Tips from the Green Bride Guide
Vintage elements are a hot wedding trend right now, plus they are eco-friendly and will likely save you money, too. Your jewelry can be vintage—heirloom rings make gorgeous green engagement pieces, and your grandmother’s pearls are a special way to honor her on your wedding day—but don’t stop there! Infuse your day with a retro chic look. Scour consignment stores for vintage mason jars, pitchers, tins or vases. You can fill them with flowers for centerpieces, or load them with candy for a colorful and sweet display.
Image: Orchard Cove Photography
Find vintage fabrics to use as your table covers, to wrap your bouquet, or to serve as or backdrop for your photo booth.
Image: Carrie Patterson Photography
Buy vintage postage stamps in mint condition on eBay to use on your invitations. For the ultimate in retro-glam, find a vintage gown and have a good tailor fit it for you. The possibilities are endless!
Many wasteful elements of weddings can be reinvented as ways to give back. There are so many ways to recognize causes in which you believe on your wedding day. You can include important charities by creating a charity registry, through which guests are invited to donate in lieu of more traditional wedding gifts. You can also make a donation in honor of your guests instead of giving individual wedding favors. You can also donate your leftover food and flowers and, if you grew out your hair for the wedding, consider donating those soon-to-be-shorn tresses, too.
While donating a wedding gown is a tough sell for many brides, it’s a great option to consider for those who prefer a new dress for their wedding day. Wonderful charities like Brides Against Breast Cancer and The Bridal Garden use donated gowns to raise money for important causes. Your gown isn’t going to do any good all wrapped up in plastic, after all.
Image: IRIS Photography
Bridesmaids’ gowns can be donated as well: Operation Fairy Dust is an organization that collects once-worn formal gowns and then redistributes them to young girls who cannot afford dresses for proms or formal dances.
One final eco-friendly charitable option is offsetting the carbon impact of your wedding. You can use a carbon calculator to determine your wedding’s impact, and then purchase carbon credits through an organization like Brighter Planet.
Last week we talked about using local, seasonal flowers as one of the easiest ways to make your wedding a little greener, and save money, too! But you can do even more to make sustainable choices when it comes to the flowers for your wedding celebration. Ask potential florists questions about their business practices: where they source their flowers, whether they can avoid using disposable florist tape and foam, and if they can donate the flowers for you after the celebration.
Some green brides choose to avoid cut flowers entirely, opting for silk or paper flowers. If these options don’t fit with your vision, you can find ways to cut down on the amount of flowers used. Instead of cut floral centerpieces, consider potted flowers, plants or succulents that can be replanted after the wedding.
Image: Stella Alesi Photography
Decrease the number of flowers in bridal party bouquets by choosing simple designs with just a few blooms. If you prefer a fuller look, supplement floral arrangements with edible elements that can be served for the farewell brunch the next day, or donated after the wedding.
Image: April Joy Events
Image: Carrie Patterson Photography
There are so many ways to showcase your style while still respecting the environment on your wedding day. In next week’s blog, we’ll talk about gifting your guests with eco-friendly favors, reusing wedding items that are typically single-use, and greening you and your guests’ wedding-related travel.