It is no secret that weddings generate a huge amount of waste. There is a lot of pressure to have the perfect picturesque day, and that comes with the impulse to buy and waste a lot of products. Wedding waste is just as harmful as any other type of waste, however, for contributing to higher carbon emissions. If you’re looking to reduce the environmental impact of your wedding, here are a few ways to make simple, eco-friendly choices that will still help you remember your special day for a lifetime.

Stay Local

One of the biggest impacts on the environment is air travel. When planning your wedding, consider keeping the events as local as possible. This will minimize the amount of travel that is needed. Sourcing catering and wedding flowers locally will also cut down on supply mileage that has an environmental impact. Staying local helps your guests save valuable resources, while also boosting the local economy by keeping spending within the region.

Choose a Sustainable Venue

Choosing a sustainable venue can seem difficult. You may think that the venue will be extra expensive or difficult to find. This is simply not true. Sustainable venues can be achieved in a variety of ways. There are certain venues that offer sustainability for their guests, like planting a tree for each wedding. Sustainable venues may be powered by solar, wind, or geothermal energy. Parts of the venue might also be built from sustainable materials. They often use low energy lighting, heating and electricity while using energy efficient windows. Eco-friendly venues can also include a park or beautiful place up a canyon. Nature is a beautiful backdrop for any wedding.

Simplify Your Invitations

As the wedding industry becomes more environmentally conscious, it is easier than ever to find invitations that are made from sustainable materials. Invitation suits that are printed on recycled paper or use alternative materials like upcycled fabrics, leather, and wood are very popular right now. You may also consider simplifying your invitations. Try to include fewer individual attachments. You can create a wedding website that gives more detailed information for your guests. Of course, the most earth-friendly invitation is one that is digital. Sending out e-vites is a stress free and environmentally friendly way to celebrate your special day.

Use Reusable Utensils

When it comes to reducing the cost of your wedding, many believe that single use papers and plastics will be more cost effective. This is not true. Plastic dishes, cups, and utensils are not reusable and often end up in a landfill. Straws are the most common single-use plastic and can cause a lot of environmental harm. Instead, you can rent or borrow reusable materials. Reusable utensils can make your wedding seem like it has a higher budget when really you are saving money and resources. Give your wedding dinner character and class by using reusable utensils for guests.

Keep Clothing Simple

When considering your carbon footprint, clothing is one of the biggest culprits that often gets overlooked. A wedding is a common excuse to buy a whole new outfit (or multiple) for the bride, groom, and guests. But the process to make said outfits has an impact on the environment. Encourage your guests to wear something they already have. The bride could also choose to wear accessories she already has or even use a hand-me-down dress. You can alter the dress to suit your size and style while giving the article a special meaning for whomever wore it before. Plus, by keeping clothing simple, you save production waste and make the wedding more about you than the outfits.

Reduce the Number of Guests

One of the most popular wedding trends is creating a smaller guest list. Micro-weddings usually have up to 20-30 people, and elopements which can be as small as the marrying couple, the officiant, and a witness, are seeing a huge surge in popularity. This may be a result of the global pandemic, or that most couples like the idea of minimalism. Either way, small wedding parties reduce the environmental impact. Less food, decorations, seating, traveling, and overall waste is created when your wedding party is small. Your friends and family should respect your decision to keep a wedding intimate and private.

Choose Green Decorations

The lighting and décor you choose helps set the mood for your wedding. Many weddings use materials once and throw them away. These materials are usually made from metal or plastic, and because of their single use are considered quite wasteful. Choose decorations for your wedding that are sustainable. Using decorations more than once throughout the day is a great idea, as is choosing ones that you can use again in your home or at future events. Most wedding flowers are imported and have to be treated with pesticides and fungicides. Choose a local florist and opt for native seasonal flowers. Once you are done with your floral arrangements, you can compost them to create healthy soil. Simplicity in decorations will make your wedding more elegant and will let your guests focus on the immediate beauty around them.

Go on an Eco-Friendly Honeymoon

A honeymoon is a special time for you to bond with your partner. However, many of the popular honeymoon destinations require travel and produce a lot of waste into the environment. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a honeymoon, of course. There are a growing number of eco-friendly resorts that cater to newlyweds. You may also consider finding a place nearby, or choosing to enjoy the great outdoors by camping or staying in a cabin for your getaway. These spaces offer raw nature that can ground and relax you, not to mention the reduced impact these locations have on the environment.

When talking about an environmentally friendly wedding, some think that you have to sacrifice style for sustainability. This simply isn’t true. Weddings that are environmentally friendly can have a simple but earthy and elegant feel to them. This is how most of the weddings are trending. Reduce the impact your wedding has on the environment by choosing a wedding that doesn’t damage the earth.

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