Saving Green by Going Green on Your Big Day
You recycle your Kombucha bottles, compost your celery stumps and never forget your totes when you visit the market (or try really hard not to), so why should your wedding plans be any less eco-friendly?
Okay, maybe you just recycle, but your wedding is one place that going green will definitely save you money. Recycling, re-purposing and some creative thinking will go a long way to cultivating a wedding experience you will be proud to share with your loved ones, and something to feel good about for years to come. What a great way to start a life together!
Make your wedding a blessing and not a burden for the environment or for your budget.
Saying Yes to the Dress
We all know that wedding dresses can cost thousands, if not tens of thousands of dollars. Why purchase a brand new dress that will serve you for just one day when you could use that money traveling and making memories on your honeymoon or purchase some new furniture, both of which will serve you well into the future in your new life together.
Does your mother or grandmother have their wedding dress hiding in a closet or attic somewhere? Make that family gem your own or purchase a gently used dress online or in a consignment shop, then hire a talented tailor to alter it to perfection just for you. You can create a look that is uniquely you at a fraction of the cost of buying off the rack.
Huge savings can be had if you are able to have an outdoor wedding in an area that will already be covered in flowers. Call your local parks and recreation department and ask them which sites have the most permit requests for weddings and other ceremonies.
If you are fortunate enough to live in a beautiful part of the country, consider a secluded beach, a lakeside, or a mountain top wedding that may not require a permit at all, saving you hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Using eVites is, of course, the most environmentally friendly and affordable option for wedding invitations. If you are a bride or groom who just NEEDS to have a physical invitation, then consider using recycled and maybe even seeded paper. What a nice reminder of your special day when your guests plant their invitation and are greeted in a few weeks with wildflowers.
Here is a fantastic place to elicit the help of friends and family and save money. Get creative together and re-purpose items while creating beauty in every nook and cranny of your venue.
Hopefully, you’ve chosen a site for your wedding that includes a lot of natural beauty, but you’ll also want to add some floral touches for tables, bouquets, and boutonnieres. First, think about the season of your wedding and what wildflowers, greenery, and mosses will be available in nature. Then consider how many arrangements you will need.
Thrift stores are packed with vases. There is no reason you should need to purchase or pay a florist for new vases. Ask friends and family to look in thrift stores in their neighborhoods if you can’t find as many as you need locally. They are everywhere. You can also get creative about vessels for flowers. If you are having a rustic wedding, consider mason jars.
Greenery can be found on a hike with your partner or wedding party the week of the wedding. What a great way to spend a fun day together and de-stress. Rather than hiring a florist to simply deliver all of your favorite flowers from an environmentally-unfriendly hothouse, costing you an arm and a leg, use what you can find and forage.
If you, your partner and your wedding party are not particularly talented at floral arranging, or if you do not have flowers available to you during the season of your big day, procure your flowers from a wholesaler, collect your greenery from nature, your vessels from thrift shops and then hire a florist at an hourly rate to simply do the arranging for you.
In keeping with your environmentally friendly theme and money-saving ideas, consider a vegan buffet! Meat options are not only a big stressor for the planet, but it’s also the most expensive item on the menu. Why not order vegan dishes from your favorite restaurant or market, and simply hire servers for the big day?
Additionally, if you plan on serving alcoholic beverages at your wedding, do not feel pressure to have a full open bar all day or night. You can purchase a variety of affordable wine and beer and instruct your bartender about how many hours these beverages will be made available. A good rule of thumb is to stop serving an hour before the scheduled end of the reception. Don’t forget to recommend that your guests use rideshare services to your venue if they are planning to indulge.
A few additional suggestions include the following: Have a daytime wedding and simply serve cake and punch; consider a pot luck reception; opt for food trucks.
There is no need for printing (and paying for) giant wedding photo albums when it can all be done digitally. Just print the ones that bring you joy and will be displayed on your walls.
Consider hiring a photographer to come just for the ceremony and wedding party photos alone. Save money and trees when you solicit your shutterbug friends.
You likely have many guests who would be flattered if you complimented them on their amazing Instagram accounts and asked them to be your unofficial wedding photographers!
Use some of these tips, do some research and browsing on Pinterest and you can be sure that your green-dream wedding is possible no matter what your budget.
Congratulations on your engagement!