{Day # 20} Environmentally Friendly Weddings

What’s the hottest color for weddings? Green. Green weddings, which only a few years ago were on the fringe, have gone mainstream. Planning a socially- and environmentally-friendly wedding is a nice idea and it’s never been easier to create a beautiful and eco-friendly wedding.

Here are some of the best ways to give Mother Earth a starring role at your nuptials:
{Go Small}  The fewer guests you have, the less fossil fuels that will be used. You’ll also consume less, and create less garbage. Having a small guest list will also give you more choice of venues. Why not have your small wedding at a designated green inn or have a restaurant reception at a restaurant that serves local food?

{Buy Consumable Favors} Consumable favors are fun, fabulous and earth friendly. Some suggestions include DIY favors such as homemade jam, chocolate, cookies, candy, free-trade coffee, beeswax candles, handmade soap or lotion. If you still want to take the non-consumable route, what about cloth shopping bags, reusable produce bags, or other products that will help your guests pursue an eco-friendly lifestyle? Don’t forget to include information about local shops that carry eco-friendly products along with your favors.

{Be a ‘Locavore’} Choose a caterer or restaurant that sources ingredients locally. Buying local ingredients supports your area farmers, as well as decreases your carbon imprint. Even better, choose locally sourced organic foods, and offer vegetarian choices for your meat-free guests.


{Select a Worthy Venue} Consider having your wedding in a local garden, museum or historic building. These are often run by socially conscious nonprofits, so your rental fee will support a good cause. Make sure to discuss where your rental fee will go; hopefully, at least a part will be put toward new programs and facility upkeep.

{Use Potted Plants instead of Cut Flowers for Centerpieces} Look for a florist that offers pesticide-free flowers, which are just as beautiful as their chemically treated counterparts but far better for the environment. Or consider using a local vendor for seasonal blooms to cut down on transportation costs and fuel emissions. To go even greener with your greenery, choose a reusable centerpiece. Small trees or potted plants can become a beautiful and meaningful part of your garden or home décor after the big day.

{Buy a Second Hand Wedding Dress and Bridesmaid Dresses} Have you seen some of the gorgeous vintage gowns at www.vintageous.com? Avoid dressing your wedding party in fabrics that require dry-cleaning—the harsh chemicals used in the process are tough on the environment. Look instead for natural materials like linen or cotton, which are kinder on the environment and more comfortable for your bridesmaids and groomsmen.

{Don’t use Throwaway Dishes or Flatware} Use china dishes, flatware, cloth napkins and glasses instead of plastic cups. Not only will this save a ton of waste, it will look more elegant.


{Switch Out Your Transportation} Make an emissions-free statement by leaving your reception in a gas-free ride. If your wedding is outdoors, consider exiting on a “Just Married” bicycle or in a horse-drawn carriage. Or, if you’re getting married near the water, jump in a boat and ride away on the waves—eco-friendly and incredibly romantic.

{Share Your Flowers and Food} Letyour special day live on a little longer by sharing it with people in need. Rather than toss all your still-gorgeous flower arrangements, donate them to a local hospital or convalescent home. The same goes for any leftover food—most soup kitchens and homeless shelters can arrange to have someone swing by your reception to pick up unused refreshments.
{Credits: Intimateweddings.com, Weddingchannel.com}
{Photos: Welcome2Green.com}

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