How To Plan A Wedding Under 15 Lakhs

by Namrata Nautiyal
1 comment
Wedding Under 15 Lakhs

I have been writing the budget wedding posts for awhile now. I know some of you who have just got engaged, are in the middle of calculating your wedding budget. In this post, I will cover all of your wedding expenses to plan a Wedding Under 15 Lakhs.

Wedding Under 15 Lakhs is a fairly good healthy budget to start with. You can get reasonably good wedding vendors, venue and outfit choices within this. I am obviously not including gold. Only because there are so many variations to gold. Some brides inherit their family heirlooms, others tend to spend based on their culture, etc. It’s just something I don’t want to get myself into.

If you still want to include gold in this budget, here’s what you gotta do. Keep INR 5 Lakhs aside for gold and other jewellery. Now, your working budget for the wedding is 10 Lakhs. Check the link below for the wedding budget breakup.

How To Plan A Wedding Under 10 Lakhs

Here’s a list of things that are included in the INR 15 Lakh wedding budget.

  • Outfits (Bride, Family, Gifting, Trousseau) – Budget INR 1.85 Lakhs
  • Brides Jewellery – Budget INR 30,000
  • 3 Wedding Events (Haldi+Mehendi, Wedding, Reception)
  • Decorator Charges for 3 events – Budget INR 2.45 Lakhs
  • Guests – 50 for Mehendi, Haldi. 100 for Wedding. 500 for Reception.
  • Venue + Food – Budget INR 7.10 Lakhs for 3 events
  • Photography (Candid+Video) – Budget INR 2.25 Lakhs
  • Brides Makeup – INR 22,500
  • Wedding Favours – INR 10,000
  • Wedding Invites – INR 10,000
  • Additional Money (Miscellaneous) Costs – INR 62,500

This is only a rough estimate of the breakup for the full wedding cost under 15 lakhs. You may choose to spend more or less within these categories.

Now, if you are not comfortable spending 15 Lakhs on your wedding. I get you. You might like to see my other wedding budget posts I have written in the past.

How To Plan A Wedding Under 2 Lakhs?

BONUS: Free Download Budget Wedding Calculator

Decoration Budget – INR 2.45 Lakhs for 3 Events

Breakup of decoration and decorators charges for haldi + mehendi, wedding ceremony and reception is as follows:

  • Haldi + Mehendi Budget – INR 20,000
  • Wedding Decor Budget – INR 1,00,000
  • Reception Decor Budget – INR 1,25,000

General Tip: Go for more lights in your decor than props. Generator charges are fixed for the most part. So think lanterns, fairy lights, Edison bulbs and so on.

Chances are if you’re having a wedding and reception at the same venue, you can negotiate the decor charges even more. A 2.25 Lakh wedding decor budget should get you decent props, and an Instagram worthy decor easily. Keep in mind, the ones you see all over the internet, usually costs upwards INR 5 Lakhs an event. People really spend on weddings, but this budget should get you pretty decent stuff.

Ok, now I want to start with the fun stuff first. There are a lot of ways you can save on decor and get away with a stunning expensive looking decor. I would highly recommend you trying out some of these ideas for your haldi and mehendi event. You can try and save here, and spend the extra cash for your reception and wedding decor.

Affordable Haldi & Mehendi Decor Ideas

1. Buy Tassels in Bulk for as low as INR 175 for 50 pieces

You can easily DIY a big dream catcher by sitting one afternoon. All you need is some woollen threads or regular threads, some tassels and some fake greens. You can alternatively add real ferns for your actual mehendi decor.

You can also take it one step ahead by adding baby tassels to your mehendi jewellery. I am not sure where you can find this jewellery from. In case you do, let me know. Will update the same on this post.

2. Buy strings of Pom-Pom from any regular fabric market

Pom-Pom strings come for as cheap as INR 20 a meter. You don’t need a decorator to fetch you these for your mehendi decor. There are tons of ideas of using pom-pom for your wedding house decor, and your mehendi venue decor.

12 Ways Of Using Pom Pom For Mehendi Decor

I love just how creative brides are getting these days. If you are wearing pastel, light lehengas and want just a dash of pop. Then adding pom-poms to your latkans, kaleere are good ways to innovate your look.

Picture Source – Wed Me Good

The thing about pom-poms is you don’t have to put in an effort. Just hang it as is, and it is decor in itself. You can do various permutation combinations with colours, placement. Just be creative.

I have also extensively written on mehendi decor props and budget. You might want to have a look at those posts. Pick and choose your props and I guarantee you, you will save a ton of money and have a fabulous prewedding function as well.

I am not getting too much into the main wedding decor. It’s hard to manage on your own, and some headaches are best given away to others. So let the decorator take care of the main wedding and reception decor. You have INR 2.25 Lakhs to spend on your main wedding functions.

Bride + Family’s Outfits – Budget INR 1.85 Lakhs

  • Main Wedding Dress – Budget INR 20,000
  • Reception Dress – Budget INR 70,000
  • Pre-Wedding Dress – Budget INR 15,000
  • Trousseau – Budget INR 25,000
  • Mum’s Outfits – Budget INR 18,000
  • Dad’s Outfits – Budget INR 12,000
  • Siblings Outfits – Budget INR 25,000

Now I’m not going to get into individual options because this post will never end otherwise. But here’s a quick breakup of how to achieve the maximum in this budget.

Go for a saree for the wedding ceremony and wear your favourite designer lehenga for the reception. If you are creative enough, do a DIY pre-wedding lehenga by opting for pure silk banarasi or chikankari outfit. They will fit in the budget and overall give you a designer worthy look as well.

At INR 70k, some of you might say “koi bhi designer lehenga nahi milne wala hai“. I agree. But think of it this way. It is so much better than having an INR 50k and under budget for a lehenga.

Go to retail stores like Kalki Fashion, RoopKala, Meena Bazaar, Frontier Raas etc. I bet you will easily find something heavy, wedding appropriate and gorgeous! If you are still hell-bent on a legit designer lehenga, then check these designers out.

Lehenga by Twisted Threads

For pre-wedding lehengas, there are a bunch of designers and stores that do amazing budget lehengas. You can check them out on Frugal2Fab Shop.

For your mum, the best thing is to invest in pure silk sarees. You can check out Nallis, Meena Bazaar, Frontier Raas and so on. Some of these stores keep both traditional and new design looks in their collection which are well worth the price.

Best Budget Silk Saree Store In Mumbai

If you are looking for a budget silk saree store, Balaji Silks in Bhandup, Mumbai is my recommendation for you. They keep everything from banarasi to paithani, kanjeevarams and more at very reasonable prices. (I picked my wedding saree + trousseau from there + two more of my brides have done their entire shopping from that store) So you know that is validation right there.

Outfit Ideas For Brides Sister

Banarasi lehengas and chikankari lehengas are trending this season. Rather than buying a designer piece, try getting one stitched locally. The fabrics itself might cost you in the INR 5-8k price range. But the final product will be well worth it. If you are not too much into designing lehengas yourself, here are some of my previous posts on budget lehengas that you may like.

Wedding Jewellery – Budget INR 30,000

Photo Credits: Happy Frames Photography

Between real jewellery and artificial, the best way is to mix them both. I’m sure you can arrange for gold either through your family or buy some at the last minute. The real challenge comes in buying artificial or semi precious jewellery.

While polka, Kundan, jadau are all very much in demand. They do come at a steep price. I know some of you have been obsessing about Sabyasachi jewellery. To tell you the truth, a single set from Sabyasachi’s heritage collection might come at a higher price than our entire wedding budget of this post. So safe to assume you can’t get your hands on one of those.

But there are quite a few good affordable markets you can try for wedding jewellery. For instance, Lajpat Nagar & Chandni Chowk in Delhi. Bhuleshwar in Mumbai. These are wholesale as well as retail stores. You can easily get a heavy bridal set (complete with maang-tikka, nath, and others) in under 10-15k.

If your city doesn’t have a fantastic wholesale market for bridal jewellery, you can try shopping online as well. I found one UK website which does reasonably priced bridal jewellery and ships worldwide. Have a look.

This UK Bridal Jewellery Store Will Solve All Your Wedding Jewellery Needs

Jewellery by Purab Paschim

Instagram Wedding Jewellery Stores

Off late, there are lots of new Instagram stores for bridal jewellery. They have amazing designs but are expensive as well. So while they are nice to browse through, you really got to pick and choose when you invest in these.

I have never really written much about wedding jewellery let alone Instagram jewellery. Turns out you didn’t miss much. I did a quick research on some brands, and I’m listing down the same. Honestly, if you’re on a budget, I wouldn’t recommend going for any of these because they are expensive. They are beautiful but expensive.

  • Purab Paschim – Necklace alone starts from INR 20k a piece
  • Mortantra – Chaandbaali earrings start from INR 5000
  • Tyaani by Karan Johar – Necklace chokers start at INR 1.4 Lakhs

We all say to ourselves that we will invest in something that we will use later on as well. Truth is, no we won’t. A bridal piece can either be bridal or it is not bridal enough.

The other alternative is to rent out jewellery. Stick to your golds. For all other bridal looks, find out local rent options. In Mumbai, I recall one could get a heavy full bridal jewellery set for as low as 1000 bucks a day price. 1000 vs 30,000 may be even more. You do the math 🙂

Wedding Photographers – Budget INR 2.25 Lakhs

If there is one thing I’ve learnt about weddings. It’s that you need to invest in your photography team to really make your big day shine. Sure, if your budget doesn’t give you the wriggle room to stretch, then ones gotta do jugaad. But with a 15 lakhs wedding budget, you really can stretch to get your favourite photographers.

A good candid photography team will usually charge anything between INR 50,000 to INR 75,000 for a days event. If you are really hell bent on a photography team but can’t pay for the cinematography, I suggest stick with this. Add a traditional video along with your package. Traditional videographers are also giving a 2 min short clip these days.

Candid Photographers

  • WhatKnot Photography – INR 60,000 a day
  • KnotsByAMP Photography – INR 75,000 a day
  • Dipak Studios Photography – INR 55,000 a day
  • Happy Frames Photography – INR 75,000 a day
  • True Shades Photography – INR 40,000 a day

Now keep in mind cinematography doesn’t come cheap. Sometimes it costs close to a lakh a day if you go for the good ones. So you need to pick and choose carefully. Are the pictures more important to you or the video or both? If not, you might have to compromise to get both in your budget for a three-day event.

P.S. Any pictures that you see on Instagram of real brides that I and other wedding blogs put up are usually from the really-really expensive wedding photographers. While in reality spending 5-6 lakhs on photography+videography might not be everyone’s scene. You need to do some digging and there are tons of other less popular but good agencies out there.

Budget For Food – INR 7.10 Lakhs

If there is one thing you must not worry about over spending on. It’s the food. Think of it as once in a lifetime party you’re throwing for all of your guests. The breakup for food is as follows:

  • Mehendi + Haldi for 50 guests – Budget INR 20,000 at 200 per plate
  • Wedding for 100 guests – Budget 1,00,000 at 1000 per plate
  • Reception Party for 500 guests – Budget 6,00,000 at 1200 per plate

There is no hard and fast rule that you have to do this breakup. It might just be that your wedding and reception is a single dinner event. You might use the extra cash elsewhere then.

Usually the venue charges are inclusive of the food price. So I haven’t allocated a separate figure for the venue. For your mehendi and haldi, be creative. Add a chaat counter. You can just hire a local vendor and pay him per plate for the event. If you buy snacks in bulk from say a Haldiram or so, you should easily be able to stay under the 20k mark.

Wedding Favours – Budget INR 10,000

There are a world of options you can play around with in wedding favours. I am casually listing down some options. But you can do a whole lot more.

  • Latkans – Buy bulk at 20-50 bucks a pair
  • Earrings/Chaandbaalis – Buy from wholesale market at INR 80-100 bucks a pair
  • Succulents – INR 50-80 if you buy in bulk
  • Ethnic Clutch – INR 300 a piece (available in Dilli Haat)
  • Chanderi Dupattas – INR 300-500 a piece (for a small group)
  • Gota jewellery (rings, hand jewellery etc) – INR 20-60 a piece

if you are looking for more affordable easy ideas for mehendi favours, check out this post listed below.

30 Fun Mehendi Favor Ideas For Your Ceremony

Wedding Invites – Budget INR 10,000

Wedding Invites is one category where you can under-spend or over-spend, depending on your taste. If you like the basic traditional invites, it will cost you INR 30-50 bucks a card. The other better alternative is to make your own wedding invite along with quirky details.

What do you need to design your own wedding invite?
  • A graphic designer, some ideas, and a printing place.

My friend Aditi who got married last year spent INR 40 on her wedding invite. She had a unique design which honestly you wouldn’t find in your generic stores. All she did was hire a graphic designer, pay him for his designs and get the ideas printed in bulk. Here’s what the final wedding invite looked like:

You can see more details about this invite in the link below:

Cute Indian Cartoon Wedding Invitation Card And All Its Details

Some of you may not be all excited about finding a graphic designer and getting the work done. If you’re looking for an easy route to wedding invites, there are a bunch of websites which give free templates, fonts, designs to play around with. You can make your design and download it, and either send out emails, or print it.

Miscellaneous Expenses – Budget INR 62,500

If there is one thing I know about weddings, it is that you will always exceed your desired budget. So having spare cash allocated to nothing helps to handle the spillover. Some of you might need to accommodate guests, others might have some transportation costs. Whatever the need, you can maybe add some from other buckets and put in this one to solve the need.

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1 comment

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