When this couple planned their wedding, they wanted their guests to feel the love that surrounds them everyday. They made this happen by using Alverno College for their ceremony and the Polish Center of Wisconsin for the reception. Their wedding came in just over $31,000 and they still get complements on it!
As always, we were excited to hear they used some Married In Milwaukee Family Members. This included photography by Nikki Winter Photography and custom invitations by Design That Flies.
Quick Facts – Polish Center Wedding:
- Number of Guests: 175 (141 for dinner)
- Ceremony: Alverno College
- Reception: Polish Center of Wisconsin
- Total Costs: $31,171
Wedding Essentials ($5,928):
- Invitations/Stationery: $944 (included customized wedding invitations, after 8pm invites & cards).
- Cake: $125
- Desserts: $600
- Photographer: $2,640 (included two photographers, all day coverage & engagement photos.)
- Photography Permit: $131 (for botanical gardens photos)
- Flowers: $1,487 (included reception centerpieces and extra table flowers, bridal party bouquets, flower girl basket flowers, men boutonnieres & godparent, parents and grandparent corsages)
Reception and Ceremony Costs ($14,316):
- Ceremony: $200 (Alverno church rental)
- Venue: $3,500 (rental fee for the Polish Center)
- Food/Drinks: $8,826 (included: linens, plated dinner, appetizers, beer, wine & soda & after 10:00 pm snack)
- DJ/Uplighting: $1,090 (includes a $200 tip)
- Officiant: $0 (family member)
- Photo Booth: $700
Attire, Jewelry and Beauty ($5,358):
- Dress: $1,750 (includes dress, dress belt, veil and earrings).
- Bride’s Shoes: $295
- Groom’s Attire: $0 (free with other groomsmen rentals)
- Rings: $3,173
- Hair and Make-up: $140
Other Costs ($5,569):
- Rehearsal Dinner: $1,040
- Wedding Party Gifts: $1,248 (bridal party and parent gifts)
- Hotel Suite $150
- Transportation: $650 (included a 24 passenger party bus and 1 limo)
- Wedding Favors: $207 (Rishi Tea and Cigars)
- Other Costs: $2,274 (church programs & decorations, save the dates, stamps, guest book, unity item, centerpieces, extra tables, dance sandals, bathroom baskets, and other items)
A Note from the Bride and Groom
We asked the bride and groom to tell us about their planning and budgeting process, and this is what they had to say:
We are both from Milwaukee, WI and heard about our chosen venue via several recommendations. We had previously checked out several other great venues in the area and there was always something missing for us. When we went to tour the Polish Center of Wisconsin and once we heard all of the options available to us we knew immediately this was our venue!
The venue was simple like us and we had the freedom to decorate it as we pleased. The biggest selling points for us were the location of the venue, the landscape, floor plan, parking space, bar options, freedom to decorate without being charged for little extra items and of course it fit our budget! We both couldn’t be more pleased with wedding venue we picked for our wedding day!
The Polish Center of Wisconsin have their own recommended cater, Jack Norman Catering. We had the option if wanted to go outside of their recommendation, but we were happy with their recommended cater. Before our wedding day we were able to taste many of the food options which could be served at our reception. We attended an organized taste testing day which Jack Norman Catering sets up a couple times a year for those who have booked with them for their upcoming events.
It was very nice to have this and we were able to bring as many family members as we wanted for no extra charge. At the tasting if we weren’t able to taste test a specific dish we had the option of trying the dish at a planned appointment. We were also able to customize dishes based on likes and dislikes, which we did with a few items. We went through this cater for our reception appetizers, plated dinner, after 10:00 PM snack and linens. They were very well priced, budget friendly, professional and cooked our guest some very delicious food! We received many compliments on our wedding food! We loved working with Jack Norman Catering!
When looking for our perfect wedding day photographers we made sure we had these two items in mind: wedding photography is an investment and does the photographer/duo fit us as a couple?!
When doing our initial wedding photography research we became discouraged and overwhelmed due to price and all the great photographers we have in the Wisconsin area. We must have looked through 60 photographers and teams before we found our wedding photography duo. It wasn’t until we received a recommendation via a mutual friend who had them as their wedding photographers.
From our first meeting with Nikki and Bobby from Nikki Winter Photography, we knew they would be capturing some of our greatest wedding day memories. We chose them to capture our wedding day, because they are a madly in love married couple, made us feel comfortable, could have fun with us, calm during chaos, assisted us with whatever we needed and most of all their photography talent.
Their pictures captured real life moments and everything else between. All the qualities we wanted in our engagement and wedding pictures we had with this duo. Honestly, we couldn’t be more blessed with our choice. We received such great feedback and positive comments on both our wedding and engagement photos. We just loved them as photographers as well as individuals. Couldn’t be happier with the images they captured and produced for us!
When planning a wedding many often start with a theme, we however did not have a theme. We chose our wedding colors, went off of emotions and how we hoped our guest would feel attending our wedding.
We both have wonderful family and friends which are an amazing support system to us as individuals as well as a couple. This was not only our wedding day, but it was a day which we could thank those who have been involved in our lives and relationship. We wanted our guest to feel the love and fun that surrounds us every day. We are very lucky.
The things that we continue to get complimented on the most are the things we made sure to invest more of our money in; the venue, food, DJ, photography and the small details of our wedding. We knew we achieved our wedding vision when we had our guest coming up to us saying, “you can really feel the love in this room, what a fun wedding, wedding of the year and magical.”
We stayed within our budget very well and to our surprise had money left over. It’s true what they say, a wedding budget will always change and extra expenses will come up. We made sure we were prepared for these budget surprises and if weren’t for my husband I’m sure we would have gone over several times. Haha!
We also had a two year engagement which helped us in the saving area. We had everything we wanted at our wedding without having to sacrifice too much. Making a budget as well as having that extra just in case money made this wedding planning process much more relaxing and enjoyable for the us both.
– Anna and Michael – The Bride and Groom
A BIG thanks to the bride and groom for sharing their awesome Alverno Collage and Polish Center wedding and to Nikki Winter Photography for the photos!
If you’re currently working on your wedding budget, make sure to read through our previous articles featuring real Milwaukee wedding cost breakdowns.