8 Incredible Tips for a Nature-Friendly Wedding

First comes love, then comes wedding planning… Weddings don’t have to be wasteful. But that doesn’t mean you should wear a dress made of oats, offer a cake made out of raw sprouts, or skip on the things you love like florals, centerpieces, a gorgeous ring, or darling invitation suite – but you can opt for these small changes, so you create less of a carbon footprint! Talking about carbon footprints, green weddings are now becoming a thing! When it comes to preserving Planet Earth, everyone wants to do the right thing. There are so many new technologies and innovations that are making eco-friendly alternatives more accessible than ever.

But when it comes to planning the Big Day, we worry that being environmentally correct will mean sacrificing our cherished wedding vision. Luckily, you no longer have to wrestle with your conscience to have a celebration that is both beautiful and “green”—or at least, green-ish. Your wedding should be a reflection of you as a couple, including your style, love story, and values. And if living an eco-friendly lifestyle is important to you and your partner, your nuptials should relay that.

After all those months of planning your engagement and the wedding, it’s time for the final segment- your reception night. And just like you chose to go green for your wedding as well as your engagement theme, why not doing an eco-friendly reception too? To help make that happen, we’ve put together a guide with some stylish, sagacious and yet nature-friendly ways you can make your Big Day eco-friendly. From reception catering to your bridal outfits, we’ve got everything covered- Green themed! Check it out!

#1. Save Trees with Your Invitation Choice!

The easiest way to go green is through the invitations. “You can do a digital invitation for casual weddings to a high-end couture invitation on recycled cotton

#2. Wear Something Greener, but Chic!

You don’t have to sacrifice glamour to both look good and do good! Erase the picture of a “Bride in Birkenstocks” with a wreath of dried flowers on her head. The modern bride wears her “green” with panache. Most designer gowns are already made of a natural fiber—silk! Other green—er, white—options are hemp/silk blends and organic cotton, which go well with Victorian, Renaissance, or garden weddings.

When shopping for your wedding dress, keep in mind the famous green adage “Reduce, Re-use, Recycle.” Rent your formal wear instead of buying, and you’ll save money and conserve resources at the same time. A heartwarming and straightforward way to “re-use” a dress is to tailor a hand-me-down to your modern sensibilities. Vintage is still hot, and what better accompaniment to a vintage ensemble than estate jewelry? Often more exciting and less expensive than its modern counterparts, estate jewelry avoids the politically charged stigma sometimes associated with the mining of precious gems. If you inherited an engagement ring, it could be reset to suit your taste. (Or follow the newest eco-friendly trend in jewelry—cultured diamonds. They’re socially acceptable and absolutely flawless!)

#3. Pick Your Venue

Choosing a location that is close to your guests will reduce your wedding’s impact in a big way. But once you’ve done that, you might also want to consider what type of venue you will be using. If you aren’t tied to a particular church, synagogue, mosque, or rammed-earth eco-dome, why not consider supporting your local community garden, farmer, or other worthwhile projects? Not only will your wedding serve as a useful source of revenue for the chosen local hosts, but it can also raise awareness of their work and send an intensely personal message about the issues that you and your partner care about.

#4. Green Your Transportation

So, now that you’ve picked the venue now, how will you and your guests get there? Try to provide as much information on transport options as possible. Encourage guests to carpool or set up an Uber to get your own ride code and set limits for how much you’ll cover for each ride taking guests to and from—even better if it’s a green car service that uses electric cars!

#5. Watch the Numbers!

No matter what other choices you make, the most significant factor in the ecological and financial impact of your wedding will be its size. The cold hard fact is that each person you invite means more miles traveled, more food consumed, a bigger venue, and more waste when it’s all over. Since this is your big day, invite as many loved ones as you want, but keep an eye on the numbers and be aware that the more the guest list grows, the harder it is to draw the line: “Well, if we’ve invited cousin Sami then we really should invite aunt Mary…”

#6. Eco-Friendly Decoration

Go for some creative DIY decor ideas and turn your backyard or courtyard into an attractive reception venue. If you’re having a destination beach wedding, simply use some colorful cushions, mattresses, chairs, and bolsters, and your reception venue is ready! In case of a forest wedding, just add wooden chairs, logs, and lanterns to deck up the setting with jungle vibes.

#7. Benefit from Natural Light

Celebrate the outdoors and the natural environment by choosing an outdoor venue where you can rely on natural light. Or, for a real intimate feeling, you could opt for candles instead of switching on light fixtures. Another way to make this work is by hosting a brunch wedding, instead of going well into the evening.

#8. Green Catering

When you’re looking for eco-friendly wedding reception ideas in the wedding catering area, think recycled plates and glasses or bamboo sweet-baskets. Make it an absolutely NO Plastic ceremony by using glass or steel water bottles and water glasses. Use as much local produce as possible. Ask your wedding bakers to use fresh milk and eggs for cakes and sweets. Fresh and locally grown produce would mean fewer storage requirements and hence lesser use of refrigeration.