Green Thoughts

Happy New Year, friends!

Congrats to all of the beautiful new brides-to-be after this holiday season!  I like to keep up on current wedding trends, and lately, all I see is GREEN! I do love a fresh, lime flavored summer shindig, but I am talking about the idea of green: recycled, homegrown, functional fun.

I got to thinking about this.  We all know about using recycled paper, and tossing birdseed instead of rice, but what are some subtle ways to make your big day more environmentally conscious?  How can you be green, and still keep your day unique to your own style?  I came up with a few ideas…

Be conscience in your favor choice:

  • With so many cute options for favors these days, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and pick something standard: a picture frame, a photo clip…while these are great standbys, there are so many eco-friendly options that will really get your guests talking.
  • Consider an edible favor!  A yummy candy favor will never go to waste (sorry, a little self-promotion…).
  • Another cute option would be reuseable groceries bags, personalized with your wedding details.  Your guests will love the unique idea, and they’ll think of you every time they shop!
  • Many couples are opting for charitable donations in addition to or instead of traditional wedding favors.  Boxes representing a variety of your favorite charities can be placed near the door of the reception.  Each place card can double as a card for guests to put in the box representing the charity they choose.  After the reception, count the number of donations and donate to corresponding amount to each charity.  Great way to pay it forward in starting your new life!  “Thank you for coming, and thank you for sharing!”  Click hereto learn more!

    Swizzle stick suckers make lovely favors. They double as place cards, they decorate add to the table decor, and they make a light, sweet treat for your guests!

Double up!

  • You save money and supplies if you plan to have your wedding accessories double up.
  • Turn your wedding program into a paper fan to keep your guests cool at a summer wedding!  Simple chose a heavy, recycled cardstock for your paper, and attach a popsicle stick to the bottom to form the fan.  To keep with the green-theme, instead of a popsicle stick, you could easily attach a twig instead!
  • Consider doubling your place cards and favors.  Candy buffets are an awesome way to do this.  By selecting recycled paper bags, or take-out boxes and labeling each one individually, guests are able to fill their “place card” with candy, and essentially create their own party favor!
  • Packets of seedlings also make cute, eco-friendly place cards.

Keep it fresh

  • Recently, my sister-in-law opted for potted herbs as favors as her bridal shower.  Each pot was lined with a ribbon in her colors, and there was a tag that read something like “You are the key ingredient to a perfect shower!”  The herbs  looked beautiful on the table, they smelled amazing, and my chives plant is still flavoring my potato soup 8 months later!
  • If you are choosing a signature drink, consider something fresh and light, like a strawberry mojito. (Tried this, 10 out of 10 stars.)
  • If possible, consider using caterers that specialize in homegrown, local foods.  Featuring a homegrown menu is a great way to support local farmers, as well as expose out-of-town guests to the flavors of the area!

Photo compliments of plumparty.com

Minimize driving

  • A great way to keep your wedding day green is to minimize driving for your guests.  Although they will need to get to the ceremony site, holding your ceremony and reception in the same area is a great way to save on gas for guests.
  • To add to this, hosting your event at hotel minimizes driving even more.  It gives your guests the option of staying on site.  This way, they can enjoy celebratory cocktails stress-free.  It also can make the wedding feel more like a vacation, even if it is local.

Recycle! (duh…)

  • Pretty paper flowers from recycled materials make a vintage-looking addition to a receptions decor.
  • Use recycled paper on your programs, place cards, etc.  Give yourself props by including something like “I used to be a newspaper!” or “Have we met?  I’m recycled.”  It may not be everyone’s sense of humor, but whatever, I think it’s hilarious.
  • DO NOT let any of your delicious food go to waste!  There are most likely shelters and homes in your area that would be MORE than happy to take your leftovers.

Oh so pretty decorations made with all recycled paper.

Consider Consignment

  • Used decor and apparel, such as veils and gowns, are a beautiful way to honor the “something old, something borrow” tradition.  Goods at consignment shops are often in beautiful shape, and it’s a great options if you want to be one-of-a-kind! The Barefoot Bride in Memphis, TN is a great example of how elegant consignment can be!

Photo from weddingsbycolor.com

Want to be even GREENER?

  • Check out the Knot for more green ideas, tips, and color palettes!

Peace, happiness, and all the best for 2012,

-Kristine

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