Weddings. Are. Expensive. We all know this. So it’s perfectly natural to try to cut as many corners as possible. Thoughts like, “I bet those party favors wouldn’t be all that tough to make at home,” or, “Would anyone really notice if the flowers were fake?” are probably running rampant through your head right now.

However, cutting corners can be a dangerous game. Here are just a few examples of when you simply have to just buckle down and dish out the dough.

1.) The band or DJ. No, just because your cousin owns an iPod and knows how to work it does not mean he is even remotely qualified to determine which blend of original music and cliché wedding songs is going to be best combination for your wedding reception. Does he know how to get people up on the dance floor? Does he know how to make “The Chicken Song” someone everyone wants to participate in rather than someone everyone groans over? Does he have the censored version of your favorite Drake song so you don’t have to worry about offending your grandmother should it come on a little earlier than expected? The answer to all these questions is no. And even if you answered ‘yes’ to one of them, it doesn’t count. Hire a professional entertainer.


2.) Hair and makeup personnel. This one isn’t necessary all the time (you’re getting married on the beach with your hair in loose waves and a single witness), but for the most part you need to hire a professional. There are so many things to stress about on your wedding day, that your hair and makeup often come last unless you have a set appointment. I can’t count the number of weddings I’ve been to where there have been delays because the bride was in the back “touching up.” You know why she was constantly “touching up?” Because her hair went flat because she didn’t know how to do it in the humidity, or because she’s sweating and the makeup she usually uses is coming off. A professional hair stylist can create a hairstyle that won’t be going anywhere, and a true makeup artist will be able to give you a look that will last the whole night through.

3.) The photographer. There seems to be an epidemic in this country right now with people who claim to be photographers and people who actually are photographers. Your sister-in-law who just got a new camera is not a professional photographer. Does she understand how to use lighting? Where to stand to get the best shots without being in the way? What about how to properly edit photos, how take naturally flattering pictures or which angles set you a part…the fact is, it looks easy but it’s not. These are going to be memories you’ll want to remember for the rest of your life, make sure you get them done right. Otherwise, the moments you think are being capture could turn out to look like this: