Caring for the environment is nowadays an extremely important theme in our daily life choices, as it should. But we can, and indeed we must consider our environmental impact in special times as well. Why shouldn’t a celebration of love between two people being about their love towards nature too, and also be an inspiration for more eco-friendly weddings?
Of course, choosing to have an eco-friendly event souldn’t be just a trend. It is utterly necessary to understand what options and actions impact the most in a wedding celebration, and what are you willing to do or to give up for your wedding’s sustainability. However, there are many solutions and alternatives to help nature without completely renounce to style and luxury. Let’s analyse some of them here; later we’ll dig deeper into a few specific topic!
There’s no such thing as “All or nothing”
If you are thinking about having an eco-friendly wedding, forget about the proverbial “All or nothing”. It’s impossible to have zero impact on the environment and to consider all details – sometimes it’s just honest lack of awareness. Or some guests are not as careful as the others. Or some last minute accident requires a less ecological solution. For example, if you get married in Sardinia, you can’t avoid long-distance transportation, that are unfortunately what affect the environment the most; but you can try to reduce, optimize and even compensate them!
It doesn’t matter if it’s not perfect, as long as it’s coherent and reflects the importance of environmental sustainability for you two. In order to avoid confusion, and the risk to make conflicting choices, we strongly suggest you to do these three things for your eco-green wedding:
- Talk about it, just the two of you. Try to understand what are your and your guests’ limits. As in every wedding choice, it’s necessary to agree and find ideas that represent you as a couple.
- Find out what are you not willing to give up, and where you are ready to find new solutions and alternatives.
- Last, but not least: say it loud! If you organize your wedding yourself, be very clear with your suppliers (and look for those with similar mindset). If you need help, this could be another reason to hire a wedding planner: to have a support in selecting the “greenest” choices. Also, your professional planner has certainly seen many original solutions already, so he/she can suggest you the best options and vendors, without comprimizing your needs. Also, claim your decisions to guests as well, to avoid misunderstanding and to involve them in your ecological activities.
Sustainable wedding: the essentials
What should never miss a wedding that cares about the enviroment? Bearing in mind that there is quite a lot to say about every single element of a marriage celebration, here’s the essentials for having an at least minimally eco-friendly wedding:
- General rule: don’t waste. What’s your first thought when we say “disposable” for a wedding? Ours are invitations and flavors. You could send your guests some reusable options (such as bookmarks, ornamental printings, postcards, …). As for flavors, you have lots of choices: from enogastronomical gifts, to plant seeds, it’s easy to find the idea that reflects your wedding’s theme at best. And talking about wasting, it’s impossible not to think about leftovers, especially in a wedding with many guests. To prevent food waste, look for associations or food banks that will pick up chilled leftovers of unserved food after the party. Speak with your caterers and/or your wedding planner in advance: if they have done this before, they may suggest you whom to call.
- Reduce (or avoid) plastic. Try to avoid decorations that contain plastic (including balloons). If you can, select a catering that uses biodegradable or reusable materials (in Italy, plastic tableware is forbidden!), and maybe some alternatives for packaging as well.
- If you can’t give up, compensate. If you don’t have time to find out the best eco solutions, here’s where having a wedding planner can really make the difference! But if you don’t want to give up anything for your big day, or you have almost everything already set up, another nice option is to compensate emissions or your event’s environmental impact with a donation, maybe opting for a charity registry. And if your wedding is in a open-air venue, why don’t you organise a small clean-up with your guests for the day after?
- Use the season. For your wedding bouquet and any other floral decoration, choose seasonal and local flowers (find out in this article some examples and pros of this choice). And for your menu, make sure the restaurant or catering service uses local, natural and sustainable foods – vegetarian options are usually better.
The eco-chic wedding
If you’re afraid that you need to give up style and elegance for some sustainable choices, you’re wrong! True, being eco-friendly usually leads to more modest alternatives – such as reusable decor or natural fabrics; but it doesn’t mean that they have to be dull or dented. Au contraire: this elements are ofter used by artisans to create unique pieces. And nowadays you can find some fashion companies that produce wedding dresses from previously used fabrics: you can have an almost zero-waste wedding gown that is not a second-hand dress.
An extra idea: would you like to add some tradition to your wedding, and making it even more touching? Wear your mother’s or grandma’s wedding dress, asking a designer to do some adjustment and small renewals to make it look more modern.
If you need some more suggestion for a more eco-friendly wedding, contact me here.