How to have a sustainable wedding:
The scope of wedding planning has changed significantly over the past few years. In recent trends we are seeing a rise in popularity among the smaller, more intimate affair for your wedding day, and away from a giant celebration. With this shift, we are also seeing an increase in eco-friendly and sustainable wedding efforts. This eco-friendly push can be seen within decor, apparel, vendors, catering, invitations, flowers, registries, and more. We have put together a guide on how to make your wedding as sustainable and eco-friendly as possible.
Vintage, Reused and Consigned Wedding Dress + Bridesmaids Dresses
Dearly Consignment Bridal shop in Spokane, WA is the perfect place for brides looking to sell or purchase a gown sustainably. In order to consign your wedding gown or bridesmaids’ dresses, check out their dress qualifications here. Their selection is trendy, modern, and up to 70% off of retail pricing.
Alternatively, you can reuse a wedding gown from a relative and have it tailored to fit, or find a vintage dress from a second-hand store to bring back to life!
Eco-friendly Vendors that offer Recycling Services
In order to prevent pollution, waste, and harm to our environment, finding a venue with green efforts is extremely important. Sustainability efforts from a venue could include on-site recycling, solar panels and generators, carpool services, and zero-waste. When searching for your perfect venue, take these factors into consideration. Big parties leave behind lots of paper, plastic, and messes.
Ethical Wedding Rings with Conflict-free Diamonds
Ethical rings are made with gemstones and metals that came from conflict-free environments. This means that they were mined or created by people in fair working conditions, and with minimal impact on the environment. HoneyBee Goldsmiths makes gorgeous custom wedding and engagement rings using only conflict-free diamonds and metals. They also do heirloom restoration if you have a treasured ring passed down in your family that you want to restore. Check out more of their work here.
Sustainable decor is easier to achieve than you may think. The best way to decorate your ceremony and reception areas is with pieces from other weddings, from second-hand and thrift stores, or items you can make at home! Your decor is definitely not something you should spend a pretty penny on. Check on Facebook marketplace and Offer Up for vases, arches, mirrors, candlestick holders, and anything else that would go well with your theme (all things that can be reused). Look at thrift stores for items like glassware, mason jars, and pretty fabric that you can use for tablecloths. Tree stumps make great cake or dessert stands. We have a discussion section on our website called the Forum where you can actually shop or swap for wedding decor, apparel, rentals, and more. Swap & Shop here: https://applebrides.com/forum/t/swap-shop
Switch the plastic balloons for cut-out ones, and go with reusable paper floating lanterns to give you electricity-free lighting.
Sustainable Flower Choice
As for flowers, you have some good options that are more sustainable than cut flowers. Dried flowers make a beautiful arrangement and can be preserved long after the wedding. Another option is to have live plants and flowers like orchids that can be repotted and enjoyed after your big day.
Sustainable Wedding Favors
Wedding favors are certainly not necessary, however, they make a special touch. For an eco-friendly wedding favor, you can do a bag of flower seeds for your guests to plant at home or something edible like chocolates. Another idea would be coffee grounds or a custom tea blend. This way, the gift will be either eaten or enjoyed sustainably by your guests. Avoid plastic packaging of course!
Sustainable Send Off
For your big exit, skip the confetti (uneconomical) and choose something that won’t harm the environment. Safer alternatives to rice and confetti are rose petals, lavender, dried flowers, or leaves.
An Eco-friendly Registry
Another beneficial strategy for having a sustainable wedding is to create an eco-friendly registry. This could include composting bings, recycled glass vases, natural fiber baskets, non-toxic laundry bundles, metal straws, and reusable grocery bags. A great sustainable houseware brand here. Another sustainable option is to have your guests donate to a charity of your choice.
Recycled Paper Invitations or Virtual Invites
The best option for sustainable invitations is a virtual invite. This doesn’t have to look cheap! Joy is an online invitation platform that offers online and print invitations. Another great option is to use recycled paper for your invites which a number of invitation companies offer.
Local Food + Beverage
Lastly, we will review how to keep the dining portion of your evening as sustainable as possible. If you are serving dinner at your reception, skip the buffet! Trust us when we say that there’s always a surplus of food that ends up going to waste when you do a buffet-style dinner. Too many people are worried about drinking and dancing to even notice the food. Going with a plated dinner will help you to keep costs lower and avoid waste. If there is remaining food afterward you can donate it to homeless shelters. Avoid single-use dishes like plastic and paper. Choose a local caterer that values local produce and seasonal ingredients. If you are supplying alcohol, choose local wineries, distilleries, or breweries.
Local mobile bars:
In finishing, these sustainable trends are not required when planning your wedding, however, they will help you to avoid negatively impacting the environment. Hopefully, you can utilize one or more of these suggestions when planning your big day in order to avoid excessive waste. Happy wedding planning 🙂