There’s a growing consciousness with us all now about how we personally need to make a difference and live more sustainably.
David Attenborough certainly got the British public thinking when he showed the town-sized areas of floating plastic that are littering our oceans, resulting in many people becoming much more aware of their use of disposable water bottles, unnecessary packaging in supermarkets and with online deliveries.
So as a modern bride you may well have thought about how you could have a green wedding and make it more sustainable and with less of a footprint on the planet. Here are some ideas for you to consider.
Using things more than once, recycling or up cycling (when you give an old favourite a makeover) is becoming more and more of a thing.
One classic way you can up cycle at your wedding is by wearing your mother/grandmother/aunt’s or close relative’s wedding dress. Have a look at their wedding photographs and see if their dress would work for you. With their permission you could make a few alterations so it fits you perfectly and maybe change the neckline, the bodice or the sleeves so that it looks a little bit more contemporary.
Wear a vintage gown like this and you know that your wedding will be very original and personal. Have any alterations done by a professional dressmaker so they’re perfect.
You might also like to see if you can borrow a wedding veil too. They’re an item that doesn’t get very much wear and they don’t date too much either.
You could also hire a wedding dress, some designer dresses are available to hire at a fraction of the cost they would be to buy.
The other green wedding trick is to rent or borrow items to decorate your wedding venue. Don’t buy something you’re likely to use only once and which may end up being taken to the dump and landfill because you don’t have storage space for it.
Bird cages for invitations and table centrepieces, wedding post boxes, aisle runners, lanterns, oversized candelabras, these are all items that will style up a wedding beautifully and our stylists have whole storerooms of options. So using a wedding stylist is in fact very green as you can be assured that everything will be carefully boxed up after your wedding and put to good use again.
Lovely though it is getting married on a beach somewhere exotic, it does mean that your guests will probably have to get on a plane to get there.
Instead why not source venues that are more local? We can help you to turn a venue into just about anything you want it to be.
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Rather than having exotic fruits and vegetables (we’re thinking kiwi fruits, bananas, pineapples…) use local produce. Ask your caterer to serve delicious apple pies, blackberry crumbles. Serve British strawberries and raspberries in the summer.
The same applies to meats. Lamb and beef are at their best at different times of year as are different vegetables like parsnips, asparagus and new potatoes.
Choose flowers that are in season to keep your green credentials intact. That’s tulips, narcissi, hyacinths and blossom in spring. Hydrangeas and peonies in summer. Talk to your florist or wedding stylist about what’s best for the month in which you’re marrying. Avoid having flowers that have to be flown in from far-off continents. They’ll be more expensive and ramp up those air miles.
You can buy seed wedding favours which are the perfect take-home gift. Your guests can grow the flowers in their gardens or on a balcony and the flowers will provide food for bees. Many packs can be personalised with your name and the date of your wedding and a green charity will also receive a donation.
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Avoid any plastic packaging with your invitations and don’t use glitter (it doesn’t biodegrade and ends up in the oceans). There are many companies around now who specialise in eco-friendly invitations. They may feature recycled paper and biodegradable fabrics but they still look eye-catching and appealing.
If you want to forget paper altogether you could opt for a service like Evite.
When you’re creating your wish list, look carefully into your choices. Opt for bed linen made from sustainable material like bamboo (it’s softer than it sounds). You could ask for trees to be planted in woodland. Maybe you could even ask for a contribution towards solar panels in your home!
Credit: Main image via June Bug Weddings