Monday, July 13, 2009

The first steps in my venue search

{picture from my personal collection}

I wish I could look into a magic crystal ball and it would point me in the right direction of a venue that would fit our top ten requirements & be within budget of 10K, but doing that in L.A is muy dificil! I'm not saying it can't be done, I'm sure it has been done many times, but my problem is that I don't want to do it without sacrificing too much of what we want. The past 3 months I have focused my attention on the venue since this is going to take up probably 60% of the budget and would dictate our other vendors such as florist, DJ, photographer etc. Here is how I went about trying to find a venue:
  • Look through all the wedding sites.
  • Make excel sheet, so I could keep track of the ones I researched. I have 4 tabs in the excel sheet 1: List of venues that are appealing and seem to be within budget, 2: Venues that are BYO (bring your own), 3: No Venues, venues that did not make the cut 4: Venues that I went to see and are a possibility. *Here* is a template for you to use for your own personal use.
  • Add venues to excel sheet & email the ones I wanted more info from and once they gave me the info add it to excel sheet.
  • Look through excel sheet and grey out those that were out of the budget, which was seriously 95% of them and those that didn't fit the bill of the top ten list.
  • Make a list of the ones that are potential, call them and make an appointment.
How did you find your venue? Did you know right away it was the "one"?


  1. Hmmm. I wish I knew more about LA sites to help you.
    I don't even remember how we found our venue. Possibly
    But it is a restaurant and has actually had a few weddings.

    Look for community centers, historical mansions, or even restaurants. There are low site fees at the first two and the third can be surprisingly affordable though they may not do inclusive packages.

    We both loved the architecture and feel of our venue. We are renting the whole place (Actually more than we wanted) because it is on Sunday and they are only opening for us. I negotiated down their minimum and at the end we are pretty happy with it.

    We are doing a 1 pm - 6 pm reception which really saved also. Just a thought but I know it's not on your top 10.

  2. My fiance and I tried to make dinner reservations at a restaurant, and found that they were closed that night for a wedding. So instead, he spirited me away for lunch. As we sat there, taking in our surroundings, we thought, "Did they say they were closed for a... wedding?" We knew that afternoon that this had to be the place.

  3. Glad I stumbled across your site! Found it through Pink Argyle. I planned a wedding in downtown LA while living in West LA. Nice to see a local gal blogging! Best of luck with your planning :)

  4. I found my venue randomly on as the back ad page of an insert in our local indie rag. The place is about 5 miles from our house and we never knew it existed.
    Check into Sundays and/or Fridays if you don't mind the non-Saturday thing. My venue was HALF the cost on a Sunday. SOLD! ;)

  5. There's a great spreadsheet prepared by another blogger at Also, definitely consider a luncheon at Lawry's like From one Westsider to another: good luck!

  6. Thank you so much chicncheap, The Frugal Fabulous Bride, Carly, The Thirty-Something Bride & Lisa for all your great comments & feedback. The search continues but I feel we are getting closer to finding it!


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