Weddings require a lot of juggling, from sorting out seating charts, recording dietary requests, and dealing with future in-laws. Then there’s the hot topic of sustainability: is your wedding actually hurting the earth? No pressure there, right?
Right! First of all, congratulations on being conscientious enough to consider how to make your wedding as green as possible. Second, we have the tips and tricks that make having a green wedding more achievable than you’d ever dream!
Gift Bags with a Message
Welcome bags are a popular and gracious way of showing how much you value your guests’ attendance. Make it carry a message by putting in products that are eco-friendly and fun, like an Aquasana filtering water bottle and sustainably sourced coffee. Explore a farmer’s market for items that showcase local flavor like soaps, hot sauces, and even herbs or succulents. What better way to be green than to give a plant?
Hire Likeminded Vendors
When your vendors are already experts at reducing their carbon footprints, hiring them is an automatic step in making your wedding green. Ask about their views on sustainability, and what actions they take to lessen their impact on the environment. Get started with our list of preferred vendors.
Utilize What’s In Season
Summer represents a time of ease for going green: fruits and veggies at their peak of deliciousness and affordability. Check your local farmer’s markets or farm stands for the best variety of farm-to-table cuisine. This holds true for flowers, too, with bright blooms both available and at lower costs. The fantastic assortment of options that the season gives is one of the top reasons we love a summer wedding.
Look Into A Vegan or Vegetarian Menu
Don’t panic! This is just a suggestion, and could be easily done for one of your courses for a plated dinner, or some of the appetizers. People wouldn’t even notice if you sneakily threw in a tomato flatbread or chickpea bruschetta. Animal products consume significant resources, while vegan and vegetarian are far better for the environment. The catering experts at Crystal Gardens will work hand-in-hand with you to understand your sustainable food preferences.
Your wedding invitations can be stunning and sustainable! There are countless options to choose from: upcycled fabric, recycled paper, and even wood. Some of the unique companies that offer interesting ideas include Paper Culture, a business that offers 100% post-recycled paper invites, and with every purchase, they plant a tree. Earth-friendly stationary can include seed paper, a biodegradable material that sprouts into flowers when planted in a pot of soil (such a cool keepsake for your guests, too!). Botanical PaperWorks has an entire line of custom goods on plantable paper that are eco-friendly, zero waste products. They even offer colorful confetti, a great alternative to the outdated (and dangerous for birds) rice throwing after the ceremony.
Make Your Registry Eco-Friendly
There are so many sustainable alternatives to the everyday items you want on your registry. Explore items that have long lifespans, like stainless steel straws (we love the Final Straw!), metal tea bags, and more. Some companies even give a portion of their sales back into charities that give to the environment, a double win!
Highlight A Worthy Cause
Along with your registry, you can encourage your friends and family to donate to a philanthropy supporting sustainability. There are outstanding organizations that promote conservation, protecting wildlife, and supporting small business owners in rural areas. Find a few that you personally support or advocate for and share them as options that your family and friends can learn about. Give a brief description of the organization’s purpose, mission, and how to contribute. Explain why the charity speaks to you, and see if it speaks to them, too!
Renting Is Key
The enemy of sustainability is single-use items: things like paper plates and plastic straws. A venue like Crystal Gardens can provie all the things your wedding day needs, like linens, tablecloths, and tableware. Consider having rental clothing for your bridal party, the groomsmen, flower girl, and ring bearer, or even look at resale stores for great deals. Check places that resell wedding decor that fit your style and come at a fraction of the cost if bought new. Anything that can be rented will reduce landfill waste and reduce your spending.
Donate or Sell What’s Left
Leftovers after a wedding are common, whether it’s food, flowers, or decorations. This is an amazing opportunity to donate! Speak with your wedding coordinator to look at ways to pack up leftover food and give it to a homeless shelter. The gorgeous flowers you chose can be given to an elderly care facility to brighten their days. For decorations that you won’t have a use for, resell them to another lucky couple.
Your summer wedding can be as green as you want, with little effort! We’re ready to start planning your big day with sustainability at the forefront! Connect with our event coordinators at Crystal Gardens today!