We have noticed ever since the pandemic that most couples when planning their wedding go with one of two mindsets: either a) we’ve missed out on life for a year, the bigger the better: or b) go for a smaller affair. Now the smaller route can be due to budget, or just so they can have their closest there on their special day.
But we are increasingly seeing more couples have their impact on the planet in the back of their minds. And as awareness grows about how much our planet is (quite literally) dying, and in leading up to the COP 26 conference in Glasgow, this is not going to go away any time soon.
So we have looked into how you can make your wedding as ethical and sustainable as possible. There may be no way to make everything purely ethical, and some of these may not work for you; but we hope that others can also help give you some more ideas while planning your big day.
Our Top 10 tips are:
- Think about your venue carefully
This works on a few levels. It can mean picking a venue which is close to you, and one with close public transport links. But we also mean in the sense of how seriously the venues you look at take the issue of sustainability and the environment. What practises have they got in place to reduce their carbon footprint? Be sure to grill them about it as well – their attitude to it will reflect in HOW they give their answers, not just WHAT they tell you.
- Choose local and ethical suppliers
Like the venue, this is something you can really grill suppliers about, but admittedly some more than others. Ones that source British, if not local materials are definitely more advisable. For example, choose a florist that supplies British flowers, preferably if they do seasonal bouquets. Choosing a local supplier also adds sustainability points by supporting the local economy.
- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
We’ve seen a lot more in recent years how much our waste negatively impacts the planet; therefore measures taken to use as little waste as possible will be a huge asset. The Green Bride Guide estimates that the average wedding produces a whopping 400lbs of rubbish after all! Small tips include saving your gin bottles or jam jars as centrepieces or vases, among many many more.
- Think about your menu carefully
We will look into this more later, but think about the locality of your suppliers. Where are they based? And where does their food come from? No point having a different menu if their ingredients have been shipped halfway across the world. Do they have links with organic farmers perhaps, or food community projects?
- Embrace e-invites
This is a trend that is definitely on the rise. As well as couples choosing to make up their own wedding website to allow guests to RSVP and let them in on all the wedding details. All of course without chopping down any trees, and saving money on postage costs.
- Streamline guest travel
Depending on where your venue is, are there any public transport links? If it’s clear they would realistically need a car or taxi to get there, consider hiring a bus to pick guests up from a certain point. Or, you can also encourage guests to car pool instead.
- Say Yes to the 2nd hand Dress
A lot more couples have chosen to hire out dresses and suits rather than buy – or they have been buying them 2nd hand from charity or vintage shops. It is something that you will (hopefully) have to wear once in your life, so it makes perfect sense to us.
- Be showered in green confetti
Ditch the plastic for this one. There are so many more options than bits of plastic to be thrown in your face. A lot of places now make it with dried flower petals instead; far better as they decompose. You can use seeds as well, but do be aware you don’t want one of those being pelted at your face full throttle.
- Encourage your guests to give back
A more up-and-coming idea for favours is for charitable donations. If there is an organisation that is particularly important to you and your partner, this could well be something to consider.
- Staycation for your honeymoon
If there has been one benefit Ms Rona has given us, it is to have realised just how lucky we are in the British Isles to have so many places to explore. So why not choose somewhere in the UK for your honeymoon rather than burn the jet fuel to go abroad. Saves all those pesky Covid checks and tests too.
To find more trends for 2022, and more advise on ethical and sustainable weddings, click here: Weddings Archives – The Wellbeing Farm Wedding and Events Venue