The green wedding sector is booming so there's never been a better time to organise an environmentally friendly rustic wedding. New outfits, travelling guests, food wastage and energy consumption can all take their toll on the environment. Make your wedding as eco-friendly as possible with these top tips.
1. With This Ring
Seek out an ethical, environmentally-friendly jeweller to supply your wedding rings. If you would prefer a traditional gold band, ask for recycled gold, and ethically sourced gemstones. Alternatively wood wedding rings made from sustainably sourced timber are growing in popularity.
2. Green Flowers
It's hard to imagine that something as natural as flowers could damage the environment, but intensively farmed blooms, grown in heated environments, or flown in from the far flung corners of the globe can leave a hefty carbon footprint. Choose a local florist that uses seasonal locally sourced flowers. For table and room decorations consider using potted plants that can be taken home and reused in your garden after the wedding.
3. Wedding Dress
Reuse your mother or grandmother's wedding dress, transforming it with the help of a local seamstress, or buy a vintage dress. There are charities that buy and sell modern used wedding dresses, so you can either buy one from them, or buy new and donate your dress later. There is an increasing trend for using hemp as wedding dress material. This sustainable material is durable, resilient and mould resistant, making it ideal for a rustic wedding dress that will be kept in storage after the big day.
4. Fair Food
Choose food that is in season and available locally to cut down on the energy used during its transportation. Pay attention also to portion control. An enormous plate of food may look impressive, but the wastage generated by catered meals is no joke.
5. The Venue
Pick somewhere that is convenient for your guests to reach to cut down on the petrol they use. There are environmentally friendly wedding venues available throughout the UK, but if reaching one involves a significant journey for your wedding party, your additional road miles will cancel out any benefit that their practices offer the environment. When looking for a wedding venue, look for places with their own source of renewable energy and a policy statement on waste management.
6. Minimal Guest List
Consider restricting your numbers, as this will keep costs, energy consumption and wastage down across the board. Often couples can feel under pressure to invite relatives they haven't seen for years. A green wedding is the perfect excuse to keep numbers low and save yourself some money, while helping the environment at the same time.
7. Recycled Stationery
Use recycled card and paper to create your wedding stationery. This can offer texture and colour variation not found in shiny smooth new papers, so is better suited to a rustic wedding anyway.
8. Lively Favours
Gift a gift that lives like a small cactus or potted plant. Alternatively give a donation to an environmentally friendly charity and offer a picture postcard with information about the charity at every place setting.