(feature image: Photos By Zoe)
Planning a wedding during the last few years has been incredibly stressful for couples. The pandemic threw up many hurdles and many people have changed plans numerous times, with over 70% postponing their big day in light of Covid-19. Amongst all of this potential stress, it’s easy to lose sight of some other important wedding planning essentials. And recently, one of the key things to consider is the environmental impact of your wedding.
We hear more about how important it is to reduce our impact on the world around us. Weddings might not feel like the obvious place to start, but events do generate waste and have a huge environmental footprint. For eco-conscious couples, planning a sustainable wedding could be a top priority. Here, we look at some top tips for reducing waste on your special day.
Create your own decorations
The amount of stuff you can buy for your wedding is incredible. Even just considering decorations, the choices are endless – place settings, table plans, bunting, and more. A lot of these items are only used once – single-use materials are the epitome of today’s throwaway culture.
So why not make your own decorations with recycled materials? Bunting from old clothes, place names on carved wood and homegrown plants as table centrepieces are striking ways to decorate, and are eco-friendly and budget-friendly. This can also add to your personal touch around the byre.
If you’re not feeling that creative, consider hiring decorations rather than buying everything new. We have some amazing stylists on our recommended suppliers list who can help out!
(Iain Mcintosh Photography)
Think about the flowers you’re using
According to this sustainable wedding guide, exotic flowers are one of the worst offenders at weddings when it comes to having a negative impact on the environment. This is largely down to choosing flowers out of season from far away. You can immediately reduce this by working with a local florist and asking them where they source their flowers. You can then discuss with them what’ll be in season when your wedding is due to be held and plan accordingly.
(Photography by Emilie Gray)
Pre-order your food
Think carefully about how many meals (and courses) you’re providing your guests. Food waste is a surprisingly large impact from weddings, with 10% being thrown away. Always get your guests to pre-order what they want during the day and ask your venue what they tend to do with unused food. You could consider donating unused, unopened items.
You should also be careful with your wedding cake – a lot of wedding cakes are thrown away simply because they’re just too big. If you still want the impact of a large cake, many cake makers use false tiers to cut down on waste (and costs). Or, if you’re willing to go smaller, consider cupcakes or a one-tiered cake just for you.
Considering scrapping the gift list
Historically couples were given many useful household items at their wedding as it would be the start of them living together. Nowadays, many people live together for years before a wedding, so this practice has become a bit outdated.
Think about what you really need or want from your guests. You could consider scrapping the idea of gifts altogether or if you have particularly persistent (and generous) guests, ask for experiences or potentially contributions to your honeymoon. Only create a list of items if there’s actually things you need.
Any efforts you make to reduce waste at your wedding should be applauded. With the right help and support, you can plan a sustainable wedding which only leaves behind happy memories.