golf Club and The Grand Hotel. Cut down on costs by holding your wedding and reception at the same venue, as these locations can be pricey.

Community centers like the River Winds Community Center also host weddings. Although these facilities are large, they are generally less costly. Find out if one to three cuisine choices are included in the overall wedding costs. National parks, old farms, camp grounds, beaches and community squares are great outdoor locations. Just make sure that you'll have an alternate spot for your wedding should the weather call for an indoors event.

Finding the best New Jersey wedding Photographers and Vendors

To find the best photographer in New Jersey, cake decorator, DJ and florist, consider joining New Jersey wedding discussion forums. Ask participants to recommend two three New Jersey photographers, florists, musicians and other professionals you want at your wedding. Experience counts.

Each artist, event planner and entertainer who you work with should have managed or worked at several weddings. You don't want to be the "tester" wedding. If you work with wedding planners, make sure that you can negotiate contracts for florists, caterers, bands and decorators. 

 In 2014, 93.2 million people visited New Jersey. Some of these visitors traveled to the Garden State to exchange wedding vows. Because there are dozens, if not a hundred or more great places, where you could get married in New Jersey, make choosing your wedding venue an early priority. Where you get married is going to impact how many people can attend your wedding, the type of decorations you'll have and how big a band you can afford to entertain your wedding guests with.

Early steps to preparing a great New Jersey wedding

Price, location, an indoor or outdoor location and size are features to consider when choosing a wedding venue in New Jersey. Wedding Wire and The Knot are two periodicals that list caterers who prepare delicious cuisines for weddings. You can also do an online search for New Jersey wedding caterers. Read reviews on the caterers before you start calling and checking out prices and menus. If you're having an outdoor wedding, you also want to make sure that the caterer does outdoor weddings.

New Jersey Bridal, Exquisite Bride and Bridal Garden showcase dozens of bridal salons and wedding gown vendors. As a tip, you could save money on the cost of a New Jersey wedding gown by visiting consignment shops. Brides have also found reasonably priced wedding gowns online at discount.

Selecting the best NJ wedding photographer for your personal needs

Affordable New Jersey wedding photographers may be members of the New Jersey Wedding Photographers Association. Some highly experienced wedding photographers in New Jersey work with studios. Still other talented New Jersey wedding photographers work independently. The fact is wedding photographers are always on the move so usually only have a home office.

Benefits of working with independent wedding photographer includes: consistent style (compared to companies), developing customized wedding photo packages and being able to meet the photographer at the location of your choosing to take your engagement and reception pictures.

Professional equipment that extends well beyond the best cameras, vision, creativity, spontaneity, lighting, training and experience are must have. The photographer you go with should create pictures that tell your story in a style you find pleasing.

Saving a bit more money on your Jersey wedding

Steps that could save you money when planning your wedding include getting married on a Friday or Sunday. Saturday is the most expensive day to get married on, regardless of location. Use a playlist instead of a live band or DJ. Choose flowers that are in-season or get your flowers from a grocery store flower shop. Major grocery stores that sell beautiful, fresh flowers and bouquets are  Pennington Market Florist in Princeton, New Jersey and Giant. But it might be best to go with your local flower shop rather than an expensive vendor when on a budget.

Love New Jersey wildflowers? How about the puttyroot orchid, hop clover, dense blazing star, speckled wood lily or orange day lily.

Save money on catering by asking friends and relatives who love to cook to prepare a buffet style meal. You might be surprised how many people will consider it an honor to help you ensure your wedding is a resounding success. 

Anthony Mickeal