Guest Blog: 10 small swaps to make your wedding more eco-conscious
Heyyy! I am so excited to be writing this guest blog for Rachael at SoulGoodStuff.com, I thought I would start by introducing myself a bit. I’m Sophie, the founder, boss lady and planner at The Little Details by Sophie. I plan and style eco-conscious weddings, inspired by the couple’s story in Cornwall.
Planning a wedding can be a minefield at the best of times, then you add in trying to be eco friendly and it’s just mind blowing. But I promise, it is actually really easy to make sure your wedding doesn’t leave a mark on the planet.
Here are ten simple swaps you can do to reduce your waste, carbon footprint and ensure the only thing you leave behind are amazing memories and a bloody good photo album!
1. Invites ⇢ e-invites
The amount of waste wedding stationery creates is crazy, so emailing your invites means they won’t end up straight in the bin (you will also save a lot of money).
They don’t have to just be a boring email either, make it personal! Are you scientists? Write a paper! Are you into technology? Create a video! Are you creative? Make something and send a photo of it!
Your guests will also be sat in front of their emails when they receive it too, so maybe they will RSVP straight away. Win win!
2. Meaty meal ⇢ Go Vegetarian/Vegan
By going vegetarian and sourcing local for your wedding breakfast you will drastically reduce your carbon footprint.
Vegetarian food can sometimes have a bad name (let’s blame tofu for that!) and some family members may not like it (I know my dad wouldn’t) but just don’t tell them and let the food be a surprise. I really believe it is your day and it should be how YOU want it to be. Coordinating with your caterers beforehand can ensure nobody will go hungry despite the meal being vegetarian. And if your dad may be grumpy, he will cheer up with cake once it’s cut!
3. Exotic bouquet ⇢ Seasonal arrangements
Going seasonal and local is one of the best ways to reduce your impact on the environment.
I am really lucky to live and plan weddings in Cornwall as there are so many florists who use their own gardens to grow the flowers, reducing the impact on the environment because they aren’t flown in. A lot of them are also being organic without even trying as they don’t want to fill their gardens with chemicals.
DO NOT BOOK A FLORIST WHO USES FLORAL FOAM (commonly known as oasis). It is essentially single use plastic and it does not break down in landfill.
Herbs and succulents make beautiful centre pieces down the tables and potted plants make such a statement in an entrance-way, or even dotted around the venue. You will also have a reminder of your day for so much longer.
5. Fast car ⇢ Walking
Obviously walking is a real eco friendly choice. Choose a church or venue that is close to home, don a pair of comfy shoes and march your way to your wedding. You might even find that people will cheer you on!
6. Buying decor ⇢ Hire your decorations
Do you really need 10 photo frames and 10 table runners? Yes, your intention is to sell them after the wedding, but will you really? Hiring your decor reduces the amount of ‘things’ there are in the world as you are reducing demand and to be honest a wedding planner can normally get you a really good deal.
7. Electric fairy lights ⇢ Romantic candles
You can save electric by swapping to candles. It will create a romantic atmosphere and saves the planet at the same time! Please make sure it is ok with the venue first and try and use soy wax candles so they biodegrade.
8. Something new ⇢ Vintage clothes
We all know the saying “Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue”, but why not swap your something old to your dress? How many times are you going to wear your dress after your wedding day? I love shoes, so my something new was my beautiful pair of Sophia Webster shoes which I have worn so many times after our wedding, whereas my dress, I must admit, I haven’t put it back on…
9. Card place cards ⇢ Favours that double up as place cards
Instead of having cardboard place cards, I love the idea of doubling up the favours as place cards. Get cookies with your guests name on, or get a caricature of the guest made from a photo, that they can take home and frame instead. I would much rather hand out favours that the guests will use and love rather than little boxes of chocolates (I can’t say I have ever remembered to take these favours home).
10. ‘Oh my goodness I want that’ ⇢ ‘We want to make memories’
Do you really need that blender that has been packaged in an insane amount of plastic? Yeah.. probably not. Why not ask your friends and family for non-tangible goods like gift cards, money for your honeymoon or if it’s paid for, honeymoon experiences. We asked our friends and family for money to help pay for our once in a lifetime honeymoon, they completely understood and loved being able to help us create some stunning memories.
If you’re looking at ways to ensure your honeymoon is eco-friendly, but you would love to travel, I have a guide to having an eco wedding if staying in the U.K is not an option over on my website.
I have really enjoyed writing this blog post and I hope I have helped someone realise there are little things you can do to have an eco-conscious wedding. You don’t have to do it all, even these small changes make a big difference. And think about it, if every wedding did something, it would soon add up to a lot.
If you have any wedding planning questions, need any help on how to make your wedding even more eco or are looking to get married in Cornwall and don’t know where to start, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The photographs used in this blog were all taken by www.veritywestcottphotography.com