Eco-Friendly Wedding Inspiration

Rea Shaw eco friendly wedding wedding planning

As the trend keeps growing, couples are being more mindful of ways to be eco- friendly and as sustainable as possible with their wedding planning. There are many ways to achieve this which is accessible and inexpensive. 
Let's start with the dress!
Consider buying a second hand dress, remember wedding dresses are only worn for one day and many brides decide to sell them afterwards so there will be plenty of choices, and you can buy one at a fraction of the price! Also consider your mothers dress or a family member's, and have it altered so that is looks completely different. Most dress's have to be altered to fit you anyway so you are still saving money by just paying for a seamstress to do the work. You may even have a friend who can sew!
After wearing the dress consider to do the same or make it into something else that you want to have on display in your home.
It is a good idea to see what your bridesmaid's have in their wardrobe to start with, this way you could work from that. Mis-matching bridesmaid's gowns look really effective together. Another suggestion is giving your bridesmaid's your colour choice then they can choose the gown, different styles in similar colours will compliment each other.
This is not for you if you want to get married abroad. It's much better for the environment if you get married in a local location. Choose somewhere that will need minimal decoration, which will help cut the cost and look simple and beautiful. If you can, and your venue has beautiful tables and chairs, try staying away from table linens and chair covers, these will require washing and drying. Look for stained wood which will look beautiful when styled minimal.
With the right setting mis-matched chairs look great together. Ideal if you are planning the wedding yourself. Hunt down chairs not in use by family and friends, people always seem to have extra stashed away in the loft or garage!
Consider using natural materials to create decorations, such as tree branches to hang foliage from and leaves for guest place cards.
As most candles are made form paraffin which release toxic chemicals, you may want to look for beeswax and soy candles which are widely available. You wouldn't want to miss out of the beautiful atmosphere candles can create.
Collect old vases and jars and instead of buying cut flowers from the florist, source them from family, neighbours and friends gardens.
Consider using plants or herbs as centrepieces too, this way they will not immediately die after the wedding like flowers will. They will still smell and look lovely.
Find a caterer that will use local and organic sourced food to serve. Choose seasonal items that will make it easier for dish offerings.
Source bamboo plates and cutlery which can be recycled. They will look fab and add character to your table decor.
Spend your money on wedding favours that are going to last. Give everyone a plant they can grow in the garden that will last forever.
Choosing something your know they will use is better than something they do not want. Think honey, jams and chutneys, olive oil and bird seed. You can find these 'meant to bee' favour tags here >>>
Wedding Gifts
As a wedding gift, you could suggest guests donate to plant a tree in your names, which is great for the environment. You could plant it in a special place to visit once in a while.
Some great alternatives to traditional confetti is leaves, seeds and flowers. No clearing up to do after the confetti toss and it's much better on the environment.
The most eco-friendly way to send wedding invitations is by email to your guests. If this feels a little impersonal you could add a link to your wedding website where all the information will be and you can personalise it to your hearts content. Your 'on the day' stationery is best made from paper which can be recycled.  Consider using fruit to hold your place cards.
Only invite who you 'really' want at your wedding. Having a smaller number will reduce the resources you need. It will also make it more personal and special. Do not fall into inviting people because you feel obligated to, I'm sure they will understand.
Remember you can rent most items for your wedding which will cut costs enormously.
So you see an eco-friendly wedding is definitely achievable with some forward thinking. 
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