One of the more recent trends in wedding planning is working out how to have a wedding with a low impact on the environment. You might be thinking how are weddings bad for the environment? Well, you’d be surprised with all the travel emissions, food, plastic and paper waste, weddings aren’t exactly eco-friendly.
Why have an eco-friendly wedding?
Besides being on trend, why should you incorporate environmental concerns into your big day? Well, there are lots of small changes you can make which are good for our planet earth, some of which also save you money!
Of course, you could get very serious about it and have a completely outdoor, natural, eco-friendly wedding but our ideas in this article are suitable for any wedding style. Just small changes that can have a big impact. We’re going to give you things to think about in your planning phase as well as some great ideas to make your wedding day more eco-friendly.
1. Ditch the paper
There is a high amount of paper waste due to weddings. Think about it, between invites, save the dates and RSVPs we’re talking about a lot of paper. So what’s the alternative? Minimise your paper waste by prioritising. Can’t bear to give up the invites? Then maybe give a wedding email address for the RSVP instead of more paper. You could even consider doing all of your invites online and only sending paper ones to the wedding party and older relatives without computer skills.
2. Think Seasonally
Choosing flowers and even food which is in season is a great way to help the environment. Also, we all know food in season tastes the best! You can have a tasty wedding breakfast whilst still considering environmental concerns like carbon emissions from importing food and flowers which aren’t in season.
Plus, you can save money by choosing seasonal options, so yay for the wedding budget! Seasonal flowers are beautiful and help to give a natural feel to your big day. Even without eco-friendly concerns, seasonal flowers are the way to go!
3. Let in the light
When it comes to choosing a venue, there are lots of ways to think about being eco-friendly. For example, using less lighting. Getting married outside or in a venue with lots of natural light is a great way to save energy.
You might also think about getting married in the summer and in the day to spend less energy on heating big spaces for your guests. There are lots of venues which promote protecting the environment so you could think about choosing an eco-friendly location for the big day.
4. Be realistic with your guest list
Barbara who you knew in high school, but haven’t spoken to since or Dave your ex-accountant are these people you really need at your wedding? Be realistic, make a list of who you actually need to have at your wedding. Then make a list of people you would like to have there and another list of people who you don’t mind either way.
Then throw away the third list! Your wedding doesn’t need to involve the entire town and the fewer people you invite, the fewer resources you use. Plus think about the travel of all the people you’re inviting, really not great for carbon emissions. So cut down on your guest lists for an environmental win!
5. Vintage is queen
Vintage shopping is always fun but what about incorporating vintage elements into your wedding? From bridesmaid dresses to decorations you can opt for second-hand ideas to help reduce the amount of plastic and fabric waste. Besides, wouldn’t your bridesmaids look amazing in vintage dresses?
6. Source food locally
This one can be difficult depending on your venue, but finding caterers who use local food is perfect for any wedding. Not only do we all love local food but you’re also reducing the carbon emissions to bring the food to your wedding.
This could affect where you choose to get married but in general, eating food made on local British farms and in local businesses tastes great and supports the local community rather than big corporations.
7. The dress
This one is going to be hard to swallow. For some of you, this might sound like sacrilege but have you thought about sourcing a second-hand dress? Maybe from within your own family or finding a beautiful vintage dress and having it altered.
If this is too much for you why not look for a dress made with sustainable resources instead? Fairtrade resources like hemp and cotton might be less traditional but they’re definitely more eco-friendly.
8. Thoughtful wedding favours
Rather than having place cards and the standard wedding favours why not double up on purposes? For example candle holders or decorated pebbles as place cards which also act as wedding favours. Or go for eco-friendly options like wildflower seeds and plantable gifts. You could even head to your local shops to find cute elements like chocolate bars or handmade soaps to add to your tables.
We’re not asking you to suddenly go mad for every idea on this list. However, incorporating little elements which show you’ve considered the environment are not only nice for your guests but great for the feel of your wedding too. Let us know any ideas you have for reducing the impact of your wedding on the environment!