Guest Post: One of the wisest things we have read about increasing environmental awareness, is the importance of making it fun! There is no need for an environmentally friendly wedding to be boring, drab or shabby. Rather, many wedding stylists and planners are embracing the eco vibe, owing to its innately chic appeal. If your heart is colored green and you wish to share this aspect of your life with guests at your wedding, consider these eco friendly ideas:
Give plants away as your wedding favor: Many future brides and grooms rack their brains trying to come up with exciting presents to thank their guests for sharing their big day with them. Some go to considerable expense, giving away crystal works of art, accessories and jewellery. Why not give away a small plant of choice (preferably a sturdy plant like a cactus), jazzing it up with a personal message in each plant? Give it a chic spin by presenting the plants in a mini wooden pot, and use a romantic font for your message. Additional eco-friendly favours include local gourmet products (think raw chocolate, small pots of honey or macarons), recycled stationary, or locally made, recycled décor items.
Do away with paper: You may have opted for paper invitations, and if you did, we hope you chose seed paper! Guests plant the paper and soon, wild flowers begin to bloom in their gardens! You can continue to save paper at the wedding itself, of by foregoing printed seating lists and menus. We recently saw crystal used for this purpose – with all menus and information written on crystal blocks and displayed at the venue and on the tables.
Go local with the flowers: The green lifestyle is all about relying on local, seasonal products and this applies to your bouquet, as well. A wild, artistic arrangement can really bring out the beauty of seasonal flowers, and by going local, you can save big time on the costs of transport from flowers, many of which are flown in from other countries.
Select a local venue: Try to find a venue that is close to home, so that friends and family do not create a big carbon footprint travelling to and from the wedding.
Serve locally sourced organic food: When you plan the reception meal, try to base it on the zero kilometre cuisine idea. Source a Chef or caterers who are used to cooking with local produce and who know how to bring out the most of organic produce. A wedding seems like an ideal venue to present pure, unadulterated, pesticide-free food.
Ideally, chic dishes bearing a plethora of colors and textures (try including a few raw dishes as entrees at least) should be served outdoors – think of a garden wedding with guest flitting from marquee to marquee, perhaps with each marquee serving cuisine from a different nation, yet made with local produce. Some brides and grooms love the idea of an outdoor wedding but fear that rain or poor weather could ruin a perfect reception. Plan ahead by covering yourself against any possible change of dates because of the weather, but in general, if you plan your wedding during a warmer month, your reception isn’t likely to be dampened by the rain. The wedding cake is also important: make sure it is made with free-range eggs and organic flour and let guests know that, so they can be inspired to purchase similar ingredients for home use.
Details, details: Think of the many ways in which you can use eco friendly products. For instance, why not use environmentally friendly soap and paper towels in the bathroom or recycled candles for the tables? Some companies make these candles to order, so you can be very specific about the size and shape you like. To decorate the tables, why not use growing flowers in a pot, instead of an arrangement? Many guests will delight in knowing that the beautiful flowers they are contemplating will continue to live and thrive, long after your big day.
About Author, Sally James: I worked for many years in the travel sector and hospitality industry and was lucky enough to visit many varied countries throughout the world and have some amazing experiences. Once I became a mother my outlook and priorities changed and began a career as a writer.