Unique Wedding Ideas
Emma Margeaux Bride Online Columnist

11 Tips to Green-ify Your Wedding

Most eco-warriors spend substantial amounts of time worrying about the environmental affect of their wedding. And with millions of weddings being held each year, this it's easy to imagine the scale of damage being done to the teensy spot of green that we call home. But the good news is that creating a 'green' wedding has never been more accessible or affordable! Read on to do your bit for the planet, without sacrificing your ultimate wedding style or celebrations.

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  • Try to use or incorporate local, organic produce wherever possible. This means that: you're guests won't be exposed to pesticides found in non-organic foods and flowers; the flowers will be fresher and the food tastier as it'll naturally be in season; it'll be cheaper, as you don't have to contribute to the shipping costs of out-of-season, foreign foods; and it leaves a much smaller carbon footprint, as sprayed pesticides and transport are the factors most prominently affecting the environment here. Also, remember that Australia has some of the most exquisite wines available!
     
  • Hold your ceremony and reception at the same location. This will mean that you save on additional transport and decorations (great for your pocketbook as well), as well as being majorly convenient for your guests. 
     
  • Encourage your guests to carpool or provide transport for the masses, such as buses. Where possible, choose fuel efficient weddings cars.
     
  • Go organic or use recyled materials: this applies to your invitations, your dress, any table linens, curtains, hangings, chuppas, etc you're planning on using. Using organic materials not only saves substantial amounts of water (the creation of one pair of jeans uses thousands of litres of water, just to give you an idea), and also saves you from added chemicals and pesticides. Use recycled paper for invitations and remove any excess like registry info etc Ask guests to recycle your invitations. Provide an electronic invitation with extra info (such as registry and RSVP)

  • If you love the look of flowers, but cringe at the thought of how wasteful it is to have thousands of flowers cut just for your wedding, consider using potted flowers where possible. Use potted plants as aisle runners, backdrops for your seating chart stands, and of course, your centrepieces. Your guests will be able to take these beauties home and enjoy them for a long while to come!
  • Register your wedding for carbon credits instead of conventional wedding gifts.  
     
  • Use recycled and eco- friendly material for your wedding bonbonniere too! Give out packets of seeds, saplings, or make an edible bombonniere out of eco-friendly ingredients. 
     
  • Choose eco- friendly candles. Ever noticed that most candles produce a black soot when being burned? Yep, that's carbon too. Opt for soy and honeycomb candles- these are better for the environment, burn more beautifully, and come in every imaginable shape, size, and frangrance.
     
  • Use recycled glassware, if available from your catering company. Often recycled glass comes in a plethora of shapes and sizes- from classic, elegant pieces, to those that are handmade, one-of-a-kind, and a little less conventional. 
     
  • Cut down on extra dishes and cutlery where you can. The manufacturing and washing of dishes wastes thousands of tonnes of carbon every year, so try to use these as minimally as possible. Instead of using dishes within dishes (e.g. a separate ramekin for rice), try to make your separate dishes self contained: stack your vegies artfully, use sweet or savoury crepes to wrap your food, and incorporate finger food onto your menu. 
     
  • Honeymoon locally! Chances are that you, like most Australians, have sunk plenty of money into seeing international sights- and why wouldnt you? Australia will always be there, right? Use this opportunity to help the environment, save some money, and explore the incredibly unique and rich experiences Australia has to offer.

These are just a few ideas, we'd love to hear how you have incorporated green and eco themes into your wedding!

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