Your wedding is likely to be one of the best days of your life, however for the environment, it isn’t quite as enjoyable. A single wedding can produce 20kg of plastic waste, and considering there are an estimated 115,000 weddings a day across the world, that’s a total of 2,300,000 kg of plastic waste per day from weddings alone!
So, for the environmentally conscious brides and grooms out there, we have put together a list of more eco-friendly options, so that your day can be everything you dreamed of without it having a big impact on the environment. Also, things that are eco-friendly tend to save you money as well as helping the environment, so it’s a win-win!
Choose Vintage Jewellery
The first thing you can do to make your wedding more eco-friendly is to choose vintage jewellery. The jewellery industry is hugely exploitative to people across the world and it is also very damaging to environments. So, shopping vintage and choosing pre-loved pieces is a way of reducing your impact in this area whilst also giving some breathtaking pieces of jewellery a second chance.
Vintage jewellery is so beautiful and it has such a special quality. There is a depth of history behind each piece that you simply don’t find with modern equivalents. You could go for something from the Victorian era for your wedding rings, or you could opt for an Art Deco engagement ring for something stylish and different.
Additionally, as VAT would have already been paid once on vintage jewellery, any further purchases are VAT exempt. This means you can get a piece of vintage jewellery for 20% cheaper than a modern equivalent with the same size and quality stone! All of these things combine to make vintage jewellery a fantastic option for eco-friendly weddings.
Make Your Own Confetti
Another thing you can do is make your own confetti. The confetti that you can buy online is usually at least partly plastic, which is actually very dangerous for local wildlife. So, an eco-friendly and beautiful alternative is to make your own confetti.
Collect fresh flowers when they are in full bloom and allow them to dry to create your own confetti! You could cut smaller shapes out of your petals for more delicate confetti. You can also buy real petal leaf confetti online, so this is an alternative if you don’t feel confident drying the petals yourself.
A few days before the wedding, add some fresh lavender into the confetti mix to give it the most amazing natural scent. Not only is this confetti much more beautiful but it is great for the environment.
Consider Virtual Invites
Whilst it is lovely to receive a wedding invitation through the post, it is damaging to the environment. When you consider the materials needed to make the invitations, the transportation needed to get them to your guests and also the waste once the wedding has passed, it all adds up.
So, virtual invitations are a great alternative that are also cost effective. With paperless wedding invites you will save time, trees and money and your guests will still receive a beautiful invite.
Get Married Locally
Destination weddings can be beautiful, however having all your guests fly out is going to have an impact on the environment. So, get married locally. Not only will you be supporting your local economy, but the amount of travel will be reduced significantly. Plus, there are some beautiful locations that you might not even know exist just around the corner!
Get married at your local beach rather than going abroad, go for something rustic in a converted barn in the forest or even in river cabins! For the ultimate eco-friendly wedding, get married at your local National Park. These venues will be all about conservation and the money you spend will be going towards helping the environment and the local ecosystems.
Rent Your Outfits or Buy Pre-Loved
Next up, you could consider renting your outfits or buying pre-loved. Firstly, buying wedding dresses or suits can be very expensive, so you can immediately cut out potentially thousands to spend elsewhere! You can find beautiful dresses and great quality suits that are as good as new and you will be helping the environment.
Although they might not have quite the same sentimental value, trying to maintain and preserve a wedding dress is a big challenge! Most people end up keeping their wedding dress in the loft and just having a quick peek every so often, so it is a much better option for some people to either rent their outfit or buy something pre-loved. If you do buy pre-loved, consider donating it afterwards to be as eco-friendly as possible!
Have A Plant-Based Wedding Breakfast
Another brilliant way to reduce the environmental impact of your wedding day is to have a plant-based wedding breakfast. It is common knowledge that eating plant-based reduces your environmental footprint, so why not bring it into your wedding day!
As usual, you would ask for any dietary requirements and send out a menu for people to choose from, but with all plant-based options rather than meat. You could start with a roasted beetroot, tomato and pine nut salad, vibrant tomato bruschettas or crispy vegetable gyoza. For the main, move onto a delicious butternut squash risotto, a mushroom bourguignon or a root vegetable wellington with all the trimmings. Finally, for dessert go for a sticky toffee pudding, a chocolate orange tart or a delicious banoffee pie, all vegan of course! Then your guests could take a piece of vegan wedding cake home!
This is an opportunity to show people just how delicious plant-based food can be and you will definitely be doing your bit for the environment!
So, there you have it! 6 different ways that you can make your wedding more eco-friendly. You will be helping the environment, saving money and opening people’s eyes to the different ways they could be more eco-friendly in their own lives. It’s a win-win for everyone!