What we spent on our Giando on the Water wedding



Photo: Fatima Mughal-Ahsan Photography

As part of our real weddings series, “The Cost of Tying the Knot,” we ask couples to share their real wedding costs with us. If you’d like to be a part of the series, take our questionnaire, and we’ll be in touch. You are welcome to remain anonymous, or not.


Amanda Jackson, 30, works for a menswear accessory company

Matthew Jackson, 28, works in insurance

Current Neighborhood:

Crown Heights

Wedding Date:

Saturday, November 12, 2016


Photo: Fatima Mughal-Ahsan Photography

Wedding Location:

Giando on the Water, Williamsburg

Cost Breakdown:

Venue/Food & Beverage: $40,000

($185 per guest X 200 guests +$1000 ceremony fee)

Officiant $40

All Seasons Flowers $2600

Fatima Mughal-Ahsan Photography $2200

(Included 10 hours coverage, second photographer, engagement shoot and boudoir shoot)

Photo Booth: Sharingbox $1000

Video: WeCinema $3000

Music/DJ: Beat Train Productions $1700

Décor/Signage from Etsy $2000

BJ Linens $3000

Wedding Gown $6500

(Hayley Paige from Wedding Ateliers, NYC)

Total cost: $62,040


Photo: Fatima Mughal-Ahsan Photography

How We Met

We met online before the app era. I was done with dating but left my profile up in case someone really great just happened to be out there. My profile ended in “P.S. I can dance better than you” and in Matthew’s thoughtful message he wrote back “P.S. I’ll take that challenge.” We then a month or so chatting we met up and just never stopped seeing each other.

How did you choose the venue and how did it stack up to your expectations?

I knew I wanted to get married in Brooklyn, and saw probably a dozen or so venues that just didn’t feel right. I never thought I wanted to get married outside especially in the fall but the owner of Giando’s walked us outside, and with the full Manhattan skyline, I cried. The venue did everything, as well as let me have a “red carpet formal” wedding just to step it up a notch.

Of all your expenses, what was the most surprising cost? What did you feel you got the least value out of, and what did you get the most value out of?

The most surprising cost was the linens. For one night of use, it seems insane to pay thousands of dollars, even for sequins.

The most value was the venue. With everything included, this was a steal. Everyone was blown away by the service, the view and the food.

What were your best and worst wedding day moments? Any surprises crises?

For me, the best moment was definitely reading our vows and hearing what he had to say. My worst was when the wedding ended!

My husband would say the worst moment for him was when the ceremony was delayed a few minutes because the bus carting all our wedding guests was a little late.

Our biggest mishap was when the bus left at the end of the night without us, the Bride and Groom! My father-in-law quickly saved the day, making the bus come back to get us after they dropped off the wedding guests.


Photo: Fatima Mughal-Ahsan Photography

If you had it all to do over again, what would you have chosen to do differently?

There really isn’t a lot I would change.

I would add a few pictures to be taken. I would have made sure my bridesmaids had shawls while they were standing outside because it was a little chilly. I would have spent more time with a few people at the wedding as it gets super chaotic and you just don’t get to spend time with everyone there.

What do you do as a couple when you’re not planning a wedding?

As a couple we’ve joined bocce leagues and enjoy happy hours. I force him to go to Broadway shows that he ultimately likes and we love all things New York sports.