Add green to your collection of wedding colors with a few eco-friendly touches. Your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event filled with love and laughter, and the subsequent reception is an unforgettable party. Undoubtedly, there will be plenty of trash, leftover food and empty bottles as the bash winds down, but that doesn’t mean your party can’t have sustainable touches. From natural decor to separate recycling bins, a few eco-friendly features go a long way toward looking out for the environment and giving you peace of mind on the honeymoon. You’ve picked out your dress, written your vows and signed the lease for your new apartment. Now it’s time to put the sustainable touches on your big day.
Everyone knows that weddings can get really expensive really quickly, so why not take advantage of all the great resources you have available? If you or your significant other have friends with culinary, photography, design, cosmetology, or experience in other relevant careers, ask them for help! One of the best and easiest ways to get the assistance you need on a budget is by asking your friends and family to give you the gift of service rather than a new blender. If you’re already married, how did you get help on your big day?
Paper invitations come from trees, but what if these announcements could go right back into the ground? With plantable love birds invitations, recipients will have a constant reminder of your impending nuptials in the form of a wild flower. These distinct invitations contain wildflower seeds and 100 percent recycled paper. Not only will guests appreciate the unique gesture, you’ll know that your invitations provided a little natural beauty. Spring is here, and your wedding invitations can be a part of the new bloom.
A choice as simple as having your reception inside can have big environmental implications. Indoor receptions require electricity for light sources, air conditioning and sound systems. Outdoor receptions use natural light and, when the weather is right, require no climate controllers. The result is a sustainable reception that uses natural light in lieu of electricity. For many, hosting an outdoor reception isn’t about sustainability at all. It just feels right. No matter the season, your wedding will serve as a moment of spring — a period of change as you embark on your new journey.
Distinct decor can turn any wedding venue into the unique, personal backdrop of your dreams. Selecting a theme can keep a bride-to-be up at night, but an emphasis on sustainable decorations will narrow the scope and provide directions. By exchanging vows, a couple promises that their relationship will stand the test of time. For a symbolic look, why not use furniture that has stood the test of time at your reception. Using vintage tables and chairs reduces the cost of renting or purchases expensive furniture, promotes sustainability and creates an unforgettable atmosphere.
David Tutera, of “My Fair Wedding,” a wedding planning show on Women’s Entertainment, suggests picking candles made from soybean wax or bee’s wax. He continues by saying to use a florist with locally sourced flowers. You can take it a step further by using potted flowers in lieu of cut flowers and your guests can take them home as wedding favors.
When searching for a caterer, chef, or restaurant to create a selection of appetizers or main course for your wedding, be on the lookout for one that works with local suppliers. Not only does this reduce your carbon footprint, but using local ingredients is also a great way to give back to farmers in your area. When creating a menu, consider choosing organic food options or providing guests with vegetarian options as well.
When it comes down to it, hosting an eco-friendly wedding reception means holding to sustainability basics. If your guest list is relatively small, make an effort to use real flatware, dishes, and cloth napkins, which can be reused, rather than disposable products. Cut back or eliminate the use of balloons, confetti, or any other decorative piece that you can’t keep after the event, flower petals act as a beautiful alternative and can be dried or composted. That means recycling. Provide separate containers for trash and recycling to ensure that reusable paper and plastic doesn’t end up covered in cake.
Music is an integral part of any reception, but many couples fail to use their imaginations on their wedding days, opting for the run-of-the-mill DJ. Your friends can head to the club to hear the hottest hits. Further establish your wedding’s character with subtle acoustic music. Whether it’s an ensemble of stringed instruments or your talented singer/songwriter acquaintance, acoustic music has a certain authenticity that guests will appreciate and doesn’t require electricity.