David Tutera Gets Real: High Style Weddings On A Budget

by Jolene Rae Harrington, Media & Communications Director

Recently, I had the opportunity to interview celebrity wedding planner David Tutera at the Langham Huntington Hotel in Pasadena. Even though he’s worked on events with such VIPs as Jennifer Lopez and Vice President Al Gore, I was impressed by his enthusiasm for helping non-famous brides have equally stellar weddings.

During our chat, David also shared some of his wedding tips for ways to get high style with lower cost.

Here are some notes on our conversation, and take aways that can help you save some serious bucks on your big day!


Your wedding stationery tells a story; it’s the first chance to get your guests to feel invested in your wedding.

The Take Away: You don’t have to spend a lot to make a strong first impression.

The Wedding Dress

Sample Sales are good ways to save money, but beware: Check the dresses for stains, damage, fit, and need for pressing. Repairs, alterations and dry cleaning cost extra!

The Take Away: Even if it costs less, make sure it still looks good on you!

Bridesmaids’ Dresses

Jolene and David love twobirds bridesmaids’ dresses. The line offers a rainbow of colors, and the versatile dresses can be worn 15 different ways.

The Take Away: Be flexible by letting your 'maids pick their own style of dress based on personal style and body type, but keep control of the overall cohesion.

Think Style, Not Theme

“Theme” is the wrong way to think of your wedding. Instead, think in terms of “style,” and then use it sparingly throughout your event.

The Take Away: Less is more.

It’s All In The Flow

All-in-one venues have certain challenges, so try shaking things up with the tips below.

The Take Away: Change it up!

Wedding Music

David says: “Music is the heartbeat to any celebration!”

The Take Away: A DJ or live band with an MC is a wise investment.

Outdoor Events

How to make rustic outdoor venues sophisticated and chic? David likes contrast because it’s more exciting.

The Take Away: Do the unexpected.

Cocktail Receptions

If you want to have a great wedding, throw a great cocktail party… BUT make sure your guests feel taken care of (and fed!).

The Take Away: Keep the food and drink dynamic.

Courtesy: The Golden Rule

Courtesy doesn't cost a dime, so make sure you're being a gracious host.

The Take Away: Make your guests feel well taken care of!

A Wedding Coordinator—Luxury or Necessity?

It is an added expense, but David believes it’s also a necessity.

The Take Away: The right wedding planner pays for itself!

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Some clients may have paid to be placed in our editorial and some of these links may be affiliate; however, we never include a venue, vendor, or product unless they have a proper place here. This is part of our Core Values. We create our website first and foremost to be good for the couples using it to plan their Big Day. We won't stray from that for a few advertising dollars. #scoutshonor

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