HOW TO PLAN A GREEN WEDDING
Green weddings are becoming increasingly popular, and many couples are finding original and innovative ways to plan their wedding with greater environmental responsibility. Traditional weddings often involve a lot of waste and have a large carbon footprint for something which is over in a day. Planning a green wedding doesn’t mean cutting corners, and thinking a little more about the planet can result in a fresh and unique feel to your wedding which you and your guests will remember forever.
Weddings are often associated with extravagance and luxury, and you may not be comfortable with this in these times of recession and poverty around the world. Taking a more responsible and ethical approach to planning your wedding day can make it feel extra special. The following seven ideas are a great foundation for a green wedding.
Travel and transport.
Think about where you will have your wedding ceremony and celebrations afterwards, and try to keep travel needs to a minimum. Having both the ceremony and celebrations at the same location is a simple way to cut down on the need for guests to travel. If you choose a remote location, family and friends will need to travel further and the carbon footprint of your wedding will increase.
Eco-friendly and recycled stationery.
Wedding invitations, orders of service and other stationery can all be printed on recycled paper, and this is another easy way to make your wedding greener. You could choose to send invitations by email or other electronic form, and cut the need to use paper completely. Thank you notes could also be sent digitally.
Eco-friendly wedding jewelry.
Exchanging rings is an essential part of a wedding for most people, and this is another area where you can do your bit for the environment. Gold mining is one of the dirtiest industries in the world, and the treatment of workers is often very poor. By choosing recycled metals and stones you can take a more environmentally and ethically responsible approach to buying your wedding jewelry.
Try to choose locally grown produce when arranging food for your wedding. Many items of food are shipped hundreds of miles from the point of origin to the point of consumption. Don’t feel you have to stick to tradition when choosing the food for your wedding, and experiment with something different if it’s a greener option. Avoid using disposable plates and cutlery if possible.
Traditional bouquets and wedding flowers may look beautiful, but they often only last a few days and are grown using intensive farming methods. Think about growing your own flowers for your wedding, or buying from a local farmers’ market. Silk or dried flowers are another option.
The wedding dress.
Every girl dreams of her wedding dress from a young age, but it’s generally only worn once and can be morally hard to justify from an ethical and environmental perspective. Wearing the wedding dress worn by a parent or grandparent is becoming very popular, and this can save money as well as being a greener option. The popularity of retro style at the moment means you’ll be wearing the height of fashion if you are able to use a relative’s dress. Think about donating your dress to charity after the wedding.
After the hard work and stress of planning your wedding it’s important to take a break. Don’t feel you have to stay close to home to have a green honeymoon, as there are ways you can travel to foreign countries and still do your bit for the planet. A volunteer vacation is one option, or you could choose to stay in basic accommodation built from local materials. Avoid hotels run by large corporations, and look for ways to support local communities.