Weddings are a wonderful occasion that brings together two separate families to build relationships to become one big happy family. It is a culmination of the hard work by the bride and groom to showcase their love and appreciation for everyone that had a hand in helping them find each other and bloom in their love. But for many ethically conscious couples, there is a lot of guilt and worry around weddings.
Someone who lives a sustainable life, knowing that weddings generate a lot of waste can experience anxiety when planning one. But there is no reason you cannot have the wedding of your dreams. There are many more options you can choose from these days to help you make sure that your wedding suits your environmentally friendly lifestyle.
Renting or preparing outdoor wedding venues is a good way to keep down electricity and lighting costs while providing a natural background for memorable pictures. Wearing your mother’s dress is a sweet way to connect with her and have a sustainable yet beautiful wedding gown. You and your bridesmaids can take a class on making flower crowns so you can have lovely accessories on the day that become keepsakes instead of trash. Knowing your options can help you to make the best green choices for your special day.
Single-Use Paper and Plastics
Having an outdoor wedding can mean that it is difficult to have real cutlery and plates. The chances for accidents are high and most caterers would want to keep their plates safe. They will offer plastic and paper alternatives but this is very bad for the environment.
When choosing a caterer ask for their sustainable and reusable dishware or if they have compost-able paper dishware. There are many companies that make biodegradable and sturdy paper dishes and cutlery so there is no reason you cannot use these for your wedding. Many of these companies also offer a variety of straws from paper to bamboo. You may want to not have straws but some guests expect it in their drinks. With sustainably made straws, you can be sure that every aspect of your wedding does not harm the environment while catering to your guests’ needs.
If you are having flowers as part of your decorations for the wedding, you may be concerned about sending them to a landfill after a single day’s use. Talk with your florist and the wedding venue to make sure that there is a different plan for the flowers.
You can choose to donate them via your florist to senior care homes and the local hospitals. If your florist does not offer this option, there are organizations that do and will happily coordinate with you to collect the flowers after the ceremony.
There is a chance that this is not an option for you in your area. In that case, you may want to consider donating your flowers to the local community garden or to local farmers for composting. You can add on any food waste from your wedding to this donation as well. This ensures that the flowers and the food waste go on to benefit the environment and do not become waste.
Work with a catering firm that sources their ingredients from local sources to reduce the fuel waste of bringing in products for your wedding. A caterer that works with local farmers and grocers shares your values and is more likely to understand your needs. You can have a delicious buffet that you know supported the community and did not contribute toxic carbon emissions to the world.
Choosing seasonal vegetables and fruits for the meals can help the caterer to give you fresh and delicious meals as well. It will keep the costs down and if you have a seasonal theme wedding, then it will enhance the theme even more.
Even your centerpieces can be functional if you incorporate them into your wedding theme. Choose pretty succulents in attractive pots and match them to your wedding colors. Have them on the tables as centerpieces and let your guests know that they are wedding favors as well.
While locally-sourced flowers that are sustainably grown can look great, a succulent is more lasting. The flowers would still be single-use and you would have to arrange for donations or composting. With succulents that act as both centerpiece and wedding favor, you are getting a pretty decoration that can also be a great memento for your guests.
Succulents are easy to look after and will not impose too heavily on your guest to develop a green thumb. Put a QR code on the side of every pot that guests can scan. This QR code can lead them to information on how to care for a succulent, so they do not feel overwhelmed by the need to research care instructions by themselves.